Friday, February 19, 2010

Paper twist angel ornaments

The angel in this photo is one of my favorite handmade ornaments. Years ago when my daughters were at a Christian boarding school, their school held a craft fair in the fall. I always loved crafting ornaments for that fair, and this paper twist angel is one of several I made at that time. It was a pattern in Country Handcrafts, later called Crafting Traditions. Ever since, I've wanted to make more of these because they really are very cute.

I've kept all of the supplies on hand. I literally had everything I needed to make more of these angels, but I just hadn't found the time. I even acquired, by way of someone else gifting me with their crafting leftovers, a number of the cute little puffed satin stars and other shapes to use for the angels to hold. Also, over the years I've found other cute little items like wreaths. gifts, lanterns, etc. that would work well in the angels' "hands". I just didn't make any angels...

Fast-forward to this year. After Christmas, I decided I really wanted to make at least one of these and send it to a dear friend. My friend loves the color green and so her angel had to have a green dress. I would have given the angel dark hair like my friend, but couldn't find the dark doll curls I know I have somewhere. Her angel would have to be a blonde! My friend also enjoys tea and all things tea-themed, so I wanted her angel to be holding a teapot. Lo and behold, I had several teapot ornaments I had made years ago out of Sculpey® clay (also from a Crafting Traditions issue). I simply cut the gold hanging thread off one and glued it in the angel's "hands".

Voila! A very customized ornament for a very dear friend!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

yo-yo wreath ornament

Some time ago I posted a picture of a yo-yo candy cane ornament one of my granddaughters had made. Her sister started a yo-yo wreath but tired of it quite quickly. I decided to finish the ornament myself and put it in my stash. Here it is!

I photographed the ornament on the glass-topped desk (with wintry cards under the glass) where I do a lot of my crafting. Very inspirational!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

This year's tags from last year's cards

As I've mentioned before, I usually save Christmas cards for a year, keeping them corralled in a pretty wooden box so that (if I think of it) we can try and pull out a card every day and pray for the person who sent it. Good intentions that I seldom follow through on for very long.

When I take the previous year's cards out to put in the ones from the Christmas just past, I don't throw the old ones away, but instead get out some tag templates, scissors, cord or string, and paper punch to turn them into gift tags for the next Christmas. Here is the batch I made in January.
They're sort of all jumbled together, but you can get an idea of some of the pretty tags that were made from the cards.

There's something very therapeutic about playing with paper and scissors on a dreary winter day, don't you think so?

Monday, February 08, 2010

Two projects from last year

I may have showed these projects before, but want to do so again. They are both a good reminder to me of the wisdom of working on Christmas projects all year round. These are both things I finished last spring or late winter, projects I found in some old Christmas magazines and just wanted to make. It was such fun getting them out to use this year!

This little red felt skate was so much fun to make!

I adapted it a lot. The top cuff was supposed to be fake fur. I used some jumbo loopy chenille which I had on hand, and really liked the result. This project came from a 1960s Christmas magazine.

After taking down the Christmas tree, I couldn't bring myself to put the little skate away just yet. I hung it on my Christmas ribbon board. But then, when I took that down, I added the skate to my Valentine ribbon board, where it fits the wintry, red and white theme just fine.

This table runner which I made last spring turned out to be a real lifesaver this holiday season.

I used it Christmas Eve and far beyond. We had a houseful of people most of January. This runner covered so much of our table (even with all the leaves in) that it was very helpful keeping the table clean and also cushioning serving dishes. This project was from a 1980 Decorating & Craft Ideas magazine and I just love the result. It makes me smile every time I look at it. This winter I hope to make some of the matching placemats.

So if there were Christmas projects you didn't get to this past holiday, don't give up and just put them away. Go ahead and work on them right now! Next Christmas, you'll be glad you did.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Candlewicking Christmas tree skirt

I thought I would take a minute to share photos of my Christmas tree skirt. This is one I made many years ago. It is candlewicking, done from a kit which my parents gave me. It took me quite some time to finish this project -- stitching the lace around the edge was more time-consuming than the actual stitchery! -- but I finally did and have used it every Christmas since. You really can' t see much of the tree skirt in the above photo, other than that pesky lace, so here are more that I finally thought to take this year.

You can see that the main motif is a beribboned heart between two doves.

In between these main motifs are smaller motifs of a candle. Here's a closeup of a candle motif.

I keep thinking I would like to make a new tree skirt, perhaps a crocheted or patchwork one. But I'll hold on to this one for its sentimental value.