Smooth Half Ball Trees

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

Create a stunning holiday centerpiece with FloraCraft® by cutting foam balls in half and gluing them together.

Materials

  • FloraCraft® Foam: Balls, 1” (6), 1-1/2” (3), 2” (3), 2-1/2” (3), 3” (3), 4” (2); Cones, 9”x3”, 6”x3”
  • FloraCraft® Smooth Finish™
  • Metallic silver textured yarn
  • Acrylic paints: mint green, white, silver
  • Triple-thick gloss glaze

Tools

  • FloraCraft® Make it: Fun® Foam Cutter or serrated knife
  • Glue gun and sticks

Basic Supplies

paint spatula or putty knife, flat paintbrush, fine sanding block, straight pins, toothpicks, ruler, scissors, paper towels, rubber gloves, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions

Sizes

4”x18″, 4″x15”, 3″x13”

Trees

1. For tallest tree, cut one each 4”, 3”, 2-1/2”, 2”, and 1-1/2” balls in half. Using glue gun, stack and adhere all half balls together, from largest to smallest, inserting half toothpicks between each layer. See Photo 1. Stack balls straight up or asymmetrically as shown. Adhere two 1” balls to top of tree.

Photo 1

2. For medium tree, repeat Step 1 but set aside one 4” half ball for a future project. Stack and adhere remaining half balls together. Adhere two 1” balls to top of tree.

3. For smallest tree, repeat Step 1 using one each 3”, 2-1/2”, 2”, and 1-1/2” balls. Stack and adhere all half balls together. Adhere two 1” balls to top of tree.

4. Following manufacturer’s instructions, mix Smooth Finish™ prior to use. Wearing rubber gloves, completely coat trees with Smooth Finish™ using spatula or flat paintbrush using methods outlined in Steps 5 and 6. See Photo 2. When using spatula, apply small amount to foam and spread evenly in all directions, working finish into foam cells. When using paintbrush, load material onto brush and spread onto foam, smoothing lumps as you work.

Photo 2

5. To create textured finish on tallest tree, first use brush to apply coating to crevices of tree, and then use spatula to create small, overlapping ripples in coating. Apply small mound Smooth Finish™ to tree and then another overlapping first mound. Keep working with coating until tree is covered and fairly uniform. Let dry completely. Use sanding block to lightly sand raised areas to create smooth appearance as shown. See Photo 3.

Photo 3

6. To create super sleek finish on smaller trees, use brush to smooth out coating as you apply it. Apply first with spatula, then smooth with brush, or simply use brush to apply coating to entire tree. Let dry completely. Use sanding block to create ultra-smooth appearance.

7. Use drybrush technique to apply mint green paint to tallest tree. To drybrush, dip flat paintbrush into paint and rub off excess onto paper towel. Using side of brush, lightly brush across raised areas of tree to add color, leaving recessed areas bare. Let dry. See Photo 4.

Photo 4

8. Paint medium tree mint green and small tree white. Let dry.

9. Following manufacturer’s instructions, apply even coat gloss glaze to all three trees. See Photo 5. Let dry completely.

Photo 5

10. To create tree trunks, cut top 4” from 9” cone using foam cutter or serrated knife. Use remaining 5” section to create base for tallest tree. Cut top 3/4″ from 4” section; use remaining 3-1/4” section to create base for smallest tree. Cut top 2-1/2” from 6” cone; use remaining 3-1/2” section to create base for medium tree.

11. Coat tree bases with Smooth Finish™, let dry, and sand surface smooth. Paint bases silver; let dry.

12. Insert toothpicks halfway into tops of bases. Use glue gun to adhere trees in place.

13. Embellish trees with metallic yarn. Pin one end of yarn to top of tree and spiral down around to bottom. Secure yarn end with pin at bottom of tree.

Tip

  • For added sparkle, use glue gun to adhere tiny crystal gems over surface of each tree base.

by Dondi Richardson for FloraCraft® (www.makeitfuncrafts.com)

Hatbox Snowman

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

 

To beat the summer heat, throw a “Christmas in July” party. Create this adorable, quick-and-simple Hatbox Snowman to decorate your patio and spread the Christmas cheer! No snow required!

Materials

  • Round papier-mâché boxes with lids, one each size: 5-1⁄2”x7” diameter, 4”x8” diameter, 4-1⁄2”x10” diameter
  • Wooden shapes: 3⁄4” discs, five; 1” disc, three; 1-1/4” hearts, two; 2” carrot
  • Rusty tin items: primitive heart, 1-1⁄4” across; jingle bell, 1” diameter; shovel, 12”
  • Fabrics: green/ecru homespun, 1”x27”; burgundy felt, 1⁄4 yd.
  • Acrylic paints: Rust, White, Black, Burgundy, Hunter Green
  • Aleene’s Brush-on Snow
  • Artificial pine sprigs, two
  • Pine cone, 1-1⁄2”
  • Jute twine, 1-1⁄4 yds.

Tools

  • Palette knife
  • Paintbrushes: flat, liner
  • Needle and burgundy thread
  • All-purpose primer
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue

Basic Supplies

scissors, ruler, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions

Size

20″ tall

Snowman

1. Remove lid from small box and discard. On covered work surface, apply one coat all-purpose primer to outside of boxes and remaining lids; let dry. Paint boxes White. Adhere boxes together, with smallest box at top; let dry.

2. Paint the following: small discs (eyes/mouth) Black; hearts (cheeks) and two large discs (buttons) Burgundy; carrot (nose) Rust; remaining large disc (button) Hunter Green. Let dry.

3. Using palette knife and following manufacturer’s instructions, apply brush-on snow to boxes. While still wet, and using photo as placement guide, push painted wooden shapes and rusty tin heart into snow. Let dry overnight.

4. For hat, cut 5”x14” piece from felt. Sew gathering stitches along both long edges. Pull gathers tight on one edge for top of hat. Fit open end of hat around top of head; pull threads to gather and spot glue to head.

5. For hat band, cut 1-1⁄2”x23” strip from felt. Beginning and ending at center back, adhere band around top of head, over hat gathers. Trim ends as needed.

6. Using a liner brush, highlight eyes, cheeks, and nose with White. Thin brush-on snow with water; spatter paint hat.

7. Cut three 6” lengths from twine. Tie each length into a bow; adhere bows to buttons. Use remaining twine to tie shovel around neck. Tie fabric around neck to hide twine; knot fabric at right side of neck. Adhere bell to top of hat. Adhere greenery and pine cone to right side of hat.

by Bonnie Stephens

Festive Holiday Frame

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

 

Capture your Christmas memories with a photo of your family on Christmas day and display in this Festive Holiday Frame. 

 Materials

  • Cardstock or construction paper: red, white
  • Cardboard or chipboard, 8-1/2” square, 3”x8-1/2” strip
  • Christmas day family photo

Tools

  • Craft glue

Basic Supplies

scissors, ruler

Directions

Size

8-1/2″ square

Frame

1. Measure and cut 8-1/2” white paper square. Cut out 3” square in center of frame (for photo opening).

2. Print and cut out patterns.

3. Measure and cut four 2-1/4” red paper squares. Fold squares diagonally in half. Cut star design from squares, placing line on fold, and cutting on dashed lines. Open up design and adhere on corners of white square, leaving 1/4” border on edges.

4. Measure and cut four 2”x3-1/4” red paper rectangles. Adhere rectangles between corner square designs.

5. Measure and cut 3”x9” white paper strip. Fold strip in half lengthwise. Cut four large heart shapes from folded strip, placing line on fold, and cutting on dashed lines. Open up designs and adhere on centers of red paper rectangles. See photo.

6. Measure and cut 2-1/2”x7” red paper strip. Fold strip in half lengthwise. Cut four medium heart shapes from folded strip, following directions above. Adhere medium heart shapes on center of white heart shapes. See photo

7. Measure and cut 2”x4” white paper strip. Fold strip in half lengthwise. Cut four small heart shapes from folded strip, following directions above. Adhere small heart shapes on center of medium heart shapes. See photo.

8. Tape photo inside opening on back of white paper square. Adhere white paper square to 8½” cardboard square.

9. To make easel for frame, cut 3”x8-1/2” cardboard strip. Bend strip 2” from end. Adhere 2” end, aligning top edges, to center back of frame.

Tip

Be sure to date your frame. Continue this as a Christmas tradition each year as you’ll love these precious mementos in year to come.

by Mary Ayres

Christmas Friend Coasters

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

 

These adorable Christmas Friend Coasters are sure to spark some holiday spirit. Or, create them as a great last-minute gift idea.

Materials

  • Round cork coasters, 3-3/4”
  • Craft foam: white, black, red
  • Wooden shapes, assorted sizes: circles, teardrops, hearts, triangles
  • White felt, scraps
  • Ribbon, 6” lengths
  • Wiggle eyes, two

Tools

  • DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paints: Lamp Black, Snow White, Flesh Tone, Baby Pink, Primary Yellow, Jack-O’-Lantern Orange
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue

Basic Supplies

scissors, ruler, paintbrushes, black marker, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions

STEP 1

Print and cut out patterns. Cut coaster from craft foam as follows: snowman and polar bear white, Santa red, penguin black.

STEP 2

On covered work surface, paint wooden shapes as follows: polar bear: two circles (ears) white, one circle (muzzle) black, two circles (inner ears) pink; Santa: one circle (face) tan, two teardrops (mustache) white, one circle (nose) pink; penguin: one heart (eyes) white, one triangle (beak) yellow; snowman: teardrop (nose) orange. Let dry.

STEP 3

Adhere cork coaster onto center of craft foam coaster. Using photo as guide, adhere wooden items on coasters.

STEP 4

For Santa, cut beard and freehand cut hair from white felt scrap; adhere onto face. For snowman and Santa, cut mittens from white craft foam. For penguin and polar bear, cut mittens from black craft foam. Adhere mittens on sides of body.

STEP 5

Use black marker to add details and eyes on faces and draw three buttons down center of coasters. Measure and cut 6” ribbon length for each coaster (except Santa). Tie ribbon bow; adhere below head.

Tip

For ease in painting wooden shapes, tape onto newspaper.

by Melony Bradley

 

Vegetable-Stamped Reindeer Towel & Mitts

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

 

Finally, it’s okay to play with your food! You don’t just have to eat your vegetables — use them to stamp cool designs! This set makes the perfect gift for the cook in the family!  

Materials

  • Kitchen towel set: dish towel, oven mitt, pot holder
  • Vegetables, one each: celery stalk; large potato; baby carrots, three
  • DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paints: Milk Chocolate, Mistletoe, True Red, Cool White, Lamp Black
  • Red/white checked ribbon, 3⁄4” wide, 13” lengths, three
  • Gold jingle bells, 5⁄8”, three

Tools

  • Sewing needle and white sewing thread
  • Sponge or paintbrush

Basic Supplies

scissors, toothpick, paper towels, knife, paper plate (palette), newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions

How to Stamp with Vegetables

1. Use knife to cut vegetables as desired. Dab cut ends on paper towels to remove excess moisture.

2. Use sponge or paintbrush to dab cut vegetable ends with paint.

3. Press painted side of vegetable onto fabric, applying even pressure. Lift vegetable straight up.

4. Reapply paint as needed. Let dry.

Reindeer Design

1. Cut: potato in half (head); celery stalk into 1-1⁄4” and 3” pieces (antlers); one carrot in half widthwise (nose); one carrot in half lengthwise (ears). Adults, help kids when using knife.

2. Stamp head and ears Milk Chocolate.

3. Stamp antlers above head Mistletoe.

4. Stamp nose below head True Red.

5. Use end of uncut carrot to stamp eyes Lamp Black. Let dry.

6. Use toothpick to dot highlights in eyes and nose Cool White; let dry.

7. Tie ribbon length into bow. Use needle and thread to sew jingle bell to center of bow; secure with knot. Sew bow below reindeer; knot thread ends.

Tips

  • Wipe vegetables clean with a paper towel instead of washing with water. The less moisture in the stamp, the easier it is to absorb the paint.
  • Check out a dollar or discount store for inexpensive kitchen towel sets.
  • For younger kids, use heavy-duty tacky or fabric glue instead of needle and thread to secure bell to bow.

by Mary Ayres

Die-Cut Ticking Fabric Ornaments

Simple supplies such as red and green ticking fabric purchased at most fabric supply shops lend a charming, rustic feel to handmade ornaments such as these charming stuffed bird ornaments that were cut from a Sizzix BigShot die-cut machine and this beautiful bird die from Brenda Pinnick from Sizzix.

Simply die cut two layers of ticking fabric using the BigShot machine and ticking fabric for each bird ornament.

Fuse red wool felt to webbing and free hand heart shapes with scissors.  Iron in place on front shape.

Use two strands of embroidery floss and cross-stitch edges in place.

For the wing shape, cut a 3” teardrop shape and use it to trace two shapes from natural burlap. Cut the shapes out with scissors.

Use alphabet stamps for a short and sweet sentiment like “joy, “peace” or “noel” and stamp on fused burlap. Cut out sentiment and fuse to one of the burlap wing shapes using an iron and pressing surface. I used tiny alphabet stamps for my sentiments but you can use whatever holiday-themed words you might have on hand.

Sew the muslin in place with black thread and a straight stitch. Place the wrong sides of the wings together and sew 1/4” from ends, leaving a tiny opening for stuffing. Stuff wings with Polyfil Fiberfill Stuffing by Fairfield and sew opening closed.

Repeat this process for the bird. Be careful not to overstuff the bird or it will be difficult to machine sew closed.

Finally adhere the wing to the bird using a fabric glue such as Fabri-Tac by Beacon Adhesives. Embellish bird as desired. I adhered a tiny pebble bead for the eye and added some felt die-cut flowers.

 

The possibilities are endless. These birds look sweet hanging from a mantle or even as a special package tag.

Melony Bradley (www.mel-designs.typepad.com)

Winter Wishes

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

 

Adorable, easy-to-paint wooden snowmen can be displayed or reused throughout the winter season.

Materials

  • Midwest Products Co., Inc. Basswood: 3/16”x3/8”x24”, 1/8”x3”x24”
  • Glossy royal blue gift bag
  • White cardstock
  • Papers: black-and-white gingham, blue-and-white snowflake print
  • Small black brads, 18
  • Black alphabet stickers
  • Black-and-white gingham ribbon

Tools

  • Drill with bits: 1/16”, 3/16”
  • Midwest Products Co., Inc. Easy Cutter Tool
  • Acrylic paints: white, black, orange
  • Black dye ink pad
  • Adhesives: paper glue, glue gun and glue sticks, Plaid Paper Mod Podge

Basic Supplies

paper trimmer, scissors, ruler, pencil, black fine-tip marker, fine-grit sandpaper, foam brush, round paintbrush

Directions

Prepare Wood

1. Cut three 4-1/2” lengths from wide basswood strip. Cut one 6” length from same piece for tag. Cut two corners from 6” piece to create tag shape; set aside.

2. Cut three 4” lengths from narrow basswood strip. Cut three corners from remainder of same piece for snowman noses.

3. Sand all pieces. Using round brush, paint 4-1/2” pieces white, 4” pieces black, and noses orange. Let dry.

4. Cut three 3”x2-1/2” gingham paper pieces. Adhere pieces to top half of each white snowman for hats. Adhere black wooden hat bands across snowmen as shown; let dry.

5. Using drill and 1/16” bit, drill four holes for mouth and two holes for eyes in each snowman. Insert brads; bend ends at back to secure. Adhere nose to face. Draw eyebrows with marker.

6. Cut three 2-1/2”x1-1/2” white cardstock strips; ink edges and adhere to hats.

7. Ink bottom edges of snowmen.

Card

1. Make 5”x6-1/2” white side-fold card. Cut 5”x6-1/2” snowflake paper panel; adhere to card.

2. Adhere snowman to center of card using glue gun.

3. Cut three 5” ribbon lengths; adhere two lengths to top and bottom of card. Knot remaining length in center; adhere beneath snowman’s chin.

4. Apply stickers to white cardstock to spell “Winter Wishes.”

Tag

1. Trace basswood tag onto back of snowflake paper; cut out paper tag and adhere to wood tag using Mod Podge and foam brush. Let dry. Ink tag edges.

2. Using drill and 3/16” bit, drill hole in top of tag.

3. Adhere snowman to center of tag using glue gun.

4. Cut two 5” ribbon lengths. Thread one length through hole in tag; knot ends together. Knot remaining length in center; adhere beneath snowman’s chin.

5. Apply stickers to white cardstock to spell “to” and “from.”

Gift Bag

1. Cut 4”x5” snowflake paper panel; ink edges and adhere to gift bag.

2. Adhere snowman to center of snowflake paper using glue gun.

3. Cut 6” ribbon length. Knot center and adhere beneath snowman’s chin.

4. Apply stickers to white cardstock to spell “For You.”

Tip

Adhere a magnet to the back of the snowman before adhering to surface with double-sided tape. Recipient can add it to the fridge for a fun winter decoration.

by Melony Bradley for Midwest Products (www.midwestproducts.com)

Ho, Ho, Homemade Santa

Creating handmade holiday home décor doesn’t have to be a complicated process.

It’s Jill Cornell here today with a quick and easy idea to make a whimsical Santa to add to your holiday décor. All you need to get started is a foam cone shape, pipe cleaner, hot glue gun, cotton balls, cardstock, paint, pom-pom trim, and your favorite patterned paper collection and embellishments. (I’m using the Welcome Christmas Collection by Pebbles Inc. for my Santa.)

Cut the cardstock to a half-circle and wrap around the cone. Hot glue is a great adhesive for this type of project. Do the same with a piece of patterned paper for Santa’s hat. Santa’s face was easily added by painting a flesh-colored spot on the cone, adding punched black circles for eyes, a brad for the nose, and a border sticker for the mouth. Santa’s beard of cotton balls was simply hot glued to the cone. Add some alphabet stickers to make your Santa extra “merry. “

Adhere a border sticker for the hat and pom-pom trim. A pre-made felt embellishment and flag help dress up Santa. Finally, add some cotton balls to the top of Santa’s hat.

My Santa is currently sitting on my fireplace mantel among a collection of Santas – all handmade by me over the years. I even have papier-mâché and wooden versions that I made in elementary school. And this would make a great project for older children supervised with the hot glue.

Jill Cornell from Blessed Scrapper (www.jillcornell.blogspot.com)

Holiday Glasses

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

 

Painted holiday ribbon and pine bough mugs will create a festive atmosphere for your next holiday party.

Materials

  • Glass mug, 5” tall
  • Plaid FolkArt Enamel Paints: Engine Red, Coffee Bean, Fresh Foliage, Green Forest, Metallic Pure Gold
  • Plaid FolkArt Clear Medium

Tools

  • Plaid FolkArt One Stroke Mini Brush Set

Basic Supplies

tape, oven, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions

STEP 1

Clean mug. Print and cut out pattern; tape to inside of mug.

STEP 2

Paint ribbon Fresh Foliage and stripes Engine Red. Mix equal parts Green Forest and Clear Medium; shade ribbon. Paint stripes and dots Pure Gold. Paint stem Coffee Bean and needles Fresh Foliage. When dry, add Green Forest needles.

STEP 3

Follow manufacturer’s instructions to bake mug.

by Holli Long for Plaid Enterprises, Inc. (www.plaidonline.com)

Christmas Star Ornament

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

 

Give paper scraps star quality when you bring them together in this charming ornament.

Materials

  • Bazzill Basics Paper Papaya Puree Medium Cardstock
  • Karen Foster Design Christmas Collection Papers: Ornaments, Christmas Bells, Home for the Holidays Collage, Poinsettias
  • Metallic gold floss

Tools

  • Computer and printer
  • Scoring tool
  • Small star punch
  • Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Pine Needles Ink Pad
  • Ranger Stickles Gold Glitter Glue
  • Therm O Web Adhesives: Zots Singles Small, 3D Foam Squares, SuperStik Glue Stick

Basic Supplies

paper trimmer, scissors, ruler, pencil, white printer paper

Directions

Size

7-3/4”

Ornament

1. Print pattern front and pattern back onto orange cardstock. Print second front pattern onto printer paper. Cut out patterns; set aside back pattern.

2. Using straight edge, scoring tool, and pattern as guide, score orange cardstock front piece along dashed lines. Gently fold “mountain” peaks on star points to center; folds will come toward you. Gently fold “valley” peaks from center to opposite edge; folds will point away from you.

3. Do not score printer paper star. Align it with orange cardstock star, rotating shape for best fit. Once stars are aligned, number corresponding sections on both stars from one to 10.

4. Cut numbered sections from printer paper star; use sections as templates to cut pieces from assorted patterned papers. Ink edges of each piece with Pine Needles ink; adhere to corresponding section on orange star using glue stick.

5. Stack and apply four foam squares to center of back star; apply foam square in middle of each point. Apply small adhesive dot at tip of each point.

6. Cut gold floss length for hanging loop; knot ends and press to adhesive at top point. Adhere front and back orange stars together.

7. Punch small star from orange cardstock and adhere to ornament center; coat star with glitter glue and let dry.

Tip

Using a glue stick to adhere individual pieces of paper gives you a bit more drying time to get them in position, compared with using other types of adhesive.

by Alice Golden (www.alicegolden.typepad.com)