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amy powers’

inspired ideas christmas 2010

volume 2, no. 2

dear friends

T

his really is the most wonderful time of the year! And although I know your days will be filled with gift wrapping and cookie baking and shopping, I hope you'll be inspired to make room in your schedule to make some of the lovely projects featured in the next 100+ pages. It's a bit of a crafty smorgasbord with everything from wreaths and decorations, to gift packaging and tags, to gifts to make. More than a few of these projects are great for the whole family to work on together. I think Thanksgiving evening, after the dishes are washed and everyone is fat and happy on turkey, is a perfect time to craft as a family. I'm honored to have in this issue a guest list of amazing talent, crafting celebrities, blogging friends, and kindred spirits all gracing these pages with a fabulous array of projects to make this holiday extra beautiful. I hope you love this magazine as much as I’ve loved putting it together for you. I couldn’t have done it without all the help from my wonderful friends who donated their time and talent to make projects to share with you. Happy Crafting! with my love,

Amy Powers

contents dear friends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 guest list . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 design team . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11 gift garland . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 candy canes . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18 merry elves . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22 peace on earth wreath . . . . . .26 village houses . . . . . . . . . . . .28 muffin tin advent calendar . . .36 felt ornaments . . . . . . . . . . . .42 sweet baskets . . . . . . . . . . . . .46 snowman gift tins . . . . . . . . .52 silhouette tags . . . . . . . . . . . .58 printable tags . . . . . . . . . . . . .62 fun festoon . . . . . . . . . . . . . .66 ornament chandelier . . . . . . .78 magical balloon ride . . . . . . . .82

vintage treasures wreath . . . . .88 patch works . . . . . . . . . . . . .92 crystal icicle . . . . . . . . . . . . .102 yarn ball wreath . . . . . . . . . .108 china doll tree topper . . . . . .114 burlap & lace doorhanging . .118 sampler tree . . . . . . . . . . . . .122 chenille chain . . . . . . . . . . . .126 felt playmat . . . . . . . . . . . . .130 swedish stocking . . . . . . . . .134 yo-yo tree . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .140 christmas tree apron . . . . . . .144 snowflake cake . . . . . . . . . . .150 happy necklace . . . . . . . . . .152 cookie cutter jewelry . . . . . .156 vintage-inspired doll . . . . . . .162 christmas sampler . . . . . . . .166 christmas 2010

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guest list Kristi Jackson

Stephanie Woody

Teresa McFayden Lynn Lebsack

Jone Hallmark Molly Pearce

Deryn Mentock

Analise Sledd Danielle Muller

Janet McCaffrey

Lianne & Paul Stoddard Heidi Woodruff

Charlotte Lyons

Kellie Dykast

Heather Buhaj

Ann Vaughan & Linda Campbell

Jerusalem Greer

Mary Engelbreit Pam Garrison

Sadie Hartmann

Amy Hanna

Sasha Libby

Jenny B. Harris

amy powers’

inspired ideas volume 2, no. 2

christmas 2010

AMY POWERS . . . . . .EDITOR Design Team: Pam Keravuori, Charlotte Lyons, Sasha Libby

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR & SUBMISSIONS: Email amy@inspireco.com or send correspondence to Amy Powers, Inspired Ideas, 5213 Tulip Leaf Court, Centreville VA 20120 ADVERTISING: Email advertising@inspireco.com if you are interested in advertising opportunities.

Š Copyright 2010 by Inspire Co. LLC All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced in any form without written permission of copyright owner. All images contained within have been reproduced with the knowledge and prior consent of the artists concerned and no responsibility is accepted by the publisher, Inspire Co. for any infringement of copyright or otherwise arising from the contents of this publication. Every effort has been made to ensure that the projects within this magazine are original.

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design team Charlotte Lyons's creative repertoire includes a happy mix of design, crafts and

art - as well as illustrated books she writes about creative life. Trained as a teacher, she has developed techniques for painting, stitchery, collage and design that infuse her work with an eclectic handmade charm. After growing up in a household decorated with colorful textiles and flea-market finds, Charlotte's work is still inspired by the humble designs of traditional art and craft and the inventive use of everyday materials. Born and educated in St. Louis, Charlotte raised three artistic daughters in a bright pink house near Chicago. Presently, she lives in a green house along the Hudson River in New York with her husband and daughters. Charlotte shares her creative life on her popular blog http:/housewrenstudio.typepad.com

Sasha Libby was raised over her father's art studio. As she kept him company while

we worked, she was encouraged to pick up a paint brush or try her hand at printmaking at a very early age. As she (and her creativity) grew, she found herself in the studio working with her father (now known throughout blogland as The Secret Weapon) making jewelry, ornaments for Christmas trees, special toys, miniatures... and all sorts of silly things. Truth be told, if she can come up with an idea, The Secret Weapon can help her execute it. They like to brainstorm and solve problems together. When Saucy isn't talking her entire family into helping her with a project, she is thinking about the next project, blogging the last one, and probably taking credit from The Secret Weapon. She lives with husband Veto and daughter Loopy in a one hundred year old house that seems a little quiet now that Buddy Budderson has moved away to school and taken his drum kit. She very much enjoys eating pastry. Read Saucy’s blog and you’ll never be the same: http://www.saucysprinkles.com

Pamela Keravuori's formal art training began with a coveted scholarship during high

school to Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia. Although she did her graduate studies in French Literature, Behavioral Psychology, and International Relations, earning a President's Fellowship to Rhode Island School of Design finally convinced her to pursue a painting career. Pamela's "day jobs" included working as an interior designer in NC, a buyer for Wedgwood and Estée Lauder in Germany, and a gallery director for the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, VA. But those jobs merely supported the flow of art supplies into her ever-changing studios as she followed her husband on his military assignments. After many years of exhibiting her large abstracts in Europe and at home, amassing a healthy pile of exhibition catalogs and reviews in several languages, and adding her paintings to many collections, both public and private, Pam is still keen on expanding her creative skills. Along the way, her poetry has been published, and she hand-wrote and illustrated a cookbook that was twice published and sold out in Germany. Lately she's been exploring new crafting techniques, happily looking for ways to combine them with her paintings. Her four children and three grandchildren are her biggest fans. Read Pam’s blog to find out what she’s up to lately: http://pamelajanes.blogspot.com

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gift garland M

y husband and I both share similar Christmas memories of lying under the decorated Christmas tree and counting and sorting the gifts. I could hardly wait until Christmas day to open each one! There was always a special gift, the best wrapped gift. I remember thinking that this gift must be something completely magical that I really, really want, to be so beautifully wrapped! I would sit there every evening, under the tree, and dream of Christmas. This cheerful present garland is based on those warm holiday memories. It is sure to welcome guests and friends and remind them that Christmas is just around the corner! I’ve taken some simple items that I had in my craft room and created a festive garland you can hang just about anywhere in your home.

by Analise Sledd christmas 2010

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Instructions

Scissors and tape Hot Glue A variety of small boxes‌I’ve recycled some empty boxes from my pantry. Your favorite Christmas wrapping papers and adornments, ribbons and trimmings. 3 yards of tinsel wire or other festive ribbon for hanging the garland.

1 Wrap each box using a variety of wrapping papers. Try to use colors that coordinate with your usual Christmas dĂŠcor, so they fit right in.

2 Decorate each box using an assortment of ribbons, trimmings, beads, baubles, miniature ornaments and bows.

3 Lay out the wrapped gifts out and decide in what order you would like them to hang. Try to hang some vertically and some horizontally, balancing between the small, medium and larger boxes.

4 After deciding the order and arrangement you like for the gifts, hot glue the tinsel wire or sturdy ribbon to the back side of each gift. Be sure to leave enough ribbon/wire at each end for hanging the garland. You should leave just

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a few inches between gifts to keep them hanging well. Too much space between them will cause them to droop.

5 After gluing the gifts onto the ribbon, if you like, tie some small ribbon scraps and perhaps a few small ornaments to each end and in between the gifts for some more festive cheer. Now your garland is ready to hang and enjoy! You will find this garland is really easy and takes only a little time to assemble. I really love the idea of having gifts adorn the house to remind us of the true spirit of Christmas… generosity, giving and goodwill.

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Being crafty has always been a part of what makes me, me. If you know me at all, you know that I enjoy making my surroundings pretty — that’s just who I am. I can’t help it! I love to embellish and add a little “zhoosh” to everything I do. Creating has always made me feel complete as a person, doing what I was uniquely created to do. Sugar*Sugar, the name of my blog and shop, was named such because I wanted to focus on the things that I love: cupcakes, donuts, and sweets of all kinds…quite literally, in fact, as my waistline will tell you! But, I knew I could translate that warm “fuzzy” feeling into what I was making…tangible art that can make you want to eat it! “Sugary Sweets” is what my art is all about — something cozy, warm, and inviting to brighten your day and bring you comfort. To learn more about Analise Sledd, visit leesiebella.typepad.com & www.thesugarsugarshop.com.

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candy canes M

y youngest son Miles loves to craft and he loves to "help" me with projects when I am crafting. I am always looking for ways I can include him on a project without losing my mind at the same time. With this project I was able to give him a variety of tasks— from stirring the pipe cleaners in the tea while they soaked to helping me "paint" them with glue towards the end. We made these to use as ornaments on our tree, to give away to friends who visited during the holidays, and to use as embelishements on our gifts. I love how they look all bunched up and tied together with a great tag made out of brown kraft paper cardstock. I think this year we may even try food coloring instead of tea on a batch. I am thinking a faded pink & rich red would be delightful, don't you? Enjoy!

by Jerusalem Greer christmas 2010

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Step 6 Using a small paint brush, brush your

candy cane lightly with glue, then dust with glitter (I used silver.) Shake off excess glitter and re-fluff your candy cane by running it between your fingers, allowing some of the glitter to fall off. You don't want huge clumps of glitter—just a light dusting.

Step 7 Let glue and glitter dry. Step 8 Repeat many times, making as many candy canes as you want!

Step 1

Gather your pipe cleaners in red and white. I used the thicker fuzzier ones, but the thinner traditional size will work as well. These can be purchased at large discount stores and craft stores.

Step 2 Soak your pipe cleaners in a hot-tea bath for a vintage look. (I used several family-size tea bags in a big stew pot of boiling water. To keep my pipe-cleaners from rising to the top, I placed a regular dinner plate in the pot to hold them down.) Let soak for 1-2 hours. (If you would like, add a tid bit of vinegar to help the tea color set.)

Step 3 Drain all the tea off your pipe cleaners, then gently squeeze out some of their excess liquid—but not too much. They need to still be fairly wet for Step 4.

Step 4 Place pipe cleaners in clothes dryer and dry for 10-15 minutes on high heat. Make sure to include a fabric softener sheet. This will help set the tea stain further and fluff your pipe cleaners back up. Letting them air dry will take longer and result in a wimpier pipe cleaner.

Step 5 Twist 1 “white” and 1 red dry and fluffy

pipe cleaner together and bend into a candy-cane shape. (If you want to make smaller candy canes like these shown, cut each pipe cleaner in half before twisting.)

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Jerusalem Greer has a hard time writing her bio because she cannot figure out how to sum up her life in a few titles. She also feels overly self-important even thinking that she is beyond titles, therefore she is at an impasse. So here are few facts that might provide insight if not explanation: She is married to her Sweet Man of 14 years, has 2 amazingly creative and very messy boys, 1 dog, 1 hamster, 1 toad and 1 hedgehog. As a family, they are planning (hoping, fingers crossed) to adopt 2 little girls next year as she feels she needs some allies in the gender department. Her favorite phrase currently is toute de suite even though she doesn't love what it means, just how it sounds. She thinks it should mean Too Sweet, so she is likely to use it that way even though it is wrong. She loves yoga, wraparound sweaters, camping, eating rotisserie chicken with her fingers and finding free stuff on the side of the road. Her favorite part of designing is seeing what was just before in her imagination come to life for others to enjoy. You can always find Jerusalem blogging and creating at http://jollygoodegal.com

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merry elves A

s if I don’t have enough to do to get ready for the holidays, I decided to make a whole family of elves out of— of all things—toilet paper rolls! Well, I made exactly one, and here he is. Then I thought of an easier way to reproduce him. Just for Amy’s Inspired Ideas, I’ve drawn a little elf that you can just glue onto a toilet paper roll and leave as is or embellish to your heart’s content! I think a whole line of them on your mantel would look amazing, or they could hang on your tree or even be turned into gift boxes for that perfect little present for that perfect little person. However you decide to proceed, may he (she??) bring you lots of holiday joy!

by Mary Engelbreit

Click to print your very own Merry Elf!

 Double-stick tape is probably the easiest to use for constructing your elf. Just use a strip at both ends of the elf cut-out and attach to your empty toilet paper roll.



Cut out two sets of arms for each elf and glue together to make them two-sided. Attach the arms with a glue dot. Wouldn’t it be cute to put a little something in his hand...like a tiny candy cane? Or make a bunch of them for your Christmas table to hold name cards. © ME Ink

®

Use this template to cut your elf’s hat out of felt. We trimmed the hat with chenille yarn and then knotted a bit of it to make a quick (& very cute) pom-pom for the top!

K This makes a great after-Thanksgiving project for the kids’ table! Print out a bunch of them and give them safety scissors, tape, & an assortment of embellishments. Older kids can make the felt hats for the younger bunch. If you don’t have enough toilet paper rolls, they can just roll the paper and secure with double-stick tape.

Mary Engelbreit estimates that she has completed more than 5,000 illustrations since beginning her professional career. Her art springs from real life, and real life—she is quick to point out—just keeps happening. With the help of her staff, Mary goes to great lengths to make certain her artwork is reproduced as faithfully to her original work as possible. Today, Mary Engelbreit Studios and The Mary Engelbreit Online Store are headquartered in Mary’s hometown, St. Louis, Missouri. Thousands of national and international retailers sell Mary Engelbreit products. It’s an amazing degree of success for any company, but even more remarkable considering that it all began with a single-minded young girl who decided at age 11 that she was going to be an artist. And while Mary Engelbreit Studios has grown into a global licensing and retail business, that same girl still sits at its core, grown up now, but drawing her pictures with the same sense of wonder, imagination, and enthusiasm. christmas 2010

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peace on earth wreath

by Charlotte Lyons 26

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inspired ideas

village houses Y

ou’ll never guess what’s used for the bases of these glitter houses. Cereal boxes! You know the miniature ones

that come in a variety pack? Well, they are the perfect size to make houses from, using the construction of the box as a starting point. Without much of the hassle of measuring and scoring, these houses are a breeze to make. You’ll be making them faster than your kids can eat the cereal! With three different shapes to create, you can make a whole village of these Putz-inspired houses, including a church with a steeple.

by Amy Powers christmas 2010

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Supplies Q

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Mini cereal box A larger empty box (like a regular-size cereal box) Gesso Paint Paintbrushes Scissors that can cut cardboard (I like Tim Holtz’s micro serrated scissors) Xacto knife Clear glass glitter Snow-Tex by DecoArt Aleene’s Tacky Glue Hot glue gun Template (found in appendix) Paper scraps Stylus Stiff cardboard for base, like hardback book cover Embellishments to use as decoration around the house, including pom-poms, flowers, beads, Christmas picks

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Open glued seams of the mini cereal box. To do this, open the bottom just as carefully as you open the top. Then find the glued seam along the side. There’s a tab inside that connects the two sides. Carefully separate, using your fingers and keeping the tab intact. Flatten the box and paint the inside (the side that’s not printed) with a coat or two of gesso. Allow to dry completely. Then, using your choice of house color, paint over the dry gesso. Allow to dry completely. Meanwhile, open and flatten the larger box and give it a coat of gesso on both sides. Allow to dry completely. Cut the roof piece(s) from the larger cardboard piece. Score along the fold marks using a stylus. Paint the roof piece(s) to complement the house color and set aside. Use the template to cut out the house. To align the template piece with the box, match the box folds to the fold-marks on the template. Keep the bottom flaps and the side tab attached to the house shape you cut out. We’ll use those to glue the house together. Use an Xacto knife to cut the windows and doors. You can use a small hole punch to make a circle window, especially at the gable. If necessary, touch up the paint along those cuts. Allow to dry before continuing to next step. Cut out little patches of paper for the windows and doors. I like to use printed or solid tissue paper for the windows and tiny-patterned scrapbook paper for the doors. Sheet music or old book pages also make good windows. To attach the windows and doors, dab a bit of glue around the windows and the doors on the inside.

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Now it’s time to glue the house together. Basically we’ll reconstruct the mini cereal box. First put a bead of glue along the side tab and glue to the side. Use a clothespin or hemostat to hold closed. Glue the bottom flap closed and put something inside to weigh it down. (I put two bottles of paint in...they fit perfectly!) Using a toothpick (or wooden coffee stirrer for the church), let’s make a support for the roof. Cut the toothpick to 1.5”. (For the church, cut the coffee stirrer to 2.75”). Put a dot of hot glue just inside each of the peaks of the house and attach the roof support from peak to peak. To attach the scored roof, put a bead of hot glue along the roof support and all along the top edge of the house. For the base, I like to use book covers. This is a great way to recycle them. Using your heavy-duty scissors cut the heavy cardboard to about 3” x 5”. Use hot glue to attach the house to the base.

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Add details to your house, like shutters for the windows and/or awnings. Perhaps a little porch roof? Here’s the fun part...adding embellishments all around your house! A pom-pom bush? A bundle of mini millinery flowers? Look for Christmas picks with small beads or evergreen bits that can be used for bushes. Use a paint brush to apply the Snow-Tex to your house. Clump it along the roof-line, around the base of the house, wherever you want snow. Allow to dry completely, or even overnight if possible (and especially if you have thick clumps). Now, let’s add a bit of sparkle. Working quickly, paint a thick layer of glue on every surface of the house. Place a sheet of clean paper beneath the house to catch the excess glitter as you pour it over the house. Pour the glitter over every part of the house. Don’t worry that your house now looks white...the glue will dry clear and your house will be dazzling.

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muffin tin advent calendar

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holiday

handcrafted Advent calendar is fun for all ages during the season.

We ’ v e

had

Advent calendars in our family for years and we all enjoy them! Hang it for all to see on December 1st, and peek behind a number each day to find a festive treat!

by Teresa McFayden christmas 2010

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Wilton mini muffin tin (24 count) Primer spray paint Florist spray paint, vanilla Ribbons for hanging Various patterned papers for covering each muffin hole (Basic Grey, 7 Gypsies and vintage music sheet were used here) Numbers 1-24, various sizes and styles 2½” & 25/8” Circle or scallop paper punches, nice but optional Small candies or tokens to fill each muffin hole Magnets Drill

inspired ideas

1 2 3 4

Drill 2 holes in the top of tin. Coat muffin tin with primer to help paint adhere to coated surface. Allow to dry. Spray 2 coats of paint over the tin. Florist’s Spray is a very fine spray and works well for this surface. Allow to dry. Punch 24 circles to cover the muffin holes. Use all the same pattern or color, or mix them up a bit for interest. If you don’t have a punch, trace a glass from the cabinet! Considering layering smaller or larger circles or using other shapes such as a star, etc.

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Add numbers to the circles. A variety were used here, including some metal (Making Memories), some embroidered (#5), some stickers (Basic Grey and vintage price tags) were used here. Add festive embellishments and ribbons... make it fun! Fill each muffin tin with a chocolate or trinket. Baker’s Candies work well, and they fit almost perfectly. (A bit of the wrapper ends were snipped off.) Our family loves them!

Teresa is a mixed-media working

Apply 2-3 magnets to the back side of each circle.

the Silver Bella Art Event. She is a

for all things vintage. She is the Founder of Paper Bella Studio and child of God, a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend, an entrepreneur, a photogra-

Cut a strip of patterned paper to fit across the top of tin, and add the word December. Twine and sticker/letter banner (Jenni Bowlin Merchantile) matched the colors of this calendar so I had to use it! Add magnets to the back of the banner.

10 Add ribbon through the top holes for hanging, and vintage buttons or other embellishment to the bottom for interest.

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artist & designer with a fondness

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pher, a free thinker, a dream-come-true maker, a coffee drinker, a consumer, a recycler, a blogger, and a believer. Always a believer. Teresa invites you to visit her blog at http://teresamcfayden.typepad.com. Check out her e-courses and art event on her website: www.paperbellastudio.com!

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inspired ideas

felt ornaments

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he simplicity of these little ornaments delights me. I have always loved the colors and stitching on Swedish and German Christmas miniatures—a little vine with tiny dots, mushrooms, whimsical swirls—it is something in my "inner child" just squeals about! Since these are such simple designs, they are very easy to make. It could be a fun project to do with kiddos, too. Enjoy!

by Jone Hallmark christmas 2010

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Strawberry 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Cut from felt one berry “body” and one leaf. Stitch tiny french knots* all over the “berry”. Fold in half. Stitch up one side with tiny stitches. Stuff the berry with stuffing of choice to the tip of the berry. Use a running stitch around the top and pull tight to stitch a knot. Take a few stitches through the leaf to attach it to the berry. Use a length of that thread to create a loop for hanging.

* You could use beads or felt dots instead of french knots, if you like.

Home is where the heart is 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Cut 2 houses, 2 roof pieces and a heart from felt. Stitch the heart to the center of one of the house pieces. Stitch the roof to that piece also, along the bottom of the roof. Line up the other house and roof (back to back) with the one you just stitched. Stitch the roof to that house. Tack a loop inside at the top and put the two “houses” back to back. Stitch the sides and roof of the house, leaving the bottom open for stuffing. Stuff it to the tip of the roof. Stitch up the bottom.

Mittens 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Cut 4 mittens and 4 cuffs from felt. Lay mittens on table, two with thumbs on the left and two on the right. Tack your loop on two opposing mittens at the corners by the thumb. Set cuffs on top of each mitten. (*remember to have a front and back to each mitten). Stitch along the bottom of the cuffs to attach to the mittens. Embroider your design under the cuffs on the two (opposite) fronts. Stitch all the way around each mitten, including the cuffs. Add buttons on the cuff opposite thumbs Hang them up.

Toadstool 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Cut 2 stems, 2 caps and a tiny door from felt. Stitch the door to the base of one stem. Stitch the caps to the stems (*be sure to have a “front” and “back” that match up). Scatter your buttons* on the cap and stitch them on (repeat on back, if you wish). Tack the loop inside at the top. Stitch the front and back together (up the stem, around the top and down) leaving the bottom open. Stuff the toadstool and stitch up the bottom.

* You can use beads or felt dots instead of buttons on the cap, if you wish.

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sweet baskets

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first made these baskets for Easter. I like the idea of recycling useful things to make something else useful. It occurred to me that I could simply change the decoration on the handle to make the basket useful for any holiday. A little bit of glitter, holly and red ribbon can decorate a sweet basket to be filled with tiny treats and hung on the tree or set at each place with a little name tag for a holiday dinner.

by Jone Hallmark christmas 2010

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1 Cut out one cup from an egg carton. 2 Punch two holes (one on either side near the top) using a 1/8” or 1/16” hole punch. 3 Cut a 7” - 7 1/2” length of sturdy wire (18 or 20 gauge) 4 Bend the ends of the wire up at 1/2”—using pliers. 5 Bend the entire wire in a halfarch and slip the end of each side of the wire thru the holes in the cup. 6 Squeeze the ends of the wire together tight with the pliers. 7 Tear strips of newspaper (or old book pages or sheet music). 8 Make a “papier-mache” mixture by thinning white glue with water. 9 Coat each strip of paper on both sides. 10 Smooth the paper strips (one at a time—overlapping) onto the cup until it is covered with paper—inside and out. 11 Allow to dry. 12 You can wrap the wire handle with paper, too, if you like, or decorate the handle with ribbon, flowers, leaves—anything you wish.

Once upon a time, Jone Hallmark was a professional ballerina living in Switzerland. After a long search for what she really wanted to be when she grows up, Jone found that felt, wire, paper, glue and string make her very happy - the “simple things” in life. She loves Alice in Wonderland (oh yeah, and mushrooms) and dragonflies. She is drawn to anything with polkadots and looks forward to the next time she can head to the southwestern part of France for a workshop with the Pantry Violets. Jone lives in Santa Fe, NM with her hubby and her 5’ 7” son (wow—that’s over 8 inches in the last 17 months!) Two dogs, Kipper and Jack, and two cats, Pearl and Marble, are constant companions. She loves getting together with her creative friends and making BIG messes in the studio or on the kitchen table— actually, any flat surface will do.

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snowman gift tins

by Lianne & Paul Stoddard

Swirly Designs by Lianne & Paul

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Fill these little snowman tins with small toys or yummy treats for everyone on your holiday list. You can customize your tins with own color combo and style to fit your holiday theme.

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Materials for Snowman head • • • • • • • • • •

pack of white Premo Sculpey Clay tooth pick ceramic tile paintbrush acrylic paints: red, white, black, blue gloss varnish clear glitter craft glue blue card stock 1” scalloped paper punch

for the tin • • • • •

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scallop scissors 12 x 12” white glitter paper paper ribbon trim and decorative embellishments small round white tin (or papier mache box)

inspired ideas

Making the snowman

Condition your white clay: using your hands, roll out approx 1” oval shape to make your snowman head. Create a mini hat for your snowman with a 3/8 circle cutter for the base and a small square for the top. Insert a thin small wire for extra support into the snowman head. Take a toothpick and poke two eyes before you cut the end off with scissors and insert it in for the carrot nose.

Baking the ornaments

Once you have you a completed your snowman you’re ready to bake him. Place your snowman on a smooth ceramic tile and bake in your oven according to the manufacturers instructions on the clay packaging. If you don't want to use baking clay, you can also try air-dry clay, which could work too. Let cool.

Painting your ornament

Once your ornament has cooled off, use your acrylic paints to paint your snowman according to the photo,or in whatever colors you like. Use the left-over part of your toothpick to paint in the eyes. Let dry.

Finishing touches

Paint a quick coat of varnish all over your snowman. After the varnish is dry, you should have a glossy finish to your snowman. To make your snowman sparkle, apply glue and add clear glitter to the head and hat. Let dry. Punch a 1” scalloped circle out of a color piece of card stock and glue your snowman head to it.

Decorating

Once your snowman is complete, glue your snowman to the lid with a strong glue or glue gun. Then take a 7 ¼ x 2” piece of paper ribbon or scrapbook paper and glue it around the perimeter of the tin. Add any decorative embellishments you please…. like scalloped ribbon, pom poms or tinsel….to decorate your tin. Finally, take the glittered cardstock and trace your lid with a pencil and cut out to glue inside the lid of your tin. Then trace the bottom of your tin and, with your scalloped scissors cut, it approx ¼” larger than your pencil circle. Glue the bottom of your tin to the base. Fill the tin with treats or small toys and add a gift tag! Perfect for everyone on your holiday list.

Lianne &Paul

are a husband-and-wife team and the creators of Swirly Designs by Lianne and Paul (www.swirlydesigns.com) where every day is a holiday. They met while at The New England School of Art & Designs in Boston. After graduation, Lianne entered the Graphic Design field while Paul pursued a career in Illustration. They married in 2000 and soon thereafter began a joint venture designing ornaments using polymer clay. They work very closely together, combining their talents to create whimsical original handmade polymer clay designs they hope will find a special place in peoples’ homes and hearts. They truly work hard to capture the magic of the holiday season. For a look into their studio, their work and their busy lives with two small children, check out their blog at: http://swirlydesignsblog.blogspot.com

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silhouette tags

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sing pre-1920’s silhouettes from our friend Karen, the Graphics Fairy

(http://graphicsfairy.blogspot.com), and inspired by an idea from reader and friend Molly Pearce, I created these felt gift tags. What makes these really fun are the embellishments, like the flowers in the hair and pearls around the neck of the mother. With a whole family of silhouettes, including a baby, you could tag a bundle of gifts in style with these.

Project inspired by Molly Pearce christmas 2010

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Materials Q

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Black felt Ivory felt Other colors of felt for tag layer Embroidery floss & needle Small sharp “good” scissors Pinking shears Pins

Steps 1 2

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Print out silhouettes (in appendix) and loosely cut around each family member. Pin each cut-out piece of paper to a small piece of black felt. With a pair of sharp scissors, cut as closely around the silhouettes as you can. Try turning the paper/fabric instead of the scissors to get smoother cuts. Un-pin the paper and trim any areas that need finetuning. Cut a 2.5” x 4”piece of ivory felt with pinking shears. Stitch around the silhouette with black floss (just one skein) to attach the silhouette to the ivory felt. You can add details like eyelashes, too, and it will look like you are an expert with scissors! Now this is the fun part! Embellish to your heart’s content. A pearl necklace for Mama, a band around Papa’s hat, a flower in Sister’s hair...have fun! You can try embroidering details too. If you want to add a name to the tag, you can embroider it now...or what about spelling names with tiny alphabeads? Cut a 3.5” x 5” piece of colored felt and sew the ivory embellished tag piece to it. If you’d like to add a loop of ribbon to the top of the tag, sandwhich it between the two pieces before sewing them together.

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printable tags

T

hese

square

Christmas

tags

become the perfect adornment for your holiday gifts. Simply print

them on a good quality cardstock and cut them out. I used a natural white linen textured cardstock and cut them out using my paper cutter, but you could also use scissors. Then, punch a hole in the top and attach them to your gifts using ribbon or baker's twine (as shown here). Try using more than one on a gift because two patterns together are better than one! Enjoy!

by Kellie Dykast christmas 2010

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(for personal use only) inspired ideas

(photo by Heather Smith) Kellie Dykast lives in Tennessee with her amazing husband and spoiled cat. She started her Etsy shop Every Jot & Tittle on a whim in 2007, and it has now become a part time job. Her paper items have been in many magazines including Better Homes and Gardens, Country Living, Domino, Romantic Homes, and Creating Keepsakes. She loves to make things, especially with paper. She also always has a list of projects to accomplish around her home. You can follow her projects and steal her ideas from her blog, www.dykast.us/scraplog.

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fun festoon

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h, how I love Christmas dÊcor that includes felt and sequins! I am sure it is because my Grandma handmade a wonderful felt-andsequin stocking for me when I was born. I have used that stocking my whole life and treasure it. It epitomizes Christmas nostalgia to me. As a matter of fact, when my brother was on an aircraft carrier during Desert Storm and I knew he would be there over Christmas, I found the felt-andsequin stocking Grandma made for him and filled it with treats before sending, knowing that for him, too, the very sight of it would bring joy and love and memories flooding back to him. And it did — he was thrilled. A small, simple, handcrafted item can hold such magic. It is with thoughts of those stockings that I pulled out some felt and sequins and beads and thread and began to make a small garland for my family to treasure through the years. I imagined my Grandma crafting alongside me, which led me to want to make another with my children, so that they would have memories of us creating holiday treasures together. This became an easier, simpler version of the sequin garland. Hopefully, you and your child might take a moment to sit together during the holidays making memories and crafting nostalgia that will decorate your home for years to come. Happiest of holidays to you and yours!

by Pam Garrison

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Supplies Q

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felt in different colors sequins seed beads embroidery needles (one with an eye small enough to go through seed beads) embroidery floss scissors

How to: Choose some felt in colors that delight you. I would stay away from the very inexpensive felts at the local craft stores and instead opt for wool felt, or partial wool felt. Heather Bailey has some beautiful felt on her website in a great selection of colors. Also, I am forever in search of vintage Christmas felt items like stockings, which have both vintage felt and vintage sequins. Etsy probably has these, too. Cut out your shapes to be used on your garland. We’ve provided the shapes I used, but let your imagination guide you here too. I used 17 felt pieces for this 30” garland. Of course, you can make your garland as long as you’d like by adjusting the number of pieces cut out.

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The fun part: embellish the shapes you’ve cut out by adding sequins and beads. I recommend using just one strand of embroidery floss at this stage. Once all your felt pieces are decorated, lay them out in the order you want, giving thought to colors and shapes. Then cut a piece of embroidery floss (all 6 strands used here) in a complementary color to tie all your pieces together. Add 6-12” to the desired length of your garland before you cut your floss so that you have room to play and make knots easily. I just lay out all my pieces and then cut a strand a bit longer than they are instead of measuring. Using a needle with a larger eye, tie a knot in one end of your string. Start from the back of one piece and come up through the edge, thus hiding the knot. You can either do a running stitch straight across the pieces, or if you don’t want to see the floss that ties them all together, just make a small stitch and come back up on the other side of your piece. I find it helpful to make sure that I catch the piece on the edges, so that the felt shape doesn’t bend on the embroidery floss. If you are concerned about the back showing by hanging it somewhere the back pieces will be seen, you can always cut out another felt piece of the same shape and color and glue to the back, or even music paper or holiday gift wrap. Hang your artwork and enjoy!

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Mama’s Little Helper’s Holiday Garland This is a very simplified version of the other garland, which is a great project for your little ones to do at the same time. Cut out holly leaves and berries only, instead of many shapes. Then using a contrasting embroidery thread (all 6 strands) and big needle (easier for little hands), do a running stitch through each holly leaf and connect to another holly leaf. Continue this process, occasionally adding a holly berry between leaves. You don’t have to worry about how close or far from each other that your leaves are while making the garland. You can adjust at the end to your liking. Besides being so simple without the embellishments, this garland looks the same from both sides, so can be draped anywhere your little ones heart desires!

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No Felt Left Behind Anyone who knows me knows one of my crafting mottos is: “no scrap is too small.� Oh, how I love to make something from the leftovers of a project! So after cutting out all the felt shapes for the felt garland, I had lots of pretty colored strips and bits of felt left. I took a bunch of the scraps and started wrapping what pieces I could into a small ball shape, similar to the fabric scrap balls of long ago. I then took a very small needle threaded with regular sewing machine thread and began by hiding the knot somewhere in what I had gathered, although really, hiding the knot is not necessary, as you will be adding more felt scraps and can hide it then. I then proceeded to push the needle through the ball, coming out on the other side and grabbing a felt piece in the process, then back down again, always hiding the thread, and adding more and more felt scraps. By keeping the concept of a ball in mind, you will know where you need to come up and pinch the felt closer to the ball. When finished, I just went back through in and out, not making a knot to finish it, just going through enough times to secure it and hide the thread. Word to the wise: a thimble or hard surface comes in very handy when trying to push the needle through the ever-growing felt ball!

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Pam Garrison is a crafting artist passionate about creating and inspiring others to create. She is particularly fond of handcrafting holiday treasures to be kept and passed down to her children and eventual grandchildren! She shares her talents by teaching at art events in the U.S. and abroad. You may have seen her work in numerous art books and magazines, or on HGTV's "That's Clever." She is currently licensing designs with Papaya Inc. Pam resides in Southern California with her husband and two children where she strives to incorporate creativity into her life every day. You can follow her creative tales on her blog, http://pamgarrison.typepad.com christmas 2010

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ornament chandelier Y

ou can deck your halls — right up to the light fixture — quickly and easily this holiday season. Simply locate your most special, petite glass

ornaments and replace some of the large crystals from your existing light fixture with these glassy bits of holiday treasure. In fact, they're probably safer up high on your chandelier rather than on the tree! The key to this frosty, wintery look? Filling the glass bowls with faux snow and nestling very tiny ornaments below the lights. You can take this look further or do something altogether different by adding beautiful bows to compliment your decor, or cascading holly and cedar branches — just be sure to keep any dried twigs or branches away from the light bulbs!

by Sasha Libby christmas 2010

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magical balloon ride

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ho doesn't love a hot air balloon? Who doesn't dream of flying off in one? I have always loved vintage hot air balloon ornaments and thought it would be fun to make one using some of my own treasures. I was so excited to put to use some wonderful old tins that I had been saving. They made the perfect baskets for the balloons. This project is super easy and would be fun to do with children. Maybe your child would like to put a Santa inside of the basket with his or her Christmas wish list. The baskets also make a great place to stick your favorite vintage do- dads like the vintage stick snowman and vintage plastic reindeer that I used. Use your imagination! It is endless in what you could use to create your own treasured Magical Balloon Ride.

by Amy Hanna christmas 2010

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Styrofoam ball ( I used a 4" and a 6" ball) Lace to cover ball (you can also use fabric or cheese cloth) Victorian paper scraps of angels Favorite photo Ribbon (I used metal ribbon) Vintage tin (you could also substitute a tiny tart pan or a small wicker basket from local craft store Tinsel garland Tinsel Pins Glue dots Bullion

The balloon 1 Wrap the styrofoam ball with lace, and pin in place. Completely cover the ball. 2 Wrap tinsel garland around ball two to three times, and pin in place. 3 Add decorations like Victorian scraps or a photograph using glue dots. 4 Wrap silver bullion around the ball to hold photo and to add texture.

Vintage tin basket 1 Drill three holes into the tin (you may also use an awl to poke holes if the tin is thin enough). 2 Cut three pieces of the ribbon the same length and tie the ribbon onto the tin, using the holes, exposing the tie on the outside of the basket.

Putting it together 1 Use pins to attach the ends of the ribbons to the bottom of the balloon. 2 Pin a ribbon loop to the top of the balloon to hang. 3 Fill the bottom of the tin with tinsel. Then have fun filling the tin with vintage goodies.

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Hand Made Paper Dolls

I made these paper dolls to surprise my daughters on Christmas morning. It was so fun seeing the looks on their faces when they first saw them in their Christmas stockings. Later I used them to decorate the table at their birthday party. It would also be fun to make dolls of different members of your family and make a garland to hang from your tree.

You’ll need Q

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small stretched canvas copy of favorite photo sized to fit on canvas acrylic paints paint brush collage paper

Step 1: Copy a favorite photo in a size to fit your small canvas, and glue the photo to the canvas. Paint over the photo, making your own fashion statement, but leave the original face and arms of the photo unpainted. Step 2: Collage papers to the little person to add texture, such as a crown or pocket. Step 3: When it is dry, take your painted canvas to the local copy store and have it enlarged to your desired size. Now you will have a big "painting" without having to paint a big one. Step 4: Back the enlargement with a heavy cardboard or card stock. Add glittered stars to the crown and beads around the neck or any other embellishments that suit the occasion. This is such a fun project to do with pictures of your children or of your parents when they were children or of their wedding day. You can use them to stick out of stockings on Christmas morning or to decorate for a person's birthday or anniversary party. You can also attach a popsicle stick onto the back and use it to stick into a pot with flowers or marbles.

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Paper Clay Dollies I made these little paper-clay dolls of my daughters a few years ago and thought it would be fun to have them hang from my Christmas tree. They are very easy to make. I used paper clay to form the shape of the girls and, after they dried, I glued photos of my daughters faces onto them. I made paper hats out of music paper and vintage wallpaper to decorate the girls and embellished them with odds and ends. You can attach a hook to the top, or use them inside of your own magical hot air balloon.

For Amy Hanna, an art object becomes extra special when the elements that are used to compose the final work are selected with great care and handled with sincerity of the heart. This is why she is so particular in searching for just the right elements to use in her revered art jewelry creations, as well as her mixed-media works. "Special pieces are what make the final work significant," says Amy. In her book, "Rejuvenated Jewels" (Quarry Books, 2009), Amy's philosophy shines through as she offers technique and inspiration that get readers to know that indeed, what you put in, affect what you get out of a project. Amy lives in Southern California with her husband and three children. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, and she has taught her techniques at various art retreats across the nation. To learn more visit http://www.amyhanna.typepad.com christmas 2010

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vintage treasures wreath

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hat’s more nostalgic than vintage Christmas ornaments with their wonderful time-worn patina and history? Knowing they adorned family Christmas trees for generations and each year were carefully packed away for the next Christmas season helps remind us of the joys of Christmases past. Find out how to capture that charming feeling on your holiday wreath, combining well loved Christmas treasures in one happy place for all to enjoy!

by Linda Campbell & Ann Vaughan christmas 2010

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Materials Q

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Wreath Vintage ornaments Vintage candy containers Other vintage Christmas collectibles Glue gun & glue sticks Ribbon Spray adhesive Mica flakes or large flaked opaque glitter

Helpful hints Q

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Wreaths can be found at your local craft store. (We found ours at Michael’s for $5.99). Vintage Christmas ornaments are very collectible and can be found inexpensively at estate sales, auction houses, flea markets, rummage sales and ebay from between $9 to $19 dollars per box or lot. Search ebay for ‘lots of vintage ornaments’ and broken or damaged pieces which can be found inexpensively. They’d be perfect for this use. Try to find unusual ornaments and collectibles for greatest impact. Collect ornaments of various sizes, shapes and colors for added interest.

inspired ideas

Steps 1

Fluff your wreath and place it on a flat working surface.

2

Plug in your glue gun and let it warm up.

3

4

5 6 7

Position your ornaments where you like them on the wreath. Take care to vary the sizes, shapes and colors of the ornaments. Don’t overthink it; random placement adds to the interest of your wreath. Have fun with it! Once you are happy with the placement of your ornaments, begin gluing them in place. Be generous with the glue, taking care to handle the ornaments gently. You may find you need to add additional ornaments to fill in as you glue. Have a selection of ornaments available to you to fill in holes. Choose a ribbon that you like to run through the wreath. When you have completely finished gluing your wreath and you're satisfied with the results, add a final touch of vintage charm with a dusting of mica. Use a spray adhesive and sprinkle the mica flakes lightly, letting the excess mica fall onto your covered work surface. (If you can't find mica, a large flaked opaque glitter will also work.)

Linda & Ann, owners of

the cottage

well-loved furnishings Our business was born of our desire to have an inviting shop offering unique and affordable vintage finds that we and our customers both love. We offer fresh new ways to utilize the best of old, wonderful antique and vintage home furnishings in a friendly, intimate atmosphere. If you’re looking for fun, affordable, one of a kind, out of the box home furnishings, you’ll find them in our twelve room Victorian located in historic Leesburg, Virginia. We help our customers surround themselves with things they love that reflect their own unique personalitlies. As our tag line states, we offer “well-loved furnishings” and price them to sell. We buy what we love and we love to buy!

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patch works

I

'm a patchwork addict. I tend to look at everything through patchwork-tinted glasses—like hmmm, could I adapt that to patchwork? I wonder what that would look like in mismatched calico prints? It's a sickness that I don't want to be cured from, I must say. It was easy to see how cute a Christmas tree would be in stripy little patches of green with a tiny little patchy trunk, and the best part is how easily it comes together! Add an appliqued star with a little embroidery and you've got a well-rounded craft project, as far as I'm concerned. Amy had the brilliant idea to make a companion to the tree—a stack of presents! Of course she didn't have to ask me twice. I went to town and combined fabric, vintage buttons, and velvet ribbon. I can't wait to see what you come up with—this project is a perfect canvas for your creativity!

by Stephanie Woody christmas 2010

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Supplies • • • • •

• • • • •

sewing machine rotary cutter & mat scissors iron assorted small cuts of fabric in greens, reds, and brown, 11/3 yards of background fabric (I chose Robert Kaufman Essex, a cotton/linen blend) fusible web (I use Steam A Seam) ribbon and buttons embroidery floss 2 (11 x 14”) canvases spray craft glue or heavy-duty stapler

All seam allowances are 1/4 inch.

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Essentially what we're going to make is a piece of patchwork fabric, similar to a quilt block, that we'll glue and/or staple around a canvas and hang on the wall. The final measurements, before stapling to the canvas, will be 19 inches wide x 22 inches tall.

1

First up is using a rotary mat and cutter to cut strips of fabric. There are no hard and fast rules as to the dimensions of your tree, but keep in mind that your canvas front is 11x14 inches. My longest strip is 9 1/2 inches, and my shortest is 1 inch long. Let's say you decide to use 7 strips to make your tree, not including the trunk. Cut these strips out, varying the length and width. Mine are anywhere from 1 3/4 inches wide to 3 inches wide. This is all up to you—have fun with it! After you've cut your strips out and arranged them to your liking, it's time to cut out the corresponding strips of background fabric.

Cut a strip of background fabric that measures 11 inches long by the width of each tree strip—then you'll have an 11-inch background strip for each side of your green tree strips, for a total of (14) 11-inch strips. Attach these, using a 1/4 inch seam, to each side of each green strip. Use this same method to make your tiny tree trunk, which will be from 1 to 2 inches wide. Press all seams open.

2

Now you'll start sewing your horizontal strips together. I have found it's easiest to press the seams open as you sew. You’ll have to get up and down a lot but it’s worth it, I promise. Finger-press seams open before ironing to make it a little easier. After all strips are sewn together, flip your piece over and press from the front. (Remember: press up and down. Don't drag the iron back and forth. These little strips are fragile and you don't want to distort the grain of the fabric!)

3

4 5

Measure the height of your tree and subtract that number from 22 (the height of the finished piece). For example, my tree was about 9 inches tall, so 22-9=13. Now divide this number by 2, and you'll have the length of your top and bottom strips of background fabric (in my case 6½). So I cut 2 strips of background fabric 6½ inches by 19 inches (the finished width of the piece). Attach one strip above the tree and one below, making the total height approximately 22 inches. Now it's time to square up your tree. Use your rotary cutter and mat to trim your tree patch to 19 inches wide by 22 inches tall. Sketch a star and trace onto your fusible web. Following the manufacturer's directions, apply fusible web to fabric and cut out star shape. Iron onto the background fabric right above tree. I chose to hand-embroider inside my star. You could also machine stitch around the star, embellish it with buttons, or just leave it plain. christmas 2010

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Press your finished piece well and set aside. You'll want to do this next part outdoors if you're going to use spray glue —it has a really strong odor and tends to overspray and make things sticky that aren't supposed to be. Put down some newspaper and lay out your canvas. Making sure your design is centered on the canvas, lightly mist the spray glue onto the canvas and press with your hand to evenly adhere. Flip the canvas over, then adhere both right and left sides of the fabric to the canvas, slitting the fabric as shown in the picture. Fold over and crease with your fingernail. Lift the fabric up, trim with scissors on the crease line, and then lightly press back down to re-adhere. Fold the rest of the fabric over like you're wrapping a Christmas present and spray to adhere. Turn the canvas 90 degrees and repeat with the other sides. Step 7 may also be done using a staple gun—but please keep in mind that the staples, if left exposed, could scratch your walls. Cover staples with adhesive felt to prevent any disasters!

To make the stack of presents, use the same method as the Christmas tree! Decide what size presents work for you, and I suggest staggering the "boxes" so it doesn't look too uniform. If you use trim or ribbon, make sure you stitch it on before assembling your pieces so the trim/ribbon is secured when you stitch the side seams. Adorn with buttons, pom pom trim, ric rac, ribbon, and a little tag! I traced a gift tag, cut out with sharp scissors, and stamped "to:" and "from:" using a regular ink pad and small alphabet stamps. Use your creativity—that's what it's for! Most of all, relax and have fun when you're making these—they are a great girl's night project and make a perfect family keepsake.

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Stephanie crafts to stay sane. Her background as an interior designer lends itself nicely to decorating anything that stands still with handmade items. She documents this obsession on her blog, Providence Handmade (providencehandmade.com) She loves vintage hands, the number 5, coffee, & Jesus. She grew up glued to the side of her woodworking, painting grandfather who had a knack for seeing the beauty in art & people. He still inspires her to do the same. What started as a hobby 6 years ago has blossomed into an incredibly fulfilling passion...finding the extra in the ordinary & making everyday items and tasks meaningful & authentic. She is married to her best friend & has the honor of mothering 3 incredible kids.

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very favorite ornaments Thank you to the readers who sent in photos of their favorite ornaments

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crystal icicle E

very year, as Christmas approaches, I gather a talented group of my fellow art sisters around me for a very special swap. Our group (called "Adorn") is all about the adornment of Christmas. Each group member creates a batch of Christmas ornaments to be swapped among the members. These aren't just your run-of-the-mill ornaments. The level of creativity and inspiration has been nothing short of amazing. An astounding array of mixed media materials have been incorporated including china doll heads, tiny canvases, enamel, cabinet cards, cast-off leather wallets, paper, fabric, metal, wire and beeswax. Each ornament is an

extraordinary treasure and, each year, the group tries to top what was done the last year. The swap is one of the highlights of the year for me...a wonderful time of sharing during the most joyous time of year. One of the ornament ideas floating around in my art journal was this crystal icicle. I had sketched several versions...with wire wrapping, with fabric, with a spiral instead of a drop. I envision my tree sparkling with many of these beauties. A grouping of them would also look gorgeous dripping from a wreath or swag.

by Deryn Mentock christmas 2010

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step`1

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step`6

Materials Q

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Chain nose pliers Extra long round nose pliers Wire snips 4 oz ball peen hammer Rawhide mallet or rubber dead blow hammer Steel bench block Sand bag or towel (for bench block) 20 gauge black annealed steel wire 24 gauge black annealed steel wire Foam sanding block, fine grit; cut in half Faceted glass beads Chandelier crystal drop

How to: 1 Cut 10 inches 20-gauge steel wire. Clean by running between two pieces of fine grit foam sanding block.

2

Hammer one end to create a paddle.

3

Grasp paddle using round nose pliers and create a loose spiral.

4

Use chain nose pliers to bend a 90-degree angle just below spiral.

5

Flatten the top of the spiral.

6

Use rawhide mallet or dead blow hammer to harden the wire by hammering it for about four inches below the spiral.

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step`7 step`8

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step`11 step`10 106

inspired ideas

7

Thread beads onto the wire below the spiral.

8

Once beads are threaded onto the wire, bend the wire at a 90degree angle using chain nose pliers. Then create a loop using round nose pliers. Grasp the loop with the chain nose pliers and wrap it at the bottom. Trim the end and tuck it under using the chain nose pliers.

9

Cut and clean about 6 inches of the 24-gauge steel wire, and thread it through the holeat the top of the chandelier crystal. Gently cross the ends of the wire over each other to create a loop.

10 Grasp the loop with the chain nose pliers and wrap at the bottom of the loop.

11Thread a bead onto the wire. Then, using chain nose pliers, bend the wire 90 degrees. Use round nose pliers to create a loop and, before wrapping the loop, thread it onto the bottom loop of the icicle. Grasp the chandelier crystal loop with chain nose pliers and wrap the bottom; trim the end and tuck in.

Deryn Mentock has been passionate about art, especially jewelry design, for as long as she can remember. Her designs mingle unique, worn and well-loved finds, religious pieces and faceted, semi-precious stones as well as one-of-a-kind handmade elements, combined in unexpected ways. She prefers the look and feel of vintage, unusual and found objects and delights in blending these treasures into her work. Each composition, infused with color and texture, reveals an intuitive message of faith conveyed through the artist’s hands. She enjoys teaching nationally and is a design team member for Objects and Elements. Her artwork has been featured in several books including “Mixed Emulsions” by Angela Cartwright, “Exhibition 36” by Susan Tuttle, “Collaborative Art Journals and Shared Visions in Mixed Media” by LK Ludwig and, most recently, “Mixed Media Dollhouses” by Tally Oliveau and Julie Molina. You can also find her work in many articles and publications, including Step by Step Wire Jewelry, Handcrafted Jewelry, Belle Armoire Jewelry, Belle Armoire, Art Doll Quarterly, Stampington's Gallery, Somerset Studio, Correspondence Art and Stampington's book Artist Trading Cards. You can contact her at mocknet@sbcglobal.net and see more of her work at her blog; http://somethingsublime.typepad.com and her online store; http://mocknet.etsy.com

Please do not distribute, lend or copy. Do not mass produce. Do not teach without permission. Design copyright 2010 Deryn Mentock

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yarn ball wreath W

hat I love about this wreath is its simple beauty. It adds color, texture and dimension to your Christmas décor. I also love the sheer simplicity of the creating process. While I enjoy making crafts, I wouldn’t say I’m the best at them. That’s what’s so amazing about this project...most anyone can make it. One of my favorite quotes about creating says, “The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul. No matter our talents, education, backgrounds, or abilities, we each have an inherent wish to create something that did not exist before. Everyone can create. You don’t need money, position, or influence in order to create something of substance or beauty. You may think you don’t have talents, but that is a false assumption, for we all have talents and gifts, every one of us. The bounds of creativity extend far beyond the limits of a canvas or a sheet of paper and do not require a brush, a pen, or the keys of a piano. Creation means bringing into existence something that did not exist before—colorful gardens, harmonious homes, family memories, flowing laughter.” ~Dieter F. Uchtdorf I hope you enjoy creating this wreath for the beauty it will bring to your home and for the joy the creating process can bring you.

by Kristi Jackson christmas 2010

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Here's what you need:

{all supplies were found at a craft store, WalMart, and Target} Wire Wreath Form {I used an 18-inch form} Ornaments Yarn Glue Gun Styrofoam Balls in a variety of sizes. Q

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To make the yarn balls:

I used a variety of sizes of styrofoam balls. The sizes I used are: 2½ inch, 2 inch, 1½ inch. Wrap the yarn around the styrofoam ball in various and alternating directions {just like making a real yarn ball} until all of the white sytrofoam is covered. When you're finished, just tuck the end of the string underneath the yarn to secure it.

Making the wreath:

There are a couple of ways to do this. You can evenly space out your large yarn balls onto your wreath form and glue them one at a time. And then you can glue your smaller yarn balls and ornaments around your large yarn balls. I have done this on a few of my wreaths. Or you can build the wreath one section at a time, building up each section as you go. I found that this leaves fewer holes and hides the wreath wire form from view. This method works better for me and I like the way it looks. I added the larger yarn balls and ornaments around the base of the wreath form, and then I filled the 'holes' with smaller yarn balls and smaller ornaments. Securing each by gluing them to one another and to the wreath form. While gluing the pieces together, you'll want to hold them for 15-20 seconds to make sure they are secure before moving on. I also made sure that I alternated the colors. I found that holding the wreath upright or hanging it on my door let me have a good look at it and find the places where I needed extra pieces added.

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Kristi loves to create both through photography and crafts. She enjoys the process of creating and the joy of giving her creations away. She’s an aspiring photographer, a worrier, a thrift store lover, a little on the shy side, adorer of kindness & generosity, a seeker of simplicity, but her most beloved roles are being a mommy, wife, daughter & sister. Kristi captures life through photography. Photography helps her slow down and look for details that she otherwise might miss. She feels most alive when she is creating and sharing things of beauty. One of her favorite photography quotes is: “Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever...it remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.” She finds inspiration everywhere from her children, nature, the simple things, soft colors, natural light, quotes and life. Earlier this year she opened an etsy shop, Life Through the Lens, selling her photography (www.alifethroughthelens.etsy.com). She also has a blog under the same name where she shares bits of her life, co-hosts a weekly photography challenge, and writes tutorials of the crafts she makes at http://iseelifethroughalens.blogspot.com.

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china doll tree topper

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reate an heirloom Christmas tree topper using a vintage china doll head. Have fun “dressing up” your doll using vintage trims and embellishments. Who knows...maybe she’ll turn out to be an angel!

by Danielle Muller

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& trims e c a l h t i w t r i k decorate the s

glue doll head to the top of cone

Supplies Q

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China doll head (best with a shoulder plate) Porcelain china doll arms Large piece of Oaktag Paper of choice to cover cone (vintage or not; wallpaper, scrapbook paper, sheet music, etc.) Trims of choice for bottom of cone, and around arms, neck and/or head of doll (lace, tinsel, ribbon, crepe paper, etc.) Embellishments as per your style (greens tied with ribbon for hand, etc.) Mod Podge and Foam Brush Scissors (for paper & fabric) Hot Glue Gun & Sticks E6000 or other heavy-duty glue 28 Gauge Gold or Silver Wire (won’t be visible)

Please note

If your china doll head does not have a shoulder plate you will need to improvise on this tutorial with regards to the wiring steps. With a little planning and a lot of glue you can make it work. Search eBay & Etsy for vintage china doll heads. You can find porcelain china doll arms in many craft stores that sell doll parts or you can look in your local thrift stores and/or tag sales for dolls. Often “ugly” cheaper dolls will have nice porcelain arms.

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use wire to secu

re arms to the

doll head

Step 1 Determine the height you want to make

your tree topper according to the size of the doll head you are using. In the project shown, my cone is approximately 10” high. Draw out your cone template onto the Oaktag and cut out. (To make the cone template, I just experimented by drawing out a fan shape and then rolling it and trimming it to get the shape I was happy with.)

Step 2

Using your Mod Podge and foam brush, glue your paper of choice onto the Oaktag and trim with scissors.

Step 3 Roll your Oaktag into your cone shape and use hot glue to secure.

Step 4

Using your hot glue gun, begin to add your trims of choice to bottom of cone (doll’s dress).

Step 5

Using your hot glue gun, begin to add your trims of choice to the porcelain arms…It is imporant to do this PRIOR to securing the arms to the cone

Step 6

Place the china head with shoulder plate onto the cone and glue down using glue of choice.

Step 7

Working on one side at a time, thread your wire through the small holes found on your shoulder plate. Thread up through the front, then across the shoulder, then back down through the other hole near the back. Twist the wire to form a “tail” that will help connect the arm in the next step. Repeat this process on the other side of the doll.

Step 8 Wrap some wire around

the tops of the porcelain arms, leaving some extra wire.

here’s how the arm looks attached

Step 9 Attach the arms to the doll by twisting the wires of the arms together with the “tail” you made earlier on the body.

decorate with a lace collar

Step 10

To further secure the arms to the body, I suggest using some hot glue.

Step 11

Using your hot glue gun, begin to add your trims of choice to the shoulders and/or neck of your doll.

Step 12

You may also choose to add a necklace, headpiece and/or bouquet of greens/flowers to your doll; another suggestion is to add wings and make your doll an angel! (see pictures for variations).

add beautiful details

Step 13

Place your china doll on top of your Christmas tree or use as a free standing decoration for your mantel or shelf! Enjoy!

another version of the same project christmas 2010

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burlap&lace doorhanging

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ith simple materials and a stroll through the woods, you can create this festive doorhanging to greet and welcome your holiday guests. Replenish with fresh greens throughout the holiday season and you’ll always be ready with a welcoming entrance to your home!

by Danielle Muller christmas 2010

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Supplies Q

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Burlap (size depends on what type of container you use) Mason Jar or other container to hold water Vintage laces and trims Jute twine Rusted Metal Skeleton Keys Natural greens, such as holly or pine Fabric Scissors Sewing Machine Hot Glue or Fabri-Tac (optional)

Lay your container on the burlap and measure the appropriate size you will need to create a “sack” to hold the container, leaving a seam allowance. Sew your burlap inside out, in the shape of a “sack” which will hold your container. Turn the “sack” right side out and add vintage lace/trim to the top of your “sack”. No need to sew...use a hot glue gun or Fabri-Tac. String some old rusted metal skeleton keys to a piece of jute twine and wrap around the top of your container to “gather” the material …leaving some extra twine to make a tie to hang. Add natural greens to complete your holiday door hanging. Hang somewhere you can enjoy all season long!

Danielle Muller is a mixed

media/paper artist who lives in Long Island, NY with her husband, three children and two cats. She enjoys creating vintage-styled whimsies using many of the antique bits and baubles she picks up during her tag and estate sale excursions. Her work has been see n in various Stampington publication s and can also be seen in the upcoming Janua ry 2011 issue of Romantic Homes Magazine . Danielle shares her passion for liv ing an inspired life on her website, The Vin tage Dragonfly. Keep up to date on all sorts of things...swap announcements, wo rkshops, trunk shows, shoppe updates and more by visiting www.thevintagedragon fly.co

m

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sampler tree

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hese trees are a kind of embroidery sampler, really....each row is a different stitch. Add rows of ribbons, rick rack, sequins, beads, and buttons to make a beautiful decoration to cherish every year. This would make a great project to make with a group of friends. Don’t worry if you’re new to embroidery. A good guide for learning stitches can be found online at Janet’s stitch school (http://stitchschool.blogspot.com). And you can fill in with decorative trim and bits. Before long you’ll have a tree as unique as you.

by Amy Powers christmas 2010

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Materials Q

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Ivory felt Embroidery floss in your chosen palette A variety of embellishments such as buttons, beads, sequins, rick rack, ribbons, and other embellishments 1/4” wooden dowel cut to 8” long Wooden spool (with or without thread) A star of other tiny topper for the tree

Steps 1

2 3

4

5 6 7

Cut felt using pattern found in the appendix. To make stitching around the curve of the tree easier, you can very faintly draw guides with a pencil. Or you can wing it. Starting at the bottom, or wide end of the “pizza slice”, stitch a row using the stitch of your choice. Continue stitching up the tree to the point. Alternate colors and stitches. Add rows of gathered seam binding, sequins, beads, or rick rack. Just remember when stitching embellishments like beads and sequins to leave an allowance for stitching the cone together. After you’ve covered the piece with rows of stitches and bits and bobs, and you’re pleased with how it looks, fold the piece over, right sides together, lining up the straight ends. Stitch together along those straight sides. Very carefully turn the cone inside out, using a chopstick to gently poke the point. Stitch on a star or other topper. Glue dowel into the wooden spool to make a stand for the tree and set the cone down over the dowel.

Now isn’t that sweet?

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chenille chain

A

s a little girl I remember making paper garlands every Christmas and decorating everything from the door frames to the Christmas

tree. It was my love of vintage holiday decorations and the memory of those paper chains that inspired me to make these chenille chains. There is something about these tinsel and chenille pipe cleaners that seem so vintage to me.

by Heather Buhaj christmas 2010

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Supplies Q

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Chenille stems (available at your local craft store) Or pipe cleaners (available at your local smoke shop or online) Or tinsel pipe cleaners (available at your local craft store) Ribbon Flat nose pliers Side cutter pliers or wire cutters Something sturdy and round (I used a lipstick tube because I wanted my links to be petite)

Using my lipstick tube as a guide, I measured the length I would need for the chenille rounds, it worked out to be be approximately 3”. Leave a small amount of extra when measuring (1/4” will do) on each end for wrapping. Use the piece that you just measured as your guide for cutting the rest of the chenille stems. One package of chenille stems will give you over 2 yards of garland. Wrap your chenille piece around the lipstick tube. Criss-cross the two ends at the top of your tube. With your flat-nose pliers, twist the two ends together like you would with a twist tie. Snip off the extra little piece of chenille with the side cutters (or wire cutters). Using the flat-nose pliers again, flatten the little nub that is left behind. I twisted it slightly as I flattened to conceal the connection point a little more. Now start building your chain by repeating this process with another chenille piece. You can make the garland as long as you would like! When you’re finished tie a small piece of ribbon to each end of the of garland for hanging. You now have your very own vintage-inspired chenille garland!

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Like many other little girls, Heather started creating with leftover scraps and materials from her Mother and Grandmother’s projects. Those scraps were turned into the most wonderful little treasures for her dolls. After having her children, Heather truly embraced her creativity and the opportunity to create. With a “good eye”, creative genes, and love for all things pretty, her creative tastes are widespread and always evolving. She has an uncontrollable love for buttons, lace, fabric and paper and gravitates toward projects and techniques that use them such as sewing, paper crafts, and mixed media. Heather lives a “Crazy, but Beautiful Life” with her four children and wonderful husband near the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. She puts it all out there for the world to read—the good, the bad and the crafty on her blog: www.mydailydoseofcrazy.blogspot.com

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felt playmat

R

emember those felt storyboards from your childhood? This takes that same idea to the floor! Your little one will play for hours, rearranging the roads and the houses. Best of all, you can roll it up and store it away. This makes a great rainy day toy (one that only comes out when the sun goes in) and it makes a terrific gift for any child on your list. You can make it as simple or as complicated as you’d like. And this is a perfect gift for an older child to make for a younger sibling.

by Amy Powers christmas 2010

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Materials Q

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1 yard green felt 1/4 yard of black felt An assortment of colors for the houses Embroidery floss in colors that complement your felt colors, including a yellow for the dotted line of the street pieces Really good scissors (or a rotary cutter) Tapestry needle Smaller needle for finer details 4 medium suction cups and/or hook & loop tape

Steps 1 2

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Check the end cuts of the green felt, straightening them up if they’re jagged or uneven. Sew a blanket stitch around the perimeter of the green felt mat. (This step is not necessary but it makes a more finished product, especially for gift-giving.) Cut an assortment of street lengths from the black felt: about 8” long and 2” in diameter. Make a bunch of straight pieces and at least 4 elbow curves. Make a few s-curves and other curvy pieces to add some fun. Be sure to keep the pieces about 2” wide. With a knotted thread, stitch a running stitch down the center of each street piece, neatly knotting the end. This running stitched dotted line will enable these street pieces tt be reversible.

5

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Stitch together simple triangle and rectangle shapes to make the houses. Decorate as much or as little as you please. Finish off the back of the houses by stitching another piece of felt (cut to the house shape) to the back. Add fun details like a stop sign. You could really go to town customizing this playmat for your little one. Add a special Grandma’s house, the library, the farm...whichever places are important in his life. He’ll have so much fun rearranging the neighborhoods and streets. If this playmat is to be used on a hard floor, attach suction cups to each corner. For use on a rug or carpet, add a strip of the “hook” part of the hook and loop tape to each corner. Not sure how the mat will be used? Add both. This will help the playmat stay put while your little one plays on it. If you think he’ll play around the mat, instead of on the mat, or if you think he won’t be too concerned about things getting messed up as he plays with it, you can skip this step. This playmat can be folded or rolled up for storage. If you’re planning to roll it, consider stitching a folded length of ribbon to one edge for tying.

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swedish stocking

’m so excited to be contributing to the Christmas issue of Inspired Ideas! When Amy suggested that I design a stocking, I immediately thought of a Scandinavian theme, as it is one of my favorite inspirations, especially at Christmas time. My design is of course red and white, the traditional holiday colors of Sweden, and features a Dala Horse, long associated with Swedish design. I hope you enjoy creating one for yourself.

God Jul!

( t h a t ’s M e r r y C h r i s t m a s i n S w e d i s h )

by Jenny B. Harris christmas 2010

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You will need: Q

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the pattern (found in appendix) sharp fabric scissors regular needle embroidery needle pins white and red felt (wool or wool-blend works best) red sewing thread white and red pearl embroidery floss

This design is for a 12” long stocking, but you can enlarge the pattern if desired. Please note this pattern is for personal use only. Using the pattern, cut out all shapes from felt in the colors and amounts as noted. Refer to photograph for positioning of shapes.

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Front of stocking Pin the Dala horse and heart shapes onto the front panel of the stocking. Pin one of the cuff, heel and toe pieces to the front panel of stocking. Attach all by whip-stitching around edge with red sewing thread. Note - do not stitch along edges of stocking panel. With red pearl floss, attach the white “plus” shapes to each of the hearts with a french knot in the center. Sew red french knots around the horse’s saddle and below each heart. With white pearl floss, stitch a french knot for the Dala horse’s eye, and sew white french knots along the edge of the toe, heel and top band of stocking.

Back of stocking Pin remaining cuff, toe and heel sections onto the back panel of the stocking. Pin hanging loop in place between top band and back panel. Attach top band, toe and heel to back panel by whipstitching along the edge with red sewing thread. Note do not stitch along edges of stocking panel.

Jenny has been drawing and making stuff since she was a wee thing. Whether she's illustrating children's books, designing patterns or stitching silly toys, Jenny thinks that a day spent in the studio is an absolutely super day. She lives and works in a rambling, creatively

Assemble stocking

decorated home in Dallas, Texas (which is

Pin front panel to back panel with wrong sides together, leaving top open. Using white pearl floss on the red portions, and red pearl floss on the white portions, whip stitch all around edge of stocking, leaving top open.

band). Christmas is hands down her

heroically tolerated by her architect husfavorite holiday, as anyone who has visited her blog Allsorts can attest. You can read about her crafty adventures there (http://allsorts.typepad.com) or chuckle at

With white pearl floss, whip stitch around top opening, catching hanging loop in stitches to secure. Hang your stocking and enjoy!

her random bursts of creative output in her etsy shop, Loopsies. christmas 2010

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Please support our advertisers! Click on any ad throughout this issue to go directly to the advertiser’s site.

Alexa Lett ...the artsy-craftsy merchant vintage inspired... blog, art, jewelry, supplies

www.AlexaLett.com

Linens, Lace, and Ephemera

yo-yo tree H

ere’s a project from my mother, Marjorie Kellam. She’s a bit of a purist so all her trees were green. She used homespun fabrics, rusty stars, and more primitive wooden spools. But I thought it would be fun to try another color palette. An all-white tree would be dreamy, with all sorts of fabrics of different textures. It would look like a snowy tree. This is a fun project to make with children. Yoyos are fairly simple and a lot of fun to make. Let your child choose the fabric combinations and her personality will shine through. And wouldn’t Grandma like to have a sweet yo-yo tree made by her sweet grandchild? — Amy Powers

by Marjorie Kellam christmas 2010

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Supplies Q

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9 different fabrics (search your scraps....the largest piece you’ll need will be to make a 10inch circle) 1/4” dowel cut to about 8” long Wooden spool, with or without thread Small wooden star Yellow or gold paint Glue Needle & thread

Instructions Put a dab of glue inside the spool and insert the dowel, making sure the dowel is straight. Paint the star yellow or gold. (Wouldn’t it be fun to glitter it?) Out of your different fabrics cut 1 circle each: 10-inch, 9-inch, 8-inch, 7-inch, 6-inch, 5-inch, 4inch, 3-inch, 2-inch. (See guide in appendix if needed)

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Cut a small slit (1/4”) in the center of each of the circles. Make yo-yos out of each of the circles. Do you know how to make a yo-yo? It's so easy. Using a knotted thread, stitch the circumference of the circle, 1/4" from the edge of the circle. When you complete the circle, pull the thread gently to gather the circle into itself. Whip a couple of stitches to hold the yo-yo in place. Slide each yo-yo onto the dowel through the slit and the gathered end you just made, starting with the largest circle and working your way to the smallest. After you slide the last yo-yo on, top your tree with your little star. *For the tippy-top yo-yo, you could try something a little different to make the yo-yo more finishedlooking. Before you stitch the circumference of the circle, turn the edge over all the way around the circle and press. Now stitch the folded-over edge just as you did with all the other yo-yos.

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christmas tree apron

I

made this apron for a holidaythemed apron challenge and, because we had to sew all of it ourselves, I created the red and white striped base using a vintage McCall’ s pattern. You can do the same with a favorite apron pattern or use an apron that you already own. Anything in a solid holiday color would work perfectly; red gingham, stripes, or polka dots would be cute, too!

by Janet McCaffrey christmas 2010

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Materials Q

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Apron Pattern pieces A and B (found in appendix) Felt—yellow and black or brown Embroidery thread to match felt colors About 3.5 yards green brush fringe, pom pom trim, or rick rack Jingle bells Thin red ribbon Buttons Additional embellishments of your choice

Using pattern piece A, cut out two stars from the yellow felt. With yellow embroidery floss, blanket stitch around one point. Position the star in the center of the waistband and continue stitching around the edge while attaching it to the waistband and the body of the apron. Using pattern piece B, cut out a piece of black or brown felt for the tree stand. Position it along the bottom hem aligned vertically with the star at the top and blanket stitch it in place. It will be a lot easier to position your fringe for the tree if you draw some lines on the apron. Use an air-soluble marker and the lines will disappear on their own in a few days. Draw a vertical line from the star down to the tree “stand”, then measure out to the sides so you end up with a triangular shape. Draw horizontal lines spaced about an inch apart. My trim is 5/8” wide; if yours is wider, you may want to space your lines a bit farther apart. My top line is 1” long and the bottom is 12”. Make your triangle as wide or as tall as you like. Starting with your top line, fold under the edges of your trim about ½” on each end and pin the strip in place. Using a sewing machine and thread that’s close in color to your trim, sew the strip in place. Continue positioning, pinning, and sewing the strips in place until you reach the bottom line. I found the strips a bit slippery and had trouble getting them to align perfectly—if that happens you can either baste them in place or attach them with a bit of fabric glue to hold them in place until you sew them. Now that the tree is finished you can start embellishing it. Tie the jingle bells with a bit of thin red ribbon and tack down the bow with some matching thread. Sew on some pretty vintage buttons. I kept my tree pretty simple but you can get as crazy as you like with embellishments. Add some pretty ribbon or lace, sew on some charms or millinery flowers, try some silver beaded trim. As with holiday trees themselves, sometimes more is just perfect!

Janet McCaffrey is a freelance graphic designer and owner of Primrose Design, a craft business that sells one-of-a-kind pillows and accessories crafted from vintage fabrics, recycled embroidered textiles, vintage buttons, and trims. She lives in a 1860s farmhouse in northeastern Pennsylvania with her writer husband and three cats. When she’s not designing magazines and websites or sewing new products for Primrose she can be found hunting for vintage treasures, working on embroidery projects, playing with their cats, tending the vegetable and flower gardens, and fixing up their old house. You can read about her crafty adventures on the Primrose Design blog at http://primrosedesign.blogspot.com. And, if you’re interested in learning more about hand-embroidery, be sure to visit her Stitch School blog at http://www.stitchschool.blogspot.com

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snowflake cake

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Pink is a lovely Christmas colour, don't you think? Gussied up with white chocolate snowflakes, this cake confection will sparkle up your holiday dessert table. If pink isn't your shade, leave the frosting white... white on white is elegant and goes with any decor. The instructions for this snowflake cake are so terribly easy. Simply bake a packaged strawberry cake mix according to package directions in two nine inch round pans. When cooled, frost in layers with your very favourite pink buttercream frosting. Here's my recipe: Q

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1 cup white butter or margarine (butter or margarine without the yellow dye), at room temperature 1 cup white Crisco vegetable shortening, at room temperature dash of salt 1 teaspoon white (decorator's) vanilla extract 1 teaspoon butter flavouring 4 cups icing (confectioner's) sugar 2 to 4 tablespoons heavy cream dash of strawberry Kool Aid powder

You may wish to tint your buttercream pink... why not add a dash of strawberry Kool Aid powder? Just a dash will do... add a bit and see what you think of the colour and the flavour. You can always add more, but you can't take it out.

Snowflake instructions:

Make the "snowflakes" ahead of time. Heat white chocolate candy melts in the microwave until you can stir them smooth. Using a pastry bag, pipe simple star shapes onto waxed paper or a silicone baking surface. Sprinkle the tips of the snowflakes with fancy nonpareils or sanding sugar for some sparkle before they harden! Store at room temperature until you are ready to place them on your frosted cake. Store your cake in an airtight container in a cool spot - if you choose to refrigerate it, let it warm to room temperature before serving.

In a stand mixer at high speed, blend the butter or margarine with the vegetable shortening and the salt. Start adding the confectioner's sugar, one cup at a time, blending well after each addition. Scrape down the bowl often. Mix in the vanilla and butter flavouring. Your frosting will be very stiff... now add the heavy cream, one tablespoon at a time, on the highest speed of your mixer. The frosting will get light and fluffy... almost like a cloud.

by Sasha Libby christmas 2010

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happy necklace

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s a little girl, my grandmother’s jewelry boxes were tiny treasure chests open for business. I loved the huge brooches and

the sparkly “diamonds”! I draped myself in her fancy long necklaces and even fashioned some into crowns that the Queen of England would be envious of! These precious memories are the inspiration for my happy necklaces. (You really do have to be happy when you wear them. It’s impossible not to be.) I love that they are easy to make and unique to the creator. They could be totally altered to fit any holiday, special occasion, or shared with a dear friend. Gather up your favorite pretties and let’s spread a little happy!

by Lynn Lebsack christmas 2010

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Cut the pin backs off using wire cutters.

Use these instructions to make a kitschy Christmas necklace shown on the previous page or a pretty flower one above.

Work with the pieces to create a little arrangement that is pleasing to your eye.

You'll need a little fabric for backing. Cut the backing that will work for your arrangement. In fact, cut two--one for the front and one for the back. I wanted a little weight with mine, so I sandwiched a piece of paper in between... Gather some happy grandma-ish brooches from yard sales or flea markets or the trusty goodwill.

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Then I got out the big guns - E6000 (holy cow it is good glue!) and glued the arrangement right on to the fabric backing. I used an old chain from a garage sale necklace. Then I went to town stitching and went around and around using different stitch widths.

I used the amazing crop-o-dile to punch holes and add eyelets.

Miss Lynn has spent all her days creating and crafting. As a little girl making beads using dried up marshmallows and pink fingernail polish, to a young teen putting together collage pins that made her mother sure she needed therapy, the need to create has always been as natural as her need to breathe. Lynn spends her days with a classroom full of fourth graders, using any and all creative methods to motivate these precious little people. Home is her favorite place to be, surrounded by the loves of her life – her husband, Grant, and their children, Elliott and Beatrice. She especially enjoys piddling around in her art room, cutting and pasting, making pretties. www.createbreathe.blogspot.com.

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cookie cutter jewelry

J

ust say the word cookie and everyone will come quickly

and with smiles. Imagine taking

your cookie with you where ever you go. That’s the beauty of wearing your cookie — or, rather your cookie cutter.

by Heidi Woodruff

christmas 2010

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Most crafters have some sort of assortment of cookie cutters from which they can make fun necklaces to wear. Using vintage tin cookie cutters, even children’s size if you can find them, adds to the novelty of the necklace. The secret to hanging the cookie cutters as necklaces is to use your scrapbooking tool called Cropadile. The Cropadile is an amazing and powerful mutli-tool that punches holes, sets eyelets, and more. For your necklace, use any silver chain necklace at the length you feel comfortable wearing. You’ll need a couple jump ring hooks, jewelry eye pin wires, any glass beads, pearls, etc., any other jewelry findings you have around, and needle nose pliers. Needle-nose pliers that also has a metal cutter on it is useful. Otherwise have a pair of wire cutters handy. Select the smaller of the two hole punch sizes on the Cropadile and punch a hole in the very top center of the cookie cutter, being careful to not get your fingers included in the punch. Thread a glass bead onto a 2-inch jewelry eye pin, then pull this up through the bottom-inside of the cookie cutter. Repeat this on the top side of the cookie cutter, making an eye pin loop. Use as many beads as you want on top. Attach the jump ring to the hook and then to your necklace. Did I mention this is an easy project? Perfect instant gratification with no calories! When you wear your cookie, you will receive smiles. As a side note, another way to make the small hanger hole in metal cookie cutters is to use a small drill bit and a power drill. Just tap the top center of the cookie cutter with a nail first to give the top a starting point for the drill bit. This method can be used if the cookie cutter you select doesn't have enough room to punch it with the Cropadile tool. This necklace would be adorable if you are able to find the vintage children’s-size cookie cutters. Look in the glass cases at antique stores or on eBay. It’s a fun hunt. When you search online for the smallersized cookie cutters, notice the dimensions given as there are miniature cookie cutters which are sold as

cookie cutters for doll houses. These miniature cookie cutters are great to use to make charm bracelets. Now that you know you can punch a hole in cookie cutters, another idea is to make them into Christmas tree ornaments. Follow the above steps but hook them on the hooks for the tree. Another inspired idea is to spray paint the cookie cutters white (or your desired color), then paint on a glitter glaze. Or paint on a thin layer of glue and sprinkle German glass glitter. These might be better to use as tree ornaments since the glass glitter might hurt if worn as a necklace or bracelet. One final tip is to use the thin metal Christmas ornament hooks in place of the jewelry eye pins. They are longer and you can cut them off at the desired lengths using your wire cutters.

Heidi Woodruff is an everyday crafter. If she doesn’t create something each and every day, she hasn’t really put in a full day. Heidi enjoys crafting at her home, which she calls “Sweet Woodruff Acres,” and uses her home as her backdrop for all variations of craft projects. When her two girls were very young, Heidi started up a successful home business (lumber wholesale) just so she could stay at home with them. Now 21 years later, both girls are married, and Heidi even has 3 grandchildren. Heidi still works from home, now with one foot in her office and the other in her craft room! Heidi and Mark, her husband of almost 30 years, live on the southwestern Oregon coast. It was Mark who taught Heidi how to run all the power tools in his shop, which is where she makes the wood blanks for the signs she paints. Heidi loves to “have a cookie everyday”…just one is all you need. And, if you can’t eat a cookie, treat yourself to something good! Follow Heidi’s adventures on her blog: http://everyday-cookies.blogspot.com/ christmas 2010

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he idea for this project was totally organic. It’s that perfect inspiration story you’ve always wanted where something quite literally lands in your lap. I was browsing one of my local thrift stores when I happened upon a strange (but vintage!) looking box. I opened the box and inside was a complete kit of some kind of ornament with fabric and sequins. I’m a huge fan of sequins so I tucked it away in my shopping basket and made my way to the front counter. When I got home and really sat down with the box and the contents, I was like a little girl with a new toy. There was a complete pattern for the dress and after I finished making the ornament using the vintage ornament kit, I got to work modifying the vintage pattern for an updated version of the one I had just made. Now I’m sharing it with you! This one uses your own, handmade head and whatever yummy, vintage fabrics you might have at home.

by Sadie Hartmann christmas 2010

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One 3" White Foam Body One 1" Plastic Doll Head with Wire *OR* A 1" Wooden Bead (head) One White or Pink Chenille Wire Stem (Pipe cleaner) Seam Binding ribbon, pink or white Very thin trim like rick rack or white loop braid Pink glass seed beads Pink fabric (I used 2 layers of dotted pink Swiss) White Eyelet Lace 1/2" Straight pins Pink, silver or shiny white 8mm sequins Sheet music for the choir book or wrapped wood block for gift Yarn for the hair Flesh colored paint for the head Red and black paint pens for the eyes/lips Tacky Glue

1 Trace paper patterns onto the pink fabric you are using for the dress. Cut out all the pieces. 2 Glue the very thin rick rack/trim to: a. the curved parts of the overskirt b. one long edge of the skirt bottom c. the curved parts of the shoulder patterns d. one long side of the bodice 3 Pin the ends of the skirt bottom at the right and left side seams of the doll body with the trim side near the bottom. Make small pleats as you go. 4 Follow the same procedure with the eyelet lace across the front of the doll body, allowing about 3/8" of the skirt bottom to show. 5 Pin the sides of the overskirt to both the left and right side of the doll body, over the eyelet lace and making pleats at the waistline. Use seed beads on the pins because those pins will show.

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6 Now put a pin through a seed bead and start pinning sequins to cover the back of the skirt all the way to the waistline (see picture of the back of the doll). 7 Wrap the bodice around the bust of the doll with the trim side up and secure with pins. 8 Insert plastic doll head, or make a hole in the center of the neck and insert a one inch length of the chenille wire into the neck. OR Paint the wooden head flesh color and paint on the face. Put tacky glue in the hole of the bead. Thread the bead onto the chenille stem coming out of the neck. 9 Insert 2.5" pieces of the chenille stem into the body where the arms go. 10 Position the two collar pieces over the shoulder/arms and secure with pins. 11 Tie the seam binding ribbon around the doll's waist and make a bow in the back. 12 Using tacky glue or hot glue, wrap yarn hair around the doll's head. 13 Cut out a mini choir book from sheet music, or wrap a small wood block as a gift and secure to the dolls arms/hands.

Sadie Hartmann a.k.a “Sadie Lou” lives in the Sierra Foothills of California with her husband Dan of 14 years and their three children. All through her childhood, Sadie was “artistic”. She dabbled in all of it: creative writing, the dramatic arts, musicals, poetry, cooking, sewing, dancing ... all of it. Over the years, as the seasons of her life came and went, so did her artistic focus. When the children were small, she was passionate about making scrapbooks. As the children grew older, other forms of art could be explored. Joining the craft-blogging community inspired Sadie to start an online journal of her explorations. Later, the blogging world urged her to start selling her creations. Sadie launched her Etsy shop, “Sadie Lou Who” in 2007. In 2010, Sadie’s primary artistic interests have been to reinvent and update some of the crafting projects from days gone by. “There is something so nostalgic about making a piece of art that connects you to the past.” You can connect with Sadie Lou by visiting her blog http://craftilyeverafter.blogspot.com

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christmas sampler O

ne good way to keep the stress at bay during the holiday season is to find pockets of time to relax and stitch. Tuck this project in your purse and treat yourself to this little crafty indulgence. Print the template (found in the appendix) directly on to your fabric. Use ink-jet ready fabric (available at the craft store) or make your own by ironing freezer paper to your fabric. Then grab your floss and stitch away. To make your sampler into a banner as shown, stitch the grid part of the sampler first. Then back the piece with another piece of fabric (I used felt) and stitch the banner-shaped border through both fabrics, leaving the space at the top open to create a rod pocket. Fashion a rod from a dowel and beads, and hang wherever you need a dash of Christmas cheer!

by Amy Powers christmas 2010

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o g o t e g a p s i h Click t e appendix. to th u’ll find o s e y t a e l r p e h m T te & s n patter ary for necess ng some . i t e e u l s p s i m o s c i h t n i projects

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Inspired Ideas, The Christmas Issue