When it comes to Christmas crafts, I haven't yet run out of steam. There are so many great ideas and inspiration floating around via blogs and magazines that it's hard to stop thinking of my own variations on the projects. Because I'm already a fan of "upcycling", applying the upcycling mentality to holiday crafting makes so much sense. After all, Christmas can be a time of great waste as well as good cheer. The boxes, the paper, the styrofoam packaging. All these things can end up in a dumpster or can be used again if you are clever (and I know you are!)
Instead of running to the mega-craft supply store to gather materials, I try to consider what I already have in my home. If you frequent estate sales, tag sales, or even garage sales, you might have a stash of vintage wrappping paper and ribbons, like I do. Those vintage Shiny Brite ornaments come in cardboard boxes that have cool retro-Christmas graphics. In the garage or basement most of us have a couple terra cotta flower pots. These materials, along with a vintage bottle brush tree or two, a picture frame, and basic crafting supplies like glue and glitter are all you need to get started on some last minute projects.
Last year, I posted My Eco-Friendly Christmas Crafts. I had the extra boxes left over after making vintage ornament wreaths, and I felt guilty about throwing them away. The tags made from the Shiny-Brite and other ornament boxes were so easy, and I think they turned out looking great:
I used a white Sharpie pen to write on the cardboard:
Take some of your vintage wrapping paper, or new wrapping paper scraps, and decoupage them onto wood cutouts of ornament shapes.
I added some metallic trim found in a bag of miscellaneous Christmas ribbons, and it made a perfect "cap" to the ornaments:
This year I got out my same bag of Christmas wrapping paper and used it to cover some flower pots and a picture frame. I thought the flower pots would be good containers for bottle brush trees, which look much more impressive "potted" than standing on their own.
To make these easy wrapping paper covered flower pots, I painted terra cotta pots off-white around the edges that I knew would be difficult to cover with paper, or all over for the pots that I would be using thin paper on, that way the terra cotta color wouldn't show through. Then, I just applied decoupage glue to the flower pot. I tried Martha Stewart's bottled glue for the first time, and it was easy to work with. After applying the paper, I rolled over it with a brayer, then topcoated it with the glue.
Below I have the three steps lined up:
I love the old golden ribbon I discovered in my stash:
One of the pots was covered with vintage sheet music, and I added some old wrapping paper seals for some color:
I covered a little picture frame with wrapping paper, then made a little collage from a Santa cutout and more wrapping paper. To finish it off, I touched the poinsettias with red glitter glue.
The snow in my pictures is real, for those of you that are wondering!
I hope you have some time this week for some last minute Christmas projects, my friends. Finding time to be creative is so important, isn't it?