Gather your friends and use these patriotic decorating, entertaining, and recipe ideas for this year's 4th of July celebration. From festive star banners and refreshing watermelon coolers to raveworthy party favors and more, your 4th of July party is bound to be summer's biggest shindig.View Slideshow
Brighten your holiday home with these clever handmade Christmas decorations. From bright ornaments and creative wreaths to cozy pillows and festive garlands, we have tons of holiday crafts that you'll love to help make your home holiday-ready.
Make fancy folded treat holders as a pretty home decoration, food gift, or as party favors. Our free download includes a pattern and instructions. You'll want to pick out pretty scrapbook papers for the pyramids, plus decorative ribbon and metallic twine or yarn for finishing touches.
Count down to Christmastime with our easy do-it-yourself calendar. To make this holiday craft, cut twenty-four 2-1/4-inch circles from an adhesive magnet sheet. Adhere them to patterned paper; cut out. Use a 1-inch circular punch for the inner circles. Number and glue them to the magnetic circles. Fill the wells with fun trinkets, notes, and candies.
Editor's Tip: Be sure you pick a muffin pan with 24 wells (one for each day leading up to Christmas).
Express your best wishes for the season on a colorful garland made with felted balls and embroidered pennants. String the pieces onto baker's twine, then swag the garland inside a two-tone painted frame.
Make the frame: Find an ornately designed frame at a local thrift store or garage sale. Using painter's tape, mark off a line about two thirds of the way down the frame. Spray the top section with white paint; let dry. Mark a new line with painter's tape at the edge of the white area; spray below the line with gold paint and let dry.
Make a felted ball: Pull off a small piece of wool from roving. Gently pull fibers apart to fluff the wool. Using the palms of your hands, roll wool into loose round ball. Dip ball of wool into a small bowl of water with a drop of liquid laundry or dish soap. Squeeze excess water out of ball. Roll ball between hands gently to avoid forming large cracks; let dry.
No room for a tree? This hangable wall decoration is the perfect holiday craft for small spaces. To make, draw a large triangle on a large shipping pallet to desired size (ours is 44-inches tall). Cut out the triangle using a jigsaw; use sandpaper to smooth all surfaces. Paint tree slats with alternative shades of green paint. Predrill holes, then screw small cup hooks and drawer pulls to the front. Hang cards and decorations on the cup hooks. Tie rope between knobs; attach clothespins to rope. Garlands, globe lights, and mini presents also make fun tree decorations.
Make a gift even more special by embellishing the wrapping with a needle-felted tag or adornment you've made yourself. Simply cut out pieces of felt in whatever shape you like best and adorn with extra felt strips, triangles, stars, or other festive shapes. Needle-felt designs into your tags, or stitch letters and patterns for extra decoration.
These colorful Christmas trees are made using varieties of different baking cups. Cut down the side and around the bottom of your baking cups; discard bottom. Starting at the bottom of a foam cone, wrap a cut strip around the tree, securing the ends with straight pins. Cover any foam that remains showing with another strip. Add more strips, overlapping slightly and alternating patterns until you reach the top. For the last two strips at the top, roll a small pleated piece and insert it inside a slightly larger strip; pin to treetop.
This holiday crafts idea transforms inexpensive materials like pinecones and felt into a trio of wise gnomes. Let your imagination run wild as you style their beards, scarves, and hats.
With a little help, you'll have holiday wall art that's beautiful to look at and read. You'll need a framed chalkboard or a decorative frame and some chalkboard paint for this project. Print and enlarge our chalk design to fit your frame. Tape the design to the chalkboard, and slide white transfer paper underneath. Trace and fill in the design with a chalk pencil, keeping the pencil sharp for crisp lines.
Editor's Tip: To prevent smudges, place a piece of paper between your hand and the chalkboard panel, and work away from the areas you have already filled in.
Elegant, yet rustic, this advent calendar is a fun way to decorate and get your family excited for the holidays. Paint a board and attach it to a vintage window or picture frame. Hang manila shipping tags from cup hooks on the board. You can use a ruler to space the hooks evenly, or trust your eye. Adhere number stickers to the envelopes to help kids count down the days. Each morning, they can hang an ornament from that day's hook.
Perfect for Christmas place settings or centerpieces, these winter-theme votives are an ideal accent for a holiday table. Wrap silver or clear votive holders in blue velvet ribbon, and hot-glue mini frosted pinecones to the ribbon for a natural touch.
Editor's Tip: Make a few of these for a unique hostess gift, or let Christmas guests take them home as party favors.
Strike a merry chorus on your Christmas tree with these handmade ornaments made from sheet music. To make, place old sheet music in water until it is just damp; blot off excess water with a towel. Apply a thin, even layer of decoupage medium to a piece of cream cardstock; immediately place the damp sheet music on the cardstock. Roll a rubber brayer over the sheet music to smooth it and push out air bubbles; let dry. Trace the ornament patterns onto the wrong side of the cardstock; cut out. Make a hole in the top. Rub a cotton swab in sepia ink and rub the swab along the front and back edges of each ornament. Apply several layers of decoupage medium to both sides of each ornament; let dry. To hang, thread a wire ornament hanger or a ribbon through the hole.
Christmas ornaments don't have to be just for your tree -- here they come together from repurposed Christmas cards in homemade artwork. Grab a few old Christmas greeting cards and cut out three different-size circles. For the ornament caps, punch two circles from metallic silver cardstock using a punch. Glue a circle at the top of the small and large ornaments, tucking half of each circle behind the ornament shape. Position ornaments on a sheet of paper; mark positions with a pencil. Cut a length of green ribbon for each ornament hanger; tape the ribbon ends to the paper with double-stick tape. Tape the ornaments in place, and tie a bow from the remaining ribbon. Adhere the bow to the top of the medium-size ornament with crafts glue. Frame the design for a polished look.
Editor's Tip: Glam up the decoration by adding adhesive gemstones to the ornaments.
Display a friendly season's greeting to all guests. To create a ribbon card hanger, simply stitch ribbon in flaps and attach a kicky bow at one end with a few stitches. Add a picture hanger to the back of the bow and hang on the wall. Tuck a card under each flap and adhere with double-stick tape.
Learn how to make a festive Christmas wreath made from yarn in our quick video. The bright felt will stand out against your door this holiday season.
Spruce up your holiday decor with patterned-paper trees. Cut or punch a decorative edge from 1x2-1/2-inch and 3/4x2-1/2-inch strips of patterned paper; curl the edges by wrapping them around a pencil. Hot-glue the pieces to a foam cone (ours are 9, 12, and 15 inches tall). Top each tree with a star cut from felt and held in place with wire. Add a gem for sparkle. Trim the tree with buttons, brads, and gem ornaments.
These rock candy-embellished cones are a fun and easy holiday crafts project. Pour horizontal rows of candy crystals in three or more colors on a baking sheet with the rows flush together. Wrap solid light color cardstock around foam cones, slightly overlapping the paper at the back of the cone and securing it with hot glue. Do not apply the glue directly to the cone, which will melt. Larger cones may need two sheets of paper to be completely covered. Spread crafts glue on the cones and roll them in crystals; let dry. Repeat process, if needed, to cover cones completely with crystals. Use hot glue to fill in small gaps with hand-placed crystals.
Transform a package or make an easy centerpiece with these simple paper trees. Cut three paper circles, each 1/2 inch larger than the previous from decorative paper. Fold each circle in half four times. Snip the tip of each to make a hole; unfold. Thread the circles onto a wooden skewer, gluing in place if needed.
For the topper, glue two small shapes together with the top of the skewer in between. Gently poke the skewer through the top of a package to stand.