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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 button, brad, and gem ornaments.
Make a tree skirt that you won't want to cover with gifts. To make the skirt, cut a desired-size circle, with a slit for the tree trunk, in the fabric of your choice. Cut holly leaves from two colors of green fabric and in two sizes (24 and 26 inches long), and cut circles from red fabric for the berries. Hand-stitch long straight stitches with embroidery floss down the center of the leaves. Glue the leaves and berries onto the skirt.
Turn a garden urn into a sophisticated Christmas decoration by using it as a stand for an evergreen wreath. Adorn the arrangement with berries, pinecones, and sparkling orbs. Add symmetry with neatly wrapped presents in brightly colored packages on both sides of the urn.
Make a tasty felt lollipop by sandwiching a poster board circle between two decorated felt circles; sew the stack together with a blanket stitch, leaving a small opening for the stick. Cut a length of dowel and insert it in the bottom of the lollipop. Hot-glue a ribbon bow to the dowel and display in a small vase filled with tiny marshmallows.
Propped on a windowsill or a mantel, these papier-mache letters will greet your guests with cheer. Use them to display a holiday sentiment or your family's last name.
Put old or mismatched forks to use as Christmas card holders. Place a piece of green florist's foam inside a clear glass or vase. Stick forks into the foam and use the tines to display Christmas cards. Tie a velvet or satin bow around the glass for a finishing touch.
Editor's Tip: You may need to bend the fork tines for the cards to stay in place.
These container covers, crafted using an old wool sweater in holiday hues, have endless possibilities. Felt a sweater by washing in hot water and tumbling dry. Cut the sweater into rectangular pieces and sew into tubes to fit your containers. Make them to cover pots of planted evergreens or glasses to hold Christmas candies. They also work great for to-go coffee cups (great gifts for your espresso-loving friends).
Editor's Tip: To hold the wool cover in place, attach the hook side of adhesive hook-and-loop tape to the container and slide the wool cover over the top of the container.
If making cutout cookies isn't your thing, use cookie cutters in a new way this Christmas. To make this wreath, arrange large cookie cutters on a paper-covered work surface in a circular shape, and fill in the gaps with smaller cookie cutters. Glue the arrangement together with an adhesive appropriate for metals; let dry. Spray-paint the wreath, if desired, and finish with a festive bow.
Build anticipation for Christmas day with a handcrafted countdown calendar. Basic crafting supplies, a computer, and your creativity can transform a plain wooden plaque into a calendar filled with family photos.
Pillows add instant personality to any room. And handmade pillows like these are sure to be used for the holidays year after year. Our tree pillows were done in red-and-white, but you can use different color felts to match your style.
Give a purchased blanket a personalized touch with ribbon and pretty stitching in red and green. The result is a cuddly throw, perfect for a Christmas gift or an extra cover for holiday guests to use.
Keep yourself organized in style this holiday season. Wintry blue and white fabric and ribbons elevate a humble bulletin board to art-gallery status. Use pretty thumbtacks to post your essential holiday lists, recipes, party invitations, and reminders, or simply tuck your important papers between the ribbons.
Use fabric scraps and crafts wire to make these fun Christmas tree napkin rings. They're quick to make and require just a few supplies. Make a set for your holiday table or as a handmade present to give a friend.
Snow globes can be found in stores by the dozen. Why not make your own? The trick is to use liquid glycerin -- an ingredient used to make handmade soaps -- available at crafts stores.
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