Custom Christmas Decorations
Dress your home for the holidays with homemade ornaments,
gift wrap, decorations, and more this Christmas. Start by selecting a collection of fabrics and papers in an assortment of prints and solid colors. Choose materials within your palette and vary the scale of the patterns -- include both large and small prints. When selecting your colors, use two or three main colors with one or two accent colors. We used a palette of red and mint green, with white and gray accents.
Easy Christmas Candle Display
glassware can transform into an illuminated holiday centerpiece in minutes. Wrap the glasses (search thrift stores for varied sizes) in patterned paper, securing with double-sided tape. Add some holiday bling by spraying a few glasses with spray adhesive and then rolling them in glitter.
Pair handcrafted decorations with store-bought staples for a pretty
Christmas tablescape. Shiny Christmas ball ornaments and bottle brush trees mesh well with crafted candle holders, place settings, and trims. Go to the next slides to see details from this tablescape.
Cake Plate Update
Dress up a plain
cake stand for the holidays with this easy fringe treatment. Cut paper into triangle and adhere to the edge of the stand with double-sided tape. Use the decorated stand to serve a mountain of sugar-coated donuts, reminiscent of a snowy hillside.
Raise this banner high in celebration of
Christmas. Cut triangle shapes from Fun Foam (available at crafts stores) and cover with paper or fabric. Embellish with antique buttons. Cut slits in the two corners and thread the triangle on ribbon as shown to form the banner.
Christmas Place Setting
Create these pretty
place settings in a flash for your holiday get-togethers. Cut circles from heavy patterned paper (or copy a favorite fabric onto cardstock) and sandwich between a charger and clear plate for a charming place setting. Top each place setting with a small wrapped gift, ornament, or homemade Christmas treat.
Bowl of Gifts
Repurpose an old fish
bowl as the foundation of a whimsical Christmas centerpiece. Place small wrapped gifts inside the bowl and sprinkle with faux snow.
New Take on Trees
This may just be the best thing since artificial trees -- a wall-mounted
Christmas "tree" that doesn't take up much space, shed needles, or require arduous assembly. Hang small matching shelves in a triangle pattern on the wall and top each shelf with a different ensemble of Christmas decor favorites. (Go to the next slides to see some examples.) Place a greenery-filled urn at the base for the tree "trunk" and surround with pretty wrapped presents.
Use the shelves of your wall tree to display favorite
Christmas collectibles, such as this antique tin featuring Old Saint Nick.
Editor's Tip: Hang a matching ornament on each shelf to unify the display. Red ball ornaments do the trick for this display.
Make use of your fabric scraps by constructing this whimsical wreath. Cover buttons with fabric scraps, securing on the backside of the button with hot-glue. Wrap a plastic foam wreath with ribbon and trim the outside edge of the wreath tinsel. Then glue the buttons to the wreath, layering and overlapping as desired.
Wrap real or faux
Christmas presents in colorful paper and ribbon. Add sprigs of ivy and pine to the shelf and drape the edge with sparkly tinsel. Or for a more natural look, use evergreen garland.
Sweet Tree Treat
Add a simple white
bowl of peppermint candies to one of the shelves, with a bright red package as backdrop. Use artificial snow to dust the shelves for extra glimmer.
Wrap disk-shape papier-mache ornaments with fabric and add scrapbook letters to spell out a
Christmas greeting. Hang the ornaments on a length of tinsel and hang the garland from the mantel.
Editor's Tip: For a fresh holiday display above the mantel (or on any wall space), hang an arrangement of white platters and plates, and embellish with sprigs of evergreen attached with double-sided tape.
Mimic a snowy winter landscape by filling a white compote with clear and frosted
ornaments. Surround the display with evergreen boughs and tuck a few sprigs into the bowl.
Editor's Tip: To add color to the vignette, fill other vessels with bright red candies, such as jelly beans or red hots.
Christmas Stocking Display
No mantel? No problem. Repurpose a vintage
headboard as a stocking station. Make your own stockings from your cache of fabric, or look for store-bought ones that coordinate with your look. You can also customize store-bought stockings by trimming them in fabric. For example, you can wrap the cuff in one of your fabrics, or tie a strip of fabric into a bow around the stocking's hanging loop.
Build up excitement for the big day with a countdown calendar. Wrap a piece of corkboard with fun fabric and tack on
gift tags cut from coordinating papers. Add a small wrapped gift or vintage trinket to each tag. Make numbered tags for each day in your countdown and add one to the board every day until Christmas Day.
Editor's Tip: Although we've shown a board decked out for 12 days, you could easily enlarge the project and create an advent calendar.
Wrap up party favors or small
Christmas gifts in red bags embellished with a band of fabric. Cut strips of fabric long enough to fit around the bag opening. Fold the top of the bag over on itself and wrap a fabric strip around it, using double-sided tape to secure. Finish the wrapping with a decorative sticker or button.
Wood sock dryers, a laundry staple from a bygone era, can be given new life as a charming
Christmas decoration. The red sock-shape board shown here has round holes drilled into it for holding candy bundles. Make them by wrapping red and white candy in tulle, gathering the ends of the fabric together to make a bundle. Tie the bundles through the holes of the sock form, securing the ends in the back.
Christmas Ice Capades
Turn a pair of castoff skates into a charming
Christmas decoration. Paint polka dots onto the boots of the skates and lace with lengths of red ribbon. Tuck small wrapped packages into the skates and hang from a banister or the back of a chair.
Editor's Tip: To prevent injuries, make sure the skate blades are dull.
Ready an all-season grapevine wreath for
Christmas by covering it with a thin coat of white paint. Once dry, dress the snowy wreath with vintage ornaments and small wrapped presents, securing with floral wire or hot-glue. Finish the wreath by tucking holly and evergreen sprigs in among the embellishments.
It's a Wrap
Branch out from ordinary
Christmas wrapping papers and embrace the look of fabric. Make color copies of a favorite fabric and print onto paper. Standard-size printouts on 8-1/2x11-inch paper work great for smaller packages. Utilize a local copy shop to enlarge and scale your fabric for bigger gifts.
Clever Color Scheme
Mix and match papers and fabrics for a whimsical countdown board. Here, white polka dots on red fabric stand in as the background fabric, while the opposite combination (red polka dots on white) is used for the tag.
Christmas countdown board with petite packages, embellished with ribbon and three-dimensional scrapbook stickers. The gifts can be just for show, or you can wrap up a small treat inside. Glue a loop of string to the back of the package so it can hang on the board.
Paper & Fabric Ornaments
Simple corrugated paper
ornaments (available at crafts stores) can be dressed up to fit your holiday scheme. Adhere fabric to the paper forms with Mod Podge and customize each one with a unique combination of vintage buttons and baubles.
Use a small, but detailed portion of a large-scale print material to cover a corrugated paper
ornament. Center the ornament over the portion of the fabric you'd like to use and trace around it. Use Mod Podge to adhere the fabric onto the ornament and top with buttons and embellishments.
Crepe paper gives
ornaments a ruffled, feminine look. For this project, simply glue crepe paper around the backside of the ornament, so it sticks out slightly beyond the edge of the paper ornament. For a finishing touch, adhere a fabric-covered button to the front of the ornament.
Christmas cards into tree ornaments with old-fashioned flair. Adhere vintage ephemera to corrugated paper and add a hint of sparkle by outlining parts of the card with glitter glue.
Editor's Tip: Want to keep your vintage cards intact? Make color copies of your cards and use the reproductions to craft your ornaments.
Tiny Christmas Bow
ornaments are sweet and simple to make. Simply cut a square of fabric to your desired size, gather in the middle, wrap a string around the gather to secure, and tie the ends of the string together to form the hanging loop. You can easily make these in multiples to outfit your Christmas tree.
Plastic foam crafts balls become stylish
Christmas ornaments with the help of fabric strips, which are wrapped around the orbs and coated with a layer of Mod Podge. Hot-glue a looped metallic cord or ribbon to the ornament top.
Folded Paper Ornament
Two basic shapes -- one circle and one triangle -- convert to form a three-dimensional
ornament made from paper. Download the free pattern and trace onto paper. Cut out the circles and fold on the dotted lines to create a triangle shape in the bottom of the circle (the circle folds into a cuplike shape). Repeat with additional circles and hot-glue the flaps together to make a sphere.
Editor's tip: Photocopy a piece of fabric and print onto cardstock to use instead of preprinted paper for this project. Or, trace the pattern onto old Christmas cards to upcycle them into pretty ornaments.
Seasons Greeting Cards
Round up an arsenal of paper supplies -- die cuts, patterned papers, stickers, and more -- and get creative with card making. Use these cards as inspiration to make your own.
Christmas decorations and small heirloom decorations in a pretty tray on a tabletop or shelf.
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