Be creative by decorating your Christmas tree with a favorite theme that suits your decorating style or your family's personality. We were inspired by a local festival of trees and have included tips for bringing the looks inside your own Christmas home. Bonus: We've included lighting tips to make your tree shine.View Slideshow
Christmas wreaths don't have to be made from traditional evergreens -- in fact, we encourage you to mix it up with eucalyptus leaves, boxwood, lotus pods, and even items that don't come from nature, such as peppermint candies and pom-poms. These fun-to-make creative designs show you how to make Christmas wreaths with unexpected shapes, dazzling colors, and out-of-the-ordinary materials.View Slideshow
No gift? No problem. We've got you covered with quick and easy craft ideas like sweet treats, homemade decor, ornaments, and more!
1. Cut a 7-inch square from a piece of reversible patterned cardstock. Roll the paper into a cone.
2. Secure the outer edge with double-sided tape. Cover a large brad with strips of washi tape, folding the ends under the brad. Cut two or three pieces of ribbon to notch the ends.
3. Punch a hole in the edge of the cone and through the ribbons. Poke the brad through the ribbons and the cone and fold it open to secure. Fill the cone with candy. Tuck the top corner into the cone and secure with a glue dot to close.
No-bake food gifts make fabulous last-minute presents. Here, cereal gets a cute Christmas makeover, combining crispies with marshmallows and chocolate to mimic Germany's iconic cake. Use crafts sticks and a foam board to prop the trees up. Place in a small box or container, then sprinkle with coconut for a snowy-white finish.
Everyone can use a journal. The trick to making a practical notebook pretty? Washi tape! The decorative tape comes in endless colors, patterns, and sizes -- and makes any plain notebook look fresh and new.
Make the flower: Adhere five strips of washi tape close together on a piece of cardstock to create "tape paper" for punching. Punch three or four flowers from the tape paper, layer the pieces, and fasten them in the center with a brad.
Cocktail hour just got a lot happier! Give friends and family a holiday edition of your favorite white wine alongside easy homemade fennel seed crackers. Follow our easy recipe then peel and replace the current wine label with one of your own -- handcrafted or computer-made. Wrap the fresh crackers in a paper baking cup inside a plastic bag, then tie the two together using a pretty ribbon.
Ideal for youngins and creatives, this artsy picture frame lets your receiver do all the doodling. Pick up a plain wooden frame at your local crafts store, alongside chalkboard paint (which comes in all colors!) and a box of chalk. After painting, insert a picture of your choice, then make the first mark. Draw festive designs like snowflakes, trees, and more.
Let the flavors of fall linger a little longer with hand-dipped caramel apples. Get extra creative by dunking the ruby-red treats in melty chocolate, chopped nuts, and colorful candies. Make them present-ready by placing them in cute baking cups and tying them in pretty ribbon bows.
A paper CD envelope provides a perfect wrapping (with a window!) for showing off Christmas cookies with character. Line the inside of the CD envelope with a colorful piece of scrapbooking paper. Then, attach a piece of ribbon across the front of the envelope and add a snowflake adornment. When the icing on the cookie is dry, carefully slide it into the envelope for a fun and festive way to individualize treats.
Give a friend's or family member's desk a little holiday flair with a framed quote. This one is done with a seasonal motif, but you can adapt the project to fit the recipient's passions or interests. Adorn the frame with scrapbooking stickers, beads, or even glitter to make it just as unique as your family member or friend.
Start stockpiling recycled materials to use for wrapping holiday food gifts. Just about any cylindrical container can be reused to hold tasty goodies and more. Fill these creative containers with the recipient's favorite treats: biscotti, candy cane sticks, or the always-enjoyable pretzel sticks. Use wrapping paper, construction paper, ribbon, or fabric to decorate the outside, then attach a ribbon to the top of the container using a stapler, glue gun, or hole punch for fast and easy, on-the-go treats.
Create a decorative monogram to give as a handcrafted Christmas present. Paint a wood letter a neutral color and decorate with buttons, ribbons, and other embellishments, customized to the recipient's taste and style. To make it Christmas-theme, use holiday colors and elements.
Editor's Tip: Use a last initial to serve as a family gift.
Let it be known that Santa is in the house with this greeting. Paint a ball ornament with red acrylic paint. When the paint dries, apply letter stickers and a snowflake to make Santa's voice ring throughout the holiday season. A bit of holiday ribbon at the top completes the project.
Editor's Tip: For holiday brownie points use the recipient's initials or an inspirational quote to decorate the ornament. You don't even have to paint the ball if the color is already fitting.
A plain tin becomes pretty enough for a picture when adorned with festive paper, ribbon, and a framed message. Attach decorative wrapping paper to the lid using spray-mount adhesive, double-sided tape, or glue. Use your calligraphy skills to write a kind note for the inside of the frame, or create and print a greeting using a computer. After you've filled the tin with cookies, fudge, or any other tasty treat, clip the frame to the ribbon and seal the box for the recipient. Not sure what to gift? No worries, we have some sweet and decadent suggestions below.
Editor's Tip: In lieu of an actual frame, find a fitting border online or create one on your computer to personalize before printing, then paste to the top of the tin.
A nice bottle of wine is a great go-to gift for the holidays. But this year, turn up your creativity dial a notch with a decorative wine label. This fun label has graphic Christmas trees on a red background, plus space to write a holiday greeting -- maybe if your note is nice enough the receiver will want to share.
Artfully arrange cookies, fudge, or other sweets (such as our Sticky Pecan Upside-Down Baby Cakes, recipe in the link below) on fancy platters for an elegant Christmas gift. Browse thrift stores for interesting and one-of-a-kind platters to present your delicious homemade gifts. Use two long pieces of sheer, wire-edge ribbon to wrap the platter like a gift, tying the ends together into a delightful bow for an elegant presentation. Personalize with a holiday gift tag.