Christmas Gifts: 20+ Cute and Clever Ideas to Try

Friends and family will adore these handy handmade Christmas gifts -- including dishware, vases, and other home accessories -- that are just as fun (and easy!) to make as they are to give. Start one of these simple Christmas crafts today so you can check everyone off your holiday gift list.

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Three-Step Christmas Centerpieces

Create a striking holiday centerpiece in just three steps. We have a special secret for the step one: How to lay the table runner.

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Creative Christmas Tree Themes

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.

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Christmas Sugar Cookies

Turn a simple sugar cookie into a masterpiece this Christmas. Whether you like your sugar cookies soft or crisp, simply decorated or frosted with intricate designs, these sugar cookie recipes are sure to sweeten up your holiday season.

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Deck a Christmas Staircase in Two Steps

It's so simple to decorate your staircase for Christmas! Get our damage-free, two-step plan to ensure that the holiday spirit extends from first floor to second.

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Creative Christmas Wreaths

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.

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Genius Christmas Hacks

Get ready for the Christmas season with our clever tricks to simplify the holidays. Including crafty Christmas wrapping ideas, must-try ideas for hosting guests, and why-didn't-I-think-of-that Christmas shortcuts, our tips for the holiday season are guaranteed to make your life easier.

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Decorating for Christmas with Flowers and Plants

Brighten up your home and your spirits by including fresh flowers in your Christmas decorating.

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    • Winter Jewels

      The precious gems of the plant world -- orchids -- make delightful holiday decorations. A glass pedestal vase filled with ornaments holds this blooming gift up to the light, sparking joy throughout the holiday season. To enjoy long-lasting orchids for weeks or even months, place orchids in bright indirect light, such as a south-facing window with a sheer curtain, and keep them away from cold drafts and dry heat. Once a week, set orchids in a sink and drench their roots with lukewarm water.

    • Standing In

      A Victorian-style cast-iron tree stand fitted with a 6-inch terra-cotta pot painted a glossy green makes a sturdy stand for these brilliant pink orchids.

    • Perfected Paperwhites

      Few holiday plants are easier than paperwhites. Set the bulbs halfway into some potting soil, water them, and wait a couple of weeks. You can also buy paperwhites (and other bulb plants like daffodils and tulips) already started. Whichever way you go, dress up the look with some Spanish moss and a scatter of tiny apples.

    • Soft-as-Silk Cyclamen

      Potted cyclamen are a triple-treat holiday plant. They offer long-lasting good looks, clear colors, and interesting foliage. Keep your cyclamen healthy for a longer period by placing it in a bright, cool location away from direct sunlight. Water only when the surface of the soil becomes dry. After the blooms fade, allow the plant to dry out and become dormant. Once growth restarts, begin watering again. Like most houseplants, cyclamen enjoy spending the warmer months outdoors in a well-shaded location.

    • Add a Sparkle

      Shimmery silver ornaments are the perfect accent to a display of white potted flowers, such as these cyclamen, Star-of-Bethlehem, and kalanchoe.

    • Amazing Amaryllis

      When it comes to choosing a holiday amaryllis this year, don't settle for boring old red yet again! Each year, garden centers stock a host of interesting varieties in pink, white, purple, copper, and multiple colors in interesting patterns.

    • Serene Amaryllis

      Serene amaryllis bloom in soft winter light on a cool windowsill. Line up a trio of the blooms in special glass vases designed to suspend the bulbs above water. To add a glistening effect and help the roots grow, fill the bottom of the vases with a handful of clear marbles.

    • Accessorize an Amaryllis

      If the giraffelike neck of amaryllis puts you off, don't turn into a basket case. Just surround one or more of the long-necked lovelies with an assortment of small potted azaleas.

    • Alluring Azalea

      If you've ever watched the Masters Golf Championship in Augusta, Georgia, you know just how fabulous azaleas are when they're in their preferred climate. Thankfully, Northern gardeners can enjoy them for years in pots, and the holidays are the perfect time of year to start enjoying them.

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      Standing Tall

      A column of 'Honesty' Keepsake azaleas put on a show for weeks in simple white pots. The tree-form shrubs make great patio or sunroom plants.

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      Christmas Cactus

      This family treasure will bloom year after year, just in time for Christmas.

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      Hibiscus

      Hibiscus produce large, striking flowers, indoors or outdoors. They survive in cold regions only if you bring them indoors from early fall through late spring.

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      Wrap It Up, Folks!

      By virtue of its popularity, the poinsettia is the queen of holiday plants. For an easy, inexpensive, and impressive host or hostess gift, wrap a pretty specimen in thin, easy-to-mold art paper, then tie it off with a satin bow.

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      Next Slideshow Pretty Christmas Living Rooms

      Pretty Christmas Living Rooms

      Don't stop at the Christmas tree -- extend your Christmas decorations through the whole living room. These Christmas decorating ideas will have your space overflowing with cheer, whatever your decorating style.
      Begin Slideshow »

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