Everybody loves a good Christmas tradition! These yearly activities tend to be the parts of the season that we look forward to the most. They allow for extra wallowing in all things Christmas. We invited four bloggers to share their own crafty Christmas traditions. With cake-making, holiday recipes, and sweet, sentimental decorating ideas, these classic, annual events give us another excuse to celebrate the holidays.See More
After gifts are opened, sit down to a delicious Christmas brunch the whole family will love. These delicious brunch recipes, including Christmas breakfast casseroles, cinnamon rolls, and pastries, are sure to make your Christmas morning memorable. Bonus: Almost all of these breakfast recipes are easy to make ahead.View Slideshow
Express your affection by making your own gifts this Valentine's Day. We have creative homemade Valentine gift ideas for him and her -- DIY photo projects, home decor, and food gifts -- that are sure to show any loved one how much you care.
Express your love for your special someone with a sweet sentiment made from rope. To make, douse thick natural fiber rope in a mix of 1-1/2 cups warm water, 1 cup flour, 1 cup cornstarch, 1 cup crafts glue, and 1 teaspoon salt. Shape the rope into a word and a frame, laying the design on a piece of plastic wrap. Use light-gauge wire to add stability and to form tight letter shapes. The letters should harden within 24 hours. When dry, tack the lettering on the wall, attaching decorative birds or other embellishments as desired.
Editor's Tip: Write your word on the plastic wrap using a permanent marker first as a guide for the design.
Pretty pink and sparkly Mason jars make gorgeous vases for your Valentine's Day flower gift. To make, paint the outside of the jars with two coats of paint. We mixed several shades of pink with white to create a range of hues. For a touch of glam, mask the top of the jar with painter's tape and cover the bottom with glitter spray paint.
This Valentine's Day, gift a dreamy, stylized set of wall art with our simple and elegant photo transfer project. First, print a favorite photo on an overhead transparency. Cover the surface of a canvas with a thin coat of gel medium, a clear gloss finish that can be found at your local crafts store, then place the transparency ink-side down onto the gel. Burnish it with the back of a spoon. Lift a corner to see if the image has transferred, then peel off the film completely. The resulting image will have an artsy, gritty quality. Transfer several images on different-size canvases and group them for a cool wall display.
Metallic buttons easily create a too-cute Valentine's Day heart on our too-easy pillow design. Simply gather a collection of mismatched buttons and spray-paint them gold. Stitch each button onto the pillow, making a heart shape.
You don't need a dozen roses to make a spectacular Valentine's Day arrangement. Simply cluster a handful in a simple vase with a variety of other flowers and anchor the stems with pebbles.
Kick off your Valentine's Day gift-giving with this fun card-making kit for kids. Not only will they love putting together these sweet valentines, but they'll also be able to give a gift of the season to their loved ones. Package a cardstock heart, bejeweled brad, red crayon, and a blank card in cellophane. Include assembly instructions telling kids to write a handwritten message on the paper heart before attaching it to the card with the brad.
A sweet, romantic Valentine's Day cake makes a too-cute centerpiece or decoration. Felt, upholstery foam, and rickrack come together to make the dessert -- try one piece or make the whole cake!
A pretty crocheted cuff makes a sweet and romantic bracelet for your loved one. The lacy band is made using perle cotton and fastens with two buttons on the ends.
Fill a simple cylinder vase with pretty flowers and wrap the vase with a matching-color piece of burlap. Cut a strip of burlap wide enough to wrap around the cylinder, and line the top and bottom edges and the ends of the burlap with adhesive. Attach the burlap strip to the vase. Cover the top and bottom edges of the burlap with thin velvet ribbon, using fabric glue to secure.
Place your favorite harvest-scented candles inside glass votive cups and wrap the vessels with tamale-making husks (available at grocery stores). Soak husks in warm water for a minute to make them flexible. Tightly wrap a husk around a votive cup and hold in place with a rubber band. Trim excess husk at the top and bottom. Twist a thin length of husk and tie it around the center of the candleholder; remove rubber band.
Put together a date-night-in-a-box with your valentine's favorite movie, two small bottles of champagne, and his favorite candy for the two of you to enjoy. Your thoughtfulness will make the perfect Valentine's Day gift. Bonus: Include marshmallows and roasting twigs for an evening by the fire.
Slip plain glassware into something more comfortable with these sweater cozies. Stretch a piece of an old sweater around a glass vase or candleholder, right side in. Pin the sweater ends together to create a snug fit, slip off the glass, and sew where pinned. Cut off the excess, then turn right side out. Use various sweater accents, such as buttons, pockets, sleeves, and ribbing, to dress up your glassware cozy.
For the tech-obsessed loved one in your life, give the gift of a customized gadget case. A swivel hook at the top snaps onto jeans or totes so he or she will never be without music. Pick a pattern your partner will love and load their gadget with a playlist of favorite songs.
A tasty food gift is the present everyone loves. Drizzle this tangy syrup over pound cake or ice cream, or add a dash to cocktails. To package, wrap washi tape around the top or bottom of an apothecary bottle for a quick embellishment. Tie a gift tag or love note to the neck of the bottle with twine.
For an inexpensive yet elegant Valentine's Day gift, give old jewelry new life by transforming it into a beautiful vase. Use glass glue to secure the jewelry to plain glass bottles for creative, simple designs. When the glue is dry, prime the bottles and paint with high-gloss paint. Pair with a bouquet of flowers for a romantic and reusable home decor gift.
A simple wooden frame embellished with a few heart shapes displays a memorable love quote. Using a word-processing program, type a love quote in red script and print; fit inside the wooden frame. Download our free pattern with the quote, "Love without reason lasts the longest." Or find more love quotes below.
Make a case of your valentine's favorite soda or beer even more special with a few simple touches. Wrap a piece of embossed red scrapbook paper around the cardboard case, securing with double-stick tape. Fold another piece of cardstock to cover the handle and cut out the opening. Embellish the package with a length of narrow velvet ribbon and a stamped tag.
Make your sweetheart feel special on Valentine's Day by giving him a unique card describing 10 reasons why you love him. Tuck a handwritten library card (our template is available, below) inside a library card pocket, stamp the pocket with a pretty image, and attach it to a nice journal to complete the gift.
Watch this video for five easy ideas for handmade gifts, including customizable stoneware and fun food gifts. Our easy instructions and fun homemade gift ideas ensure you'll enjoy crafting this Valentine's Day.
Dress up a simple picture frame with colorful candy hearts for a sweet Valentine gift idea. Cut out a cardboard circle to fit on top of a square frame. Adhere hearts as shown, then glue the cardboard to the frame. Pair with a favorite photo of you and your loved one for a gift you both will cherish.
Personalize a small candy box to make a special gift. Cut a square of decorative paper large enough to cover the box lid and sides; cut diagonal slits in the corners. Glue paper to the lid and fold the paper edges down, lining up the corners and trimming any excess if necessary. Download the Special Delivery pattern, available below, and print onto cardstock. Cut out and attach to the box lid with glue or double-stick tape.
Gift your loved one's favorite candy in a hand-designed muslin bag. Place a piece of smooth cardstock inside a muslin bag and stamp an image onto the front. Remove the cardstock and set the bag aside to dry; fill with candy. Make the gift en masse for coworkers or as a Valentine's Day party favor.
Baked goods are always a sweet way to wish someone a happy Valentine's Day. Print our recipe onto a medium glassine bag (available at crafts stores or online at etsy.com), and fill with our tea-scented biscotti to give to a friend or coworker.
A handmade valentine will mean a lot to your loved one, but a frame will keep it secure. Punch or cut heart shapes from different colors and patterns of cardstock, and adhere the hearts to a pink sheet of paper to create a background. Print our quote or make your own card, cut out, and attach to the backing. Frame it for a special gift for your sweetheart.