Wednesday, December 16, 2009

CRAFTASTIC: Christmas Craft Spectacular!

With just a little over a week left until Christmas Eve, I thought I'd share a round up of some of the best Christmas crafts I've come across.

First up is a super simple project from Factory Direct Crafts that your kids will love - making a button wreath ornament.

The how to really couldn't be any easier.  Take a length of floral wire, bend it into a U-shape, thread on your buttons, twist the two ends of the wire together to create a closed circle and then tie a ribbon over it to create a hanger for your ornament.  That's it!

Another easy peasy DIY ornament idea comes from Dollar Store Crafts.

These 10 Second Ornaments are made with pipe cleaners and fabric scraps.  Just take a cookie cutter and wrap your pipe cleaner around it so it takes the same shape.

 Next, take whatever fabric you have around (they used pieces of an old plaid scarf), cut it into a 1/2 inch thick strip and wrap it around the pipe cleaner until it's completely covered.  Then tie it off at the top, add a loop as a hanger and voila!  An adorable ornament ready to put on the tree or a gift.  

You can find more detailed instructions at Dollar Store Crafts.

Another great - and inexpensive - idea for an ornament that can double as a gift is the Surprise Ball from Once Upon a Holiday.

It looks like any old ornament, right?  But surprise!  There are tons of fun treats inside.  To make your own, you need a roll of crepe paper and some trinkets (the flatter, the better).

Cut a 36 inch long length of crepe paper and start your ball by wrapping the end around one of your toys.

Keep wrapping until the first one is completely covered and then add another one and wrap around that.

Keep going until your ball is the size you want.  Then take about 2 yards of crepe paper in the color you want your ornament to be and wrap it tightly around the ball.  To finish, tie a ribbon around it.

Surprise Balls make fun ornaments, but you could also use them as place cards at your holiday meal or to hand out at a family gathering.  You can get more information on how to make them at Once Upon a Holiday.

We've covered ornaments so let's move on to fun decorations.  Jessica at Happy Together made these fabulous colorful trees by buying forms at the dollar store and gluing felt and fleece on to each one.

Aren't they amazing?  Here's one more picture just because I love them so much!

She also made the pom poms, which are so simple to do and a great project for kids.  Just take a piece of cardboard, cut a slit in it and thread some yarn though.

Wrap the yarn around the cardboard.  The more you wrap, the fuller your pom pom will be.

Then slide the yarn off the cardboard and tightly wrap a length tightly around the middle and tie.

Lastly, cut the loops of the yarn so they stick out straight and trim so your pom pom is all the same length.

How fun is that?  You can make pom poms like these to use on so many things, including decorating your holiday gifts.  For more info on how to make the felt trees and the yarn pom poms, visit Happy Together.

Another terrific holiday decoration project comes from my favorite craftess, Martha Stewart.

This Pinup Wreath is a simple and stylish way to display your holiday cards.  All you have to do is take a large embroidery hoop and hot glue some small clothespins around the outside.  Make sure to vary the directions the pins face so you can attach cards both inside and outside the hoop.  Attach a festive ribbon and hang!

Another great idea from Martha is these Gum Drop Pops.

You can wrap them in cellophane to put on gifts or display them in a jar with sugar like in the photo above.  And they're simple for your kids to make - just sliding candies onto lollipop sticks and attaching the other pieces - provided they don't eat all of the supplies! 

Get the "map" for which candies make which pops here.

And while you've got the gum drops out, why not build some of a festive tree like this from Makes and Takes?

All you need are the candies, some toothpicks and Styrofoam balls or trees. I bet you can guess what you do next.  If not, here are some visual hints....

Yup, that's it!

I've got lots more fun crafts to share over the next few days so be sure to come back to check them out.  And don't forget, if you try one of these projects, take a picture and send it to and you'll be entered into our drawing for a $125 Mommy Gift Pack.  Read more about how you can win here.

Images: Makes & Takes, Dollar Store Crafts, Factory Direct Craft, Alpha Mom, Happy Together, Martha Stewart
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