Craft 2: Oh, (Paper) Christmas Tree

I love paper. Love. I have stacks and stacks of patterned paper in my craft room, and it's the first place I go anytime I'm at a craft store. For the longest time I would buy paper, but not use it. I guess I didn't like the idea of not having it anymore? I'm over that now. :)

When I saw this cute little canvas on Pinterest, I had to make it. It's a paper Christmas tree. And it uses lots of different pretty papers.

I can't find it on the blog it was originally pinned from (it says the page has been deleted), but it was easy enough to figure out. Make rolls of papers of your choice in incrementally smaller lengths. Glue onto a canvas in a tree shape, and embellish with brads or buttons or whatever. That's another collection I'm learning to use and not just hoard.

So here's my tree. Ignore the horrible 1am quality of the picture. I bought the canvas for $2, a few sheets of paper and a pack of brads for $3. So for about $6 and 30 minutes, I have a sweet new piece of Christmas art!

I love how it looks with my collection of As on the family room mantle.

Love my As!! The glare from the flash on my camera, not so much.

Happy crafting! I'd love to see what you've created!


Craft #1: The Glitter House

As I mentioned, Avery and I decided to start the tradition of making cereal box houses each year after seeing these. So I've been saving cereal boxes and looking online everywhere for info on how to make them. I did find some tutorials and patterns, but in the end we just kind of winged it.

I started by sketching the house out and then transferring that idea to a sketch of the pattern pieces. I used the size of the box along with where it was already scored to determine some of my measurements.

I'm an English teacher. I don't really do math. So for the angles I just made tick marks at certain points and used a ruler to connect the dots. I cut separate pieces for the windows and layered vellum behind them for the panes. Then we painted, glued, glittered, and....

Ta Da!!! Our first cereal box house.

Love it! The doorknob is a crystal brad I had in my findings stash; the wreath is made from the mini garland I got to make wreaths for Avery's dollhouse. We wallpapered the inside before assembly so you wouldn't see cereal info through the door, but--did you notice? I forgot to make a door cut out on the main house portion. Oops. Oh well, easy enough to fix. That will also allow me to slip an LED candle inside and illuminate those pretty windows!

A few other things I'll remember for next year:

  1. make sure the pattern is aligned so that the inside of the box is the outside of the house. I really thought I had accounted for that, but the back piece was the printed part of the box, and hard to cover with paint. 
  2. draw/cut both side walls as attachments to the front. I did mine as complete mirrors, so they fit together like "L"s, but that meant a visible seam on the front right.
  3. I'm still undecided as to whether it's best to paint before or after assembly. We painted first, which made for much less mess, especially with Avery helping, but the paint did cause the cardboard to shrink and warp a bit, so it didn't fit as tightly when I went to put it together.
At any rate, Craft #1 of 12 is complete! We plan to add some bottle brush trees and a blanket of snow, but those have proved harder to find than I expected.


12 Crafts of Christmas

Okay, so here's my plan to keep up my crafty mojo through the holidays: The "12 Crafts of Christmas" project.

Here's how it works. Choose 12 crafts to make between now and Christmas. They can be gifts, decor items, activities with the kids--whatever. Simple, involved--again, whatever.

Once you've created, there are a few ways to share.

  1. Join the 12 Crafts Facebook page. Share your ideas for what you want to make, get ideas from others, and post pictures or links to your projects.
  2. Create a Pinterest board titled "12 Crafts of Christmas." Upload pictures of your finished projects, or pin from your blog if you have one. Follow me, I'll follow you back, and hopefully we'll create a whole network of great pins. The one I have created here includes pins that I plan to make this month.
  3. Finally...link up with your projects. Be sure you label them with the number craft it is!
I'm just about done with my first craft. Avery and I are making a glitter house out of cereal boxes. We found these last year and decided to make one every year, building a little cardboard village over time. 
Aren't they precious? The one we're making isn't quite as perfect, but I'm trying to let Avery help as much as possible. We just have a few more details to add before I share pictures of this year's house.

The linky is below. Please only link up to projects you have created for this holiday season, and be sure to link to the specific post, not your main blog page.

Happy Crafting!!


Where I've Been

Is anyone still out there? Honestly, I'll be shocked if there is. It has, after all, been almost one year since I last posted. I've had good intentions, really, and I've done lots of blog-worthy projects, but by the time I take pictures and upload them, I've usually moved on to the next thing. But I love being busy, so I'm not complaining (though having something on the calendar every weekend for the last 11 weeks is a little much...and the next two weeks are booked,too).

Here are a few of the activities filling our calendar over the last several months...

A shower with lots of DIY details for my friend Lindsay. We have been friends our entire lives, she was one of my bridesmaids, and she asked Avery to be her flower girl. We also went to four other parties in preparation for this wedding!
Disneyworld!!  We went to Orlando over Fall break and had a fantastic time.  Between the flight and the crowds, I really didn't expect my husband to like it, but he can't wait to go back! I made Avery's outfit in the above picture (she wanted something special for the plane ride--her first) and an autograph book she used when meeting the characters. I'll post about that later.
And...the wedding. I know I'm biased, but i think she is about the most beautiful thing ever. She did a great job, and didn't flinch during her walk down the aisle in front of over 300 guests, even when she ran out of flowers mid-way down.

I've also had Writing Project events, and was just in Chicago for the annual meeting. And then there's teaching (just google "Tennessee teacher evaluation" to see how that's going this year. It's never good for little ole TN to make the NY Times...), and maintaining the new house and cooking and being a wife and a mommy. Whew!

I really am going to try to blog more. In fact, I have a fun project kicking off this week that I hope lots of people from around the blogosphere will join me in! More soon on that, but here's a hint....it involves pinterest!!

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