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November 29, 2010

A little magic with paper snowflakes...

Does anyone else love the paper snowflakes in the movie Elf?

In one of my favorite scenes, Elf decorates the department store with an elaborate display of paper snowflake chains. This craft project is our own version of Elf's paper snowflake chains.

White paper
Scotch tape
Christmas ornament hooks
Garland or Ribbon

You can find wonderful templates and instructions for folding your paper snowflakes here at Vintage Junky. The hardest part of this craft is taking the time to fold the paper into the proper triangle shape. Although Josie isn't able to cut through the folded paper on her own yet, but she loves the task of unfolding the snowflake once it's been cut out.

1. Fold paper and cut out a stack of snowflakes. Our garland used 18 snowflakes.

2. Tape a Christmas ornament hook onto the back of each paper snowflake.

3. Suspend garland and attach snowflakes.

4. Stand back and admire.

Happy Crafting and Merry Christmas!

November 28, 2010

Baby it WAS cold outside!!

Hello! I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving break. I can't believe how quickly these last few days flew by. Did you pull out the Christmas decorations? We did. Be prepared for lots of vintage Christmas decorations and kid-friendly ornament ideas over the next few weeks. This is the one season that my girls spend as much time as I do in my craft room.

It was frigid when we went to get our Christmas tree Friday afternoon. The girls and I finally gave up during the perfect tree hunt and went back to the van to warm up. With the wicked wind chills, it felt like the teens outside. BRRRRRRRRRRR!!!

Our tree is monster sized and Chris wouldn't have it any other way.

Chris even managed to get the tree house decorated.

Doesn't it look cozy?

We've got a busy week ahead...Frederik Meijer Gardens Tuesday night, the Nutcracker ballet Thursday night, an evening alone with the hubby and Michael Buble Friday night (I have a secret crush on Michael) and the Zoo Christmas party on Saturday! Get ready for pictures!

November 27, 2010

They're Baaack! Tulle Christmas Trees!

I hinted last week about a special Christmas project I was making for my sister's birthday. As much as I love to craft, I didn't inherit any sewing skills from my talented mother. Please be kind. As a bonus, you even get to see a few pictures of myself and my little sis.

Here goes...

Growing up in the 70s, we had a tulle/netting Christmas tree that came out every year to decorate my shared bedroom.

(note the tree in the foreground of our tea party)

They are a tad bit tacky, but when I saw one recently at my favorite antique store, I knew it needed to come home with me so that I could take a closer look and make one for my sister's upcoming birthday. My tulle Christmas tree instructions came from this website.

4 yards of netting or tulle (I didn't use all of it, but it was close)
1 dowel 12 inches tall (you could buy 18 inch rod to have a taller tree)
1 Styrofoam circle base
hot glue
small ornaments
white crochet thread, needle and white paint

1. Make a hole in the Styrofoam base and insert dowel rod with hot glue. Let dry.
2. Paint the dowel rod white and let dry.

3. Cut two pieces of nylon net, each 12 inches wide and 72 inches long. Fold in half so that the net measures 6 inches wide and 72 inches long. Thread your needle with an 80-inch piece of crochet thread. Tie a knot in a piece of crochet thread, leaving a tail of about 3 inches on the end.

4. Baste the two sides together 1/4-inch above the fold. Once the net is basted, gather the fabric as tightly as possible so that the net forms a donut shape. Tie the two thread ends together to keep the net in a tight circle. Use the hole in the middle of the net circle to slide it on to the dowel. Repeat with the second piece of 72-inch by 12-inch fabric.

5. Make the next two layers 11 inches wide by 72 inches long. Repeat the same process of folding, basting and gathering. Reduce each subsequent pair of layers by 1/2 inch. The final two layers should be 1/2 wide by 72 inches long.

6. Use your fingers to fluff the layers of fabric into the desired shape. I then used glitter glue on the edges of the tulle. The whole time I was making the tree, it reminded me of a ballet skirt. You really could turn this into a darling tulle tree with pastel flowers and other romantic items.

7. I finished the tree by sewing tiny bead ornaments to the tulle and attaching a vintage angel to the top of the tree.

* This craft was a stretch for me. Threading a needle completely takes me out of my comfort zone. I almost hate to admit how many phone calls I made to my mother during this project. It's really not hard, I'm just a sewing wimp.

Happy Birthday, little sis!
I hope you love your tulle tree!!

November 26, 2010

Bring on the Christmas season!!

I haven't cleared the pilgrims off the front porch, but I promise they will be gone in a few hours along with the rest of my Thanksgiving decorations.

It's chilly outside and Chris has promised to go get our Christmas tree later this afternoon.

Bring on fancy chocolate drinks!

Bring on tubs of decorations!

Bring on Christmas books!

Bring on holiday treats!

Bring on the Christmas music!

Bring on the stash of vintage goodies waiting for crafty makeovers!!

Bring on the Christmas season!!

November 23, 2010

Be Thankful. Be Blessed.

I just wanted to wish everyone a early "Happy Thanksgiving". I'm excited about spending this holiday week staying close to home, playing in our first snow fall of the season, baking, decorating and Christmas crafting. I'm also looking forward to visiting your blogs and finding inspiration.

A Happy Thanksgiving to each of you!
Safe travels and blessings to your family!
It's a good time of year, isn't it?

November 22, 2010

Dump & Pour Corn Chowder

Friday night, I wasn't in the mood to cook (yet none of wanted to order pizza) and I came up with a very simple corn chowder that got thumbs up from everyone.

2 cans cream of corn
1 cup chicken broth
1 can of green chilies
left over shredded cooked chicken
1/2 tsp of cumin
garlic salt to taste

Cook until boiling. Serve with crumbled corn chips & shredded cheese. It tastes nearly identical to white chicken chilli.

This could even be a quick meal to put together with left over Thanksgiving turkey.
Speaking of Thanksgiving, I'm taking a vacation day on Wednesday to start my holiday early! Another secret...I have a vintage Christmas craft to share soon. Think 1970s...the big reveal will be after turkey day because I'm giving it to my sister for her birthday. This craft completely took me out of my comfort zone because a needle and thread was involved. No glue gun anywhere in sight. Just you wait!!

November 20, 2010

Christmas came alittle early this afternoon...

Emma and Chris went to the movies this afternoon to watch the latest Harry Potter release. As you know from our trip to Harry Potter World this summer, they are dedicated fans. Chris even bought Emma matching shirts for today's father-daughter outing.

While they were gone, Josie and I got busy with a pinecone Christmas tree project in my craft room.

We did alittle bit of this...

...and a little bit of that.

And made these...

We even listened to a few Christmas albums...

...and decorated my miniature Christmas tree.

Hope you're having a festive weekend!