DIY silhouette ornaments

I didn’t actually intend these to be ornaments when I made them. This was part of the décor for Kim and Zach’s baby shower. I made these tiny plaques to hang on the wall and flank my pièce de résistance, the cardboard deer head.

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But then I was thinking about what to do with them after the shower, and I decided that these silhouette plaques would make great coasters or DIY silhouette ornaments.

They couldn’t have been simpler to make. I first painted my wooden plaques (which I bought at Michael’s for $1.79 a piece) navy blue using craft paint and stained the outer ridge using Sherwin Williams Fruitwood stain. While those dried, I looked for free clipart online. I searched for baby forest creatures. Again, I was working with a woodland theme, but Santa, a wreath, a reindeer, or any other holiday image would work. The one tip I have: Pick images without lots of intricate details. The talons on my owl were as detailed as I went.

Print out your selected images. I scaled mine to be three inches tall since the wooden plaques I was using were four-inch squares.

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Cut the image out, and pin it to a scrap of fabric. Cut the shape out of the fabric using good fabric scissors so your fabric doesn’t pull or fray.

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Then glue the fabric silhouette to the wooden plaque using fabric glue.

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Once they are completely dry, brush a thin coat of Mod Podge over the entire surface to prevent the fabric from curling up at the edges.

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I let them dry completely before installing picture hanging hardware on the back. If you’re planning to hang them as ornaments, glue ribbon to the back; if they’ll end up as coasters, adhere a felt pad on the bottom.

What DIY ornaments are you making this year?

Quick and simple diy holiday decor

I wanted to make something holiday-ish for our bedroom that was a little romantic, a little whimsical and cost almost nothing.

I pick up frames at thrift stores all the time. I pick ones with interesting frames just in case. In my collection here, I had this red wood frame.

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I just wrote on the glass with a paint marker then put on some lipstick and kissed it. Easiest and cheapest DIY holiday decor. Ever.

Holiday cards you can still send for FREE

Living in Switzerland, Scott and I opted not to send traditional holiday cards this year. Mailing here can be ridiculously expensive. Envelopes the post office deems too big—that are standard size in the U.S.—can cost up to $5 each.

I received an email from Open Me a few weeks ago announcing a new service: Holiday cards you could customize and send for FREE! That’s right, they are free (for a limited time).

So I decided to test the service.

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I chose this design then personalized it.

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Wine cork crafts: Christmas trees

Only five days left until Christmas, and if you’re like me, you still have a little shopping to do and no more time to think about decorating the house. I think I’ve done a pretty good job of simplifying the holidays this year. I made a tree out of lights, added greens to the bookshelf and crafted snowflakes out of toilet paper and paper towel rolls.

So this wine cork craft is equally as simple, made from another recyclable product and can be done in minutes, literally. Drum roll, please. I give you mini rosemary trees!

Rosemary trees

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DIY snowflakes made from toilet paper rolls

It’s no secret that I love DIY holiday decorations. Last Christmas I made a wreath that looked similar to this one from Bonnin Designs (I stupidly didn’t take a picture of mine) from toilet paper rolls I’d been collecting.

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I tossed it at the end of the season because after a month of hanging on our front door, it had sagged badly at the bottom and resembled more of a deformed oval than the circle I created.

I’ve mentioned that I’ve had to get creative with the holiday decorating here in Switzerland. We didn’t move any decorations and aren’t willing to invest in festive flair since we head home in April. Here’s this year’s tree and our shelving unit decked out for the holidays.

Snowflake photo

This photo by Bob King popped up in my Pinterest feed the other day. I love the intricacies of these snowflakes and decided to mimic these perfect specimens of nature with the toilet paper and paper towel rolls I had been hoarding over the last eight months (I’m lazy about taking my recycling out).

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