christmas decor · Cozy at Home · DIY Crafts · Home Decor

Frosty Forest Christmas Fireplace Decor

Hi and happy Friday! Today I’m sharing photos of the Christmas fireplace decor in my home for the 2020 holiday season! I love this fireplace and thoroughly enjoy adorning it for each new season. The fireplace itself has an interesting history. Many years ago on a family beach vacation, my husband and I spotted this mantle sitting on the front porch of an antique shop. We thought it would be perfect in our mission craftsman style 1920 home, so we brought it all the way home across four states on our minivan roof rack. We installed it in our home along with a handpainted tile surround in my favorite, cobalt blue and white.

For Christmas this year, I created a frosty forest feel in my living room Christmas decorations combining decorations I already have, some quick DIY projects, and a few online shopping items. Here are a few ideas if you would like to create a woodsy, Nordic Christmas interior this year.

The first item I placed across the entire mantle shelf was a green garland with gold glitter and berries. I like to have a base of greenery, and I wanted to have sparkle on the entirety of the mantle shelf.

I absolutely love fairy lights on copper wire. Since we discovered these lights a couple of years ago (a bargain on Amazon) we use them everywhere. I love the tiny lights and the wire is also so pretty and looks nice with other decorative elements.

The centerpiece of my mantle is a large carved initial that I found at Home Goods. The other major elements on the mantle are Christmas tree candles. The two green trees are vintage from the 1960s and were still in boxes when I found them at an estate sale! I like them combined with the sleek contemporary trees in metallic tones.

I added some snowball ornaments, sparkly snowflakes, and some wintery greens and pine picks in between.

A felt reindeer garland is suspended across the entire mantle (see post for DIY).

The lit branches on the left side of the hearth are a DIY project, a tree branch planted in concrete in a pot, sprayed with faux snow and lit with fairy lights. A sparkling bird’s nest and faux ice wreaths adorn the branches.

On the right side of the hearth, tall curly white sparkled branches and a white glittery poinsetta are placed in a large glass bottle.

Across the bottom of the hearth, I placed real birch log votive holders in various sizes, from 18 inches tall to around 4 inches. These were a DIY project (more to come on this project).

Thanks so much for stopping by today!

Have a beautiful day, and happy decorating!

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christmas decor · DIY Crafts · Free Printables

Make A Woodsy and Whimsical DIY Felt Reindeer Jingle Bell Garland Banner

Isn’t there something so fun and festive about a little bit of jingle in Christmas decor? I’ve been seeing a ton of fabulous felt Christmas ornaments this year on pinterest and in online shops, so I wanted to try making a few myself! I plan to make and post some other DIY felt projects over the holidays, so I hope you’ll plan to stop back!

This fun reindeer garland banner was so easy! The hardest part was cutting out the tiny antlers on each deer. I don’t think any two are exactly identical, but I think they’re close enough. I really like the combination of the rusty jingle bells and the silky tassels on this garland. After completing it, I am displaying the garland across my firplace mantle this year with some other woodsy decor, and I’m really happy with it. The project was fun, and I have ample supplies left to make more banners with the felt, cord, and bells I bought.

Okay, if you want to give this little project a try, here’s how!

Supplies:

(The supply list contains affiliate links. These are the materials I used, and they worked well for this project.)

Thin braided rope or other thin twine of your choice, at least 10 feet long

Felt in shades of brown. I bought this inexpensive variety pack from Amazon and used 3 sheets of the felt for this project.

Rusted jingle bells (or other color if you prefer)

Silky tassels. I bought the craft pack from Amazon and plan to use the rest for other projects.

Hot melt glue gun

STEP 1: Print out the reindeer graphic (below) and cut out the pattern. Other patterns are included that I plan to use for more felt projects.

STEP 2: Pin the reindeer pattern to a piece of felt, making sure to stay on one corner to minimize waste. Using the felt pack I bought from Amazon, I was able to cut two deer from each one piece of felt.

STEP 3: Cut out six deer (or more if you want a longer garland) from your color choice of felt. I used two shades of brown and a camel color. Small sharp scissors work well to cut out the small details.

STEP 4: Lay out the twine on a long table or counter. You will need a longer piece of string than what you hope to have for the finished project. Tying each bell in will take some of the length. You will also want 12 inches or more on each end so the banner can easily be attached wherever you choose.

STEP 5: Beginning at one end, measure off 18 inches and tie on one jingle bell at that spot. Make a mark (using a subtle color marker) 8 inches from the first jingle bell. Tie the second in that spot. Repeat the same process every eight inches until you have enough bells attached for the number of deer you plan to use. For my 6 deer, I needed seven bells each 8 inches apart.

STEP 6: Lay out some newspaper or something glue safe and put the left-most section (between the first two bells) on it. Heat up your glue gun. Measure four inches between the two bells. Put some glue on one side of the section of string where the deer will attach, about 3.5 inches. Place the deer on the glue. Pick up the section of string and deer to let it dry so that it doesn’t accidentally get stuck to the paper. Continue until all deer are securely attached. Check the back side of the deer to make sure all of them are glued on along their full length.

STEP 7: Choose the tassels you want to use on your garland. From the package I bought, I chose gray, ivory, and brown because I wanted my garland to have a woodsy look. Cut the loops down so they they are at a good length to glue, about half an inch. Glue the tassels on the back with the hot glue gun. The tassels will keep the deer hanging in the right direction.

That’s it! Super easy and original Christmas decor for your home!

Have a beautiful day and try something creative! 🙂

christmas decor · Cozy at Home · DIY Crafts · Garden · Home Decor

Make A Beautiful DIY Christmas Door Topper Plus 5 Simple Rustic Porch Ideas

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! And creating a welcoming, cozy Christmas home-for-the-holidays vibe is one of the most fun jobs of the year, and it all starts with the front door! This year, I went with the classic Christmas greens and created a nostalgic vintage feel for our little front porch.

The big six foot swag sets the tone for this year’s decor, and it was a fun DIY project made from Christmas tree trimmings and other greens from the yard. I also completed some other super simple DIY projects for the porch which I will get to a little later.

First, the door topper!

Supplies:

Pine branches

Other greens (holly, boxwood)

Glittered branches

Wire

Shatterproof Christmas balls

Wired ribbon or a pre-tied outdoor ribbon

Step 1: Decide how long you want your topper to be and measure that out on the floor. I worked on the garage floor on a tarp for my project to make cleanup a little easier.

Step 2: Cut some pine boughs to some workable sizes. I used some branches from the bottom of our Christmas tree, but any evergreens are perfect. I also trimmed some branches from some other bushes in our yard, such as holly, boxwood, and other pines to add some variety. I added white glittered branches at the center as well.

Step 3: Starting at one end and working toward the center, lay out your branches so that they overlap and the swag looks full, without any bare sticks. Put smaller pieces over top to hide any thin areas.

Step 4: Starting at the opposite end and working toward the middle, repeat the previous step working in the opposite direction. At the center, place a glittered branch on each side, and make the swag look symmetrical.

Step 5: Carefully wire all of the branches together. Each bough must be tightly connected to the next, or the swag won’t be stable. Mine had a few loose spots and had to be fixed before it could be lifted above the door in one piece.

securely wire the branches together

attach shatterproof ornaments

Step 6: Make a large bow out of wired ribbon. Securely attach the bow to the center (where the branches meet) with wire.

Step 7: Add shatterproof Christmas ornaments. You could add smaller ornaments, vary sizes, or add more than I did depending on your preferences and your own creativity. I attached the ornaments with wire bag ties.

Step 8: Twist some wire to make a solid hanger for your topper at the center and each end. We put cuphooks in our doorframe to enable us to easily attach the swag from the hangers.

You’re done!

Here’s the front door at night. We put an outdoor spotlight on the door so the decor is lit up at night!

I also created some simple rustic vintage style decor for my porch this year.

Here are some fun ideas for a rustic vintage Christmas porch!

  1. Galvanized bucket arrangements. I placed floral foam in the bottom along with some fresh greens and artificial berries. The great thing about the stick on chalkboards is you can write whatever you want for the day. My messages are “peace on earth” and goodwill toward men.”

2. Use logs as decor

We had some pretty birch logs from part of a tree that had to come down this summer, so I used those to create varying heights on the porch and also in other arrangements.

3. Repurpose garden shed finds

I used a large galvanized bucket to display some decor, and a big wooden crate to hold birch logs and greens.

4. Keep some of the fall ornamentals.

I had some flowering kale that’s still looking really nice, so I combined that with pine, holly, and Christmas ornaments in arrangements. It’s definitely unique and suits the rustic look! I also used dried red ornamental peppers as decorative sprigs in some of the arrangements.

5. Make votive holders from birch logs. The full post is coming up later this week, but this is another easy DIY project.

The beautiful wreath is Valerie Madelyn from Amazon.

Have a beautiful week, and have fun decorating for the holidays! 🙂

christmas decor · DIY Crafts · Home Decor

Create Your Own Beautiful DIY Farmhouse Christmas Decor From Pistachio Shells

Hello and happy Friday! I’ve been busy with a little DIY project, and I have to say, I’m happy with how this one turned out! I love the subtle look of this modern farmhouse style Christmas decor. These little decorations would also look fabulous with a Coastal Christmas theme.

We eat A LOT of pistachios around here, so I asked my husband to start saving the shells for me a while ago. With a small bag full of shells, I had more than enough to make this project. I made the tree base out of paper and the wreath bases out of cardboard and container lids destined for the recycling bin. So this fun upcycled project cost me next to nothing.

I achieved the shaded look of the tree by painting the shells with several shades of chalk paint. The wreaths are a single color on each, and I added some grosgrain ribbon and rustic jute to give them a finished look. The wreaths could be hung from a mirror, on your Christmas tree, or even used as votive holders!

Here’s how I made this fun DIY project!

Materials:

9 by 12 70 pound paper

pistachio shells

various matte or chalk paint

jute

ribbon

glue gun

cardboard or round plastic container lids

For the tree, make a cone out of the paper by forming a tight cone and taping along the edge. Then cut off the uneven bottom so that the cone stands straight.

Divide your shells into several groups for the colors you would like to use. For the tree, I left some natural (which are the ones that almost look like a light peach shade) and painted some in light celery green and some in light gray. I also painted some white for one of the wreaths. You could also do your tree in all one color, or make a group of trees that are one color each. It all depends on you and your creativity!

Once the shells are dry, attach them to the tree using a hot glue gun, alternating colors for a shaded effect. When you place the next row above, make sure to slightly overlap the previous row so that the paper cone will not be showing. I found it was helpful to keep the little shell pieces for spots where I didn’t have quite enough space for a full shell. Continue this process until the whole tree is covered. I added a single shell with a little gold paint at the top.

For the wreath, I used the lid from a breadcrumbs container and also traced this onto cardboard for the rest of the wreaths. I used a small drinking glass to trace the center circle. Cut out the wreaths and the centers for the size you want. This same method could be used for a much larger pistachio shell wreath as well.

Using the hot glue gun, glue the shells in a slightly overlapping fashion, starting with the innermost row. Continue until the circle is covered. Add jute for hanging and the ribbon trim of your choice.

When your project is finished, pull off all the little glue strings. This project took me about three hours to complete, including painting the shells.

I read this week that getting into a state of “flow” where you can accomplish something productive that is fairly easy is a great way to cope with stress. I think we all could use that right now! So it’s more crafting from now until Christmas! 🙂

Have a beautiful day and try something creative! 🙂

DIY Crafts · Home Decor

Merry and Bright DIY Christmas Cone Trees In Three Styles

Today was a cold snowy day in the mid-Atlantic. We’ve had some unusually warm weather, but today’s chilly breeze is a reminder that it is definitely time to start pulling out some fun DIY Christmas projects!

I love these merry and bright Christmas trees! They’re so fun in a grouping with other bright Christmas balls and pom garlands. They bring a modern, contemporary take to the traditional Christmas tree, and are easy to make. This is a great project to try with your older kids (old enough to safely use a glue gun) when they’re home for Thanksgiving break or later in the holidays, or if you find yourself pandemic homeschooling. Not just a project for kids, these trees are pretty enough to use on your mantle or table display. Also, I made these trees with very simple materials; all you need is some heavy nine by twelve paper, colorful felt, and trims!

My post contains affiliate links for supplies.

I created three different tree styles. Here’s how!

Materials:

9 x 12 70 pound art paper

package of colorful felt (this was a great deal for a variety of felt colors in the small size I wanted)

2 feet of rainbow pom pom cording

tape

scissors

hot melt glue gun

pencil

For all tree styles, the first step is to make paper cones. There are other methods of doing this, but I found the easiest was just to take a sheet of paper and form it into a tight cone, and then tape the side along the whole edge. When the cone is formed, the bottom will be uneven. I trimmed the bottoms with scissors until the cones were straight across the bottom edge. Admittedly, this is a non-exact approach, but it works very easily without a lot of trouble.

Style 1: Pom Fringe Tree

The pom fringe tree is the simplest to make. You will need about 2 yards of fringe. Extra fringe is really fun to have to use elsewhere for your bright Christmas decor. Starting at the bottom of your paper cone, place the trim around the tree, going upwards and slightly diagonal with each row. Each row will be about 3/4 inch to 1 inch apart. As you place the cording, glue it down with the hot melt glue gun.

Draw a five-pointed star on the felt with a pencil. These trees are whimsical, so it’s not that important that your star is drawn exactly. Cut the star out, and attach it to the top of the tree with a dab of hot glue. Make sure the light pencil marking on the star are on the back (glued) side. When the tree is completed, pull off any stray glue strings.

Style 2: Ombre Petals Tree

The ombre tree is made with several shades of the same color. It’s also very simple to make. The hardest part is cutting the petals, but once that’s done, you can complete the tree quickly and easily. I think this ombre tree would be great in a grouping of various colors of ombre trees. Here’s how to make yours!

Find felt pieces in a gradient. You need at least three shades, but you could use four or even fade to white at the top.

Cut small petal shapes out of the felt. I used the felt pack from Amazon listed on the supplies list, and I cut petals from the entire piece of the darkest color. The lighter colors require slightly less because the cone is narrower at the top. My petals are about an inch long and half an inch wide.

Beginning at the bottom of the tree, glue rows of your darkest felt color with a hot melt glue gun. Make sure the bottom edge of the paper cone is not showing and slightly overlap the petals in each row.

Continue this process using lighter shades as you get to the top of the tree.

Cover the tree completely in felt petals. Add a felt star to the top.

Style 3: Bright Contrast Tiers Tree

For this tree, you need four contrasting pieces of felt. I have also seen similar trees in all one color of green that were very cute. I had planned to cut the felt edge with a fancy cut pinking shears, but mine were not sharp enough to cut through the felt. You might have some that would work, which makes the project slightly easier.

Using the pack of felt from Amazon, I cut my yellow piece in half for the bottom layer. This works for all colors except the top, where you will have to adjust the felt size to the top of your tree.

Once you have your felt pieces selected, create a notched edge using scissors to cut out small triangles.

Starting with the lowest layer, glue your felt onto the tree keeping the bottom edge of the felt even with the bottom edge of the tree. Because the felt is straight and the cone isn’t, you’ll have to finesse this bottom layer a little bit. I tucked the felt slightly and glued it with the hot glue gun to make it even all the way around. You can see that small tuck on the left side of the yellow felt on the picture.

Continue gluing on your tiered layers. There is going to be a back side to this tree that does not look perfect. Make sure as you’re gluing, you have a front side that looks nice and displays all the layers. For the top tier, place your felt as it would have to be glued. Mark the felt for how much you will need to cut off so that the felt doesn’t go past the pointed top of the tree. Add a felt star to the top of the tree.

This was a really fun and simple project. I finished all of the trees in about two hours. I hope you will give one or all of them a try and see what you think.

Have a beautiful day, and try something creative! 🙂

DIY Crafts · Event Planning · Free Printables

Bright, Fun DIY Thanksgiving Decor: Free Downloadable Graphics Including Crowns for the Kid’s Table

Hi and Happy Friday! Looking for some fun ways to make your Thanksgiving festive this year? For a lot of us, it’s going to be a challenge as we forego the traditional big gatherings and find ways to celebrate thankfulness in a different way this year. Today’s free downloadable graphics include some fun, bright Thanksgiving decor perfect for involving the kids or for decorating your place for the season.

You can make paper chains, Thanksgiving crowns for the young or young-at-heart, print some placemats, and a Give Thanks sign.

Enjoy and have a beautiful day! 🙂

sign or placemat

placemat-print legal size for larger

cut strips to make paper chain

Cut out crown, cut strip from remaining blue to make back, size to fit.

DIY Crafts · Gifts

Make Beautiful Porcelain Look Gift Boxes: Super Easy DIY Project

Have you ever received a fully coordinated gift basket that was thoughtfully picked for you? Contrast that to being handed something from the store check-out line, still in the plastic bag, and you see what a big differnce gift packaging can make! When you give someone a gift, it’s important to put in the time and effort to select something personalized for the recipient. Making the gift wrap look just as special as the gift also is so thoughtful and really makes the gift extra special.

I love to find new and creative ways to wrap or package gifts. It’s pretty easy to make cute tags using scrapbook paper, or turn a plain paper gift bag into an artistic original with a few stamps or other creative embellishments.

Today, I made some pretty little gift boxes using really common supplies and in less than an hour. The boxes look like they are vintage porcelain treasures, but really, they were quickly put together with simple supplies you may already have. These elegant boxes would also make a wonderful DIY favor for a wedding or shower. Each guest could receive a small gift packaged in a tiny faux porcelain box. You can make these in any color you want as well!

Okay, so here’s what you need:

Small cardboard gift boxes. I used small silver jewelry sized boxes. With metallic boxes, another nice way to make them is to sand off a little paint around the edges when the paint is dry for a weathered metal look box.

Matte paint or chalk paint in your desired colors.

Silk flowers or leaves, any color. I used silk maple leaves and some berries.

Glue Gun and Glue Sticks

Ribbon or String

How to make the gift boxes

  1. Paint the boxes with chalk paint. I used a light celery green.
  2. Paint the silk flowers with chalk paint. Thoroughly coat all the surfaces. You could also just dip them into a dish of paint if you are going to be making a lot at one time.
  3. When the flower pieces are dry, glue them onto the box in the arrangement you would like.
  4. If you want a complete monochromatic look which many porcelain boxes have, you’re done!
  5. If you want to try some shading to suit a a color scheme or decor, thats easy enough to do. Just wait for you first coat to dry and add touches of your second color to the silk flowers with a small paint brush. I did this with some of mine, and it was super easy-no special art skills required!
  6. Tie the boxes up with ribbon or jute if you like.
  7. That’s it! You’re done!

Have a beautiful day, and try something creative!

Post contains affiilate links in the supply links. Thanks so much for supporting my blog! 🙂

DIY Crafts · Event Planning · Free Printables

Free and Fun Party Decor

Hello there! Are you planning a birthday party, bridal shower, or a special day for your mom? Small outdoor gatherings are the 2020 style celebration, and if you’re looking for some inspiration for your upcoming event, I have some free downloadable graphics for you!

The design includes a crown, paper chain, placemats, and place cards.

A few suggestions for using the graphics:

Print multiple copies of the crown and cut to fit. This will be two copies for a child and an adjustable three for an adult.

The paper chain has several mix and match designs so you can make all the links the same or use them all together.

Thanks for taking a look at my blog today. For other great merchandise for your party, shower, or wedding, check out the Kate Aspen website. Use code TAKE25 for 25% your order of $200 or more!

File Download

Have a beautiful day, and happy planning! 🙂

DIY Crafts · Free Printables · Home Decor

Simple DIY Fall Hoop Wreath With Free Downloadable Graphics

If you’re looking for something unique and creative for your fall home decor, try making your own hoop wreath! I made mine from a few dollars worth of materials and in only a few hours time. I’m also including some downloadable options if you would like to add some fun fall elements to your wreath! The supply list contains affiliate links. Thanks for supporting my site! 🙂

Supplies:

1 tall metal plant stake

Spray paint (I used hammered bronze)

1 foot of wide ribbon for hanging

Glue gun and glue sticks

Small amount of Spanish moss

Fall grass and florals

Invisible line or clear fishing line

Cardstock

Printed circular graphic

Spray adhesive

Chalk paint

How to make the Hoop Wreath:

  1. Bend the plant stake into a circular form.
  2. Spray paint the hoop your desired color
  3. Glue a small amount of Spanish moss across the bottom of the hoop with a hot glue gun.
  4. Arrange the flowers and grasses the way you want them on your wreath.
  5. Starting with the bottom grasses and flowers, glue them in place with the glue gun. Tuck the ends into the Spanish moss.
  6. Print the circular graphics onto printer paper.
  7. Glue one of the circles onto a piece of cardboard or cardstock using spray adhesive.
  8. When dry, cut out the circle.
  9. Glue another paper circle to the other side of your cutout. I added some chalk paint details to the squirrel in green, gray, and tan, but that’s optional. The graphics include several options so you can make your circle reversible.
  10. Make a small hole in the top of the circle for hanging it.
  11. String invisible line through the hole.
  12. Tie the clear line to the wreath.
  13. Put a wide ribbon at the top for hanging.
  14. You’re done!

Graphics Downloads

This was an easy and fun project! Give it a try! Have a beautiful day, and try something creative! 🙂

DIY Crafts · Home Decor

DIY Mercury Glass Candle Holder: Easily Create Beautiful Decor Pieces From Jars You Already Have

Isn’t mercury glass so beautiful? I’ve been eyeing gorgeous pieces for Christmas decor and tree ornaments, wedding decor, and everything in-between.

Today I tried my hand at a little DIY mercury glass project. Where was the first place I checked when I realized I needed some jars? The recycling bin! Luckily for me, tomorrow is trash day, so I had a great selection of glass containers. I worked with a small glass jar from grated cheese today, but this same technique would work with any glass container.

I love a whole grouping of glass together. Mercury glass looks equally at home in romantic vintage decor or a contemporary setting. These DIY jars would look great with a large group of them hanging at a party or wedding, grouped on a mantle, or on a tablescape. In fact, I love this easy project so much, I plan to make a set of mercury glass from everything I can find to upcycle!

A table featuring mercury glass on Blesserhouse
Mercury glass decor at wedding reception

DIY Mercury Glass Candle Holder

Supplies:

Glass containers

Krylon Original Chrome Spray Paint

Spray bottle for water

Votive candle or fairy lights

Ribbon and small embellishments

Glue gun

Step by Step Instructions:

  1. Wash the jar to remove dirt and labels. I soaked mine in hot soapy water to remove the jar label.
  2. Fill the spray bottle with water.
  3. Spray paint the inside of the glass container. Don’t spray the outside.
  4. Lightly mist the painted surface with the water.
  5. Carefully dab some of the paint off with a paper towel to make some of the water splotches bigger.
  6. Let the jar dry.
  7. Tie ribbon around the top of the jar.
  8. Tuck leaves, berries, or flowers into the ribbon. I used thin sheer ribbon, berries, green leaves, and lamb’s ears. Glue them in place with a glue gun.
  9. Put a candle or fairy lights in the container. Battery-powered votives work well.
  10. You’re done! So easy and pretty! You could make a whole set for your Christmas display or wedding reception.
Kate Aspen - For all you celebrate

Thanks for reading my blog! Take 25 percent off any order of $200 or more at Kate Aspen. Great items for your wedding, party, or celebration! Use code TAKE25!

Have a beautiful day and take time for a quick project! 🙂