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 · 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!

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DIY Crafts · Home Decor

Make A Beautiful Autumn Hued Wreath From Dried Hydrangea

DIY Hydrangea Wreath

Hydrangea is such a beautiful flower! I keep adding more and more of them to my home landscape! Several years ago we traveled to Maine for a family vacation, and I came back inspired to add even more after viewing so many charming New England homes surrounded by the striking shrubs. Now, I have my own supply of hydrangea blossoms that are terrific for preserving and using in crafts. If you have some too, give it a try! The dried flowers can last for a year, so the effort to DIY a pretty wreath or arrangement is definitely worth it!

How TO DRY Hydrangea

I have used two methods for drying hydrangea stems. The first is air drying in bunches and the second is drying in a vase with some water. Either way, you should cut the hydrangea stem with about 8-12 inches of stem and remove the leaves.

For air drying, tie the branches singly or in small bunches and hang them upside down in a dry place, like an attic. For my wreath, I just got a bunch of my dried flowers out of the attic, and they were ready to go.

Another option is to put the flowers in a vase with water halfway up the stems. Simply let the water evaporate and the flowers will be dry. This will take about two weeks or so.

Flowers drying in a vase of water.

Making the Wreath: Step By Step

Supplies Used For Project:

Grapevine Wreath Base

Dried Flowers

Wire

Pink, Purple, Copper, and Green Spray Paint

Many of my flowers were dried from last year and mainly looked golden brown, so I decided to spray paint some of them to get the color tones I wanted. This was very easy. I just spread the flowers out on some cardboard and gave them a fine mist of paint (outdoors for ventilation) to give them some subtle color. I used pink, purple, copper, and green.

You will need a grapevine wreath base for this project. Once your flowers are dry, start at one position on the circle and begin filling in with flowers. The stems of hydrangeas are pretty tough, and if you have long enough stems, you can just weave them through the vine. That’s how I attached a lot of the flowers. They can be secured with florist wire where needed. Just gently wrap some wire around the stem being careful not to break the flower, and use the wire to help hold the flower in place. I had a few flowers that broke off the stems, so I just affixed them with a glue gun. That’s another method that works, too.

Hold your wreath up to see if the fullness is pretty equal all around, and add more flowers where needed. With the materials being natural, it’s never going to be perfect, but that’s what makes your own creation unique.

Twist a loop of wire on the back of the wreath to form a hanger.

That’s all there is to it! What a beautiful and rewarding project! I can’t wait to get everything together for my Fall front door display this year, and see how everything comes together!

HAVE A BEAUTIFUL day, and try something creative! 🙂

DIY Crafts · Home Decor

DIY Fall Folk Art Vase Fun and Easy Project

Time to get ready for fall festivities! Whether you plan to cook a meal at your home or are looking to have something to drop off at grandma’s, this is a fun DIY project. When finished, the vase has a hand-painted look because of the combination of paint and decoupage. Kids can help with the acrylic paint and decoupage steps.

Supplies:

Glass cylinder vase

Metallic spray paint

Seasonal napkins

Modge Podge

Acrylic Craft Paint, various colors

Acrylic craft paint, metallic to match spray paint

Step 1- Make sure the glass vase is clean and dry

Step 2- Spray paint the vase according to instructions on the paint can. Only do this outdoors or in a well-ventilated area. 

Step 3- Choose a seasonal napkin. I always have a bunch of fun napkins around because I just like to change up the table for the season. I chose a Spode woodland turkey napkin because it went with the look I was going for, but you could use anything. Make sure you are only working with one layer. Carefully affix the napkin where you would like it placed using modge podge or polyurethane. 

Step 4- Paint a decorative folk-art inspired border around the top. I did a simple vine and bud design in colors that coordinated with the napkin illustration. Once I had the basic design, I went back and added a little gray to places to make it look slightly shaded.

Step 5- add highlights with metallic paint. I added some small gold highlights here and there on the turkey design napkins. I also painted some blue over top of parts of the decoupage to add to the folk art hand-painted look.

Step 6- coat with polyurethane. I coated the whole thing with spray-on clear poly (outdoors) to give it all a unified texture. 

The great thing about this project is it doesn’t need to look perfect! I wanted a folk art look, so I’m happy with the primitive style painting. If the decoupage isn’t perfect, it’s also getting some paint and poly. 

This was an easy, fun project.

Have a beautiful day, and try something creative! 🙂