I'll admit, I don't keep pace with the crafts industry like I used to and it's mostly because of the whole time factor thing. I just don't have the hours available to browse the big online world of craftiness these days! Oh, how I miss it though, and if I'd the option to sit down for a solid couple of hours each day, I might not have been totally surprised to find this latest Martha Stewart Holiday Crafts book at my local library. Yes, I love my local library. Actually, I love all three libraries that I frequent on a week-to-week basis. One or two of them at any given moment, post new craft books in their "new non-fiction" section at least once every couple of days. This one just happen to have greeted me when I least expected it! And sure enough, after one peek inside the new pub, I decided it was an absolute, must-take-home read!!
So what exactly is new or worth reading about in this mini holiday craft encyclopedia? Well, it depends what time of the year it is, but right now, I'm in the market for Christmas ideas. And no, not every single project featured is fresh off the cutting block. Most have already been showcased in Martha Stewart Living. Being that I don't have a subscription to the magazine, the projects were of great interest to me still! Here's what stood out as faves...
Such a simple concept, yet, I would of never thought to try it - making poinsettias from snippets of folded wide ribbon. How very pretty...
I could almost picture myself making these as gifts for Christmas. My two sister's would adore them to pieces..inside, I'd sneak in a small handmade bracelet or two. And yes, my history includes jewelry making! I departed from the hobby after discovering scrapbooking! Go figure! You might also stick handmade little notes inside these boxes or miniature flowers :)
There's a whole chapter devoted to Valentine's Day, and even though Chris hasn't found someone special to share it with yet, I still enjoy the holiday very much! I'm a huge fan of red, pink, fuchsia and white. Their such girlie colors!! Speaking of which, this lace-dependent technique is something I've seen on Pinterest a lot lately. It's one of those techniques that makes you think, "How did I not think of that idea first?" Laugh. It's so simple....
Beautiful gift wrappings done up out of paper lace doilies is sweet and elegant. Trimming them apart is even sweeter. I've a couple of friends who've been playing around with this technique recently - love it!
These are Valentine's Day bubble favors, but I imagine this same sort of concept could easily be pulled off for Christmas as well. Candies, sparkly tinsel and tiny tags tucked inside a clear, small ball/ornament. Creating a vase full of them would be a nice entrance treat for your guests upon arrival. Thinking about doing this for my nieces and nephews :)
In discussing the holidays further, my dearest best friend, Tara Anderson, is an amazing packaging artist - her bags and boxes are always tide-ly wrapped with the greatest of care and coordinated to look like fashion accessories when all said and done. Her knack for color combinations is something I still can't grasp, and they're always beautiful! Recently, she told me of trip she took to pick up trims, flowers, and other petite pretties. She's to transform them into gorgeous gift packages for friends and family in the next few weeks! Upon hearing of her expedition, I felt a slight nudge to do the same, so I did. I bought a bag full of colorful items from Michaels and wrapping paper, too. I'll be depending on Tara to show me how to combine and make artsy package toppers from them. I've plans to stalk her blog all month! (don't tell her I said that!) She's totally amazing!!
I picked up these petite glass ornaments at my favorite garden store, Gertens, just last week! They always have an amazing variety of Christmas decor products this time of year, and they're only one mile from my home! I plan to use them as gift toppers, too!
And here's my little guy peeking from behind the book. He couldn't resist, so I allowed him to hang out during the photo shoot. :) His eyes are so very much like Eric's; Big & Brown!
And before departing, thank-you for the supportive words in response to my last post. I realize there will always be hardships for our small family in moving forward, but in sharing them with you, there's a great sense of relief in knowing that I'm not alone on this path. Hearing your voices means a tremendous amount to me and hopefully, what I share reassures others out there facing similar challenges that they too, aren't alone. Simply put, at some point or another, all of us face life altering experiences - it's knowing that we're not alone in dealing with them that can make the ultimate difference in our ability to overcome and grow from them. I'm grateful for your company! I hope you'll continue to follow me on this journey 'til it's over.