SECOND FIFTY OF 100 HELPFUL HINTS FOR CHRISTMAS

Thursday, January 20, 2011


51. To add a lot of color to a room quickly, use red or green towels, blankets or even scraps of fabric as throws for your chairs, couch, tables, etc. Large pieces of polar fleece make great, cuddly throws.
52. Display colored glass ball ornaments or even beads in bowls instead of hanging them on your tree.
53. Wash and dry half a dozen small jars (it's better if they're all different sizes and shapes). Fill each jar 2/3 full of water and add a couple of drops of red or green food coloring to each jar. Stir. Place one sprig of evergreen in each jar and display the jars in a group on a table or line them up in a row on a shelf or window sill.
54. Use children's bath crayons (for coloring in the bathtub) to draw Christmas decorations on your mirrors and windows.
55. Spray paint the outside of large, clean coffee cans with gold, red or green paint and use them as cookie cannisters. Once painted, you can decorate further by using decoupage medium to glue Christmas card cutouts to the cans, or use a hot glue gun to attach small plastic or wooden ornaments, tinsel, garland, whole spices etc.





56. Using a small brush, paint the tips of pine cones with gold craft paint. Place on a rack or piece of waxed paper to dry. Display cones in bowls or vases or attach a ribbon and hang them on your tree.
57. Create an easy wall hanging using a piece of sheet music for a Christmas carol. Cut a piece of red poster board a few inches larger than the sheet music and glue the music to the center of the poster board. Use a hot glue gun to glue a small sprig of artificial holly to the top right-hand corner of the sheet music.
58. Spruce up plain red or green bath towels with Christmas ribbon attached using a hot glue gun or ironed on with fusible web.
59. Create an inexpensive set of Christmas glassware. Purchase a set of glasses or mugs and paint holly leaves and berries on the outside of each glass or mug using red and green glass paint.





60. Dress up your dinner table: cover the table with a plain red, green or white tablecloth and sprinkle with red, green or gold cut-outs from your party decorations store. Or, make your own cuts out with specially shaped hole punches and solid colored wrapping paper.
61. Turn an old blanket chest into a treasure chest. Place the chest on the floor against a wall and open the lid (prop the lid up securely if it's prone to closing by itself). Line the inside of the chest with fiber fill to create the illusion of snow. Drape strings of beads and white indoor Christmas lights over the chest. Fill the chest with wrapped presents or wrapped empty boxes. Sprinkle with gold-wrapped chocolate coins.
62. Create personalized gingerbread men as place cards for your dining table. Use colored icing to decorate each gingerbread man with a guest's hair color and usual clothing. Using icing to print each person's name across the chest of the gingerbread man.
63. Paint a terra cotta flower pot gold using craft paint. Let paint dry. Glue on plastic or glass "gems". Let glue dry. Pipe white glue in a circle around the perimeter of each "gem". While the glue is still wet, sprinkle on gold sparkles. Let glue dry. Fill pots with flowers, nuts or candy.
64. Create an eclectic centerpiece using a large glass plate. Place a collection of containers on the plate. Use small bowls, vases, candle holders, flower pots, clean ash trays, etc. Fill each container with a different type of nut or candy.
65. Purchase inexpensive plain lampshades for your lamps. Use a hot glue gun to attach fabric bows (in Christmas prints) to the shades.





66. Place 1/2 cup of whole cloves on a plate. Apply white glue to the outside of a small terra cotta flower pot. Roll the pot in the cloves so that the outside of the pot is completely covered with cloves. You may have to press more cloves onto the pot in places. Let the glue dry. Tie a red ribbon around the outside of the pot - knot the ribbon. Tie three cinnamon sticks into the ribbon (knot the ribbon around the sticks). Tie the ends of the ribbon into a bow. Use the pot as a flower pot or fill it with potpourri.
67. Trim door frames, window frames and the edges of mirrors with Christmas garland (secure with tape).
68. Decorate with mittens, gloves, touques and scarves. String jute cord from one end of a room to another and clip knit items to the cord with clothes pins.
69. Purchase small bells from your craft store. Tie each bell to a piece of ribbon between 6" and 18" in length. Gather all of the ribbons together and knot together at the top. Drape the bells over a door knob so that they ring when someone enters or exits.
70. Poinsettias are a beautiful way to add Christmas color to a room. But don't just stop at one. Create a stunning display using at least six plants - all different sizes. Group them together, larger plants in the back. Tie a large gold fabric ribbon around the whole group of pots. Sprinkle the plants with gold glitter.





71. Wrap a large empty coffee can in Christmas wrapping paper (leave the top open). Place on the floor, add some water and fill with evergreen branches. This looks wonderful on its own, or you can hang ornaments from the branches.
72. Replace your usual curtain valence with a large piece of Christmas print fabric, draped over your curtain rod.
73. Tie bows around door knobs. One of the most simple christmas decorations.
74. Create an easy wreath. Tear Christmas print fabric into strips (or use ribbon, instead). Wrap a styrofoam wreath with the fabric or ribbon. Hang the wreath as is, or hot glue Christmas picks, ornaments, nuts, candies, etc. to it.
75. Wrap a table in Christmas wrapping paper.





76. Purchase cork place mats or coasters, Christmas print stamps and red/green/gold stamp pads. Then, stamp shapes onto your coasters and place mats. You can even stamp shapes onto your table cloths and napkins.
77. Cut pictures of people and objects from Christmas cards. Glue each object to a magnet sheet. Cut the pictures out of the magnet sheet. Stick the magnets to your fridge. Visitors can arrange your magnets into scenes.
78. Put some color into your bathroom. Display red and green glycerin soaps, bath gels and oils.
79. Use florist wire to wire Christmas picks to railings, banisters and door knobs.
80. Make a snowman. Better yet, make a whole snow family or even a whole snow village!





81. Wrap your front door in plain white paper and decorate with a large bow. Place red and green pens by the front door and have guest sign the door as they leave your home.
82. Purchase inexpensive white bathroom accessories (soap dish, toothbrush holder, garbage can, etc.). Paint holly leaves and red berries on the accessories using craft paints. Or, use a hot glue gun to attach bows, sequins, beads, buttons, etc.
83. Cut pictures from Christmas cards and pin them to your curtains or bedspread.
84. Create an red and green display in your kitchen using a collection standard food items. Jars of olives, sun dried tomatoes, pickles, red peppers, cans with red or green labels.
85. Quick wreath: Use a glue gun to attach nuts or wrapped candies to a styrofoam wreath. Attach a large red ribbon.





86. Paint nuts gold with craft paint (use a variety of nuts of different shape). Line a large bowl or basket with Christmas greenery (artificial or real), fill the bowl wit oranges, apples and the gold nuts. Add a large red bow.
87. Display a large collection of photos from Christmases past. This makes a sensational conversation piece. Use a collection of odd frames or create frames using colored cardboard or craft foam. Instead of displaying each picture individually, you can create a collage. Use a large piece of red craft foam. Cut photos into interesting shapes (just cut around what's important in the photos). Glue the photos to the foam, overlapping them and leaving a 1" - 2" border of red foam showing. Cut holly leaves from green craft foam. Glue three leaves to each corner of the red foam frame. Cut small circles from left-over red foam (these are the holly berries). Glue them next to the holly leaves.
88. Make a Christmas bedspread. Trim the edges of a large piece of red polar fleece with pinking shears. Stitch a collection of mittens to one side of the fleece.
89. Put a Christmas screen saver on your computer.
90. Paint Christmas stars or bells on the outside of your bathtub or on your shower curtain using washable children's soap crayons.





91. Place a plate full of wrapped Christmas baking by the front door as parting gifts for guests.
92. Remove your mugs from their cup hooks and hang Christmas ornaments in their place. You can do the same thing with spoon racks or key racks.
93. Shred colored paper and use it to line a basket. Fill the basket with red and green scented votive candles.
94. Decorate with giant cookies. Mix up your favorite sugar cookie or gingerbread cookie recipe. Roll out the dough. Instead of cutting into small cookies, cut out one tree shaped cookie using a knife. Don't bother using a pattern. A hand-cut shape has more charm. Transfer to a cookie sheet and bake. Cool. Cover with icing made of confectioner's sugar, green food coloring and water (no butter). While the icing is still wet, decorate your tree with peppermint candies, M&M's, jujubes, etc. Let the icing set. Your giant cookie can be displayed on a plate or you can wrap up a box in colored foil wrap and glue your cookie to the front of the box with dollops of icing. The box can be displayed lying down or standing on end.
95. Make a fresh flower garland using red carnations. You'll need a few dozen carnations. Cut the stems off just below the bud. String a length of double thread on a needle (make the thread as long as the garland you want to make). String the buds together by pushing the needle through the bud and out the top of the flower. Tie the ends of the garland together, if you wish. This garland should be stored in the fridge.





96. Make simple Christmas puppets. Cut Santas, angels, snowmen, etc. from old Christmas cards. Paint craft stick red or green. Attach one cut-out to each stick using tape. The kids can play with these or, you can display them in a vase or a bowl. Just fill the vase or bowl with beads, nuts, candies, etc. and stick the puppets' sticks into the bowl.
97. Wrap your plant pots in red or green foil wrap. You don't even have to remove the plants first. This one of the most simple christmas decorations, but its nice.
98. Create a display by your front door with unused boots. Assemble a group of boots and fill them with wrapped gifts or empty boxes.
99. Purchase an inexpensive glass vase (or better yet, three or four vases). "Paint" the vase with white glue and roll in red or green sparkles. Use the vase to display a large collection of white or red carnations.
100. To create an easy Christmas card display, purchase a large red bow that has a vertical ribbon attached. Hang the bow and ribbon and pin Christmas cards to the ribbon, starting near the top.
101. Paint fruit such as apples and pears with egg white and roll in gold sparkles. Air dry on a rack and display in a basket along with nuts.



Reprinted with permission from Make-Stuff.com 


Take some time out and read these and start your planning early as it will save you time and it is such a lovely feeling to know that all your arrangements are well in hand.


Love and hugs,




1 comments:

Diane January 20, 2011 at 11:11 PM  

These hints are amazing thanks for the share I know I will be doing some of them.. I love it.

Hugs
dianelouise

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