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Home Sweet Home

DIY Decorations: Making Your Own Christmas Ornaments

As you start to envision that magical time of year when you gather with family and friends to decorate the tree, think about adding a few unique ornaments to this year’s collection. 

Whether your style is rustic or elegant, neutral or bold, homemade ornaments add a memorable touch to the tree. Even if you aren’t a skilled crafter, there are many ways to make ornaments this year—just combine materials that are easy to find with a bit of fun and creativity, and you have something amazing! 

Here are just a few of the many possibilities for a special touch on the tree, whether you’re keeping them for yourself or giving them as a treasured gift. 

Book Page Ornaments

If you’d like to impress guests, friends, and family with skillful and elegant ornaments, try these book page creations. You can scour your local thrift and used bookstores for volumes that have gilded edges or particularly interesting page colours. Some of the folds are intricate and will take practice, but the results are worth the effort. There are several tutorials available, including lovely flowers, stars, and wreaths. Starting with this seasonal snowflake is a lovely way to show off your new skills!

Clear Glass Balls

One of the most straightforward DIY ornament styles is using clear glass balls. These are widely available at all craft stores, inexpensive, and offer a platform for endless variety! You can fill them with a range of materials, including glitter, confetti, and even shredded paper for a simple yet elegant look. If you’d like something more involved, you can paint the interior and even add modelling clay decorations to make fanciful creations like unicorns! Using coloured markers to personalize names or events on the outside can also make these memorable.

Photo: Lorado via gettyimages.com

Mason Jar Lids

Mason jars are abundant in decorations these days, and you can use them for your holiday ornaments, too! The best part is that ornaments use the lids and rings that you’ve probably discarded from other projects. You can use the rings alone to make mini wreaths in various styles. Faux moss from a craft store can easily mimic a full evergreen wreath feeling, or some twine wrapped around can give a rustic and cozy vibe. Consider making groups of these mini wreaths to cluster together on your tree or use to decorate gifts. Plus, adding small berries or embellishments at the top of the wreaths can also give them a realistic feeling. If you have extra seasonal fabric to use, try making mini “embroidery hoop” ornaments with the lids and rings; these can easily change each year to match your décor theme or coordinate with presents.

Hardware Store Finds

Beautiful and innovative ornaments don’t have to come from fancy materials—there are many you can make from items at your local hardware store! Light switch covers can turn into sparkling photo frames with a little bit of glitter and embellishment. Clear lightbulbs can be filled with everything from confetti to fake snow and small faux trees. Coating small glass bulbs with glue and glitter is a great way to string together a glamorous light strand to drape across your tree. And for those who want to be even more crafty, try gluing nuts together to form a snowflake shape, then spray with silver or white paint.

Wood Slices

For a truly homemade and rustic aesthetic, these wood slice ornaments are hard to beat. While some skilled crafters can make these using wood-burning tools, there are options available to complete this project without special materials or skills. You can cut your own wood slices from logs or buy precut pieces at craft stores—something with a smoother surface works best. Use stencils or freehand designs with permanent markers and paint if you don’t have a wood-burning kit. You can even lightly transfer an image from a printout or sticker to the wood, and then paint over it for a richer look.

Adding decorations to your tree this year doesn’t have to be expensive. A trip to the craft store is all you need!

Categories
The Entertainer

Creative Stocking Stuffers That Won’t Break the Bank

The stocking hung by the fireplace stuffed to the brim with goodies is an iconic symbol of Christmas. They sit there just waiting to be dumped out all over the floor. And, be honest: Who wants a pair of white socks or a bag of candy coal? 

These stocking stuffers are sure to bring out a “ho ho ho!” from young and old alike! From tech to coffee to fun and games for kids of all ages, these little packages snuggled deep in a knitted stocking may end up being the most-loved gifts of them all. Plus, they are all around $10, so they won’t break your holiday bank. These trinkets prove that good things still do come in small packages!

Tech Talk

A cell phone stand keeps texts and videos in clear view and them hands-free. Most options are compatible with any smartphone. Plus, the stand keeps cables organized on their desk, kitchen counter, or bedroom nightstand. 

Are they tired of messy fingerprints on their tech gear? A screen cleaning pad is a reusable faux suede cloth sized for home or office use and is perfect for all their touch screen devices. 

Ensure they never misplace their AirPods or headphones again with a carrying case that protects their investment in regular or wireless earphones. Many come in all different shapes, colours, and sizes—so check your local retailer for options and get creative!

Time to Relax

Do they need some relaxation after the hustle and bustle of holiday preparations? A reusable pouch filled with skincare products like facemask and lotions is great for your on-the-go loved one.

Who wouldn’t love luxury soaps? They make for a beautifully packaged gift and come in all sorts of fragrances—lavender, carrot, cucumber, fig, peach, cherry blossom, tangerine, you name it! These are sure to pretty up everyone’s guest bathrooms!

Even little girls and boys need a chance to relax! Crayola Bath Dropz are fragrance-free, non-toxic water-colouring tablets that will magically change your tub to blue, yellow, or red. 

Why should kids have all the bath time fun? Create rich bubbles and vibrant colours while treating your skin with beneficial ingredients like shea butter, cocoa butter, and essential oils. Bath bombs are the perfect stocking stuffer for someone who is already a fan or as an introduction for newbies. They often come in fun shapes like cupcakes, hearts, and donuts, too!

Photo: Edwin Tan via gettyimages.com

For the Coffee Lovers

A package of coffee paired with a trio of mini syrups makes a great stocking stuffer for every coffee lover in your life or your favourite at-home barista! 

For Kids of All Ages

Have a budding astronomer in your midst? A mini star projector beams the constellations of the astrological zodiac onto the walls of your home. Fun and educational, a mini star projector is the perfect way to bring the planetarium home!

Does your family love games? Codenames Board Game is a spy game for multiple players ages 10 and up. Two rival spymasters know the secret identities of 25 agents, and teammates know the agents only by their code names given on the cards. Add this unique game to your holiday fun!

Or, keep them laughing all day long with a holiday joke book for boys and girls. 

For Anyone and Everyone

Save the planet with easy-clean reusable straws. Most are dishwasher safe, and some even come with a linen carrying case! They’re perfect for a greener lifestyle. 

You can also consider getting them a personalized key chain. Many retailers offer options with common names, or surf the web for a way to make a truly customized gift in their favourite colour or style. It’s just the thing to let them know how special they are!

Are they ready to travel? Get them prepared with a universal power wall charger with a power plug adapter. Look for an option that will work in many countries.

Ready, set? Shop! Time to shop to fill those stockings with fun and affordable gifts for everyone.