Sunday, 4 December 2011

Cheap, cheery and chic - Christmas Tutorial 15

Right, I am not going to tell you how tough life is at the moment, so let's look at some ways to save a little bit of money over the Christmas holiday, which means this week we will make gift bows, candle holders and place settings.
Firstly the gift bows, you will need:
An old map book (charity shops are brill for these) or magazines - or double sided paper
A stapler
Glue
Scissors
Paperclip
Cut out 9 strips 3/4" wide and 11" long (about the length of a magazine page), then cut an inch off three of the strips and two inches off another three strips.
Fold the strips into a figure of eight and staple them together.
Lay the strips on top of each other and pop a tiny bit of glue in the centre of the strips.


Now repeat this for the next two groups of paper, leaving one of the small pieces aside.


With your left over small piece make a loop, trimming off the excess and glue it together holding it in place with a paper clip.
Pop the final loop into the centre with a dab of glue and there you have a cheap and cheerful bow, this looks brilliant if you wrap your gift in either newspaper or brown paper. If anyone challenges you either raise your eyes and mutter global warming or ask them if they do not understand irony and look disappointed!


Now, onto the candle holders, I first used these for my first Christmas dinner in my house and over 10 years later I still use them! You will need:
Empty jam jars
Shoe whitening
Stencils or pastry cutters and cardboard
Wash the jars, dry them and put the lids somewhere safe.


Use the shoe whitener pad to create decorations, just using it on its own without stencils and the circles will make a flower.   Or if you are getting small children to do this when they are on hols, just dobbing the foam top of the whitener over the glass will look like snow.  If you do not have any Christmassy stencils then use your pastry cutters to create some by tracing them onto the card and cutting them out.  Pop the stencil against the glass and dob the whitener onto the jam jars.
I put these all over my dining room to light it for Christmas Day, they look lovely with the tea light candle behind them and the great thing is that you can wash them after and use them for jam.  The other good thing is that the candles are really safe in the jars especially if you have ever suffered from a tea light flaring up, but do remember to always snuff out candles if you leave a room.


And finally, an idea that I had for place mats, which I will be making for myself later and will post pics... using mirror tiles (I found these at Wilkinsons for £4.95 for four) make sure that the edges are rounded/bevelled as I do not want to be sitting with you in Casualty on Christmas Day.  Cut out four small squares in felt and glue them onto the corners so that the tiles do not scratch your table.  Stencil or paint a decoration in acrylic/poster paints around the edge or in just one corner. Now as we are being very thrifty, you will be able to wipe the paintwork clean and recycle them for Easter, Thanksgiving, birthdays and other special occasions.


Now off you go and take a look at Handmade Monday to see how all the other crafters are preparing for Christmas.

22 comments:

madebyewe said...

I love the bows and have plenty of old pages from books to try this with - good thinking!

Polly Polkadot said...

You had my attention the moment maps were mentioned! I had never thought of trawling through the charity shop for them though, thanks.

Ros Made Me said...

Shall I make you all really jealous, it was an AA book and cost me a pound! I am now working on another project using it :)

Caroline Lovis (Redneedle) said...

Maps! Brilliant! My mind is now in overdrive thinking of maps and masculine cards. You are amazing!

Caroline Nash said...

I like the idea of the map bows and as we have satnav think the maps are now fair game, lol. good ideas for a thrifty Christmas

Sarah - Dragonfly-Jersey said...

Fantastic ideas Ros....the bows are super! xx

mcrafts said...

Really great ideas Ros - I know that I for one am looking to save where I can just now. Mich x

Emma Tustian said...

These are great. If I can find some jam jars I think I'll try the tea light jars.

Stocki said...

Who would have thought of that? Shoe whitener on jam jars..perfect! Thanks Ros...brilliant idea...I shall start immediately :)x

CHRISTMAS PIE CRAFTS said...

Really great ideas Ros - many thanks. Like the newspaper wrapping paper - a double pressie coz the recipient can have a read too. I am in the process of getting together the materials make the wreath you had on your blog recently - looked so good. My plan is to use red and white striped material

Annie and Lyn said...

The bows are really pretty made from old maps and the idea of using shoe-white on the jam-jars (so that you can then re-use the jars) is not one I'd have thought of. Simple yet brilliant!

Mrs A. said...

Really brilliant ideas here. Especially like the road map bows. Hugs Mrs A.

Susie said...

Saved! I think I save more of your pages than anything else. You do the best tutorials of practical stuff I can use. :) Thank you! Oh, btw, YOU ROCK!

Adaliza said...

What a super idea - love the bows and they're not girly either which solves a lot of problems for all the boys in our house. You get to wear the 'Great Idea' badge for the day! Ta x

Wendy said...

I love using old maps and books in projects and this one is perfect for them.

Pretty Shabby UK said...

I love the bows. My hubbys has plenty of books to choose from LOL

Helen said...

Fantastic ideas as always ros. I wil be trawling the chaeity shop at the next opprtunity!

Jam Dalory said...

Great tutorials, I like the bows, I have a couple of old AA maps I got free with car insurance quotes so i'll have to dig them out. x

Picto said...

The bows are great Ros. Pages from magazines are good too, especially as there are usually car adverts you can use for the chaps.
Thanks for popping over to my blog and leaving a comment, much appreciated :o)

Jan x

GiftsByJenny said...

What a brilliant idea! Thank you so much for sharing - the bows are fab x

Whitney-Anne Baker said...

that is awesome!! I've bookmarked this page for future reference. Even though we don't have any gifts to give out this year I think I'm going to try some anyway. I also make stuff for one of the local chairty shops so they would be perfect. Now, where are my scissors?

Martha said...

Clever you! thanks for sharing with us that tutorial :)

like the tealight candleholders, anything glassy with a candle inside always catches my eye! :)