Posts Tagged ‘DIY holiday decorating’

Call it decorating on the cheap or call it creative decorating, but I call it using your imagination! Holiday decorating doesn’t need to be expensive, if you shop in the right stores and think outside of the box. Two years ago I wrote “Tablecloths Masquerading as Tree Skirts” where I described how to make inexpensive Christmas tree skirts from round table cloths. This year, I’m sharing how to decorate chandeliers with falling snowflakes. Being fortunate to have a double-high entryway and a chandelier with “arms,” like the one in this photograph, I create a little bit of sparkling winter wonder in my home every holiday season.

To create this effect, you will need: monofilament or fishing line, thin wire ornament hooks, plastic “crystal” ornaments, and a pair of scissors. Look for sets of plastic snowflake ornaments at stores like Marshalls, Ross, T.J. Maxx, HomeGoods, etc. The number of snowflakes you buy will depend on how many “arms” your chandelier has and the type of look you want to achieve.

Cut the monofilament into varying lengths. Bend the bottoms of the ornament hooks to form loops. Tie one end of a strand of monofilament to the small loop with a secure knot. Tie the other end of the monolfilament to the loop on the snowflake ornament. Cut off any excess filament extending beyond the knots.

I am lucky because I can reach my chandelier from my staircase, but depending on the height and location of your chandelier, you may need a ladder to hang your snowflakes. Hook the large ends of the ornament hooks over the “arms” of your chandelier, alternating the lengths of filament to achieve a cascading affect.

If you don’t have the vertical height, you can still accomplish the effect of falling snowflakes on a smaller scale, by decorating an “armed” dining room chandelier. After purchasing Swarovski crystal snowflake pendants online (pre-drilled with holes) and cutting varying lengths of monofilament, I securely tied one end of a strand of filament through the hole in each of the pendants. Because the monofilament would be seen up-close, I strung each filament with clear glass beads. I then tied each strung filament to a small silver jump ring. At this point a short piece of clear, elastic, beading thread (found in craft stores or bead shops) was threaded through the jump ring and knotted to create a small loop. A short piece of monofilament would work, too, but would be slightly more difficult to slip over the chandelier ends and would be less forgiving if the loop was not the correct size. I’ve found that the elastic loops slip very easily over the outer scrolls on the chandelier. For the interior arms of the chandelier, I threaded short lengths of monofilament through the jump rings and then tied them to the “arms.” The process sounds very complicated, but is plainly depicted in the photos.

The effect of falling snowflakes is difficult to photograph, but in person they are lovely to look at!

You are only limited by your imagination. Dangling snowflakes in window frames create a dazzling look, too. Again cut varying lengths of monofilament and tie one end of the filament to a snowflake. This time you will tie the other end of the filament to a clear push-pin or white thumbtack. Then push or tack all the strands into the top of a wood-framed window and let them sparkle in the sunlight!

Have fun in your newly-created winter wonderland!

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Rush, rush, hurry, hurry. Got to get here, got to get there. Life can be frenetically-crazy at times, but every now and then, some little “thing” reminds us to slow down and enjoy life. Driving on the freeway the other day, I felt hurried and stressed. It didn’t help that a handful of crazies were out there with me and my husband. Darting to and fro, changing lanes, and speeding seemed to be the order of the day. Then a trio of hot air balloons calmly floated into view. Watching them slowly and gracefully maneuver across the sky, I thought to myself, “Look at how blue and clear the sky is today.” And as the balloons floated out of view, so did my stress.

#1 – Emotional Tools
My dad is always a little sad during this time of the year. He left his home and mother in China when he was just a little boy. Even though he loves this country and the life he’s made here, the holiday season, with its celebrations of family and home, invariably reopens a hole in his heart. Good or bad, the holidays bring to surface emotions for many people. If you need a little emotional boost, read 10 Instant Emotional Fitness Tools. These tips are not going to fill that hole in your heart, but it may put some pep back in your step.

#2 – What Are We Eating?
The holiday season brings with it many delights and indulgences. With that in mind, check out this graph from Visual Economics that depicts what the average American consumes in a year. Did you eat your 192.3 pounds of flour and cereals or your 110 pounds of red meat this year? This may make you reconsider having seconds on anything!

#3 – Creative Architecture
This topic may sound boring to some of you, but wait to cast judgment until you look at this series of images titled, 50 Most Strange and Unusual Buildings Around the World. Even though not all of the titles are correct, you’ll still appreciate the design and architecture of these uniquely-shaped buildings. After viewing them, I wanted to get out my passport and travel around the world!

#4 – DIY Decorating with Epsom Salt
Who would have thought that Epsom salt could be used for holiday decorating? Here are two cute ideas from The Inspired Room. Check out the site for photos of these projects.

1. For a fresh “snow” effect, fill mason jars with about one to two inches of Epsom salt and place votive candles in the center. For the prettiest effect, cluster several jars together or line them up along a railing or on a table.

2. To make “crystallized” candles, paint your candle with Mod Podge and roll them in Epsom salt. I can’t wait to try this DIY decorating tip!

#5 – Going Out, Going In
“I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.”
John Muir

Have a great weekend!

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