A DIY Christmas

A DIY Christmas

Arpita Nath

An editor, Arpita breathes detective fiction and British comedy. Her ideal world involves living in the Shire, working as an Auror battling the Dark Side.
December 24, 2015

Christmas is upon us! Such a beautiful time of the year to get together with family and friends, make delicious food, exchange gifts, or just spread that balmy spirit of Christmas! Be it planning dinners, decorating trees and homes, or making festive cards, take the DIY road this year and do something different. Make things from scratch, add little personal touches and reuse things from your surroundings. At this day and age, when everyone is on the run, go that extra mile to make things special for the people who matter to you... After all 'tis time to be grateful.

Glass Jar Candle Holders

Handmade decorated tealight holder on a laid table

These cute candle holders work wonderfully as a gift, a decoration ornament, and are a great addition to any dinner party table. Not only are they super easy to put together, but give off that whimsical A Midsummer Night's feel. This is a sure shot way to up your Christmas game.

All you need is:

  • Jam or chutney jars (any size)
  • Ribbons or pieces of twine or jute
  • Wire (optional)
  • Tea candles
  • Dried or fresh leaves and flowers
  • Silicone glue or hot glue gun

What you need to do:

  1. Soak empty jam or chutney jars in hot warm for 20 minutes to half an hour to take out any sticker. Then, wipe them clean and dry.
  2. You can forage in your garden for some fallen dried or even fresh leaves or flowers. Use the glue to stick it on the outside. There is no set design rule for this. You can alternate between a leaf and a flower, or just go with two leaves... whatever suits your fancy.
  3. Tie a ribbon around the neck of the jar. Or, to give it a more rustic look, use a piece of jute or twine.
  4. Then, place a tealight inside the jar and before any dinner party, light 'em up for a snazzy effect.
  5. You can also hang these little enchanting lights in your home or driveway. Take a piece of strong wire and make two loops at each end of the wire. Then, insert another piece of wire through the loops and safely secure it around the neck of the jar. There! Your jar handle is ready, and you can now hang these DIY lanterns. These holders are game on point to take any party to another dimension.

Cinnamon Spice Bundles

Christmas decoration of cinnamon stick bundle

Using whole spices is a great alternative to using artificial room fresheners. Keep bundles of these unique potpourris on centre tables or hang them on windows or on your Christmas tree... With the aroma so exotic, you'll soon feel like you're walking down a thriving spice bazaar in Marrakesh. These little spice bundles can be made and displayed in varied ways: you can make a dry or liquid version; reuse old jars or bowls; use those cloth drawstring bags that you get with earrings; or even hang them using a piece of wire.

All you need is:

  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Star anise
  • Nutmeg
  • Cloves
  • Dried apples and oranges (slice thinly and pop them in the oven at 200°C)
  • Small-sized jam jar/bowl, or a small cloth bag
  • Ribbon, jute rope, or twine (optional)

What you need to do:

  1. Lightly crush a few cloves, and break a few cinnamon sticks and a nutmeg to heighten the aroma. Place the crushed spices at the bottom and top with more whole aromatics and dried fruit. You can even throw in a few sprigs of rosemary and dried rose petals, if you feel like. You can put this mixture in a bowl or a jar. If you want to bag it up, don't forget to tie a nice little bow at the top for effect.
  2. Another way of doing this is by making a hole in the nutmeg and insert the twine through it, which will act as base, then inserting a piece of twine through the dried fruit and tying it around the cinnamon sticks. You can use a glue to stick the star anise on this bundle. These look pretty as a peach and are a great decorating option.
  3. You can even try a different version and make good use of these heady aromatics by simmering all these whole spices in a big pan of water with sliced fresh oranges and ginger. Soon your home will smell like Christmas! You can spoon out this mix and use this as table display!

Book-a-Tree

Tree Book

These are a bibliophile's dream tree. Festive to boot and super easy, you can make these book trees using paperbacks and hardbacks in many ways.

All you need is:

  • Books... A whole lot of books
  • Christmas lights

What you need to do:

  1. One method is basically stacking books against a wall in the shape of a pyramid. You can keep 5 thick books at the base and as you go up use books of shorter width and length till you you're satisfied with your book triangle. Make sure to keep the spine side out on display! Put the lights around it and light up!
  2. Another method is a circular tree, where you place books in a circle. Create a base with the heaviest books on the floor making sure they're of the same thickness. Fill the hollow with books for a sturdy base. Then make another circle of books on top of the base layer, reducing the circle diameter. Then, layer on! Finally, light up your book tree!

3-D Greetings Card

Watch this step-by-step video to make these easy-peasy 3-D cards! You can also pop over to DK's YouTube channel for more videos on how to create more holiday crafts and get some great gifting and decoration ideas.

Here at DK, we toast to the holidays in style. Take a look at our creative celebrations over the years, and from all of us here, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

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