Give your Christmas a handcrafted touch (and save yourself some dollars) with these gorgeous little projects
1. Bell garland
Don’t keep bells and other baubles just for the tree. Thread them onto a piece of twine or string and tie a knot to hold them in place.
What we used: White porcelain tree, $34.90, sage porcelain tree, $14.90, from Citta. Twine, $3 a roll, bells, $5 a pack, from Look Sharp. Other items stylist’s own.
2. Cutlery keeper
To create this simple decoration for each place setting, cut out a piece of felt in the shape of a Christmas tree, ensuring it’s tall enough to fit your cutlery.
What we used: A4 felt, $1.50, linen fabric (napkin), $33 a metre, from Spotlight. Martini glass, $49.99 for 4, from EziBuy. Other items stylist’s own.
3. Fabric Crackers
Buy or make cardboard tubes about 8cm in diameter (eg cut poster tubes into sections). Place gifts inside, wrap in linen fabric and tie with leather thonging.
What we used: Room spray, $12 for 3, hair clips, $5 for 2, eclairs, $3 a packet, pencils, $5 a box, from Kmart. Linen, $14 a metre, leather thonging, $27 a roll, from Spotlight.
4. Chocolate bark
Melt 250g white chocolate; reserve a quarter of it in a small bowl. Pour rest onto a lined tray and spread out. Stir a few drops of food colouring into reserved chocolate. Drizzle coloured chocolate over white chocolate and drag a skewer over top to create a marbled effect. Sprinkle with mini marshmallows and cool in fridge. Break up and serve or package.
What we used: Linen napkin, $12.90, from Citta. Other items stylist’s own.
5. Star napkin ring
Cut a star shape out of thick felt. Cut a strip of felt 2cm wide and 10-12cm long. Create a ring shape, glue ends together with clear craft glue. Once dry, glue star on top.
6. Bead decorations
Take a 30-35cm length of twine or string, fold in half and tie ends in a fat knot. Thread loop end through 3 wooden beads, from biggest to smallest, and knot above top bead.
What we used: Wooden beads, $9.10 a tube, from Spotlight. Glass tealight holder, $14.90, from Citta. Paper honeycomb ball in clay pink, $6, from Shut The Front Door. Other items stylist’s own.
7. Felt artwork
Cut out felt letters to create this ‘fa la la’ message or come up with your own. Stick letters to an A3 piece of card with craft glue and leave to dry, then pop into a frame.
What we used: White card, $3.25, A4 felt, $1.50, from Spotlight. Living & Co A3 frame, $18, from The Warehouse. LED mini houses, $29.99 for 3, LED house, $13.99, from EziBuy.
8. Boho ornaments
Cut 6 x 12cm lengths chunky wool, fold in half and knot onto a small gold ring. Use a 10cm length leather thonging to hang on a branch or Christmas tree.
What we used: Metal rings, $4.25 for 4, yarn in ecru and pink, $9.50 a ball, thonging, $27 a roll, from Spotlight. Vase, $11, from Kmart. Loft 26 candle, $18, from The Warehouse. Lapel console, $699, from Freedom. Other items stylist’s own.
9. Cork bows
For bows with a difference, try making them out of cork – there are lots of tutorials online.
What we used: Cork pleather trim roll, $10, brown and white gift boxes, from $3.30, from Spotlight. Card stylist’s own.
10. Wool Wreath
Tape 1 end of ball of wool to a 35mm polystyrene ring and wind around ring until covered. Tuck end under final strands to secure. Glue on decorations and tie on ribbon or cord for hanging.
What we used: 35mm ring, $8.25, yarn, $11 a ball, cork stars, $2.62 each, craft yarn (for hanging), $10.80 a roll, from Spotlight. Tree, $34.90, from Citta. Other items stylist’s own.
11. Star pillow
Take 2 x 20cm square pieces of drill cotton and cut out a star from each. Sew together with a 1cm hem, leaving a small gap for filling cushion. Stuff with filling (poke filling into points using the end of a wooden spoon) and sew up gap.
What we used: White drill cotton, $8.99 a metre, from Spotlight. Palm Springs chair, $699, from Freedom. Sage cushion, $15, from The Warehouse.
12. Pom-pom card display
Glue small pom poms onto 1 side of some mini pegs. Once glue has dried, clip pegs onto a length of craft yarn to create a simple garland. Use the pegs to display Christmas cards or other festive items.
What we used: Craft yarn, $10.80, white mini pegs, $6.50 a bag, white pom poms, $3.50 for 50, from Spotlight. Cards stylist’s own.
13. Santa sack
Cut an 80cm length of linen and sew a drawstring bag. To make it festive we ironed on a couple of star transfers.
What we used: Iron-on star transfers, $5.50 each, linen, $20.99 a metre, from Spotlight. Other items stylist’s own.
14. Cake toppers
Cut out a tree shape from thick felt then glue a toothpick to the back with clear craft glue; let dry. Pop into cakes or meringues.
What we used: 3mm felt, $7, from Spotlight. Theo cake stand, $79.90, from Country Road. Other items stylist’s own.
15. Bauble placeholder
Write guests’ names onto ceramic baubles with a permanent marker. Thread onto some ribbon, tie in a bow and place on each plate.
What we used: J&J DIY ceramic bauble, $2.62, craft yarn, $10.80, from Spotlight. Placemat, $3, from Kmart. Champagne saucer, $12.99, from H&M. Linen napkin, $12.90, from Citta. Other items stylist’s own.
16. Ply tree
Take a standard sheet of ply and draw a triangle on it from the top to the bottom. Saw off the sides and sand the edges smooth. Hammer small nails part-way into the ply for hanging decorations.
What we used: Ceramic hanging decorations, $9.90 each, from Citta.
17. Jar of light
If you aren’t a fan of Christmas decorations but want a festive touch, coil a set of LED seed lights inside a glass jar or vase.
18. Festive votives
If you love candles, try making your own votives. We took 3 plain glass votives and applied gold letter stickers for festive candles in minutes.
What we used: Timeo glass votives, $11.95 each, from Freedom. Gold letter and number stickers, $5, from Kmart. Cone tealight ornaments, $13.99 and $17.49, from EziBuy. Snuffer stylist’s own.
19. Pressie bags
Grab yourself some fat quarters (pre-cut squares) of fabric and whip up these pressie bags. Tie with ribbon and a Christmas decoration or tag for a festive look.
What we used: Fat quarter fabric flats, $7.50 each, cork tree decoration, $2.62, from Spotlight. Other items stylist’s own.
20. Tree-topped boxes
Simply glue these sweet mini tree toppers to small cardboard gift boxes for a cute alternative to wrapping.
What we used: Lanterman side table, $599, from Freedom. Gift boxes, from $3, from Look Sharp. Mini present topper trees, $3.37 for 5, from Spotlight.
Styling by: Vanessa Nouwens. Photography by: Wendy Fenwick.