DIY Holiday Friendship Bracelets

If you need a last-minute gift idea for your best pal, mom, or sister, this post is for you. Today we’re sharing how to make Christmas Friendship Bracelets. You might recognize this tutorial because we’ve done a couple like it in the past (including cute printables!).

We’re including five different patterns you can make with your family, all Christmas/holiday-themed that would be great to give out to friends or neighbors. We chose some that are a bit more complicated (and awesome!) and some that are a bit more simple (and still awesome!). They come complete with videos since they’re a little bit easier to understand than photos.

DIY Christmas Friendship Bracelets

Materials

  • See above!

1. How to make a holiday themed chevron friendship bracelet

2. How to make a holiday themed chevron friendship bracelet with a twist

This one is a riff our intern, Calee, made off of a traditional chevron pattern. It relies on the same format but with a little spin in the middle as you can see with the green.

3. How to make a holiday candy striped friendship bracelet

You can really make any sort of striped pattern you’d like, but here’s how to make this specific pattern.

4. How to read a normal friendship bracelet pattern

Reading patterns to me is like reading greek. Where do I start? What am I looking at? Some of the patterns we referred to for the more complicated designs like the candy cane, trees, and poinsettias, were from other sites and I needed a bit of deciphering before I could really dig in. To help me out, our intern, Calee, made this video explaining how to read a pattern. I hope it helps you too!

5. DIY Candy Cane Friendship bracelet

We used this pattern for our Candy Cane Friendship bracelet. If you need help deciphering  a pattern, use the video above!

6. DIY Christmas Tree Friendship bracelet

We used this pattern for our Christmas Tree Friendship Bracelet. If you can’t figure out how to decipher a pattern, use the video above!

7. DIY Poinsettia Friendship bracelet

We used this pattern for our Poinsettia Friendship Bracelet. If you can’t figure out how to decipher a pattern, use the video above!

Liked this tutorial? We have more you can try, including our DIY watermelon friendship bracelets and Valentine’s Day friendship bracelets.

DIY Holiday Sprinkle Me Cupcake Toppers

There’s nothing like some cupcakes with sprinkles to bring out the inner child and invite more holiday cheer into your life. Remember our Sprinkle Me Cupcake Toppers from Valentine’s Day? We made a Christmas version for you to try! Only this time, the packet of sprinkles is shaped like a Christmas tree. Our holiday cupcake toppers are for everyone, both young and old!

Holiday Cupcake Toppers

If you’re unfamiliar with this craft, all you have to do is bake some tasty cupcakes (that’s probably the hardest part! or pick some up from the store–I don’t bake!) and then put our Holiday Cupcake Toppers on top. When you’re ready to decorate, simply rip or cut open the tree-shaped packet and sprinkle to your heart’s content!

I think one of the best parts of the holidays is the baking projects (and of course, getting to eat the treats afterward). If you need an interactive cupcake that allows everyone to decorate their own treat, look no further. This one isn’t as messy as the typical sprinkles + paper plates scenario, which can be a real nightmare if you have a toddler. Not that I would know…

Do you like the “Sprinkle Me” flags? They always remind me of Alice in Wonderland.

DIY Sprinkle Me Christmas Cupcakes

Materials

See above
Note: We used these all natural sprinkles, which use plant-based colors and vegan ingredients (and they have some really fun shapes!)

Instructions

  1. Download the templates for the “Sprinkle Me” and Christmas Tree Shape here.
  2. Trace the Christmas tree shape onto vellum and cut two pieces out for each cupcake.
  3. Sew within the shape of the template leaving the bottom unsewn.
  4. Insert the sprinkles and then carefully sew the bottom back up.
  5. Glue a toothpick to the back of the Christmas tree.
  6. Glue a “sprinkle me” pennant under the tree.
  7. Voila!

These would make wonderful neighbor gifts because they’re festive and interactive. Can’t you see it?!

Would love to see how you make yours! Tag us with #LarsMakes or #HolidaysWithLars.

If you liked this project, you might also like:

Christmas Decor for your Home
How to Get In the Holiday Spirit This Year
Christmas Gifts Under $25

DIY Accordion Christmas Village

Today we are sharing another DIY Christmas Village (similar to one we posted last week), but this one is an accordion style and you can use the templates right here from our shop to either hand cut it out OR use a craft cutting machine to do it for you.

I just love the anticipation of Christmas, and a cute village on your mantel with fluffy cotton ball clouds and bottle brush trees just adds to the magic of the season. I like to put little twinkle lights behind the village for an added glow. Here, I added in our heirloom nativity (you can see the tutorial here!)

With this particular DIY Christmas Village, you only need to do a bit of assembly so it’s for someone who has only a sitcom’s worth of time to work on something. This village can sit as a lovely silhouette in your windowsill for passerby to admire.

DIY Accordion Christmas Village

Here’s how to do it for both the craft cutting machines or hand cut!

Materials

See above!

You can get the templates here

Instructions

  1. Use either the SVG or the PDF files, depending on how you want to cut it out. PDF files are for those wanting to hand cut it out and the SVG files are for those who can put it in their craft cutting machines.
  2. To handcut: Use the template to cut out the pieces with your ruler and craft knife.
  3. Craft cutting machine: Each “house” is meant for a different 8.5×11″ page so you’ll need to assemble them together. If you want them to be SUPER sturdy, I’d recommend cutting the tabs at the bottom off a bit and taping them together so that the buildings sit side by side.

Check out our other Christmas village here (this one is also an advent calendar!).

If you like this project, you might also like: 

DIY Peppermint Pig Pinata
Heirloom Nativity Set
Family Tree Ornaments

DIY Peppermint Pig Piñata

The tradition of the Peppermint Pig

The peppermint pig tradition started in the late 1800s in Saratoga Springs, NY. Did you know that pigs used to represent wealth and prosperity? After dinner, people would place a pink peppermint pig inside a cloth, break it into pieces, and share it for luck. You can find some here.

Today we’re sharing a Lars twist on this tradition with a peppermint pig piñata. You can start a new Christmas ritual with your family! We love that it’s a little quirky and reminds us of an era gone by.

Peppermint Pig Piñata DIY

Materials

  1. cardboard
  2. butcher paper
  3. pig template
  4. tape
  5. glue gun
  6. pink tissue paper
  7. scissors
  8. black paper
  9. light pink paper
  10. optional: green paper for leaves, real fir, berries, red bow

Instructions

  1. Download the template and scale it to the size you’d like your pig to be. We did 4x the size of the template.
  2. Trace it onto butcher paper and the transfer the design onto your cardboard. You’ll need two sizes for the sides of the pig.
  3. Create the sides of the pig out of cardboard about 4-5″ wide with the grain of the cardboard going the width way so you can easily shape the curved parts.
  4. Tape or glue the pieces together.
  5. Cut fringe from tissue paper and glue layer by layer starting from the bottom of the pig. Each piece will be 3″ tall to the widest width of the tissue paper. We cut fringe about every 1/4″ wide leaving a space of at least 1/2″ at the top.
  6. Finish the pig details with some black paper at the bottom for hoofs, circles for eyes, and larger circles in pink paper for cheeks. If you’re feeling particularly festive, add in greenery around the neck.
  7. To add a hook onto the pig to hang, cut two holes at the top and insert a ribbon or piece of wire.

Would love to see your own versions! Tag us with #HolidaysWithLars or #LarsMakes so we can see them!

If you liked this, you’ll love:

Valentine’s Day Pinata Box
Cookie Box Printable

For tons more Christmas ideas, check out our holiday tag here.

Printable Cookie Box with Arlo’s Cookies

These Christmas cookies might (might!) be too pretty to eat! I mean, can you even tell that they’re cookies?! Arlo’s Cookies is the BEST! She has an awesome holiday workshop happening right now. You can also find her Guide to Mixing Colors here. If I wasn’t such an inept baker, I’d be right there with you!

We did a adorable Valentine’s Gift Box collaboration with Arlo’s back in February (doesn’t that seem like years ago?!).

This year we are making a set of cookies inspired by our DIY mid-century nativity. We’re even launching a printable gift box to match the cookies which folds into a house shape. You can safely deliver these to your neighbor’s porches and spread some Christmas cheer!

Printable Christmas Nativity Cookie Box

This cookie box is awaiting to be made. Here’s how to do it!

Materials:

See above (the printable you can find here)

Instructions:

  1. Cut out the template
  2. Cut in between the two pitched lines at the top of the house (see second photo on right. There’s a solid line indicating where that is).
  3. Start scoring all the dotted lines.
  4. Once the lines are scored, fold back all the lines.
  5. Start gluing the tabs to the walls.
  6. You can either glue the tops of the pitched gables in place or secure with a light double sided stick tape so that it can be opened by the receiver.

Optional: Use a hole punch at the top for the tabs and secure with a ribbon!

Head on over to our Shop to see more cute printables and templates!

If you liked this project, you might like the following

Make your own Holiday Nesting Dolls
DIY Bottlebrush Christmas Trees
Printable Santa Lucia crown

This project was done in collaboration with Arlo’s Cookies,

DIY Paper Honeycomb Ornaments

We love the mid-century modern vibe of paper ornaments, and the jewel-toned colors complement any Christmas tree. We especially like that they’re non-breakable—if you have a toddler in your house, you understand.

Plus everyone loves a handmade ornament. They are sweet and sentimental, just like Christmas should be. Though these DIY paper ornaments are quite the level up from popsicle stick reindeers and laminated school photos, ha!

How to Make your DIY Paper Honeycomb Ornaments

These DIY paper honeycomb ornaments are easy to make, you’ll get the hang of it super quick. And like all of our paper crafts, you can reuse them next year! Just make sure to store them in a box where they won’t get crushed by heavier objects.

Materials:

DIY paper honeycomb ornaments

Instructions:

Read all instructions before beginning your project!
  1. Download our ornament templates here
  2. Use your cutting machine or scissors to cut out 66 pieces for each ornament.
  3. Once all of your pieces are cut, you will start glueing them together.
  4. Carefully place 2 thin lines of super glue separate from each other, and perpendicular to the flat edge of the shape. Take care not to spread the glue anywhere else. Your line of glue does not need to go all the way to both edges of the paper, start and end in a little bit to avoid glue spilling over the edges.
  5. Place the next shape on top of the one with glue, carefully lining up all the edges.
  6. On top of this new piece, carefully place one line a super glue, in the middle of where you placed the 2 lines on the last piece.
  7. Place a next pieces on top of top of that, again aligning all edges.
  8. Repeat steps 4-7, alternating between 1 line of glue and 2 until all of your cut shapes are stacked on top of each other.
  9. Now you will seal the flat edges of your ornaments shapes together using bookbinding glue or any other flexible glue.
  10. While holding the shapes together tightly, use a small paintbrush with a flat edge to spread flexible glue along the entire flat edge of your stack of paper shapes.
  11. Before the flexible glue has dried, use it to attach a ribbon to the flat edge, on the side you want as the top of your ornament. This is what you will use to hang it up later.
  12. Let your work sit until all of the glue is completely dry. Now it is time to open your ornament!
  13. Starting at one side, start to carefully open the individual shapes in your stack, carefully unsticking any edges where the super glue might have spilled over if needed.
  14. Your paper shapes should open up to form your ornament, meeting on the opposite side. You’ll see the ribbon is now tucked in in the center of the ornament.
  15. Carefully align and glue together the 2 sides that meet when the ornament is open. Ta da!

Extra Tips

Here are some extra notes that will help you avoid mistakes your first time around!

If you are having a hard time opening your ornaments that is most likely because glue spilled over the edges in places it shouldn’t be. That is why it is important to take care to make your lines of super glue and thin and straight as possible. And avoid glueing all the way to the edge of your paper. Just take your time!

You may experiment with where you places you lines of glue to achieve different end looks – as long as you use the same pattern for one entire ornament. These lines of glue effect where the “honeycomb” effect shows up on finished ornaments. For all of the shapes included in our templates, I still used 2 lines of glue alternating with 1 line between them.

DIY paper honeycomb ornaments

More Paper Ornament Ideas

Need more DIY ornament ideas? Check out our tutorial for printable retro ornaments, paper candle ornaments, or a head to toe Swedish Christmas tree.

If you’re not in the mood for a DIY, browse through our whimsical Christmas ornament selection, introduced in this post from a few weeks ago.

Paper Ornaments Available For Purchase

 

DIY Printable Advent Village Calendar

What’s more exciting than the delicious anticipation of that Christmas morning? In an effort to maintain some of that magic through the month of December, I love using an advent calendar. When I was a child, we would fight over the little chocolates or treasures my mom put inside the little pockets. Then, mom got tired of the candy and replaced it with wooden stars. We still fought over them. Our printable advent calendar is adorable, easy to assemble, and doesn’t involve any candy…so here’s hoping your kids won’t fight over it.

Printable Advent Calendar

Check out some of our other advent calendars from past years. We did a Christmas Bulb one (like a paper chain, but cuter and more Christmas-y), a Christmas Photo Advent Challenge, and an Acts of Service Advent Calendar (my personal favorite). After all, I think we could all use some extra service this year.

How to make a DIY advent village calendar

Here’s how to make our village advent! It includes some sweet details like a craft shop, book store, market, boulangerie. It’s too sweet!

Materials

Print off the printable village. There are 25 pieces:

7 – Tall houses
7 – Small houses
5 – Medium houses
5 – Trees
1 – Medium Christmas house

Instructions for cutting out the houses

  1. Cut out the house around the edges
  2. With your scoring device (we used a craft knife and lightly ran the blade over the lines), score the tabs, and each side of the house. You’ll also score the lines under rectangle roofs.
  3. Neatly fold each line.
  4. Cut the the two tabs between the triangle roofs.
  5. Glue the base of the house first
  6. Then glue the side tab of the house
  7. Lastly, glue the roof together. If you want to be able to access the top of the roof for presents or candy, use a light tape or leave it as is.

How to make the Christmas Trees

  1. Cut around the whole shape
  2. In order to fit the template onto one page, we assembled each of the four faces together. Now you will cut off the pieces so that there are four individual pieces, making sure that you leave the tabs.
  3. Score the tabs. We did this with light craft knife lines and a metal ruler.
  4. At the top of the two tree triangles that have the tabs, cut off a bit of the tab so that it is a more narrow angle.
  5. Fold the scored lined tabs in place.
  6. Lightly score the bottom rectangle. This will act as the base of the tree.
  7. Now you’ll assemble with glue each of the triangle shapes into a star formation using the tabs.
  8. Your finished star will glue a tab triangle piece to a non-triangle piece.
  9. Now, bring up the tabs and glue the sides together. If you’d like to access them, use a non permanent double sided stick tape.

Display tips: Display your village on a mantle or shelf OR you could even tie each one up onto a cute branch.

Would love to see yours in the wild. Tag us with #LarsMakes or #HolidayswithLars so we can check them out! 

If you liked this project, you might also like:

DIY oversized paper stockings
DIY Bottlebrush Christmas tree hack
Rainbow ombre advent calendar

Christmas Gifts Under $100

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Christmas gifts under $100

The best Christmas gifts under $100 don’t have to be flashy or over the top. In fact, we think it’s better to spend a little extra money on one really meaningful gift, rather than buying a bunch of cheaper things that the receiver may not use or cherish.

Use our gift guide as inspiration and surprise your loved one with a gift they’ll remember forever!

Christmas Gifts Under $100

 

Men’s Gifts Under $100

 

Have a look at our previous gift guides for even more gift-giving inspo! Including gifts under $25, gifts under $50, and this year’s kid’s gift guide. And for even more ideas, check out our Pinterest!

Christmas Gifts Under $50

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I’ve been seeing a ton of posts on social media of people putting up Christmas really early because it’s 2020 and…well…who wouldn’t? Of course, we at Lars are always ready to celebrate Christmas! Today we’re sharing another one of our gift guides with you. This one features Christmas gifts under $50.

Christmas Gifts Under $50

This category is great for your friends and loved ones who are harder to buy for. Sometimes one really thoughtful gift that costs a little bit more is better than a smorgasbord of cheaper gifts that may not mean anything to them. We think it’s worth it when you give a gift that’s truly cherished.

Some of our faves

The most adorable mittens you’ve ever seen (for your sister who always loses hers).

These on-trend taper candles, for your best friend who used to host dinner parties every month but now just hosts them with her cat.

Our fave brand of reusable bags (some stores are letting people use them again!), for you (and the planet) because you’re worth it!

Drinking more water is always at the top of my New Year’s Resolutions. A cute water bottle doesn’t hurt. Plus, these ones are monogrammed!

The yarn dyeing kit for your child’s teacher who’s in need of a mental break (and creative boost!)

Sales of lounge wear have skyrocketed this year and I get why. Your mom will love this gorgeous set, designed by Michelle Morin. Top it off with these cozy, colorful slippers.

Men’s Gift Ideas

 

For more gift ideas, check out our previous gift guides here, including one for kids!

A Lars Kid’s Gift Guide 2020

This kid’s gift guide contains affiliate links. When something is purchased through one of the links below, we earn a small commission that helps us create more content and resources for you to enjoy! This is at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting us and other small business this season!

Kid’s Gifts Under $25

 

Need a new screen-free activity to do from home this winter? We’ve got you covered. Gift our brand new hardcopy of Picture Hope: The Social Distancing Coloring Book. With unique coloring pages from 64 artists from around the world. Each one drew their representation of hope during this challenging time and your family gets to color it in! Click here to see more.

My friend Joy from Oh Joy! Just released her new children’s book OH SO KIND! This is a lift-the-flap board book about showing kindness in our community. Interactive pages engage readers in this big-hearted book about being a good friend, neighbor, and family member! Click here to order a copy. Jasper LOVES his!

This Frida Kahlo bath bomb is such a fun stocking stuffer! The company who made it, Musee Bath, primarily hires women in recovery, people with disabilities, and people who have lived in chronic poverty. Their products are handmade in the USA with ethically sourced, natural ingredients and are safe for all skin types. They have other products inspired by amazing women like Frida. This is an amazing company to support this season! Pair one of their bath bombs with a subscription to our Great Artists! Course so your kiddo can learn more about Frida Kahlo and other amazing creatives.

Kid’s Gifts Under $50

For ages 6+, give the gift of monthly craft projects! The Kid Made Modern Monthly Craft Club brings art class to your home! Gift a subscription, and they will receive a new craft box each month with all the materials needed to complete their project. You can sign up for 1 month, 3 months, or 6 months of projects here. Print off the certificate below to gift on Christmas morning!

Kid’s Gifts under $100

Spread out the Christmas joy with a gift that truly keeps on giving. A one-time purchase of our Great Artists! Kid’s Course gives your family access to 6+ weeks of learning through DIY art projects and videos. Click here to create an account that all of your kids can access! (One course access account per household.) Put together a gift basket of supplies they’ll need to complete the course, and include the access info, for the most creative Christmas morning yet! Even after the holidays come to an end, and the batteries the other toys run out, your kids will still have plenty of hours of fun left in the Great Artists! Course.

 

DIY Kid’s Gifts

It wouldn’t be a proper Lars Kid’s gift guide without some DIY ideas! For a present with an extra touch of love, try making it yourself! Our archives include gift-able projects for every level of crafter. Try these DIY painted blocks you can customize in any color scheme. Or a hand-sewn plush koala they’ll want to take everywhere. That isn’t the only plush pattern we have, check out this stuffed whale or this rainbow floor pouf too! This DIY mushroom playmat can become a family keepsake. Or for a gift the whole family can enjoy, learn how to make your own custom cornhole set and beanbags here!

Kid’s Clothing

As soon as I saw Primary has a Rainbow Gift Guide this year I was hooked. Recently, I’ve been stocking up on more solid color staples but in fun shades. That way they can easily be passed from kid to kid but don’t need to be in boring neutrals! Then I can dress up a solid staple like this green puffy coat (that comes in every other color too!) with a patterned kid’s mask (that hopefully is only short term, fingers crossed.)

I recently discovered the British brand The Middle Daughter which is featured on Maisonette. I am obsessed with their prints and shapes for kid’s clothing. Like this puffy sleeve and ruffled dress, ah! I wish they all came in adult sizes!

Click here for our past kid’s gift guide posts, for even more ideas!

 

Christmas Gifts Under $25

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Today we’re bringing you one of our holiday gift guides, featuring gifts you can buy for under $25. Though I realize not everyone in your family will have the same taste as we do, I love seeing other people’s gift guides because they help me brainstorm and think of ideas I probably wouldn’t have thought of on my own!

Gift Ideas From The Lars Shop

This year we stocked up the Lars Shop on stickers, accessories, coloring books, and plenty of other Christmas gift ideas. Help Santa out and stuff those stockings early this year.

We just released a hardcopy version of our nonprofit coloring book Picture Hope! This coloring book contains the work of 64 artists from around the world. Each one drew their representation of hope during this challenging time and you get to color it in! All profits go to benefit the nonprofit organization Love For Our Elders for the next month (we pick a new charity every few weeks!) Not only does this new physical version of Picture Hope make a creative and thoughtful gift, but all profits from your purchase will also be gifted to this special charity.

Other Gifts Under $25

The “under $25” category is one of my favorites, because it’s the perfect amount to get someone a meaningful, creative gift without putting a big dent in your wallet. Typically with gifts less than $25, you won’t need to watch for Black Friday and other holiday sales. (But even if you do, shopping those sales is kinda fun, especially now that we can do it all online!)

Want some other gift ideas? Check out our past gift guides here. And keep an eye out for this year’s $50 and $100 gift guides coming soon!

Our new holiday card with Mixbook

Holiday Cards with Mixbook

First up, I designed our holiday spirited holiday card for all you floral lovers out there who want that perfect mix of glam (gold leaf!) and traditional Christmas (that deep green!). Personally, I love selecting a color scheme that’s a bit off from traditional green and red (think lots of pinks and golds and such!), but this year I’m feeling particularly traditional and glitzy.

COVID greetings

One of the best features of Mixbook is the ability to change up and customize any part of the card. The default phrase to our card currently says, “Merry Everything” but honestly, it felt a little too chipper for how things have gone this year. Ha! I wanted something a little more reflective of the year in general and you know what, besides some notable victories (we bought a house! We’re having a baby! And some other big ones 😉 SO, we did some brainstorming for some new phrases. Here are some of our favorites:

  • (COVID) 19 Cheers for 2020!
  • “Coronavirus is coming to town”
  • COVID knows when you are sleeping, COVID knows when you’re awake…”
  • “So wear a mask for goodness sake”
  • “Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, coughing all the way”
  • Corona Cheer!
  • The best gift this year is to maintain 6 feet distance!

Or, of course, there’s just being honest, right? Here were a couple I considered:

  • Could it get any worse?
  • And I went with “What a terrible year!” because that’s how I feel (mostly!)

I’d love to hear yours! 

Jepsen Family Photos 2020

While I wanted to take a more traditional route to our card, I wanted to spruce it up with lots of colors in our photos. I had some beautiful sweaters in mind for Jasper’s outfit and it kind of went from there. There are so many adorable fair isle sweaters for boys right now and couldn’t decide! Turns out, most didn’t arrive in time for our shoot so we went with the white button down sweater, but we also considered these ones:

Which one would you have gone with? (from left to right)

  1. Navy Blue Fair Isle
  2. Red and white checkers
  3. White fair isle

And I was dead set on wearing this red dress from a collaboration between Pencil and Paper and Dondolo. It actually fits around my 8 month pregnant body and the smocking is delicious. Then Paul added his own yellow touch and we were good to go!

Because I planned everything around our card collection, it was MUCH easier to go from there. Here’s what I started with. And clearly, I didn’t get too far with Paul’s ensemble.

Jasper’s a bit of a performer and this photo session was no exception. I mean, look how it went. He LOVES a family sandwich:

But the rest of the shoot was more like this:

Lars for Mixbook travel album and Year in Review

Along with our Holiday card, we have our exclusive travel album and year in review books with Mixbook. I made one for 2018 and one for our trip to Denmark last year, and decided to continue the tradition with a year in review book for 2019 (I’ll be getting to 2020 when it’s over…and probably a number of months tacked onto that!). It’s PACKED with photos of my son, because yes, I think he’s the cutest and smartest and funniest kid in the world.

Here’s a page from some of the places we had visited in 2019.

Other team members made some of our books too.

Jane, our photographer, made a Mixbook from her trip to NYC and Washington, DC last year. She used our Year in Review book and turned it into a travel book.

And lastly, my cousin, Clare, who lives with us, made a travel book for her senior trip to Italy with her mom and aunt. It’s always so interesting to see how people make each Mixbook their own and give me so many ideas on how to do it myself!

Mixbook Discount

Lars readers get 50% off your book and card order with code: HLARS50, expires 12/21/2020, 50% off book and card order.

Would love to see your choices! Tag us with#houselarsbuiltxmixbook so we can see them! 

Head on over to Mixbook for your 50% off!

This post is sponsored by Mixbook. We love our sponsors who allow us to make original content for you! 

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