A Lars favorite from Christmas past

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The analytics and photos have spoken and you, dear readers, have claimed this oversized holly and berry garland your favorite Lars holiday project of all time. To celebrate, I’m sharing some additional photos of the project as well as some reader photos of their own re-creations.
Oversized holly garland

Rainbow Ombre Advent Calendar

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Rainbow Ombre Advent Calendar

Advent Calendars have always been one of my favorite holiday traditions. They seem to make the build-up to Christmas that much more exciting. Each day holds a little surprise and a reminder of the big event! We tapped into our love of rainbows to create a Rainbow Ombre Advent Calendar. Each day counting down to Christmas is represented by a different color bag, filled with coordinating colored toys, treats, or trinkets! We partnered with Brother to create festive P-Touch Embellish ribbons stating days 1 to 25, to tuck into each bag. You, your partner, or your little ones, will have a blast discovering a new treasure each day, not to mention it makes a beautiful display on your wall!

Get the full tutorial for the Dyed Rainbow Advent Calendar below

DIY Nativity Puppets

I was inspired by these ornaments to create puppets using paper mache balls. I’ve been wanting to do this forever, only to find out my good friend, Merrilee had already done something similar! Great minds think alike! I enlisted the talented Michelle Christensen of My Little Belleville to illustrate the faces for each character in the Nativity. To turn them into puppets, we drilled a hole into each sphere, inserted a pencil, and clothed each one in a simple fabric tunic. So simple! Jasper is already a big fan.

Gift Guide: $50 and under

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Our second gift guide is up and it’s for your $50 and under gift selections (see our $25 and under here). Enjoy!

See below for the full list!

 

  1. Fir candle
  2. Volcano cinnamon candle
  3. candy cane lip mask
  4. Stocking
  5. Pom garland
  6. Rainbow felt garland
  7. Pink sweater
  8. Pom sweater
  9. Emerald Scarf 
  10. Welcome sign
  11. Measuring cups and spoons
  12. Plaid tights
  13. floral umbrella
  14. Rainbow journal
  15. Floral tea towel 
  16. Pom beanie
  17. catstudio pouch

Stay tuned for our $100 gift guide tomorrow! 

Paper Poinsettia Flowers

 

These paper poinsettia flowers are great for both holiday decorations and everyday home decor! They’ll last much longer than real flowers, and now you can make them in whatever colors you wish!

Crepe paper is the perfect medium to add some texture to the petals and have some fun with color. From speckles to brush strokes, these poinsettias will give their real counterparts a run for their money! We teamed up with Cricut so you can easily download the SVG files and your Cricut Maker will cut out all the pieces in no time! Yes, the new Cricut Maker cuts crepe paper! It’s a Christmas Miracle!

Paper Poinsettia Flower

Find out how to make your own paper poinsettia flowers after the jump!

Day 2: Printable St. Lucia crown

Printable St. Lucia crown

I joined up with a group of Scandinavian bloggers to create a Swedish Advent Calendar: 24 days of posts from 24 different bloggers, each consisting of a Scandinavian inspired project. So mysigt! That means cozy in Swedish 😉 You can find the project for Day 1 by Gina Vide at Willowday and tomorrow’s post with Pysselbolaget as well as a list of the other participants. I’m so excited to see them all!

Today, St. Lucia’s Day is celebrated in all of Scandinavia. Traditionally, girls wear white dresses and red sashes, each with an evergreen crown of candles atop her head. A procession is then held in each town or school and carols are sung. It’s such a lovely sight! I can’t forget to mention that Pepparkakor (Swedish gingersnaps), Lussekatar (sweet saffron buns), and glogg (a mulled cider), are usually accompanied. Are you sold yet? St. Lucia Day is such a cozy holiday and I think it’s a shame we don’t celebrate it here in the states. Insert: A printable St. Lucia Crown! Skip the frigid winter and enjoy carols and sweets all while looking like a Scandinavian Princess in the comfort of your own home!

This week’s inspiration and holiday craft ideas

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GuysI have a case of the Ebenezer Scrooge! We haven’t done much Christmas anything. (But that doesn’t mean the holiday craft tutorials have stopped!). I’m preferring to stay home and get things done and eat Trader Joe’s Jo Jos. I think with the upcoming year I should learn how to take a chill pill and maybe…exercise? Well, I guess we did one Christmasy thing while my mom was here over Thanksgiving. This. Christmas in Color here in Utah where you drive through this maze of lights synced with all sorts of Christmas tunes. It’s super rad.

AND, for all you on Snapchat (my favorite thing to do as of late), I decided to do 24 Days of Christmas Karaoke/Lip Sync, which is basically me revealing too much about what goes on behind the scenes of all of our “calm” pictures.

Happy weekend! Do something joyful! Read below for some holiday craft ideas AND view some links to this week’s inspiration (some non-Christmas fun, so you don’t get Christmas burnout)!

Holiday craft ideas

Want to decorate your house for the holidays but don’t know where to begin? Start with some fun and easy DIYs! Check out this DIY printable advent village calendar to count down the days in the cutest way possible! Want to create your own festive stockings? We have a tutorial to make your own custom Christmas stockings! Try out these DIY flapper trees to place on your mantel or around your house! Want more holiday inspiration? Check out the Lars Christmas archives!

Links for your weekend!

Win a bike! (like from our bikes here!) Edit: The giveaway is now closed, but you can still check out some cool bikes from Brooklyn Bike Company.

Buy one get one free at Creativebug, for all of you wanting to take some art and craft classes! 

I’m loving following along on Heather Bullard’s France trip! 

The history of ballet bodies. So interesting! Especially hearing my mom’s take on it (she and her sister danced with the NYC Ballet with Balanchine!) 

It’s baaaaack! 

Gorgeous mural

I want this just for the cover. And the more I learn about her, the more I like her. Edit: We did a book club with this book!

photo by Jessica Peterson from our shoot with Benefit. More behind the scenes photos next week! 

2nd day of Christmas crafts: Candy lights

For the first day of Christmas crafts, we brought you a tutorial for these DIY glitter trees. For this month’s DIY project for Oh Happy Day, I tapped into my mom’s endless artistic reservoir again and remembered how one year for Christmas she made these candy lights and put them on our whole house. It was pretty fantastic looking, and I think it turned out well again this time. I love the photos that Emily took. This image above is one of my absolute favorites of all time roots and all (sick!). Should have asked her to photoshop those suckers out, ha!

DIY candy lights

Materials:

  • Corsage boxes
  • String of lights
  • Scissors
  • Wire or pipe cleaners to fasten
  • Wire cutters
  • Cellophane rolls in different colors
  • Tape

I wrote up the full tutorial for these candy lights over at Oh Happy Day. Get the instructions and pictures of the process here.

Holiday candy & decor ideas

What I love about these candy lights is that they’re not only perfect for Christmas, but they’re also perfect for Halloween! Here at Lars, we’ve done a lot of different candy crafts including this candy garland, Halloween candy poppers & Christmas poppers, and candy cane wrapping. You can never have too much candy, right? Ok, maybe you can, but when it comes to holiday decorations, I say the more candy the better!

For Christmas decor, take a look at these dyed bottlebrush trees to add even MORE color to your holiday decor! This DIY Christmas bulb advent calendar is a favorite here at Lars, and it doubles as both decoration and a fun Christmas activity! And finally, we couldn’t get through the holidays without a paper flower tutorial! Make your own Christmas flower decorations with this paper Poinsettia flower tutorial.

For more Christmas crafts, check out the Lars Christmas shop!

How to wrap heirloom picture frames and free download wrapping paper

preservation-and-creation-canvas-prints-2

You know the type–the person who has everything they need and are impossible to shop for (my Secret Santa name this year, for example!). What do you do? One thing I like to do is to give a gift in the form of a framed picture. It’s meaningful, it’s something they don’t have, and you can never have too many framed pictures. It’s a trusty default.

I’ve partnered up with Preservation and Creation once again (remember the advent city and name tags?) to show you how to give to the person who has everything. And it’s perfect for last minute shoppers (guilty!). Find out below how you can get 30% off their prints!preservation-and-creation-canvas-prints-3-preservation-and-creation-canvas-prints-6preservation-and-creation-canvas-prints-36

One way to add extra love into an heirloom gift is through the wrapping. As you all know by now, I believe a well-wrapped gift can add value and sentiment to the actual gift. We came up with a free printable wrapping paper that is worthy of being hung up on a wall too. It’s a couple of black and white Dutch baroque paintings that are absolute stunners! With a ribbon completing the look, it would be a fun discovery for the recipient on Christmas morning.

20th day of Christmas crafts: Bicycle wreath

I needed a little va-va-va voom to my boring bicycle, so I took some Christmas greenery and wired it around to form a wreath. We’ve done a berry wreath tutorial during this Christmas crafts season, but I thought that this bicycle wreath could bring even more variation to our wreath tutorial archive (I always think of putting wreaths on doors, but never on a bike!). This bicycle wreath is an easy way to show your holiday spirit and make your bike that much cuter.
I found it’s much much easier to make wreaths with a form, but since I was wiring it to a basket anyway, I could create any shape I wanted with it. I added some Danish ribbon saying “God jul” or “Merry Christmas” and hope it doesn’t get stolen like my last basket. Read below for the tutorial and more wreath inspiration!

DIY bicycle wreath

Materials:

  • Greenery of your choice
  • Craft wire
  • Ribbon (optional)
  • Wire cutters

Instructions:

  1. Form your wreath shape. You can do this with craft wire, or you can buy a pre-made wreath at a craft store, like this one or this one.
  2. Add some greenery to your wreath using floral wire. You can use real pine leaves if you’re looking for a wreath for just this season. If you want to keep reusing your wreath, I recommend getting artificial pine leaves (or any greenery of your choice). Go for more of a leafy garland if you’re looking to make a Summer or Spring bike wreath!
  3. Tie on some festive ribbon of your choice for the finishing touch on your wreath!

Done! Now your bicycle will be as festive for the holidays as your home! If you don’t use your bike often but still want to make a bicycle wreath for the holidays, you could set up your bike on your porch and hang a wreath on the basket for decoration!

Wreath decorating inspiration

We’ve done a lot of wreath tutorials here at Lars… and I mean a LOT. If you want to add even more pizzazz to your wreath, take a look at this baby’s breath wreath and this pinecone wreath! If you want to make an indoor Christmas wreath, try using paper holly or other paper greenery for your wreath.

Printable Retro Ornaments

I’m in love with a decor with a bit more jazz to them, so we designed some paper ones that look adorable printed off and cut out! We embellished ours up with jingle bells, tassels, and wooden beads. You can even include a lip balm in the center for an extra gift! These printable retro ornaments look beautiful on the tree, adorable on a door handle, or even as a gift topper.

Printable Retro Ornaments

Let’s take a look at how to make them!

Printable Retro Ornaments

Printable Retro Ornaments

Printable Retro Ornaments

Printable Retro Ornaments

Materials:

Printable Retro Ornaments

Instructions:

  1. Print off the ornament templates and cut them out using scissors and a craft knife for the center hole.
  2. Paint your wooden beads in similar shades to the ornaments. Let dry.
  3. Make tassels with embroidery floss. See our tutorial HERE.
  4. Punch holes at the bottom and top of the ornament and the center hole, so you have 4 punched holes.
  5. With bakers twine, weave your thread in and out of your punched holes, placing a jingle bell or lip balm in the center of the ornament.
  6. At the top and/or bottom of your printable, add beads and tassel.

Printable Retro Ornaments

Printable Retro OrnamentsPhotography by Jane Merritt

DIY ornaments to decorate for the holidays

If you loved these printable retro ornaments, take a look at some of the other DIY ornaments we’ve created in the past! Whatever your style is, we’ve got a range of ornaments you can create. These DIY paper honeycomb ornaments are a Lars favorite, and you can create them in whatever colors you’d like! Hang them on your tree, in your windows, or any other place in your home that needs a bit of decoration! For a fun and festive DIY, these clothespin people ornaments are great for decorating your tree or giving out as gifts. These DIY ornaments in the shape of fruit will take you to a tropical place this winter! Plus, you can use those shapes to create an origami cornucopia. You’ll be set for any holiday!

You can find more printables and whimsical ornaments in the Lars Christmas shop.

Paper Holiday Greenery Gift Toppers

Paper Holiday Greenery

Chances are you’ll wrap more presents this month than you have this whole year! The House That Lars Built is here to make sure those gifts are in tip-top shape before tucked under the tree. Wrapping a gift is a part of what makes a gift special. It shows that you spent a little extra time on someone. And we all know that time equals love!

We took brown paper packages tied up with string and added a little something extra. I love the idea of topping presents with fresh greenery, but decided paper was a better route since it’s cheaper and I already have it on hand. I used ASTROBRIGHTSⓇ paper to create all the seasonal toppers and tied them on with some red and white baker’s twine.