Remember the “old days”? Before cell phones, computers, and the vast array of store-bought Christmas decorations?
I remember visiting an aunt and uncle for a few days during the Christmas season, when I was five. We went outside and cut down a small evergreen tree in the woodsy area around their home. We decorated it with only our own handmade crafts, several of which are mentioned here. I was so proud of that tree!
Sometimes the best times are the simplest times. You and your family can have an old-fashioned Christmas by enjoying some fun holiday crafts. Here are five old-fashioned Christmas craft ideas to enjoy.
Children love to cut paper snowflakes and teens and adults can have fun, too. Using regular or special paper and scissors, with or without patterns, you can take this basic craft and make it quite extraordinary. Consider using old wrapping paper from last year to add a holiday touch. Hang them on your tree or around the house. You can also add them to any DIY Chistmas cards you make.
Who needs store bought garland? Paper chains can be made year around. However, they’re particularly fun during the holidays. They’re a wonderful and quite simple way to decorate a holiday tree or the fireplace mantel. You’ll need paper and crayons, or construction paper, or old wrapping paper can work quite well, too. You’ll also need glue.
Cut small strips of paper, the size you want your rings to be. Bend them so the strip makes a circle, and glue the ends together. Create another circle through your first one and continue linking the circles together until your chain has reached its desired length (or your fingers are tired from cutting and gluing). Let dry and hang on your tree or around a doorway, mirror or fireplace mantle.
Popcorn and cranberry strands are another old-fashioned holiday tradition. Like the paper chain, they can be used to hang on a tree or decorate other areas of your home. You’ll need to pop some popcorn and purchase a bag or two of fresh cranberries. You’ll also need a needle and durable thread, or even a light twine, measured to your desired length. It’s also a good idea to have a thimble to protect your thumb. It can be difficult to push the needle through the cranberries. Create a pattern of your choosing. You can rotate cranberry and popcorn kernels, or you can string mostly popcorn with the occasional splash of red. You decide.
Gingerbread Houses and Cookies
Who doesn’t love a good gingerbread cookie! And decorating them is extremely fun. If you want to get even more elaborate or detailed, consider making a gingerbread house instead of cookies. You can buy kits at the craft store to help you make a gingerbread house. They usually come with everything you need, including the candy decorations. Or you can try it yourself by following a basic recipe, do your own design, and purchasing the candy and frosting to fit your needs.
Pine Cone Ornaments
Pine cones (collected in your yard, in the woods or purchased at a craft store) make wonderful tree decorations and centerpieces. You can add small items like buttons and knick-knacks to the cone with hot glue. You can spray them with adhesive and sprinkle glitter on them. You can also purchase spray paint and coat the pine cone for a more dramatic effect. There are many ways to decorate with pine cones. String the cones and hang them on your tree. Or place them in a basket for a centerpiece. Add them to a wreath or to your wrapped Christmas gifts.
Old-fashioned holiday crafts often focus on using items you may already have at home. They are simple ideas executed well. A simple piece of paper can become a snowflake masterpiece. A few basic pieces of popcorn can become a beautiful decoration. Have fun this holiday and remember the simple things that make it special.