Bottle Brush Tree Mania

Here's a little post that I should have written weeks ago.  

But since I am not one of those bloggers who starts thinking about Christmas in July, I am publishing it today.

On Christmas Eve.  

Merry Christmas.  



Loyal readers (hi mom!) will remember that I recently had the opportunity to teach a session at San Diego's Urban Craft Camp.  I am happy to report that the class was great and people loved their bottle brush snow globes.

And those snow globes whet my appetite for all things bottle brush.  So, inspired by this blogger, I went ahead and whipped up a few of these:

I think this craft is pretty self explanatory so I'm not going to do a tutorial, however if you want more information about how to make one, let me know in the comments.

What I will tell you is that if you use a wide mouthed mason jar like the one below, you can fit a gift card in with the bus.

I also probably don't need to explain these DIY present toppers since I've discussed similar ones HERE.

What I will tell you how to make, however, are these colorful bottle brush trees!

I whipped them up a few weeks ago and have been having a great time sprinkling them around the house.

The first thing you want to do is bleach your bottle brush trees.  (You can buy bottle brush trees HERE if you don't have any.)

I should warn you right now that if you're looking for exact measurements and  precise instructions.... well, you're in the wrong place.

I bleached these by filling a bucket with hot water and pouring in some bleach.  (Maybe half a cup?)

Then I threw in the trees and left them there until they looked like this:

(Kids, don't try this without adult supervision.  Seriously.  Bleach is hardcore.)

After that I filled some old pickle jars with hot water and RIT dye.  Again, no measurements, I just poured in a few splashes of the RIT until I liked the color of the water.  Then I tossed in the trees until I liked their color.

And here are the results!

I love them and I hope you do too!

Merry Christmas, everyone!  



Ornament Full of Memories

Years ago my sister-in-law began making handmade ornaments for her nieces, nephews, and godchildren.  It has always been my intention to do a big post featuring all of the different ornaments but three years into the blog and that still hasn't happened. Yesterday, however, I was playing with my camera taking pictures of the Christmas tree and I found myself focusing on the ones you see below.

I have always loved them, and while they are by no means the most intricate of her creations, they hold a special place in my heart.

To make them, she began—as she often does— by reaching out and asking for some of the highlights of each girl's year.   She then took those anecdotes and typed them on little strips of paper in a pretty font.  Finally the strips were inserted in a clear glass ornament.  I just love pulling them out from year to year and reading those sweet memories.

I'm not sure where she got the idea (or if she made it up herself) but it is so simple and beautiful that I thought it was worth sharing.  It would be a great gift for a child to give to a parent, don't you think?



Thanks Anthropologie!

Last week I got shanghaied into graciously agreed to take three girls Black Friday shopping.

Now I love to shop but Black Friday has never really been my thing.

So needless to say I was a little, shall we say, reluctant... to brave the mall, but all of that changed when I walked into Anthropologie, a store that I just can't help but love.

Sprinkled over the displays that day were walnuts.  Walnuts that had been spray painted gold.

Freaking genius!

(For those of you who are new here, I love to spray paint things gold.)

So naturally I had to copy them.  (And share with you.)

Here's the tutorial:

  1. Purchase your walnuts.  This was probably the hardest part of the whole process.  I ended up ordering some on Amazon (link HERE) because I couldn't find walnuts in the shell anywhere. 
  2. Spray paint said walnuts and let dry for 15 minutes.  (I used THIS paint.)
  3. Turn the walnuts over, spray the other side, and let dry.
And that's it!  The world's easiest DIY brought to you by Anthropologie.  (And me.)

I am setting some of my walnuts out in a bowl.

Others I have glued to the tops of mason jars in which I have stored homemade granola.

Wouldn't that be a cute hostess gift?  

Way to show me the silver gold lining in black Friday, Anthropologie!  

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