Peek-a-Boo

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I love the peek-a-boo effect of glassine envelopes. They are so chic and tactile and lovely.
These ones, and the groovy cards inside them, are from Gus and Abby.
I got them in my swag bag from Blogshop last summer.

Because the ostrich and the camel work so well with the colours of the confetti garlands, they were the perfect “thank you” cards for this project. I think it’s fun that the girls will get a sneak peek at their garlands before they even open the envelopes. I added some confetti to each one because I love opening an envelope or package and having confetti fall out– it’s such a festive touch!

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Wraparound

Because they are long and a bit delicate, packaging up paper garlands can be a bit tricky.

I decided the best way to do it was to wrap each one around a cardboard tag. That way, I could write an explanation of the garland and give some suggestions for how to use it on the tag itself (in case the recipients wondered why I was giving them a string of paper flowers…).

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To make it coordinate with its garland, I stitched some confetti to the bottom of each tag.
No sewing machine? No problem. Use glue to attach the confetti or add some washi tape to pretty up the tag.

Next, I wrote a little message on the tag and then started wrapping the garland around it.

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Finally, I put a bit of washi tape on the garland to hold it in place. Ta-da!

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Confetti Garlands

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This weekend, I had the pleasure of making some thank you gifts for a couple of teenaged girls. Both of them are currently at boarding school and will be off to university next year, so I thought they might like a little something to personalize their spaces. I decided that confetti garlands would be cute.
When I Instagrammed a photo of the process, the lovely Kate Durie asked for a tutorial. So here it is!

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I made myself some of these a few months back and it is an easy, fun craft.
You will need a few little supplies.

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I decided to use one “main” colour, plus three complimentary and contrasting colours. Punch out more of the “main” colour and successively fewer of each of the next two colours. For the “accent,” or contrasting, colour, punch out only a few. I used my little floral punches, but any shape will do.
How about hearts? Circles in varying sizes?
Don’t have a punch? Why not cut out squares?
Try using patterned paper or a mix of patterned and plain.

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Arrange your piles of confetti by colour and then fire up your sewing machine.
(You will need to replace your needle after you are finished– you don’t want to be sewing fabric with a needle you have dulled by sewing paper!)
Place the first piece of confetti under the needle and slowly stitch across it; line up the next piece and repeat.
Keep going, stitching a long, looooong row of confetti together.
For the colour pattern, I was just pretty random, but you could be more mathematical about it if you prefer. To keep the thread from unravelling at either end, I sandwiched the ends between a bit of glitter tape at each end of the garland. You could use washi tape or sandwich the thread ends between two bits of confetti with a dab of glue.

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Use the garland swagged over a curtain rod (I do!), as “ribbon” for wrapping gifts, draped over a mirror, or just taped to the wall or the ceiling with some fancy tape. Use it to pretty up your daily decor or for a party.

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No sewing machine?
No worries– check back here on Wednesday for the “by-hand” version of the project!

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town

I have tried to do the modern, edgy Christmas thing in the past. The first year we were in our house, I had two live trees– one in the living room, all decked out in black feather boas and chartreuse feather decorations; and one in the den with all my traditional ornaments on it. Both looked beautiful, but the old-fashioned tree was my favourite.

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Part of my love of Christmas (besides the mulled wine!) is a love for vintage ornaments and sentimental bits and bobs, including the collection of Santas I started in my 20s. I have always been partial to the old-fashioned, Father Christmas types– I’m a fan of the tall, skinny ones in particular. My dear mum is great at buying me a new Santa every year; she challenges herself to find unusual ones
(knowing that those are the ones I prefer)
and she is a champ at it!

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I have been lucky to have a mantel in both my houses and that is where I put my Santa collection every year. This year, I combined my vintage books and some amazing nubbly wool garland to show off my treasures. For many years, my favourite has been the one we call “turnip Santa”– he perches on the edge of the mantel, jauntily dangling his legs. This year, however, my mother outdid herself with a tall, willowy fella holding a lantern.

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Are Christmas decoration collections tacky? Maybe. But I don’t care– I love these guys.
Thanks, Mum, for being so thoughtful and for always getting it right.