Sunday, December 10, 2017

Finding My Christmas Muse

I was more than content to postpone Christmas spirit 2 or 3 weeks in favor of warm sunny weather, but this morning we woke up to snow.  Not a lot of snow, but enough to let you know that winter is on its way.  I've slowly but steadily going about my Christmas decorating and creative crafts.  No stellar results yet.  Decorating has consisted mostly of the scattering of spruce tips (fake), pine cones and candle (also fake).  Last year my main focus was fresh greens.  But this year it didn't seem anywhere near as important.  Due in no small part to the fact that after three weeks or so, sodden floral oasis begins to smell bad.

Friday was a gorgeous sunny, dry day so I took my garden hod and pruners around and gathered more than enough fresh greens for a centerpiece (or two).  I decided to duplicate last year's arrangement in the wooden bowl.  That's pretty normal for me, repeating a successful idea.  Especially when lacking any exciting new ideas.  I'm not sure why last year I felt I had to cast my net so wide to get a variety of greens because I did pretty well within a hundred yards of the house.

Grape Vine Tendrils
This year my brilliant new idea was grape vine tendrils.  I pulled a few grapevines out of the berry patch and cut out the sections with interesting curlie-cues.  I had several left over partial cans of gold spray paint which were all shot, so I dry brushed glimmery gold paint on each one and also on the edges of a few small pine cones.

Last Year
You can start with all the same basic ingredients, and each effort produces slightly different results.
Not necessarily an improvement, but a unique outcome.  I always keep notes each year as to what my inventory of decorations are and what I used where and what I want more of.

This Year
Last year's passion was fresh greens, and this year it seems to be bottle brush trees.  My inventory of bottle brush trees has tripled.  Which means I'm saving empty water bottles, because along with my obsession with decorating inventory is clever and organized storage.  Storage Tip: Empty water bottles with the tops cut off, stapled into six packs, allow you to neatly store the trees without them getting crushy bottle brush tree bed-head.

So the seasonal decorating continues.  I have a couple of craft projects going on.  A paper putz house, paper-mache snowmen and "altered Altoids" which is what they call miniature shadow boxes created from empty Altoid Tins and scenes cut from greeting cards.  The beauty of all of these craft projects is that I already have most of the ingredients.  You can do a lot of interesting things with paper and glue.