Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Santa Countdown Calendar

There’s a cute little Santa hiding behind the board (he’s not supposed to arrive until the 25th so he has to hide) and a wire chalkboard holder so you can easily change the number every day.
Ready to make your own?? You’ll need:
• A small chalkboard
• A paint pen (white)
• Craft Paints – white and black
• wire ( I used a pack of stem wire, 18 gauge – you just want something pretty thick)
• felt for hat
• fabric or faux leather for mittens and boots
• small scraps of fur or fleece for hat and boots
• 1 small white pompom
• very small amount of stuffing
• ribbon
• chalk

Start by painting the wood portion of the chalkboard white.

With the lettering, I find it easier to freehand write if I have something to look at for reference.
If you’re the same way, find a font you like and print out the wording on paper. Using a pencil, write out the words on the chalkboard lightly. Make sure you leave a space where the countdown number will go.

Trace over the lettering with your paint pen. Mine was a little light so I went over all of it twice.

(If you have a nifty cutting machine, you could also do this out of vinyl and just stick it on.)
Spatter paint your whole chalkboard very lightly with white paint.  A toothbrush or stiff paint brush dipped in paint works well for this. Test it on a scrap piece of cardboard or paper first to make sure that you like the look.

Repeat with black paint.

To get your Santa ready, cut out a small hat, mittens and boots. Cut two of each.

Sew the pieces together and then turn right side out.
This fake leather was TRICKY to turn right side out for the little pieces. Ack. I used a chopstick to help turn them right side out - and some inventive fake swear words. They helped.
Stuff a little batting in each piece so it doesn’t lay flat.

Glue (I used a glue gun) the fur onto the bottom of the hat and top of the boots. Leave about 1/4″ of space at the top of the boots and the bottom of the hat so you can glue them to the back of the chalkboard.
Fold the hat over and glue the tip down and glue a pompom on top of the end.

Glue all your pieces to the chalkboard. Glue the mittens so they wrap around the board – you want it to look like Santa’s hanging on from the back.

Find something round (like a thick paintbrush) that is wider than a piece of chalk. Wrap one end of the wire around the something round you found.
Try your piece of chalk in the loops and if it falls right through, twist the bottom loop a little tighter so that it gives the chalk something to rest on.

Place this on the right side of the chalkboard and wrap the straight end around to the back. Make sure it as flat as possible so it doesn’t scratch your wall. Glue it on.

Drill a small hole in the two top corners of the chalkboard.

Wrap the ends of another piece of wire through the holes and twist. This is what you’ll hang the chalkboard from.

Tie a bit of ribbon on one side of the wire for additional cuteness, and slide in your piece of chalk. Woohoo!
You’re all done!

Stress yourself out by writing out when Santa will be arriving.

I hope you enjoyed this little Countdown Chalkboard!

Glass painted ornaments


PLAID Supplies
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® Spray Paint Kit-Satin Finish
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® Holiday Icons II Adhesive Stencils
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® 2oz Gloss Opaque Glass Paint - Beach Glass
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® 2oz Gloss Opaque Glass Paint - Pool
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® 2oz Gloss Opaque Glass Paint - Greek Tile
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® 2oz Frost Translucent Glass Paint - Beach Glass
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® 2oz Frost Translucent Glass Paint - Sea Lavender
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® 2oz Frost Translucent Glass Paint - Blue Calico
  • Martha Stewart Crafts ® Glass Handled Squeegee Set, 3pc
Other Supplies
Assorted glass ornaments in various sizes and shapes
Brush basin or container for water
Paper towels
Rubbing alcohol
Foam plate


  1. Wash glass ornaments in warm soapy water to thoroughly clean; rinse well and allow to dry.
  2. Moisten paper towel with rubbing alcohol and wipe to remove any remaining dirt, grease or soap film.  Allow to dry.
  3. Following suggested instructions on spray paint unit, mix half gloss medium and half frost glass paint in desired colors to spray the exterior of each ornament.  Allow to dry and reapply color if desired.  NOTE:  A limited color palette of three colors is often pleasing.  We used Sea Lavender, Blue Calico and Beach Glass.
  4. When base color is completely dry, peel adhesive holiday icon stencil from backing sheet; set backing aside and save for future storage.
  5. Position adhesive stencil on glass ornament where desired; press in place.
Stenciling Instructions:
  1. Squeeze a small amount of paint onto foam plate. 
  2. Load the flat edge of the small handled squeegee with glass opaque paint by scooping into the puddle of paint. 
  3. To paint a textured stenciled design, apply paint from the handled squeegee onto the opening of the stencil like icing a cake.  Continue painting until the entire design area has been completed. 
  4. NOTE:  be careful not to paint beyond the edges of the stencil. 
  5. Set handled squeegee aside in container of water for cleaning.  While paint is still wet, neatly and carefully lift stencil by peeling away from the glass surface.  NOTE:  Be careful not to drag stencil while removing it as your painted design may be blurred.
  6.  Continue adding stenciled designs over surface until desired effect is achieved.  NOTE:  When repeating a stenciled design, it is best to clean the stencil between uses by rinsing in water and allowing the stencil to dry thoroughly.
  7. Set completed project aside for 1 hour to thoroughly dry.
Curing Instructions:
  1.  All glass surfaces painted with Martha Stewart Crafts Glass Paints should be cured to increase the paint’s durability on glass or ceramic surfaces.  Follow either the Bake to Cure Technique or the Air Cure Technique. 
Bake to Cure Technique – Set dry silkscreened glassware into cool oven.  Set oven to 350°F and bake for 30 minutes.  Glass must heat gradually with the oven to avoid breakage.  Do NOT place glass in a hot oven.  After 30 minutes, turn the oven off.  Allow glass to cool completely in oven.  Wait 72 hours before using.  NOTE:  Glitter Glass Paints should not be baked to cure; only use air cure technique when painting with glitter paints.
Air Cure Technique – Air dry completed project for 21 days before using.  NOTE:  Glitter Glass Paints should not be baked to cure; only use air cure technique when painting with glitter paints.
  1. Change it up and try different color palettes or sizes and shapes of craft glass ornaments.
  2. Add an organza or silk ribbon at top to hang from a tree.
  3. Create a fun display of painted ornaments in a large glass bowl.

Homemade Holiday Buttermints

Homemade Holiday ButtermintsMakes about 90-100 ¾” mints

- 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ cups + 2 tablespoons powdered sugar (up to ¼ more if necessary)
- 3 tablespoons condensed milk
- ¼ teaspoon desired extract (such as peppermint or cinnamon)
- food coloring, if desired

1. Combine the butter and salt in the bowl of a mixer until the butter is smooth and slightly fluffy, about 1 minute. Add the powdered sugar, milk, and extract then blend until the mixture until it is completely combined, it will look crumbly. Add additional powdered sugar if needed. When the dough is squeezed by hand it should come together into a ball fairly easily.
2. At this point, if you decide you want the dough to be a stronger flavor then add more extract teaspoon at a time. Less is always better than too much because you can always add a bit more.
3. Add the color at this time, just a few drops at a time, mixing in between until your dough reaches the desired shade. Take the dough out of the bowl and pour it onto a spat or cutting board. Shape the dough into small balls or a log being careful not to over mix it if you want the marbled color.
4. At this point, you can either wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator, or start to roll it out on a cutting board with your hands.
5. Roll a ball of dough about 1 ½” into a log that is about ½” thick, slice into ¾” bite-size pieces. The pieces should be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to serve. 

Zipper Christmas Ornament

One of the many times I was standing in the long line at JoAnn's, I was lucky enough to be right by their idea table. I stared at the zipper ornaments so much that I had to come home and make a couple.
To make two trees, you just need one zipper that you take apart and some beads. I used a 22" zipper.
Then all you do is wind your zipper in loops and hot glue a bead in between. I added a bead to the bottom for the trunk and made a loop with the zipper at the top.
Add a ribbon through the loop to hang.
Now all I need is the tree to be put up to hang these beauties. Any volunteers?

diy holiday fabric yo-yo ornament

Here’s a great idea for all those fabric yo-yos you’ve been making — create fun holiday ornaments with the kids! Wouldn’t it make a great homemade gift for a teacher, music instructor or bus driver that your little ones could make with your help? This would also be a great craft for older children to learn some basic sewing (and you can teach them how to sew on a button at the same time). Make it even faster by hot gluing the pieces at the finish. Plan an afternoon to put these ornaments together for holiday gifts or your own homemade decorations!

 What you will need:

  • 1 giant yo-yo (I used a 6-inch circle)
  • 1 large yo-yo (4½-inch circle)
  • 1 button
  • 12 inches of ribbon
  • Thread
  • Needle

What you need to do:

First, make your yo-yos. Take the 6-inch circle of holiday fabric and carefully fold over the raw edge about ¼ of an inch and baste all around. You can use pretty large stitches — yo-yos are pretty forgiving.

Once you have basted the whole circle, pull the thread to gather the yo-yo tight.

Tie a sturdy knot and bury the end of the thread in one of the folds of the yo-yo.

Make the smaller yo yo in the same way. Assemble the ornament. Loop the ribbon to form a hanger, and tack it in place with thread at the center of the giant yo-yo. Layer the large yo-yo on top, and tack or sew it to the center of the giant yo-yo.

Finish the ornament by sewing a button to the center of the large yo-yo.
If you already have the yo-yos made, you could also hot glue the ribbon, yo-yos and button together to make them up in a jiffy.

Snowman Place cards

This adorable little snowman will delight all the holiday party guests.

Styrofoam balls of two different sizes
Flat piece of styrofoam
Wire edged ribbon
Straight Pin
Cotton Pom Pom
Seed Beads
Pipe Cleaner
Heavy white paper

Created from two polystyrene balls of different sizes for the body and head. The balls are held together with a wooden toothpick.

Their hats are made from ribbon used for Christmas decorations,(the kind with a wire around the edges so they keep their shape). The hats are fixed with a pin at the back of the head. Fold the ribbon over the top of the head and add a cotton pompom. The ensemble is then fixed with a pin.
The eyes, the nose, the arms and the buttons are seed beads threaded on pins.
The scarf is made from a piece of pipe cleaner.
The song sheets are made of white calling cards.
The base is a square of kapaline board.
Push three pins up through the kapaline and then place the snowman on top to hold him tight.
Use red and white ribbon to vary the colors against a white tablecloth.

Beaded Angel Ornament

Beaded Angel Ornament

Beaded Angel Ornament You will need:
  • 28 8mm beads (dress)
  • 1 16mm bead (head)
  • 42 3X6mm beads (halo and wings)
  • 1.5 Yards 24 gauge wire
Instructions: 1) Find the center point of the wire. Bend wire into L shape at center. 2) Slide 7 (8mm) beads to the bend in the wire. 3) Slide 6 beads onto one end of the wire keeping them near the end. Thread other end of the wire back through the 6 beads and pull tight. Flatten out the rows as needed. (See Diagram 1) Flatten out rows as needed. 4) Slide 5 beads onto one end of the wire, push the other end through all 5 beads, and pull tight.
5) Continue adding beads using the same method until there is a row with just one bead. 6) Take the longer end of the wire and thread 17 3X6mm beads on it. Pass the through the row of 3 (8mm) beads and then thread 17 3X6mm beads on the wire and then pass it through the row of 1 (8mm) bead. (See diagram 2) Diagram 2 7) Pass both ends through the 16mm bead. 8) Take the longer end of the wire and thread 8 3X6mm beads. Take the other end of the wire and form a hanger loop. Take both ends of the wire and wrap them around the wire just below the halo. 9) Cut off any extra wire, adjust the wings and SMILE!

DIY Grinch Pills

It's that time of year again! Everyone is Christmas shopping and trying to come up with the perfect gift! These Grinch Pills make great gifts for kids, husbands, coworkers or anyone else you can think of!
On my previous blog, these grinch pills made their way onto Pinterest and became a big hit, resulting in 237 comments! So I thought I'd repost them here with a little update on how to make them yourselves!
Things you'll need: green cardstock, white cardstock, Tim Holtz green distressing ink, ribbon, tic tacs
I'm sorry I don't have more detailed pics on this tutorial.
1. Use the template below to cut out your cardstock. You should be able to even run your cardstock through the printer to print the template. If you're not sure about sizing this, measure your tic tac box and size it to the height of the tic tac box.
2. Next, print out the image below. To size this, just make it about 1/4 inch shorter in height than you printed the template above.
3. If you wish to have the green "furry" edges on the outside of the poem, use the Tim Holtz green distressing inks. Just take a makeup sponge and swipe the edges of the paper.
4. Use adhesive to adhere the image to the front side of the tic tac template.
5. Use glue dots or fabri-tac glue or something equally strong to adhere the tic tac box to the inside of the template.
6. Now, just finish it off with some cute red ribbon!

Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope you found this tutorial helpful and I hope you prevent many people from being grinch-y this season!

Coffee Can Santa boot

Peppermint Ornament

Personalized Peppermint Christmas Stocking Ornaments!
(Easy Christmas Craft Using Starlight Mints)
Have you hung your Christmas stockings yet? It's one of my
    favorite holiday traditions. Growing up, we didn't actually hang ours. Mama and Daddy laid them out on the sofa on Christmas Eve...and they weren't really even stockings. They were white tube socks. I can still see them laying there on Christmas morning as we ran into the living room after having begged our parents to get up before the crack of dawn! They always had a tangerine and orange..I can still smell them. We would buy them by the case every Christmas at the Farmer's Market. There were also unshelled pecans and other nuts, and then our favorite..a couple of candy bars! I remember getting a Snicker bar every year. Such wonderful Christmas memories...I'm excited about making new ones this Christmas with my children and grandchildren. :o)

You will need peppermints, red fondant, stocking cookie cutter, foodwriters pens, parchment paper, holly mix sprinkles, corn syrup and twine for these easy melted peppermint stocking ornaments.

 While candy is melting, prepare your cookie cutter. I wish I'd have had at least a couple..next time I will. Baking one at time just takes a little longer.
Immediately press prepared cookie cutter into melted candy. Wait about 3 minutes and press a lollipop stick into candy to make a hole for twine or ribbon. At the 4 minute mark, the candy should be cool enough for you to remove the cookie cutter. I lift the candy and gently press the cutter completely through. It's still pliable at this point, so be quick to lay it flat on the parchment to finish cooling.
**edit** for an updated (and just plain better) technique for making the "ribbon hole" in ornament..click here. It worked perfectly on my Peppermint Mittens Ornaments!
 So Easy! Just let the fondant dry completely before writing on it or threading the twine.
 I decorated mine with holly and berries. Just dab a little corn syrup on the candies and place on stocking.
You will be doing this too if you don't make the hole in cuff large enough!
Sweet stockings..all finished!
 What are some of your favorite Christmas memories? I'd love to hear them. :o)
Wishing You a Sweet Day From
Sugartown Sweets!
I found this on: www.sugartownsweets.com