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Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Pine Cone Christmas Tree Craft {Homemade Gift Idea}

We got busy this weekend on doing some Christmas crafts and making some more Christmas gifts. One went really well. The other… let’s just say it could have gone better.

First let me explain that last year with the big new pre-lit tree that we had purchased on clearance the year before, we passed our other tree down to the kids so that they could have their own tree for all their ornaments and to decorate however they want. I try to come up with new and fun ways for them to decorate it. Last year, we made paper chains. This year…. oh I had a great idea for this year.

Popcorn strings.

Yeah. That’s the thing that didn’t go so well. There was more eating of all the broken popcorn pieces than stringing going on.

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This was the final result.

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Yes, there are, in fact, popcorn strings on the tree. Well, strings might be a slight overstatement. See those two little white lines going across the top. Yeah, those. Those are our popcorn strings. Sarah’s is about 1 foot long and Nathan’s is a bit less than that.

The problem was that I purchased tapestry needles so that the kids wouldn’t poke themselves and have bloody popcorn strings. The tapestry needles were just too big and broke most of the popcorn in half as you pushed it through. So, I’ve got some tweaking to do in my approach to this one. We may try again next year with a little sharper needles.

*** Edited to add: I just got an email suggesting to pop the popcorn a couple of days ahead of time and let it get stale to keep it from breaking apart. That might also solve the problem of the more eating that stringing... at least on the part of the mom. ;) ***

We also completed another craft that will be some Christmas gifts. Money is tight right now so I am working hard to do as many low cost homemade gifts as possible this year. This definitely fits that to a “T.”

You’ll Need:

Pine cones
Acrylic paint (green & white)
Paint brushes
Paper plates/newspaper
Yellow felt
Star stencil (or freehand)
Scissors
Hot glue

First, be sure to cover your working area with newspaper and have the kids put on old shirts that you don’t mind getting dirty with a little paint. Have them paint the pinecones green, covering as much of the brown up as possible.

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It’s a lot to do all at once, so you may need to allow a couple of different sittings to get all of it done.

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Allow the green paint to dry completely. Then have the kids go back with the white paint and put snow on the tips.

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Use a stencil or free hand cut stars out of the yellow felt. Once all the paint is dry, hot glue the star to the top. You can add a ribbon or string to it to make it a hanging ornament if you like.

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Have you done any Christmas crafts this year? Have they been a success? Or busted miserably?

11 Comments:

Amanda said...

I love pine cone trees, they are so fun! Your kids looked like they were having a blast :)

Kay said...

Those are cute! : )

I'm doing my annual scrapbook calendars. But that's about it.

rachelizabeth said...

My advent calendar that I made failed miserably. The kids like it, but next year I'll do a much better job. And I'll start on it in February so I have time to fix problems that come up.

My bread-dough ornaments failed miserably, too. They never dried out, even though I baked them all day and let them sit out for two more days.

I haven't tried any more yet (I have the stuff to do more), but I'm scared that they will fail miserably as well. We'll see!

bridget {bake at 350} said...

Donna...those are adorable.

My homemade cookie ornaments were a major fail. :)

Muthering Heights said...

Oh my goodness...what a CUTE craft!!

Brittany said...

How very cute and easy! I've never seen these before! FUN!

The girls and I made soap this year to give out as gifts. We had fun being creative with it.

One of my friends made a paper chain to help the kids count down for Christmas. (An advent calendar of sorts) They wrote a family's name on each chain "link" and when they tear off a link, they pray for that family as a family. I think it's a FABULOUS idea!

Cathy said...

Those are so cute!! I love the pine cone trees.

Lisa (Homesick Texan) said...

This takes me back--we used to make these when I was a kid, along with the paper chains and cranberry/popcorn strings. Hooray for homemade decorations!

Jenny said...

Those trees are so cute! Great idea!

beyond this moment said...

We're doing cinnamon "cookie" and peppermint wreath ornaments this year. And we'll probably string popcorn.

As far as gifts, we might do pinecone birdfeeders. The kids are also making coasters for people out of those fuseable beads.

The kids and I made some really amazing magnet sets last year for their teachers and a few family members. They turned out so well!

Honey said...

I love your pine cone trees. I always wondered what to do with those pine cones that we gather on our nature walks. Thanks for sharing. They are so adorable.