I don’t really like the word “frugal”. Especially for “craft” and “Christmas”. I much prefer words such as “smart”, “thoughtful”, “discerning”, because these better describe why we are indeed trying to reduce the stuff in our lives and also, to live better. And if someone is telling you that a crafter’s life needs some clutter, do not believe them. Be smart, thoughtful, discerning. Ok, if you really prefer, be frugal.
In this article I will try to show you how easy it is to make something really attractive with a reduced number of materials and tools and nothing special. Believe me, this works, just let your imagination flow!
Years ago, I was a real craft hoarder and if you are curious about my experience, check out my book, The healing of a craft hoarder. That was me. There is no more ardent believer than a new convert, I know, but the “Capsule Craft” principle really works and I was amazed how easy it is. Why didn’t anybody tell me about it earlier? I was really enjoying jokes like, “I don’t need less craft material, I really only need a bigger house”. Not only did I enjoy them, I believed them too. And yes, they are funny. Somehow… Until you realise the painful reality behind it all. It is very sad. Really, really sad, because we are losing our lives, buried under our precious collections. You really don’t want to imagine my previous craft space. Believe me! But I really enjoy the new one. And do you know, I can also work on our dining room table, when my husband is reading next to me, (because I love to be close to him and talk) and it is so easy to move just the few tools there that I need.
But I’ve started talking too much again.
Let’s make this frugal craft Christmas wreath!
I am a scrapbooker and not an inconsiderable part of my income is from selling my handmade greeting cards. However, after all these years of pre-Christmas hard work I still don’t have a poinsettia flower paper die. I have an orchid die and scissors and they do a great job making both orchids and poinsettia Christmas stars. It is not necessary to have everything. Actually, it is stupid to try to have everything just because one day you may need it. Most of the instruments are interchangeable. Everything can serve you to create something different! If you are curious about this topic, look at my book about how to create your own Capsule Craft Collection.
So, I will use my orchid die and my scissors to show you how easy it is to make a wonderful frugal craft Christmas wreath…
First use the die to cut some orchid petals. See, actually, we already have some simple poinsettias.
If you want bigger ones, use your scissors.
Just before that be careful drawing the shape of the petals.
With a little bit blunt kitchen knife or closed scissors on a soft kitchen wiper make some lines, to show the veins of the petals.
Mix in a small bowl some salt crystals (just normal table salt) and, if you want, some glitter powder. The glitter is not compulsory. Then put tiny amount of a transparent universal glue on the edges of the petals and stick them in the salt mix. I am not offering you to use sugar, because – you know – all these little home bugs, which love sugar, will appear from somewhere. You don’t want to remind them that Christmas with all these wonderful cookies with royal icing is coming, do you?
And when the glue is dried, you can use a simple crochet hook to shape the leaves a little bit before gluing them together.
That’s it! Your poinsettias are ready!
Let’s make the Cotton flowers for the Christmas wreath
Using the same orchid die, cut some recycled brown bag paper or a paper which you coloured yourself. Put in some fun, colour it in strong tea or yesterday’s coffee. I am drinking coffee all day, even before sleep, and always forgetting some in the bottom of my mug.
If you have brown paper for scrapbooking, use it. Use whatever you have, it is not necessary to buy anything!
Glue these cut pieces together keeping the star shape.
Then glue between them (I suggest with hot silicone) some small cotton balls.
Tadaaaa! The cotton flowers are ready! You don’t need anything more!
Final touches on the Frugal craft Christmas wreath
Do you have some soft paper at home? Old magazines? Printed pages with no private information you don’t need anymore? More brown paper bags?
Make a roll and twist them into a round wreath shape. Or a heart shape. Fix with paper masking tape.
Then just glue the poinsettias and cotton flowers onto the wreath and your Frugal Christmas decoration is ready.
For another way to make Cotton flowers, see How to make your own Cotton flowers
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