I’ve been working on a few Valentine-y things here lately. I’ve been doing so partially because I love to decorate for all the holidays, and partially with the vain hope that cutesy decor will distract anyone who comes into my house from the gaping hole that used to be the wall between the kitchen and the laundry room.
Yeah, I don’t think that’s really going to work either. 😉
I’ve seen several cute variations of branches in a vase used as holiday decorations, so making this has been on the back of my mind for some time now. My hold up was finding a solid white container that was the right size and shape to hold them, and last week I finally found this enameled pitcher at Ikea. It’s pretty much exactly what I was looking for.
The next step was to gather some small branches. Our home backs up to a greenbelt, so I grabbed the younger kids and told them we were going on a nature walk. You seriously gotta love it when you can collect free craft supplies AND exercise the wiggles out of your small children all at the same time. I’d much rather they climb on this:
…than on the display cases at JoAnn or Hobby Lobby. (And no, I have no idea where that reference came from. My kids would NEVER attempt to climb on display cases in craft stores. Never. Or at least only rarely. Or something.)
So we walked and gathered sticks. It was funny because typically when we go for walks they gather up collections of rocks, bugs (dead and alive…doesn’t matter), flowers, leaves, feathers, you-name-it, and I’m there suggesting that perhaps they don’t need to keep quite all of it to take home with us. So when Mom started collecting sticks and carrying them along with us like some large and unattractive bouquet, they found that rather odd to say the least.
I handed them off to Joey for a photo. Doesn’t he look thrilled?
Joanna busily collected her own little pile of natural craft supplies, which included a dry leaf, a pecan, and a smaller stick. While I was painting the branches white, she painted her stick (pink, of course!) and her pecan, and glued a heart to her leaf. She’s definitely my mini-me!
After I painted the branches, Jordan and I whipped up a bunch of these little heart ornaments. They are super simple to make. For each ornament you’ll need 4 paper hearts. I used a medium punch for ours, so the cutting went really quickly.
Fold each of the 4 hearts down the center, with the right side of the paper to the middle.
Then put a little bit of glue (we used one of the kids’ glue sticks) on half of one of the hearts, again on the wrong side of the paper, and glue it to half of another heart. It’ll look like this:
Do the same thing with the other 2 paper hearts. Then cut a string to hang them with (I used white sewing thread) and fold it in half to make a loop.
Take one of the glued heart pieces and cover the wrong side with more glue. Stick the folded string in the center, and then line up the other glued heart piece on top of it.
It should now look like this:
Then just trim any ends of the string that might be showing from the bottom of the heart, and it’s all ready to hang.
My plan is to use the pitcher and white branches for all the spring holidays. I’ll just replace the hearts with little shamrocks for St. Patrick’s Day and either little eggs or flowers for Easter. That way I can get more use out of it…and I have a few months to figure out where to store a pile of white branches. 😉
It’s going on my mantel, along with a few other things I’ve made, such as my reversible holiday blocks. I’ll post a photo of my decorated mantel as soon as I figure out what else is going there…there’s still too much empty space right now.
That just means I need to make more stuff, right?!?!