Monday, 28 November 2022

Christmas Cat Tree Decorations

This follows on from my post of last week, musing on making other variations of my experimental cat tree decoration.


I started by cutting part of a wooden fence embellishment just short of a length of a narrow craft stick. If/when I repeat this idea, I would make the fence slightly longer, so it’s more visible on the finished decoration.


I glued the craft stick along the bottom of the fence and then added two small beads stuck together to give something to glue the cat embellishment on to.  To give extra dimension the cat was stuck on to the front of the craft stick and onto the beads to keep it stable.


The cat was given a ribbon scarf and a Christmas tree.  It’s here that I wished the fence was just a centimetre longer on each side


The cat was given a fish (a wooden bead) and a foam, glittered hat (The Works pack of 21 for £1), all of which were given a generous coating of Ranger Glossy Accents to give it, in my opinion, a more “professional” look.


Then I went mad, adding a small, wooden Christmas plaque, glued on the bottom of the fence (The Works - pack of 6 for £1), a tiny, punched holly sprig with flat backed pearl berries on the cat’s hat, gems and nail art snowflakes on the tree, all topped off by a little Snow-Writer for the snow.


A small bail was glued to the middle of the back to allow the decoration to hang by a thin, gold cord .


I think I will return to the idea again in the new year, this was just another trial run which could be tweaked a little here and there.

Monday, 21 November 2022

Christmas Cat Tags or Christmas Tree Decorations

I don’t really “do” cats, but I have to admit that these old school, wooden cat embellishments that I got for 20p a pack a while back are sort of cute.


These tags were a bit of an experiment…………


……. using some extra thick cardboard pieces from a children’s game that I found for £1 in a charity shop. After realising their potential, I knew I couldn’t buy new card or wooden pieces for anywhere near that price on eBay, so it would have been rude not to buy them.  There were about 15 each of the squares and circles, plus a bag that could come in useful for something. The glittery, foam Christmas hats came from The Works (£1 for 21 in three different sizes).


I covered both sides of the cardboard circles with a small Christmas patterned paper, inserting a flat bail between the layers to tie/hang the tag/decoration by.  I also coloured the edges of the circles with a black Sharpie pen to hid the bare card colour.


The cat was given a scarf using scraps of red snowflake ribbon, before I gave him a hat, putting the reverse image of one on the back of his head just because I’m a bit anal about how my decorations look from the back too.


The final touch was a tiny, holly sprig punchie with three, red, pearl, flat back gems for the berries on the hat.


It’s the start of an idea, I am not 100% with the edging, it looks clumsy, but I think that may be down to my choice of paper and then pen rather than anything else. It’s also an idea that would look pretty OK on a Christmas card for a cat person, however, what I really want to try now is the cat sat sitting in front of a basic, flat, craft stick house shape, adding some snow and perhaps a fish ……….. so watch this space!

Monday, 14 November 2022

Spooky Halloween Haunted House Hanging Decoration.

Christmas stash busting ……….

Halloween Haunted House - Craft Stick House

Unfortunately, this idea came in to my head too late for this Halloween, but at least I can be sad enough to say I’ve already made a start on next year! The idea follows on from the Christmas Cabin decorations posted the other week and on which I think I can finally say I have used up all the Hobbycraft fairy doors I purchased a couple of Christmas’s ago (pack of 4 for £1). 


The cabins were made in exactly the same way as the Christmas ones ……


……. it’s just the embellishment that is completely different and over the top.




So, when the basic cabins were complete I started by colouring the front and back orange and the door, windows and roof purple. I’ll admit I had doubts about my choice of colours but by then it was too late.  I also gave both sides a couple of coats of quick dry, clear, gloss varnish for good measure ……….


……. before adding the green Dovecraft Enamel Effects wherever I fancied it oozing from before leaving to dry overnight.


Then  I sorted out all manner of MDF Halloween shapes (eBay) I still managed to have left,  all were coloured and Glossy Accented to an inch of their lives.


This was followed by all the fiddle fart, where I started by cutting down the already very small pieces of Halloween confetti to fit the windows,  putting a skull bead on the top of the porch canopy, a skeleton by the door  and bats on the roof. The door didn’t look right so I went over the embossed details with a fine, black, permanent pen, now it looked right!


Next came a ghost, black cat and headstones.


Then the detail just went insane.


All the creatures got tiny, nail art, gem eyes, tombstones a little engraving, and the door knob an eye ball ……..


…… but my favourite was the door wreath with another three watching eyes!


I’m not sure what other people do on the reverse of their flat decorations, I’m always curious.  I tend to embellish them too, because if they’re hung on a Halloween tree/branch it could be visible from another angle, anal I know! I just can’t help it ……..


….. and these were no exception, with the backs of any creatures coloured in to match their fronts, more oozing slime and bejewelled spiders to fill in some of the empty space.

Halloween Haunted House Hanging Decoration - Craft Stick House.

I think these is my favourite Halloween idea of this year, even if they seemed to take an age to complete.  I suppose now I should turn to thinking Valentines and Easter cottages ……… I wonder if I can find any more doors, perhaps I didn’t get enough after all!

Monday, 7 November 2022

Gingerbread House Tree Decorations.

Christmas stash busting ……….

Handmade Gingerbread man decorations

OMG, these gingerbread houses seemed to take forever to put together ……


…….. they started as a very basic idea to help use up some of the wooden, fairy door embellishments I bought from Hobbycraft about two years ago ………

Hobbycraft Fairy Doors CHristmas Embellishments

……… but then they seemed to take on a life of their own as I kept adding one more bit of fiddle fart after another.


I used two MDF shapes for base of the house, one was actually a dog kennel (eBay),  these I coloured with a tannish brown felt pen …….

IMG_1091Tulip Slick

…….. while I painted both sides of  the other  houses with a Wilko emulsion tester pot.


Then I think I did things in totally the wrong order, but hey ho. I added white Tulip Slick dimensional fabric paint to the roof and then cut a template to cover the back of the kennel houses with a suitably sized and patterned Christmas design paper.  Adding  a small bail and more Slick to the back of the roof, before adding a few faux stitches using a fine tipped felt pen along the bottom and sides when dry.


At this point I wasn’t very sure where I was going with the idea ………


I put a scrap of yellow paper behind the window of the door to give the illusion of a light being on behind it.


Then decided to add two roughly painted craft sticks glued one on top of the other along the bottom of the house to give extra dimension for sticking an MDF Christmas tree either side of the door, plus a gingerbread man to ……


……. but these extras all needed painting, varnishing and doodling on, as did the MDF Gingerbread men, all adding to the mounting fiddle fart …..


……. but finally it was time to put everything together.


…… with a little more doodling using a white Arisito marker pen around the doors.


There were so many tiny flat back gems, Fimo, nail art candy swirls and snowflakes and tiny holly punchies  on the table I didn’t know where to turn ………. but I got there in the end.


However, not content with just decorating the front, my attention then turned to the back of the houses, adding another gingerbread man plus Fimo candy swirls and snowflakes from eBay These bags were such good value I will definitely be ordering the snowflakes at least again, as I can see their proportions working on so many other Christmas ideas going into next year.


I love how they turned out…….


……. but they were so much work, with all the individual, plain, MDF embellishments needing to be prepared and embellished and then I always seemed to be waiting for the Slick to dry.

Gingerbread House Tree DecorationsHandmade Gingerbread House Tree Decorations

With all the house shapes used up, I am now thinking (in the new year), I should try the idea again but this time using the log cabin idea from last week, we shall see.

Sorry for this rambling post, I hope it makes sense!