Saturday, December 03, 2011

yoj + trofmoc

Okay, one more Christmas craft. Before I go back to, you know, polishing my menorah and studying The Talmud.

It's these little decorate-able felt trees. This is easy to make, I swear. Cut a quarter-circle of green felt (I used a washed-and-dried thrift-store wool sweater), stitch up the seam to make a cone, trace the bottom circle onto green felt and cut out. Now stuff the cone with stuffing, add a nice heavy something to the bottom ("What did I weight these with?" I asked Birdy, because I'd forgotten. And she said, "Rocks from the yard. Nice, dirty rocks.") then stitch the bottom to the cone. Voy-la! We decorate and redecorate them every year with pins and sequins.

Don't feel like sewing? As you can see, a cone of yarn works perfectly well. That's mine, there in the back. But I see I could actually do better:

Christmas tree impersonator.

Happy December, my darlings.



  1. It is definitely starting to feel like the holidays...putting up the tree today and first batch of holiday cookies.

    You always have the best craft ideas, thanks Catherine.

  2. Anonymous12:35 PM

    OK - So I was overtaken by shyness and chose not be be "stalker-like" and say hello, but I recognized Ben and then saw your whole family (you were happily hooting, expressing your post-Hot-Chocolate-Run happiness I suppose). Did all of you run? I ran with my same-age-as-Ben son.
    Hooray for your family - and hooray for a great event, eh??

  3. Catherine, I read your book and I LOVED IT. Loved, loved, loved. A thousand times! It was so funny and touching and I was so sad when it ended. I have been making my way through your archives on Please never stop writing! I think I will give your book to every mom I know! Thank you for a wonderful gift.

  4. I just gave your book to a friend on bed rest. I'm anxiously awaiting your Talmud crafts. (-:

  5. dale in denver2:55 PM

    One of my sons drew our 9 year old niece's name for xmas. We are totally going to make this for her gift. Great idea!

  6. Thanks, guys! And Anonymous--I would have loved to have seen you! Yay for you and your son. It really was a great run, wasn't it?

  7. dale in denver1:45 AM

    omg, i am loving this little project. i couldn't find any green wool sweaters, but i did find a table runner in a lovely green made out of heavy cotton in kind of a thick waffle weave that you see for place mats. $2 at goodwill. score! the texture to the trees is so pretty.

    at work, one of our vendors sent us chocolate covered almonds - which were divine - but I was more excited about the wood boxes they came in. snagged 3 of them and they are just the perfect size to store the tree, the "snow," and two little boxes for the pins and sequins.

    i wanted to use matchboxes wrapped as little presents ala your advent calendar craft, but i couldn't find them at the stores (craft, hardware, target or grocery). i thought about returning to a restaurant where we snagged some matches when my husband and i were out to dinner sans kids - but dinner and a sitter would have cost a lot more than the $ for the mini altoids. it's the most expensive thing so far. so, i'll try wrapping just the lids and will put a little bow on them so they can sit under the tree like little presents.

    I found some great white fabric that has lumps - like it was over stretched in spots - every 2 inches or so. it is very cool. i'll sew around the edges with some sparkly red and green thread and i found really fine glitter to dust it with so it glistens.

    I made some pretty sparkly wired-ribbon bows to glue to the top of the boxes (hide the logo of the company that sent them). exercising discretion on the sequin selection was tough. the pins with the pearlized tops were surprisingly expensive. still, all in i bet it is costing me about $7 each. not that i'm counting, but i kind of am for my own satisfaction.

    i am so excited about this gift. my nieces are 11, 9 and 4. i can see them spending hours decorating and redecorating these trees. after storing it away in january, it will be something exciting for them to pull out each xmas. and, knowing how i was, i would have LOVED having something like this to decorate my dorm room or apartments when i didn't have $ or space for a tree, let alone any decorations. i hope they will treasure it and view as a keepsake. it would warm my heart every xmas.

    i'm also going to surprise my 6 year old son by keeping one for us since i had enough fabric left from the table runner. he has been fascinated by this whole process. he has sat by my side and asked a million questions every step of the way. where did you get that table? why does that piece come out to make a hole? what is in that box? what is a sewing machine? what is sewing? you can sew? (I know! who knew!) it looks like a tree (I know! I did it right on the first try!) i don't have a pretty box for him that i can glue a sparkly ribbon to. but i still think he'll enjoy it just the same.

    when i'm done, would you like to see some pictures of the fabulousness you have inspired?

    wednesday we are delivering xmas presents to the teachers. this year we canned spicy pickled beans, pickled beets, and cinnamon applesauce - so they can have their pick. i'm looking forward to visiting all of them this week to deliver. they are always so appreciative of something hand crafted - usually inspired by you (my oldest is in 5th and i know we've made something every year but i can only remember giving vanilla and worsted wool wreaths).