Christmas is coming and inspiration and materials to decorate with are abundant in the outside world, if you’re prepared to get out there and look. I recently headed out to browse for some natural finds that I could use in my Christmas decorations. I love to do this because it’s creative and costs nothing!
Although winter is just around the corner now (it officially starts on the 21st of December), there’s still time to pick a nice, dry day like I did and get wrapped up in case the weather changes. A softly padded, warm jacket with a hood, like my Laurel coat from Lighthouse Clothing is ideal. Made with sustainability in mind, it contains recycled fill which is lightweight, cosy and warm! I love the khaki colour, but it also comes in black and almond. Add a pair of sturdy boots and you’re good to go.
I took a local route into the nearby woods that I would normally run – the slope behind me looks quite gentle in the picture, but is actually really steep when you’re running up it, let me tell you! So it was nice taking things a bit slow and soaking up the peaceful surroundings.
When you come across something like a fallen tree, there are bound to be lots of broken off spare branches. I found a long, slim branch which I knew would be perfect for one of my decor plans. It was light enough to carry home, too.
I like to look out for fallen pine cones and trailing ivy; both are good finds for Christmas decorations. I was able to gather some long vines which are useful for making garlands, wreaths, displaying around candle holders etc.
Then closer to home – in my garden in fact, I was able to gather some conifer branches. Our tree in the back garden hasn’t been fairing well for a couple of years – it’s literally half dead, so I trimmed the branches off the not dead part with plans to create a table centrepiece or decorative swag… If it turns out ok, I’ll share in another post!
There’s plenty of holly, twigs with red berries and foliage around at this time that’s either evergreen or has turned a cheery, Christmassy red… you could add a few natural elements like this to an existing faux wreath or planter. I find things like conifer trimmings are quite longlasting, but some other cuttings will fair better placed into a damp florist sponge as they can dry out and lose their appeal quite quickly, especially in a warm, dry house.
Other ideas you could try include placing woody twigs in a vase with baubles hanging off them. Keep them natural or spray with gold or silver paint! Pine cones can be dabbed with white paint for a snowy look and placed in glass jars or a hurricane lantern. Add a pillar candle and trim with a red bow – easy and effective! There’s so much you can do.
Here’s that branch in my home, decorated with homemade paper decorations and micro lights:
You can see how easy these paper crafts are on my Instagram post:
I also dressed up a copper star (from Hobbycraft) with sprigs of fresh pine and faux greenery plus some dried orange, cinnamon and a velvet bow. To dry your orange slices, cut them thinly and place on a baking sheet in the oven at a low temperature setting, turning once or twice for a few hours. Keep an eye on them to prevent them getting too brown.
I love these simple makes, you should give them a try too! I’m not a crafter all year round, but I really enjoy getting creative before Christmas, as well as heading outside in the fresh air – especially when a takeaway coffee is part of the plan! That makes me very happy.
Do you enjoy Christmas crafts? I’d love to hear what you like to make.
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