It’s getting closer and closer to Christmas (and Hanukkah is well on it’s way), so a lot of people are rushing about trying to fit in last-minute shopping and trying not to go completely crazy as they deal with family. If you’re from the northern hemisphere, chances are that insects don’t play a very big role in your holiday plans because it’s much too cold for them to be out and about at this time of year. But you can do something about that! Why not add some insect love to your holidays? I love crafting things, so I thought I’d share 5 easy holiday projects that you can do to bring some insects into your celebrations!
One of my best friends sent me a photo of her tree last Christmas: it was COVERED with butterflies! And she had made her ornaments too. Her secret: those little feather butterflies you can get at craft stores or silk flower shops. I decided to make a few for my own tree this year, and it couldn’t have been any easier. The ornament you see above took all of 2 minutes to make! Simply add a drop of glue where the wire is inserted into the butterfly and let it dry. Then bend the wire to form a hanger (I simply made a V-shape in mine) and trim the excess wire. Then attach it to your tree! So easy, and they look spectacular when you have a bunch of them scattered about the branches.
Beaded Dragonfly Ornaments
Another friend of mine was given some beaded dragonflies for Christmas a few years ago and we got together one day to make our own. All you need is some thin wire (24 or 26 gauge works well) and an assortment of small glass beads (seed beads and a few bigger ones). If anyone happens to want instructions for how to make these, I have hand-written instructions available, but if you have any experience with beading you can probably figure it out simply by looking at the example in the photo. They look great hanging from Christmas trees, or you can use them to make hair pins, etc after the holidays if a dragonfly decorated tree isn’t quite your thing.
Printing your own gift wrap is easy! All you need is some rubber stamps (or relief printing blocks if you want to go all out and carve your own designs), an ink pad, and a roll of blank paper. I like to use kraft paper that you can get at office supply stores because it comes in big rolls for very little money and I like the natural look if it. I print 4-5 different patterns on my paper, so I stretch the paper out along my table, print with the first stamp along the section, repeat with the rest of the sections until I reach then end of the roll, and then repeat with the other stamps. One thing to think about though, something I learned as my sister, another bridesmaid, and I printed table runners the day before my wedding: if you get the black stamp pads they sell at office supply stores, look to see if they are permanent ink before you get it all over your hands. When they say permanent, they really mean it! (It doesn’t show up in any of my wedding photos, but my table runner crew and I all had black insect parts printed on our hands throughout my wedding.) Insect paper doesn’t scream “holidays!” but it can still look quite elegant.
Why buy gift tags with snowflakes and reindeer on them when you can have fabulous insects tags? Just choose a heavy paper or card stock you like, cut out a shape, and either rubber stamp or draw an insect on one side! Then all you need to do is cut a hole in the top and run some string through and you’ve got yourself some sytlin’ gift tags for your gifts! The ones I have pictured here are all simple rubber stamps. The dragonfly was done in red ink and embosssing powder, the flower/butterfly was done in clear ink with brown distressing powder, and the other two were done in that very permanent black ink. I really love the look of black ink on kraft paper, so I use this combination a lot.
Thank You Cards
When the holidays are over, it’s time to send thank you notes. Why not make your own swanky insect thank you cards? These were very simple: two rectangles in contrasting colors of card stock, one slightly smaller than the other. I used a craft punch to punch the butterflies out and then used a glue stick to attach the punched card to the solid card. Then I rubber stamped the text. All I need to do now is write the thank you notes on the back, slip them into envelopes (available at craft, paper, and office stores), and mail them off!
I don’t ever do the standard Christmas crafts because I just don’t like them, but I enjoy bringing insects into every holiday. I hope everyone gets at least one insect related thing over the winter holidays this year! Happy holidays!