I don’t like it when stores start putting up Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving. But if you intend to give handmade gifts for Christmas, you have to start early, so I am going to do a few posts on gift and decoration ideas.
I have a ton of old sewing notions, buttons, and costume jewelry that my family has accumulated over the years. It seems a shame to just hide them in drawers, so I came up with a cute way to display them in little bead containers.
That one’s just pretty ordinary storage – but plain is it is, it would make a fun gift for any craftsperson.
Moving more into the holiday mode –
This gives me all the fun of designing without needing lots of materials and time. More Design Joy, less Environmental Impact.
The only hard part of this craft is finding the right plastic storage containers. You want ones that are very clear and each have their own lid. The only ones I have found are made by Darice, which is a wholesale company. Sometimes I can find them at Wal-Mart, but it is hit or miss. But lots of distributors advertise them on the web.
Once you have the containers, gather up all your treasures – cool buttons, orphan earrings, broken strings of crystals, tiny game pieces, old stamps, leftover puzzle pieces, etc. You may also want to use 3-D scrapbook stickers, pieces of ribbon, seed beads, or yarn samples. Now just start arranging! If a trinket looks a little lost in a container, put a layer of seed beads or a circle of craft ribbon in the bottom first, then add the trinket on top.
If you want to make the Christmas tree decoration, you will also need something for the backing. I bought inexpensive bamboo cutting boards for mine. Then I just affixed the individual containers with glue dots,
wrapped a little ribbon around the handle,
and then fastened one of my grandmother’s pins to the wrapped ribbon.
I chose to make some with a Christmas theme, because we have downsized and I don’t have room for the big Christmas trees we used to have, but I still want to decorate. But you could make these with all kinds of themes – a different holiday, a travel destination, a favorite hobby, or a shared memory.
Besides bringing all those little treasures out where you can enjoy them, the best thing about this project is that nothing is permanent! I can re-use any of the buttons, beads, or jewelry if I ever think of a better use for them.