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Show off your Holiday Cards in Style with this DIY Branch Holiday Card Display

by Marlene Sauer

 

DIY Branch Holiday Card Display
Images by Marlene Sauer

Every winter, it's the same story. I get a handful of thoughtfully selected, lovingly written cards for the holidays...and, I have nowhere to put them.

Tacked on the fridge with the grocery lists and unpaid parking tickets? Jammed on a shelf between the dusty knick-knacks and piles of unopened mail? Ok, my house isn't THAT disorganized (most of the time), but I'm sure you feel the pain of receiving beautiful mail and having nowhere to display it.

This year, I decided to take matters into my craft-loving hands and make a simple, pretty DIY branch holiday card display. It only requires a few basic supplies to make, can be made as small or as large as you want, and will make your home smell like a pine tree, which is obviously the best reason to make your own. Keep reading to see how to make a DIY branch holiday card display!

DIY branch holiday card display

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Ho-Ho-Holiday Wallpapers for Phone, Desktop, and iPhone Case!

by M.E. Gray

Christmas iPhone printable

When it comes to the holiday season, I like to start small. I'll start by introducing Christmas socks into my wardrobe, playing Sufjan Stevens' holiday records on Pandora, and I usually change the wallpaper on my smartphone. This year, I'm sharing a festive design in a few color schemes, depending on your holiday preference! You can download them as a wallpaper for your phone or desktop, or, keep reading to find out how to print and use as a festive iPhone case.             

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$5 DIY! Personalize Stockings with a Simple Embroidery Stitch

by Holly Wade
$5 DIY! Personalize Stockings with a Simple Embroidery Stitch
Photo: Holly Wade

If there's one thing that I think needs to be personalized for everyone in the family, it's Christmas stockings! Come Christmas morning and everyone is swapping stockings, it's the perfect way to organize whose stocking belongs to whom (and to make sure that Santa doesn't get confused, of course). With this simple embroidery stitch, it's easy to personalize stockings for only $5! Whether you're sewing your own Christmas stockings or buying your favorite color at Target, the personalized embroidery makes them elegant but cute for everyone in your house!

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Free Printable Gift Giving Cheat Sheet

by Faith Provencher
Free Printable Gift Giving Cheat Sheet
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

It's hard to believe, but it's that season again... gift giving time. It's tough to find the perfect present for everyone on your list, and even harder to try to secretly figure out what size the recipient is. But we've made it infinitely easier - just print out a few of our free gift giving cheat sheets and have your family and friends fill them out and you'll have their information at your fingertips whenever you need it.   

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How to Make a Self-Care Gift Basket for your S.O.S. (Stressed-Out Spouse)

by Marlene Sauer

 

How to Make a Self-Care Gift Basket for your Stressed-Out Spouse
Images by Marlene Sauer

 

It's the holidays and, SURPRISE! Everyone is stressed.

Be it the in-laws, end of year deadlines, travel, or all the shopping, this is a time of year that just makes us crazy. And as hard as it is suffering from burnout ourselves, it's even harder watching it in someone you care about.

There are two little words that can help: self-care! (The Oxford Dictionaries just declared "toxic" the word of the year, but they must not spend much time on Pinterest. The word of the year is clearly self-care).

Today's gift idea is for that special someone, your S.O.S., Stressed-Out Spouse (or Partner, or Bestie, or Sibling, or Other Significant Person who needs help). This self-care gift basket will help remind them to slow down and be good to themselves. 

 

How to Make a Self-Care Gift Basket for your Stressed Out Spouse

 

I've broken this gift basket concept down into four different elements that are important for centering: sleep, stress reduction, mindfulness, and me-time. The best thing about putting together your own gift basket is that you can scout your local shops for unique, handmade items and support those small businesses.

Boston locals, I purchased everything for this self-care gift basket at Cambridge Naturals in Porter Square, my favorite source for organic and natural products. And of course, I'm including online sources for the rest of you!

Ready to see how you can put together your own epic self-care gift basket for the holidays? Don't worry, I won't judge if you end up wanting to keep it all to yourself! 

 

Keep reading for our tips to make the most relaxing gift ever! 

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60 Unique DIY Hostess Gifts For Every Occasion

by Faith Provencher
60 Unique DIY Hostess Gifts For Every Occasion | By Curbly #diy #hostess #gifts
Photo: Ruffled Blog

Although it's hard to believe, it's almost that time of year when holiday parties start occupying most weekends. Most people's go-to gift for these kinds of events is usually a bottle of wine, but sometimes it's nice to surprise your hostess with something different. Here are 60 fantastic DIY hostess gifts that you can start thinking about ahead of time to avoid excessive holiday stress.   

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The Final Countdown: Make a Hanging Ornament Advent Calendar

by Holly Wade
DIY Advent calendar
Photo by Holly Wade

Are you ready to start the countdown?! Come December 1st, it's time to break out the advent calendars and find a little surprise every day as you count town toward Christmas. Advent calendars were a staple of my childhood, so I still try to make a DIY advent calendar every year to make the countdown more fun! This time, I used plastic fill-able ornaments to make a hanging ornament advent calendar that's easy to open and reveal a candy or small trinket inside (my parents often used to use give my pennies). With a variety of sizes and colors, you can use materials that fit your style and hang it anywhere in your home for a Christmas decoration that's functional and FUN!    

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Make This: DIY Palo Santo Holder

by M.E. Gray

Palo santo holder

As winter approaches, so does more required time indoors. All that time inside makes my home feel stuffy, cramped, and stale. In essence, my house feels like it's full of bad energy. I recently discovered palo santo, and I'm really enjoying the way it seems to cleanse the spaces around me, and even purify my own energies. Keep reading to find out more about this holy wood, and how to make a minimal palo santo holder.          

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Thanksgiving Crackers: Conversation Starters that Really Snap!

by M.E. Gray

Thanksgiving cracking bon-bons

When it comes to the holidays, there are lots of things that I look forward to. The seasonal desserts, the quirky traditions, and the festive decor, just to name a few. There is one thing that I dread, however, when family and friends gather: small talk. Maybe it's because I'm an introvert, or maybe it's because chatting about the weather makes me want to barf and yawn at the same time, but the idea of casual chatting-while-eating gives me anxiety. Now, the whole notion of conversation starters might make you want to groan, but what if those conversation starters were paired with a bit of mystique and excitement? Enter these Thanksgiving crackers.         

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Tea Time: The Best Ways to Store and Organize Tea

by Rachel Jacks

There are a lot of fall activities and flavors that I can take or leave, but one thing I get excited about when the summer heat subsides is tea. On a cool, rainy afternoon, drinking a hot cup of tea is wonderfully cozy. (I think I just realized why tea is so popular in the British Isles.) My growing tea collection was a mess until I figured out the best way to store tea. If you're a fellow tea-lover with an unruly stack of boxes and tins of tea, here are some guidelines and ideas for how to keep your tea organized.

A cup of tea

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DIY No-Sew Felt Wine Glass Coasters

by Faith Provencher
DIY No-Sew Felt Wine Glass Coasters
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Drinking wine and crafting are two of my favorite pastimes, and today I'm combining them into one fun, super simple DIY project. I'm sharing an easy no-sew felt wine coaster project that functions as both a coaster and a wine marker so you don't drink someone else's wine by mistake. Win win! Keep reading to check out the full tutorial... it's surprisingly easy!   

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Where to Find Scandinavian Style Staples Even If You're Not in the Nordic Countries

by Rachel Jacks

Scandinavian Style Staples

Perusing online tours of beautiful Scandinavian homes can be an addictive, and envy-inducing, pastime. Though you may not be able to import their high ceilings, period features, or masonry heaters (those cylindrical white corner fireplaces that I endlessly covet), you can certainly create your own replica of the Scandinavian look with the right furnishings. Figuring out where to find certain pieces can be tricky, so I'll round up some popular Scandinavian-style pieces, and tell you where you can buy them in the US.     

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DIY Some Self-Care: How to Make a Soothing Chai Spice Tub Tea

by Marlene Sauer
How to Make Chai Spice Tub Tea
Images by Marlene Sauer

It's the most wonderful time of the year.

No, I don't mean the Big C. My absolute favorite time of year is -- fall!

Every year when autumn hits here in New England, my senses come to life. Crisp, clear air; leaves to crunch through; snuggly scarves; cozy lit windows on dark, chill nights; there are so many little daily luxuries to savor.

And this year I'm adding another one, which will also help in my goal of better self-care: DIY chai spice tub tea!

Keep reading to see how easy it is to make your own chai spice tub tea!          

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How to Upcycle an Old Sweater into a Cozy Knit Pillow

by Rachel Jacks
Upcycled sweater pillow
Photo: Rachel Jacks

Now that the weather is getting cooler in most places, you may be pulling your sweaters from last year out of the back of your closet. And maybe there are a few that you decide won't be making it into your wardrobe rotation. Before you get rid of an unwanted sweater, consider whether it could have a new life as a sweater pillow. Here's how to add a bit of knit texture to your decor by sewing your own sweater pillow.    

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