A different creative project each week…from children's parties to sewing curtains

Monday, 9 December 2013

Wooden Christmas Sign

I wanted to make something beautiful for our home that would remind us of the joy of Christmas. This project is a little more time consuming than previous ones, but the end product is one that I am sure we will treasure for years.

Here is how you make this festive wooden sign.

You will need:

A piece of wood (mine cost £3 from a wood yard) 70cm long and 15cm wide. It should be at least 2.5cm thick.
Coloured yarn
A printer

Begin by sanding the edges of your wood and painting it lightly in a neutral colour. I have used Annie Sloan Paint, but mainly because I had it left over from a previous project.

Once the paint is dry you are ready to crack on...

I have printed out the word JOY in a font I like and expanded it to fit the size of the wood (which went onto two sheets of paper). I have made sure that the letters are 4cms shorter than the height and width of the wood so I will have a boarder around my words.

In order to save ink I printed only an outline of the letters, which can be done using the font key on your computer.

Sellotape your printed JOY onto the wood making sure that there is an equal gap around the lettering and you are pleased with the presentation of your words.
Now begins the fun (and noise!).

Hammer your first nails through the paper into the wood.

You can see I have started at the points of each letter which allows me to space the rest of the nails equally.

If you are worried about where your nails will go you can mark the paper first so you know that your spacing is accurate.

Each nail should be hammered into the wood until it is secure.

Build up your letters, one at a time until you have nails at approximately 1cm intervals on each of the printed lines.  

You are now ready to rip the paper out from under the nails. You will have to do this carefully, but if you have ensured that your nails are all secure then it shouldn't compromise your work at all.
You are now ready to start weaving your yarn around the nails. Begin by knotting one end around a nail head and then go back and forth around the nails in as many different directions as possible.

Make sure that you cover each gap between the nails on the letter line as a minimum (i.e. where the printed line would have been).

I used 8 meters of yarn for all three of my letters, but you could easily use more, so it might be worth measuring out how much you have before you start. When you have finished simply knot on an inconspicuous nail and trim the yarn to neaten it.

Here is the finished piece. I am really pleased with how it turned out, and although there were some tricky parts it isn't actually a really hard project to put your hand to.

Joy to the world the Lord has come!
Happy, happy Christmas to you xxx

Christmas decoration

Christmas is such a special time of year for us and it seems right to decorate our home with decorations that remind us of the love that God showed us by sending His son into our world.

I saw these pretty decorations a while ago and have tried to recreate them in a simple and easy way. In fact they were so easy to make that I have made loads of them to use as tags, presents and decorations for our home. 

If you have a sewing machine this project will take you under 5 minutes to make. If you don't have a sewing machine you can either glue or hand sew the layers together rather than machine them.

All you need is an old book, some red felt, a scrap of old fabric, some ribbon and a button.

Draw a heart onto your old book pages. I have tilted the page before drawing my heart to make the writing go diagonally.

As you can see my heart is less than perfect. This project lends itself to a slap-dash approach, so don't worry if one side is higher or fatter than the other, it will add to the charm!
Lay the paper heart on your scrap of fabric. If you are uncertain about sewing directly onto the paper you may want to use a bit of paper glue to keep the paper in the right place on the fabric whilst you sew it.
Roughly sew around the paper with a bright red thread. As you can see I have not done this accurately (it really doesn't matter) so experiment with the sewing machine to achieve a simple line around the paper heart.

Once you have sewed it cut around the heart so you have a margin of the coloured fabric.

Line it up on the next page of the book and repeat the process, sewing around the coloured fabric onto the paper.

Again cut around the paper after you have sewed it down so it doesn't move whilst you are sewing it.

And finally for the back layer, which is red felt. Repeat the above processes - sewing then cutting out your final heart.
Here is the heart at this stage. It looks so pretty with the red thread breaking up the different textures.
Now to turn it into a useable decoration...

I have used a length of ribbon that I fix into place  behind the heart with the red thread. On the front I added a complimentary button to finish it off.

Happy Christmas to you!