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A hasty "tree"

What you can do in a hurry with a can of spray paint . . .

I like to make things, and at this time of year my mind turns to making Christmas ornaments. For a few years I really enjoyed making paper ornaments — there are loads of instructions on the web, and I’ve tried most of the easiest. I do like a good result for not a huge effort.  (The post I linked to has links to instructions for making them if you’re interested.)

For a while I made tiny ones and hung them from a few spray-painted twigs arranged in a vase. I really liked how the slightest breeze would send them twisting and turning.

And for a few years I made lovely “dangles” using crystals and pearls and other beads. They were lovely — but they need a big tree, or somewhere to hang them from.

I’ve sometimes used things from nature — seed pods and twigs, (picked up after they’d fallen and dried out) — and I spray them with silver paint (actually chrome paint is better — shinier).  I have to say, I love the look of them, especially against a dark background.   I also spray-painted some dead fronds from my old tree-fern. They dry in gorgeous curls that when hung, twist in the breeze. In my old garden there was plenty of raw material to gather and play with, but that’s gone now.

This year, with the Christmas things still unpacked, and with people coming for a friends Christmas dinner, I’d run out of time to make anything new.

I needed a hasty Christmas “tree”. When I went out to my much smaller garden and surveyed it for Christmas possibilities. I wasn’t feeling too confident. Apart from the beautiful “Silver Princess” eucalypt, the gum-nuts of which are naturally silver, I couldn’t imagine what I could use. Most things here are still green or flowering.

But looking around I found quite a few possibilities; a spray of dead bamboo leaves from a potted bamboo — bamboo is so elegant, isn’t it — some seed-heads from the parsley plant I’m drying for seeds, and a protea bloom that I’d picked a few weeks ago to go in my guest room. There were also a few native seedpods I’d picked up while walking the dog. I put them together with some clippings from the greenery in my garden and made this very small Christmas sort-of-tree.

Really I should have given the seeds and flower heads at least another spray painting — they’d be much shiner — but I didn’t have time, and I think they worked okay. 

The tiny “tree”  started off on the dining room table as a centrepiece, but then when I needed the space for food and drink, I moved it to the sideboard with my curly twigs and a couple of Christmas cards behind it and it looked quite cute. (see right)

Do you make your own ornaments and decorations?

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Pat Wittorf
Pat Wittorf
1 month ago

I was “into” making ornaments too for a while. When my older son was born, for his first Christmas I made a special ornament that incorporated a photo of him. I did that for 10 years, adding a photo ornament for his brother when he came along two years later so, by 1982 there were enough special photo ornaments to be the only ones to use that year except…. when I moved into a new house my box of Christmas decorations was lost. I was devastated and, to this day, I have never really been able to recover and get… Read more »

Priscilla
Priscilla
1 month ago

I used to make ornaments. My favorites were counted cross stitch for each of my four grandchildren. Their names were on each along with a cross stitch Christmas ornament. My father made really nice ornaments for family and I was pleased to see them on their trees this year.