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Not everyone likes to decorate their homes for the smaller holidays but our family is always a little but sad once Christmas is over because it means the house going back to “normal”. If you are like us, here are a few crafty ideas that can turn recycling items into decorations to brighten up your home and bring back special memories!
Taking Old Valentine items and Re-purposing into Wall Art (three ways)
If you were to walk into my house and turn to your right you would notice that I have a watercolor lithograph of my favorite watch dog. If you look closer you may also see four nails that are the same color as my walls. These empty nails are for my seasonal art and crafts. At Halloween I have some woodcut outs I purchased at craft fairs over the years, at Christmas I have a stocking and Santa face sculpture that hang on the wall, and so on. For Valentine’s Day I have several empty chocolate boxes that I hang in this prominent area. They are my husband’s favorite chocolate boxes from memorable Valentine days we have shared and they sport the image of one of his beloved child hood mascots: Snoopy. Now that our nephews are getting older, Snoopy happens to also be one of their favorite recognizable characters too. I can’t imagine not hanging these boxes for them to see. It brings a smile to my face.
1) Using a found item, like an empty candy box with a vibrant image, is a good way to celebrate a holiday as well as memories and it can be an inexpensive way to decorate.
2) Say you have an empty candy box and you don’t like the image… well decorate it any way you want. The empty candy box provides a nice structure to build your artwork on top of like a pre-existing frame.
One Valentine’s Day my mom bought me a candy box half my size and she wanted me to turn it into a piece of art when we were done eating all of the chocolates (a few months later). The front of the box had this large image of a rose on it. Just your ordinary basic Valentine box. I tossed the front lid but held onto the back lid as a frame. I then took red and pink tissue paper and crumpled sheets into smaller roses. I filled the entire box with the tissue paper roses and one by one I used craft glue to secure them into the box. At times I found the craft glue annoying with its runny stickiness and thought of using hot glue but couldn’t find my glue gun. After letting the glue dry for 48 hours, I then hung the tissue paper filled box in the window. On the inside of the room we saw a red heart and outside of the house we saw the roses. This has been one of my mom’s favorite decorations in recent years.
3) For this idea you can choose to use the shell of a candy box or an inexpensive frame (from craft store or better yet the thrift store!). Not only has my mom held onto old Valentine cards over the years, I love looking through antique Valentines when ever I get the chance to explore antique shops. This is a fun way to display those precious images. You can either cut them to fit inside the heart shaped candy box and glue them down or you can frame the cards in your craft/thrift store frame find. I took several outdated frames and gave them an antiqued look with craft paint and framed some old cards for our guest bedroom.
Valentine Card Banner
When I was a kid my mom would buy craft paper, paper doilies, stickers and glue sticks. Then we would sit down and design Valentine Cards and art to decorate the house. Because it was paper crafts before there was acid free paper our art work would last one or two seasons before falling apart completely. Here is a project that should last more then a few years. My current banner has been around for four or five years and is still in good condition. When it isn’t displayed on our mantel, I store it in a zip-lock bag when I am not using it. The banner I made for my mom is much shorter then ours as she hangs it from the hook on her family room door. Her banner is also still in good condition.
- Acid free craft paper or scrap booking paper
- Scrap booking tape (permanent and acid free)
- Hot glue, craft glue or glue dots
- Valentine cards
- Approximately 3 yards of 1” wide ribbon
- Clear packing tape
1- First ask yourself if you want the banner to have a theme. Ex: I had all these antique Valentine Cards but their subject matter was from puppy dog love to Victorian images. I decided I wanted my banner to only have Victorian images on it. The color in the images was various shades of pink. So I decided that the scrap book pages I would use would be shades of pink as would the ribbon I purchased.
2- Lay out the cards you want to use and decide what order you want them attached to the ribbon. Then decide what size you want the crap paper to be and if you want more then one layer of craft paper.
3- I decided to use three layers of scrap booking paper. I first measured and cut the each layer of paper to the size I wanted. I used scrap booking scissors to add an interesting design to the edges of a few layers.
4- On the back piece of paper I cut slits for the ribbon to slide through then slid the ribbon through all of the back pieces. Once I had the back layer arranged where I wanted on the ribbon I used glue dots to secure the ribbon onto the back parts of the cards.
5- Then I attached all the other layers of scrap booking paper and card using permanent scrap booking tape that is acid free.
6- Because I normally attach the banner directly to my mantle I put a two inch piece of packing tape on the back of each finished card. This allows me to use tape or tacky putty to hang the banner on my mantle without ruining the paper on the cards.