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December 4, 2018

DIY festive decorations: two easy ways to get creative this Christmas

Tempe Nakiska
If you ask us, any part of the year is a great time to get creative. But it has to be said that Christmas, as a festive platform for all things deco and DIY, shows up some festive inspiration for a crafternoon. In the holiday spirit, Hackney Arts will be visiting us this week for an alternative Christmas wreath workshop, where we’ll build our own wintery decor. Ahead of the session we asked them to contribute a couple of extra DIY ideas for Christmas – so hit the nearest craft shop, grab a few friends, and have a cracker of a time.

Idea 1: Make a Candle

We love making candles and we prefer them made with soy wax and essential oils. Soy wax is much cleaner than paraffin wax and is biodegradable. Essential oils give a beautiful fragrance, that may not be as strong as manufactured fragrances but are more natural and give increased health benefits.

What you’ll need
  • Soy wax flakes
  • Essential oils
  • A jar or container
  • Candle wicks
  • Glue dots
  • Wick holder – you can use chopsticks if you don’t have a real one.
What you’ll do
  • Choose a vessel – any glass, ceramic or metal container will do.
  • Attach a wick to the bottom using glue dots (glue dots are better than glue so they don’t melt in contact with the hot wax).
  • Use the bain marie method to melt your soy wax flakes down.
  • Once the wax has cooled down but is still liquid, add drops of your favourite essential oils. A mix of oils is good – we like combining a floral scent like lavender or rose, with a sharper note like basil or peppermint.
  • Mix together so they are well combined.
  • Pour into your container, making sure to secure the wick so it stands up straight.
  • Trim the wick down to your desired size and allow 24hrs for it to set before lighting.
  • Light it up!

Idea 2: Decorate a Bauble Set

Decorating baubles is an easy and quick way to add a touch of luxury to your Christmas tree. Try hanging them from tree branches in your home for a rustic look, you can leave the branches plain or spray paint them white.

What you’ll need
  • Plain baubles in a range of colours
  • Masking tape
  • Glitter and/or artificial snow
  • Glue
  • Paintbrush
  • Small bowls
  • Colourful ribbon
What you’ll do
  • Take each plain bauble and wrap a piece of masking tape around the centre.
  • With the paintbrush, paint glue onto the bottom half of the bauble.
  • Pour different colours of the glitter and the artificial snow into separate bowls.
  • Dip the baubles into the glitter and snow bowls, making sure to coat the glue sections.
  • Peel away the masking tape to give a straight line finish around the centre.
  • You can use extra decorative items like self adhesive gems and mt masking tapes to create extra effects and patterns.

Hackney Arts’ workshop is this Thursday evening, 6th December, at The Collective Old Oak

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