Last Minute Gift Guide: Make

Holiday wreaths are an easy way to bring a lot cheer on the cheap to your home, and they make great gifts too!

I prefer them a little weird and wild (like most things in life), but you can use this technique for almost any material you choose.

And the only supplies you’ll need are a wire wreath form, paddle wire, and some snips. Easy peasy.
First up- grab yo’ greens! Do it in a park, and try not to look…awkward.

I chose noble fir, cedar, and seeded eucalyptus from the LA Flower Mart for around $3.50/bunch and used about 1/3 bunch per 12″ wreath. For the behemoth in that first photo, you’ll need around 2 bunches of everything.

You can also forage your greens in the wild or at your local tree lot/Home Depot, where they’ll usually give you the branches they cut off the bottoms of trees for free.
Now for some fun (and long lasting) accents- thistle, naked pepperberry, and red safari.
Make small and pleasing bunches of greens + accents.
Place your first bunch on your wreath form and use the paddle wire to secure it. No need to be pretty or too precious- just make sure it’s secure and DON’T cut your wire.
Lay down your next bunch directly below the first one, so that the top of your second bunch covers up your messy wires. Secure it in place and DON’T cut your paddle wire.
Rinse and repeat.
Voila! Not too shabby for $10 and 20 minutes, right?!

And if a wreath isn’t up your alley, here are 4 more gifts to make:

Vanilla Extract
Preserved Lemons
Homemade Bitters
Chewy Caramels

And yes, they’re all edible, because if you’ve been invited to a holiday party, your host/ess probably already has enough cheese logs, tea towels and kitchen tchotkes!

Paper Flower Balloon String Printable



Because maybe your mama would like balloons AND flowers.

Ever since this paper flower tutorial I did for A Practical Wedding, I’ve been pretty hooked on using my Sprout to catalog new flowers as I work on various projects for clients. This red & whimsical collection comes to you courtesy of a sample centerpiece I did for an upcoming wedding. Aren’t those red charm peonies a dream? Seriously, even paper peonies are a dream.




No parking. It doesn’t say anything about floating, flying, jumping, or other cuteness. Also, old-school balloons (but bigger). It’s time.




So print out this PDF stat, pour yourself a glass of wine (or two) and spend a little time with your scissors and some Netflix. For yo mama.




It’s easy:

1. Gather your supplies: PDF x4, Cardstock to match x4, ribbon, scissors, glue stick, tape
2. Trim corners from PDF, and tape to cardstock
3. Cut out flowers + cardstock backs
4. Sandwich ribbon between cardstock back and flower front. Continue. Tie to a balloon. DONE.

And if balloons aren’t your thing, maybe paper flower bombing a car window (or two)?

ps. dog mamas count too.
pps. That cute human up there is my hair stylist Teresa. Hi neighbor! She will give you a rad haircut AND make you laugh with her super punny hand-drawn cards.

DIY Neon Sign



I am obsessed with neon. OBSESSED I tell you. A few years ago I actually took a neon workshop so I could make my own neon, where I learned just how hard it is to get bendy glass to do what you want it to, while simultaneously holding it over a crazy flame and blowing (just the right amount) through a straw. How’s that for a mental picture, huh?

So when I was chatting with Maddie about my upcoming tutorials for APW and she asked if I’d ever heard of El Wire (Um, hello Tron. See also: Burning Man.) my brain immediately started thinking of all the ways to make El Wire cool. Not sci-fi cool. Not hippie cool. But simple, modern, youcouldkeepthisinyourhomepostwedding cool.

And, luckily for you (and me) faux neon doesn’t require any molten glass, mercury, or impressive mouth-to-glass skills. Head over to A Practical Wedding for the full tutorial.




Sorry, no photo of the aforementioned blowing/bending sideshow. Please enjoy this consolation photo where I am wearing extremely attractive safety goggles. You’re welcome.




This behemoth looks pretty good with the lights on too. And she dances. See also: yes that’s my vacuum cleaner. aka. Photo shoots are a total disaster zone just outside the frame.




And for the sake of longevity- if you attach the words to different battery packs, you can change the emphasis as needed throughout the course of your relationship.

ps. Nothing against sci-fi OR hippies. My super metallic (rose gold) birkenstocks arrived yesterday. Best of both worlds.