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!

DIY: Gold Leaf Polka Dot Easter Eggs

gold foil easter egg diy

Now that’s a mouth full, isn’t it?
But a tasty one. And easy too.
And don’t you just wanna squeeze all those teeny tiny succulent cheeks to death?
I mean, in an anthropomorphic cactilovefestsortofway.
Okay, that was weird.
But you can picture it right?

gold foil easter egg diy

Okay, okay…
I’ll break the awkward silence (americans can only go 4 seconds!)
and get back to Easter. It’s actually a really special holiday to me, not in any religious sense,
but in the holiday traditions that really see you through sort of way.

It’s my holiday among friends, and for the past five years I’ve thrown a dinner party for those friends who are orphaned from their family by geography, history, economy or circumstance.
So basically, a delightful, motley, and ever-changing crew.

gold foil easter egg diy

Easter has seen me through a marriage, a divorce, two blogs, and three different homes, always with a slew of friends, a vat of wine, and a trough of food at the ready. Last year the addition of my darling boyfriend and his family made the holiday one of my favorites yet, and this year is sure to be fantastic,
as we’ll be celebrating in our first home together.

gold leaf easter egg diy

And every year for five years, I’ve wanted to make some sort of Easter egg place cards. I have absolutely no idea why. I’ve meant to do it. Then I inevitably run out of time, or decide it’s more essential to make a second pie or drink more wine. Pie and wine always win.

But this year is different.
This year there is time for crafts and pie and wine.

gold foil easter egg diy

A few weeks ago I saw the clever way Emily used double stick tape over on Cupcakes and Cashmere to gussy up some salt shakers, and I immediately thought of glue dots and Easter Eggs.

Then while I was grabbing some more dots from Moskatels, my inability to pass up anything in miniature led me to acquire these teeny tiny terra cotta pots. (only 39 cents each!)
And voila! Just like that I committed to making sixteen teeny tiny polka dot egg pots.

Yep, sixteen Easter guests!

gold foil easter egg diy

I blew out the first half-dozen, which made applying the glue dots a delicate procedure.
I couldn’t push hard enough to get the glue to adhere in one clean “dot,” and some dots
were a bit misshapen or lumpy organic. Once I decided to just leave the goo in the egg until after I dotted up ’em, it became a fantastically easy project.

Then I just took an Exacto knife and sliced their tops off/poured out their innards.
And we ate eggs.

This is how I did it:

easter egg succulents

ps. This project is definitely NOT rocket science and I don’t think all three of you are such idiots that I needed to write such a detailed DIY. Mostly I just wanted to practice creating a simple format for future projects and I’d love to hear what you think! It does limit us to DIYs that are six steps (or fewer)… Thoughts?