Tagged: Christmas

Christmas Gifts as Nested Riddles

Riddle Boxes
The past few Christmases I've working with a wrapping concept that had been in my head for quite a while. This year I came up with my Christmas gift wrapping idea less than a month before Christmas. My goal was to make the actual wrapping process simple as this has been a difficult year and I wanted to go easy on myself. I failed. The Concept My idea was to create five layers of nested gifts. My nieces and nephews would each be given a gift to start out, but would immediately be told that Read More

Christmas Gifts Wrapped in Ice

Christmas Gifts Wrapped in Ice
Last year I had the idea of wrapping gifts in ice and decided this was the year to try it out. The concept is simple enough. I just wasn't sure how straightforward the execution would be. The Kinks I tried to work out as many kinks as possible during the planning stage. And one thing I knew I wanted was clear ice. My research revealed there are many factors that come into play in creating clear ice. There are tons of articles out there about how to go about this, so I won't go into detail here. Read More

Stained Glass Window Gift Wrapping

This is my tenth anniversary of using creative themes for wrapping family gifts. It started out as something I did for everyone in the family—but as the family grew, I limited these creations to just my nephews and nieces. As this was a special year, I decided to do something a bit more involved. It's a concept I've wanted to do for the past few years but didn't have the time. This year God has blessed us with a second child who will be arriving very soon, so we finished up our Christmas Read More

Star Wars Gift Wrapping

It's been a busy Christmas season as usual. And this year there were a couple traditions we just didn't make time for in the Horst household. But the one tradition I was sure to make time for was fun Christmas gift wrapping for my nieces and nephews. This year I decided to embrace pop culture, embrace current trends, and embrace my own childhood. That's right—we're talking about Star Wars. As a child this was one of my loves. My older brother collected all the good guy characters and spacecrafts, Read More

Animal Print Gift Wrapping

How to wrap gifts by cutting animal patterns
Of all the gift wrapping I've done over the years, this is the first time there was really no "wrapping" involved. I had a pretty elaborate theme planned for this year, but then I came down with the flu. It wasn't a bad flu, but it lingered and it put me behind on everything. So I shelved that plan until next Christmas and came up with a theme that was less time intensive—animal prints! The process is pretty straightforward—no special artistic skills necessary. You just need to Read More

Christmas Gift Wrapping Ideas

Clever gift wrapping ideas for Christmas and birthdays
For the past ten years I've invested extra time into wrapping Christmas gifts for my family. Gift wrapping is an interesting tradition. It's pure decoration. And it's an activity that gets even the most non-artistic person to physically participate in the artistic process. Yes, there's a secondary goal of hiding the gift inside, but the primary goal is to make something pretty. And for those who enjoy exercising their creativity, what an open door gift wrapping is! My tradition started out innocently Read More

Sheaf Christmas Tree

How to create a Christmas tree shaped like a sheaf of grain
I had an elaborate plan for this year's Christmas tree, but when I explained it to my wife she wisely talked me out of it. We ended up with a much simpler strategy. And as is often the case, simple turned out to be beautiful. The goal was to imitate a sheaf of wheat. But instead of wheat, we used wood. And so the first step was to hit the woods and gather branches. They need to be fairly straight, of various thicknesses. A slight curve is fine (and will come in handy), but you don't want sharp Read More

Fabric Christmas Tree

How to create a fabric Christmas tree as a DIY project
My wife and I have a number of Christmas traditions that are challenging exercises in creativity. One is creating a fun Christmas card. Another is developing and executing a unique gift-wrapping theme. We also create a hand-made gift for the other person. And finally there's the creation of the Christmas tree. This will be our third year creating a tree. We work on many of these projects together, but occasionally one of us will tackle a project on their own. Last year my wife handled the tree making Read More

Homemade Christmas Tree

How to build a homemade, rustic Christmas tree
I like traditions. In our first year of marriage we were given a free Christmas tree as a gift from the farm where we had our wedding reception. Before setting up the tree I cut a short piece off of the trunk, as is normally recommended. I kept that piece, planning to make a collection of stump pieces from each Christmas. That tradition lasted a total of one year. In our second year of marriage, it was replaced with a new tradition: making our own Christmas tree. Rather than spend thirty to Read More