glue gun

Gnome for the Holiday! A Tutorial

 Gnomes or Tomte or Nisse…..Oh My!
Whatever name you give them, you have to admit they are awfully cute!

I guess I am a little “GNOME obsessed” this year. 

When you see how easy it is to make your own Tomten I am sure you will want to join in the fun!

 I have always loved the wonderful book by Astrid Lindgren about the little Tomten.

These are the 8 inch versions that we made for the Festival of trees decor.
thrift store sweaters
costume wig
fiber fill
styrofoam ball
glue gun
wooden bead


  • Cut the sweater sleeve long enough to tuck into the top and bottom of the toilet paper roll.
  • Glue the styrofoam ball on top of the sweater.
  • Glue on some fiber fill and a fluffy piece of the wig.
  • Sew a triangular hat out of another sweater sleeve.  Use an area that has ribbing for the bottom of the hat.
  • Glue the hat over the ball.  Fluff the beard and trim as needed.
  • Glue the wooden bead nose very close to the edge of the hat.

After we made these Gnomes, I started to see the little creatures everywhere in all the fancy gift shops.

These are for sale on Etsy for $35.

Look!  You can buy 3 Gnomes for a mere $19.00 marked down from $24!

And this guy is super cute….but costs $19 too.

You know me….this was a challenge to see if I could DIY some little gnomes for our Christmas tree.
Instead of cardboard tubes and sweater sleeves, this version uses 3 to 4 inch chunks of birch logs.
These Tomtens are pretty fancy with their “cashmere caps” made from a worn out sweater.
The beards are made from the costume wigs.

Ahh….then I remembered that our AxMan Surplus store always carries scraps of sheepskin that must be left from cutting rugs or something!  I scored a great big piece for $3.50. I knew it would make a perfect Gnome beard!

You can certainly use the cardboard tube and sweater technique if you don’t want to take the trouble to cut up a birch log.

The end result is every bit as cute!

I hope this has inspired you to create some elfin magic of your own!

Have a Wonderful Day!

Link Parties
Mila’s Little Things

Burlap Ribbon Wreath

This project is so simple.
All I did was take a grapevine wreath and loop some wired burlap ribbon all around it.  I did secure it in a few places with some hot glue.  Then I tucked (stuck) some artificial leaves and berries .

I would admit that this is hardly worth blogging about…..unless I had a tip to share!

Do I have a tip for you!
That tip is about where to buy your wired ribbon on the cheap!

Oh, you could order a 10 yard spool from Ballard Designs and pay $20 plus shipping!

But that seems pretty silly when you can buy a 50 Yard spool at COSTCO for $6.99!

The wired ribbon at CostCo is a seasonal thing.
It is something that is worth stocking up on…..

And this year they have burlap….needless to say I bought a couple of spools.

I restrained myself from buying the Christmas styles as I already have quite a stash from years past….

Although…the shiny red satin did call to me!!

 Using all that ribbon to make bows is one of my favorite ways to dress things up.

 This bow is a lovely accent to a fall arrangement made by one of the guests at the latest Sweetwater Floral Consultants Sip and Snip.

If you are interested in learning more about creating beautiful bows…check out this tutorial!

Then head over to CostCo and get your own ribbon stash started!

Have A Wonderful Day!

Link Parties
Handyman Crafty Woman

Almost NO SEW Outdoor Box Cushion and Tablecloth

A trip to the fabric store is always one of the best ways for me to get inspired.
I found this fabric in the $5 a yard bin.
It has a monkey motif!
I love monkeys!

Since 2016 is the Year of the Monkey, it was the perfect fabric to inspire one of my “almost NO SEW” projects.

In fact, why stop at one project?

If one is good….two is better!

These two projects are the perfect color boost for the deck.
The furniture on the deck is pretty neutral….black and taupe.
The greenery is sometimes a little overwhelming.
The flowers this year are nice, but they need a punch of color.

Almost No Sew Weighted Tablecloth

The table has a glass top that always gets water spotted.
I cut the fabric one inch bigger than the glass.
Then I did a simple hem.
If you want to make this “totally” NO SEW, you could use fusible iron on webbing to secure the hem.
But here is the tricky little thing that makes the table cloth stay in place.
Every 6 inches there is a little washer sewn into the hem.
This keeps the cloth weighted enough to stay flat even on the windiest afternoon!
The total time for this….about 45 minutes!
 Almost NO SEW Box Cushion

Would you believe that this cushion was done in less than an hour?
(I had a piece of foam that needed an update, but you can have one cut at the fabric store to just the size you need)
Well, if you can wrap a gift box, you can cover a foam cushion!
I used the sewing machine to make a tube that was the exact width of the foam.
If you don’t want to sew….you could even use your glue gun to close the long edge.

Just tuck the fabric in like you were wrapping a present….

I used a needle to hand sew these edges….but the glue gun or fusible web would work too.

Not bad for a couple of hours and less than $15 dollars.

If you want more complete directions and want some more inspiration, here are a couple of links to my tutorials for the no sew cushion technique.



If you are like I am….you don’t want to spend buckets of money on custom cushions….
Outdoor cushions have a limited life span….and being able to change them in an inexpensive way just seems smart!


Have a Wonderful Day!

Linking to:
Sunny Simple Life
Eclectic Red Barn   
Stone Cottage Adventures
Funky Polka Dot Giraffe 

Bar Table from a Wine Barrel

Today’s post is brought to you by some dear “old” friends of ours.
You know those friends that you have and don’t see often enough?
But. when you do see them….it is like you were still hanging out in the old neighborhood?
Well these are THOSE friends!
Thank Goodness for Facebook to help us stay connected.
When our friends posted about a fabulous DIY project, I just knew I had to share it with you.
 Is that cool or what?
Even better….I asked for specifics and directions and my friend basically wrote the post for me!
Tutorial for Wine Cork Topped Bar Table
Acquire a wine barrel. 
Drink copious amounts of wine, reserving the corks. 
Purchase a glass top (we went to Pier 1). 
I organized the corks by length, although it’s not necessary. 
Then by trial and error, place the corks on the barrel top creating your own design. 
Finally, place 8+ vinyl or silicon cabinet door stoppers on the barrel top. 
Put on the glass top. Super easy!

I feel a little embarrassed to show you the Sweetwater Wine Cork Projects.
They are pretty simplistic in comparison…
The “drink copious amounts of wine” part holds true!
These trays or trivets are made by hot gluing corks into thrift store wood trays.
They come in very handy and save the surface of your table.

Corks were the perfect border to hide the raw edge of the wool shirt!

So I challenge you to “drink copious amounts of wine” 
or make friends with a bartender and ask her to save you some…

And to my old friends…thanks for sharing!
Wish the house that this bar is in wasn’t so far away!
and remember….
Have A Wonderful Day!

Posh Velvet Pumpkins

 Alas….those Halloween Jack’os that looked so festive a week ago are starting to go into their decline.

Before you toss them… sure to “harvest” the stems.


These stems can be used for some lovely posh velvet pumpkins for your Thanksgiving table.

Simply carve away any of the pumpkin to pull the stems out.
If you are lucky, there will be some wonderful curly vines left too.

Then….trim off as much of the pulp as you can and set them to dry.

Pop them in the oven at the lowest setting with the door open and let them dry out for a couple of hours.  They should be dry enough to use right away.

I won’t be making any new velvet pumpkins this year….I already have these!

You don’t need to limit yourself to velvet….the silk ones are pretty too!

You know how I hate writing tutorials… instead….I have found you a really well written set of directions for the project.   Check it out here.

Aren’t these gorgeous?

While I was researching for a good tutorial, I found the directions for making these cute little velvet acorns….so off I went to the Sweetwater woods to gather acorn tops.

I started to follow the directions…..
I made one….

And then…..I thought to myself…..what in the world will I ever do with these and they are taking a whole bunch of time….SO I QUIT!
HMMMMM….but if you want to make some….here is the link! 

So anyway….I hope you are reading this BEFORE you threw out your pumpkins!
I collected my stems and they will get packed away when they are dried.
Or…maybe I will make some little posh pumpkins for gifts.

And finally….

If you have kids….here is a wonderful book that shows the life cycle of a pumpkin.  A fun science project if you can get over the “ick” factor.

Have a Great Weekend!

Link Parties
Curly Crafty Mom