Merry Christmas!

Hi everyone!

On this snowy Christmas eve, I wanted to take a moment to thank all of you that are readers and supporters of this blog. Thank you for taking the time to read the posts and for leaving such kind comments. I wish each of you a very Merry Christmas with family and friends. I have a lot to share with you in the upcoming new year that I hope you will enjoy. So, until then, have a safe and happy holiday season.

712be1f728bd9c76ef839facb6ed10a6

 

Until next time,

Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net

 

Handmade Holiday 2016 ~ Day #7

Hi everyone!

Welcome to the 7th and final day of Handmade Holiday 2016. This can be such a busy and hectic time of year but I still enjoy giving something handmade and adding handmade touches to gifts for family and friends. Each day this week, I’ve shared a quick Handmade Holiday idea for gift packaging, tags, gift card holders, place setting favors, recipes and more that will be sure to add that special handmade touch.

Day #7 ~ Christmas Crackers

img_2921

These would be so pretty to place one at each place setting as a festive table favor on your holiday table. They could even be added to stockings! Tuck in a variation of little things ~ a small gift, wrapped chocolates, a Christmas lip balm or even a rolled up lottery ticket or scratch card.

 

You will need for each cracker:  piece of patterned paper 4 1/2″ x 6 1/2″, envelope punch board, scoring board, bone folder, adhesive, ribbons, embellishments.
img_2905
Start with a piece of 4 1/2″ x 6 1/2″ patterned paper.
img_2907
Score it lengthwise at 1″, 2″, 3″ and  4″.
img_2908

 

 

Then turn the paper and score at 1″, 1 1/2″, 2″, 4 1/2″, 5″ and 5 1/2″.

img_2909

 

 

Using the bone folder, create a mountain/valley fold on each end, using the score marks so it looks like this.

img_2910

 

 

 

Fold/crease the one inch lengths then fold on the first 1″ line {to the wrong side}.

img_2911

 

 

 

Place on the punch board with the left edge at the 1 1/2″ mark. Punch to cut out a notch. Slide the paper across to the 5″ mark and punch again. Repeat for the remaining three score lines. It should now look like this.

img_2912   img_2915

 

 

 

Add strong adhesive along the 1/2″ fold edge.

img_2916

 

 

 

Fold down the edge with the adhesive and bring over the opposite onto the adhesive.

img_2917   img_2918

 

 

 

Open up the cracker and push the ends inward to create the shape. Please note: Be sure the glued seam is on the bottom. Tie one of the ends with ribbon, open the other end, slide in the surprise and then tie with ribbon.

img_2920

Please note: You can tie the ribbon into bows but depending on the ribbon width, it may look a bit bulky. I just tied my ribbon into square knots.
To finish off the Christmas cracker,  I created a layered tag and added a snowflake embellishment with twine. I then used a glue dot to adhere it to the top.

*Here is another blog post with more uses for the Envelope Punch Board ~ https://thecountrytouch.wordpress.com/2016/08/16/tuesdays-tip-6/

 

 

img_2921

 

 

 

Thank you so much for joining me for this years “Handmade Holiday”. I hope that you have been inspired to try some of these ideas for this upcoming holiday season with family and friends. As always, please feel welcome to share your creations 🙂   Merry Christmas!

 

 

*Please feel welcome to sign up as a follower to receives updates by email so you don’t miss a thing!

 

 

Until next time,

Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net

Handmade Holiday 2016 ~ Day #6

Hi everyone!

Welcome to day #6 of Handmade Holiday 2016. This can be such a busy and hectic time of year but I still enjoy giving something handmade and adding handmade touches to gifts for family and friends. Each day this week, I’ll share a quick Handmade Holiday idea for gift packaging, tags, gift card holders, place setting favors, recipes and more that will be sure to add that special handmade touch.

Day #6 ~ Reindeer Tag {with Stampin’ Up! Tree Builder punch}

img_2866

 

You will need: patterned Christmas paper, card stock {cream, kraft, red, black and white}, circle dies/punches {2″ and 1″}, SU Tree Builder Punch {the trunk is used for antlers, the raindrop is for the eyes/ears}, tag punch, corner rounder punch {optional}, 1/8″ hole punch {optional}, greeting stamp, brown/pink ink, inking sponge/tool, q-tip, adhesive, twine or ribbon, black marker, Wink of Stella pen or stickles. *Please note: I didn’t take a picture of all these supplies as there are too many to fit in one picture.

 

For each tag:

First we will do all of the cutting:

Cut 1 tag from cream card stock measuring 2″ x 5″. Cut 1 tag from patterned paper measuring 2″ x 5 1/2″. Round bottom edges of both tags with corner rounder punch. *Please note: the tags can be cut with punches, dies, a Cricut or by hand.

Cut a 2″ circle from kraft card stock. Cut a 1″ circle from red card stock. *Please note: the circles can be cut with punches, dies, a Cricut or by hand.

With the SU Tree Builder punch, punch 2 branches {for the antlers} and 2 raindrops from kraft card stock {for the ears}. Then 2 raindrops from black card stock {for the eyes}.

With the 1/8″ hole punch, punch 2 holes from white card stock {for the pupils of his eyes}. *Please note: you could also use small googly eyes if you want.

img_2863

 

 

Next:

With the brown ink and sponging tool, sponge around the edges of the head, antlers and ears. Please note: sponging around the antlers and ears is a bit tricky. You can hold them with tweezers while sponging to keep your fingers from getting inky.

With the q-tip, add a touch of pink ink for rosy cheeks. Please note: start with almost dry pink ink on the q-tip for his cheeks. You can always add more but you can’t remove any.

Stamp the chosen greeting at the bottom of the cream tag.

img_2865

 

 

Putting him together:

Glue the antlers behind his head, the ears in front of the antlers, the nose at the bottom of his face and the eyes just above the nose. Add the white dots {for pupils} to the eyes and color part of them with the black marker.

Adhere the head in the center of the cream tag. Lift his antlers gently so that they stick out for a bit of dimension.

To finish him off ~ I #1}tied a small bow and glued it under his chin   #2}punched two pine boughs and added tiny red pearls {for berries} for the top of his head   #3}applied a thin layer of diamond stickles to his nose for some sparkle and shine.

Use a glue dot or a small amount of any adhesive on the back of the cream tag and layer it slightly offset over the patterned paper tag lining up the holes. Add a length of ribbon or twine through both holes in the tags for tying to gift bags and packages.

Here is another blog post with more uses for the SU Tree Builder Punch ~ https://thecountrytouch.wordpress.com/2016/08/16/tuesdays-tip-6/

img_2866

 

 

*Please feel welcome to sign up as a follower to receives updates by email so you don’t miss a thing!

 

 

See you tomorrow for day #7!

 

 

Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net

Handmade Holiday 2016 ~ Day #5

Hi everyone!

Welcome to day #5 of Handmade Holiday 2016. This can be such a busy and hectic time of year but I still enjoy giving something handmade and adding handmade touches to gifts for family and friends. Each day this week, I’ll share a quick Handmade Holiday idea for gift packaging, tags, gift card holders, place setting favors, recipes and more that will be sure to add that special handmade touch.

Day #5 ~ Nuts & Bolts and Whipped Shortbread Cookies

 

There are certain yummy things that are just part of the Christmas season in our home and these are two of them. Both of these recipes were passed down to me from my Mom and I hope to someday pass them along to my own granddaughters 🙂

 

Nuts & Bolts ~ This is great for snacking on, serving at holiday parties and for hostess gifts.

Sauce:                                                                 Snack Ingredients:

3/4 cup butter or margarine                            3 cups Cheerios toasted oat cereal

3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce              3 cups Shreddies

1 teaspoon celery salt                                        3 cups Chex

1 teaspoon garlic powder                                  2 cups Bugles

1 teaspoon onion powder                                 2 cups pretzel sticks or twists

1 teaspoon garlic salt                                         1 1/2 cups peanuts or mixed nuts

1 teaspoon seasoning salt                                 1 box Cheese Nips crackers

 

1}In a large glass bowl or saucepan, melt the butter in the microwave or on the stove top.   2}Add the worcestershire sauce and all the seasonings.   3}Whisk together until well blended and smooth.   4}Put the snack ingredients in a large turkey roaster and pour the sauce over top.   5}Mix well but gently.   6}Bake uncovered at 250 degrees for one hour, gently stirring every 10 minutes.   7}Store in freezer bags or air tight containers in the fridge or freezer. *Please note: package these up in a pretty jar, large decorated bakery bag or container to make a great hostess gift.   ∗Makes: approximately 18 cups.

img_2919

 

 

 

Whipped Shortbread Cookies ~ There are different kinds of shortbread but what I make at Christmas is never any other shortbread than whipped.

1 pound of room temperature butter {yes, 1 pound but it’s worth it!}

3 cups all purpose flour

1 cup icing sugar

1/2 cup cornstarch

garnish, such as colored sugar sprinkles, crushed candy canes or maraschino cherries

1}Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.   2}Cream the room temperature butter in mixer until smooth and creamy.   3}Combine flour, icing sugar and cornstarch in sifter and sift into whipped butter.   4}Blend on low speed to mix and then gradually increase the speed to medium.   5}Whip for at least 5 minutes scraping down the sides of the bowl often. *Be sure the cookie dough is light and fluffy.   6}Drop by spoonfuls onto parchment lined cookie sheets.   7}Shake on some sprinkles, crushed candy canes or add tiny pieces of marschino cherries.   8}Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the bottoms are a light golden brown.   9} Allow to sit on cookie sheets for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely before storing in freezer bags or air tight containers in the fridge or freezer.   ∗Makes:  4 dozen cookies.

img_2860

What are your favorite treats for the holidays?

 

 

*Please feel welcome to sign up as a follower to receives updates by email so you don’t miss a thing!

 

 

See you tomorrow for day #6!
Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net

 

Handmade Holiday 2016 ~ Day #4

Hi everyone!

Welcome to day #4 of Handmade Holiday 2016. This can be such a busy and hectic time of year but I still enjoy giving something handmade and adding handmade touches to gifts for family and friends. Each day this week, I’ll share a quick Handmade Holiday idea for gift packaging, tags, gift card holders, place setting favors, recipes and more that will be sure to add that special handmade touch.

Day #4 ~ Gift Card Holder 

img_2765

 

Sometimes it’s hard to choose just the right gift for someone. But with a gift card to their favorite store or restaurant, they can pick out exactly what they are wishing for. Or at a holiday get together, how about giving guests a little gift to celebrate the holiday season and let them know how much you appreciate their friendship? There are so many reasons to give gift cards. So let’s make them extra special by packaging them nicely!

For each gift card holder you will need: card stock, patterned paper, scoring board, bone folder, ruler, cutting tool of choice, adhesive, brads, piercing mat/tool, edge punch/die {optional if you want a decorative border under the patterned paper}, stamp/ink {optional if you want to add a sentiment}, ribbon or twine, embellishment {optional}.

img_2757

 

 

Cut card stock at 4 1/4″ x 7″. Score at 2 1/2″ and 5 3/4″.

img_2758

 

 

 

Fold on the score lines and crease with the bone folder.

img_2759

 

 

 

Add a 1″ x 4 1/4″ strip of patterned paper {for inside on the front of the pocket} and  a 2″ x 4 1/4″ strip of patterned paper {for on the front flap}. Add a 4″ punched or die cut border {if desired}.

img_2760

 

 

 

Pierce a hole on each end and insert a brad ~ this is what creates the pocket for the gift card.

img_2762   img_2763

 

 

 

Add embellishments. Now all that’s left is to add the gift card, tie it closed with ribbon or twine and give to the recipient to enjoy 🙂

img_2765

 

 

*Please feel welcome to sign up as a follower to receives updates by email so you don’t miss a thing!

 

 

See you tomorrow for day #5!

Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net

Handmade Holiday 2016 ~ Day #3

Hi everyone!

Welcome to day #3 of Handmade Holiday 2016. This can be such a busy and hectic time of year but I still enjoy giving something handmade and adding handmade touches to gifts for family and friends. Each day this week, I’ll share a quick Handmade Holiday idea for gift packaging, tags, gift card holders, place setting favors, recipes and more that will be sure to add that special handmade touch.

Day #3 ~ Snowflake Ornaments

img_2818

These frosty snowflakes will be so pretty adorning a Christmas tree, wreath or garland. Or how about as a package topper instead of a traditional bow? They could also have “to and from” stamped on the back to be used as gift tags.

 

You will need: any snowflake dies or punches, thick white card stock, glitter card stock {directions below for making your own}, die cutting/embossing machine, embossing folder or background stamp {optional for adding interest to the snowflakes}, liquid glue or tape runner, dimensional adhesive, tape, ribbon or thick string {for the hanger}, rhinestones/pearls, “to/from” stamps/ink {optional}.

img_2808

 

 

Cut as many snowflake layers as needed for each ornament. I did 5 layers for mine but it is totally up to you how thick you want yours to be. Please note: 2 of the largest size snowflake {#1} are required to “sandwich” the ribbon/string hanger. The second largest {#2} and the smallest snowflake {#5} were both cut from glitter paper and the rest {#3/#4} were from thick white card stock.

img_2809

img_2810

 

 

Making glitter card stock:

If you don’t have any glitter card stock in your stash, it’s simple to make your own with a VersaMark ink pad, sparkle embossing powder and a heat tool. #1}Pat the VersaMark ink pad over the colored card stock that you want glittered. #2}Sprinkle on sparkle embossing powder and heat set with a heat tool.  However, if you don’t have these products, that’s okay! Some liquid glue or spray adhesive and fine glitter will work just fine. Apply a very thin layer of liquid glue with a small paint brush or a light coat of spray adhesive to the snowflake and sprinkle on the glitter. Press gently with your fingertip and shake off the excess. Let dry thoroughly with a weight {such as a book} on it to keep it flat before using it for any projects.

 

 

If desired, any of the snowflakes can be run through an embossing folder or stamped with a background stamp for some texture/design. I dry embossed the #3 snowflake with the Divine Swirl folder from Cuttlebug. This step is completely optional.

img_2814

 

 

 

If these are to used as gift tags, now is the time to stamp “to and from” on the back of the second large {#1} snowflake.

img_2816

 

 

 

Add dimensional adhesive to the backs of #2, #3, and #4.

img_2815

 

 

Remove backings from the dimensional adhesives and layer the snowflakes. Please note: I found that it helps to add a bit of liquid glue to the dimensional adhesive pieces that are going to stick to the glitter card stock snowflake ~ it sticks much better.

Attach the smallest snowflake {#5}  to the top and add a rhinetone or pearl.

Tape a ribbon or twine loop to the front of the second large {#1} snowflake. Add adhesive all the way around and attach the two together ~ either liquid glue or tape runner can be used for this. However, if there are very small spaces that need adhesive, the liquid form works a bit better. There you go! A pretty sparkly snowflake ready for many uses.

img_2817     img_2818

 

 

 

A bunch of these can be made up in no time 🙂

untitled

 

 

*Please feel welcome to sign up as a follower to receives updates by email so you don’t miss a thing!

 

 
See you tomorrow for day #4!

Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Please feel free to sign up as a follower to receives updates by email so you don’t miss a thing!

 

Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net

Handmade Holiday 2016 ~ Day #2

Hi everyone!

Welcome to day #2 of Handmade Holiday 2016. This can be such a busy and hectic time of year but I still enjoy giving something handmade and adding handmade touches to gifts for family and friends. Each day this week, I’ll share a quick Handmade Holiday idea for gift packaging, tags, gift card holders, place setting favors, recipes and more that will be sure to add that special handmade touch.

Day #2 ~ Paper Bows

These little bows will be the finishing touch to your holiday gift bags/boxes and treat containers. And they are very simple to make. You can whip up all you need in no time at all! Fill a pretty box with a bunch of them and add some matching tags for a thoughtful gift at this busy time of year.

img_2755

 

 

You will need: paper {patterned or solid, depending on the look you are after}, envelope punch board, ruler, cutting tool of choice, bone folder, strong adhesive, embellishments.

img_2654

*Please note: for my bows, I used both patterned and solid papers.

 

 

For each bow:

Cut the solid card stock: 1″ x 6″  {x1}

Cut the patterned paper: 1″ x 5″ {x2}

 

img_2652

 

 

Round the corners on the solid strip and on one patterned strip.

img_2656

 

 

For the second patterned strip, center vertically on the punch board and punch each end.

img_2657

 

 

Center each strip {all 3} horizontally on the envelope punch board and punch each side. *Please note: I added 2 little pencil tick marks to line up the right ends of each piece to be sure they are being punched right in the centers ~ 1 {at 2.5″ from the center} for the 5″ pieces and 1 {at 3″ from the center} for the 6″ piece. These are easily erased when you are finished.

img_2658

 

 

With the bone folder, gently curl the ends of the solid strip and the patterned strip with the rounded corners. This makes it easier when folding.

img_2659

 

 

Apply adhesive to each end of these 2 pieces and match up the curves in the the center. Then adhere together the 3 layers on top of each other. Now you have a bow!

img_2660   img_2661

 

 

All that’s left is to add a pretty embellishement and it’s ready to add to a holiday package! 🙂

img_2663

 

 

Hints:

*Use a strong adhesive when creating these. This will ensure they don’t come apart. A thin layer of hot glue or double sided tape works well.

*Put a couple of small pieces of double sided tape on the back. The backing of the tape just needs to be removed and the bow is ready to stick on.

*Add a variety of embellishments to the centers ~ buttons, snowflakes, chipboard shapes, flowers, etc.

*These can be created for any occasion at any time of the year ~ just change the patterned papers.

*Here is another blog post with more uses for the Envelope Punch Board ~ https://thecountrytouch.wordpress.com/2016/08/16/tuesdays-tip-6/

 

 

*Please feel welcome to sign up as a follower to receives updates by email so you don’t miss a thing!

 

 

See you tomorrow for day #3!

Erin

The Country Touch

Website: http://www.thecountrytouch.weebly.com

Email: ctrytch@telus.net