Take one look at this tree and ask yourself...is this not the cutest little holiday project....ever?!?!! Today's steal, the Doodlebug Designs Holiday Tree Mega Kit, has got to be one of the funnest creations for the holidays that I have ever made.
I have to tell you a cute story behind this project. I got the tree about a week ago to photograph for the steal page. After taking it out of the box I had it sitting on my work table until yesterday, when I finally had the time to sit down and create. Every day my little 6 year old would pull up a chair to my work table, rest his chin on his folded up hands and stare at the tree. It truly brought back memories of being a youngster and being so excited for the holidays to roll around, and how my brothers and I would spend hours pouring over the JC Penney catalog looking at the toy section, dreaming of what we may find under our tree on Christmas morning. After watching my sweet boy with that dreamy look in his eyes for several days, (and almost incessant nagging as to WHEN CAN WE DECORATE THE TREE), I decided to make a crafting date with him and have him help me put together the tree.
He helped me spread out all of the supplies and then we set about creating the cupcake decorations. Now I have to tell you, I'm definitely a visual learner and pretty much would rather eat my own hair than to read instructions. Well, guess what...sometimes it pays to take a few moments to gather the tips from the pros, as I was heavily into the glitter coating process before I realized that I should have painted the styrofoam balls first. Shhhhh! Never fear! I just added a LOT of glitter.
Aaron and I decided that we would spray the balls with adhesive and coat the entire surface. My first thought was to ditch the cupcake idea and dress up the entire surface of the balls, but he was so sad at the thought of straying from the picture that I decided to hang up the idea of branching out and create for the love of my son. We sprayed the balls in a box and then added glitter. Aaron had a blast rolling the balls around until they were all sparkly.
Because I had failed to read the part about painting the balls first there were small portions of white showing through. I sprayed and rolled each ball again. I must point out that another great tip that the instructions had was to insert a toothpick into the ball before painting and adhering glue. I'm here to tell you, that would have been a fantastic idea. Hee hee!
I'm still sparkly!
It's all good. In the end we ended up with perfectly pink and very glittery cupcake balls.
At this point I decided that maybe reading the instructions was a good way to go, but actually came up with a few tweaks on my own which I kind of preferred.
The instructions say to press the red beads into the styrofoam. Well, either I need to eat more Wheaties or it's just not that easy of a task, so I took a pencil and hammered it into the styrofoam to create the space for the bead.
I also didn't have any craft wire on hand, and didn't like the idea of the knot of the string that the ornament hangs from to show, so I came up with a slightly different plan. I tied the knot and then used a brad the anchor the knot portion of the string inside of the ball.
I then added a drop of glue inside of the hole, threaded string through the hole in the bead and out the top. I then used my trusty 'hammer' (aka meat tenderizer), to gently tap the bead into place.
I wanted to make each of the cupcakes slightly different. I wanted to bring out a little more contrast in the cupcakes so I decided to use the template provided and cut out the cupcake wrappers in green shimmery paper. However, Aaron was pretty convinced that we need pink polka dot ones also, so we just did a little of both.
We then decorated the base of the tree. I wanted it to look more like a gift so we used the striped paper that came with the kit. I cut the papers so that there was about 1/4" of the tree base showing on each side.
I used a corner rounder and inked the edges of the papers then used the spray adhesive to stick the papers to the base of the tree. I went to the store and found some sparkly green ribbon to make a big bow on the front. I love how this turned out!
Later on we moved on to the gingerbread men. I have to be honest that I couldn't resist using my Silhouette for the gingerbread men, rather than hand cutting them out by hand. I also wanted to add a little more sparkle to the gingerbread men, so I took a portion of the red sparkly paper and inserted it behind the buttons and faces of the gingerbread men. I then ran the backs and fronts of the gingerbread men through my Xyron, cut a piece of string and enclosed it in a loop between the front and the back of the gingerbread men.
I added a little marker to the arms and legs of the gingerbread men and a bit of ribbon to finish them up.
We then made the gumdrops...and even followed the directions! :)
Next we moved on to the ribbon candies. Even my 15 year old got in on the action and helped to glue dot them together.
I decided to go for a little more fru-fru-ness and added ribbon to the ribbon candies rather than the twine. I love the contrast and the softness!
While my daughter was helping me she was telling me how happy the tree made her because it was so sparkly, so we decided to give our candy canes a little extra sparkle as well. I decided to use my Silhouette again, and cut out candy canes. I then used the spray adhesive and stuck them to some of the We R Memory Keepers glitter papers.
I then hand cut around the edges of the candy canes and then stuck the pieces together so that both sides of the candy canes are beautiful!
Last but not least, what would a candy tree be without candy!
This tree is going to make such a darling addition to my home this holiday season! (I think my girls already have plans to make it disappear to their room!) It makes me want to get all of our Christmas decorations out and deck the halls! However, best of all was the time that I was able to spend creating with my kids. Thank you Doodlebug for creating such a fun kit.....instructions included! :)
Have a great weekend!