I hate to play favorites, but I think I saved the best handmade holiday gift idea for last this week — painted cork coasters. Using plain cork coasters, I painted stripes and color blocks in pink, teal, and gold, and then finished off the top of them with a matte sealer to keep them waterproof. You could play around with color combinations that match your gift recipients’ home and style to make a customized gift, and pair them with their favorite wine or spirit. Are you trying any homemade gifts this year?

Cork Coaster 1 Cork Coaster 2 Cork Coaster 3

Looking for more DIY present ideas? Check them out here.

This is a DIY gift that I can nearly guarantee anyone would love to receive, homemade simple syrups. Sometimes I wonder, do they call it simple syrup because it’s so simple to make? I think they might!  I used this recipe, and added  apples for my own twist. Then I packaged it up in mini-mason jars and labeled the tops with brown craft paper, bakers twine, and recipe tags. Experiment with flavors and come up with your own mixture (I’ve used this recipe before too) — it’ll make your gift even more unique when you give it your own spin!

Cran-Apple Simple Syrup 1 Cran-Apple Simple Syrup2 Cran-Apple Simple Syrup3 Cran-Apple Simple Syrup4 Cran-Apple Simple Syrup5

Looking for more DIY present ideas? Check them out here.

Today’s handmade holiday idea is all about creating a simple hostess gift. I purchased a few different sizes of  wooden spoons, and taped off stripes at various intervals with painter’s tape, and then painted in the lines with black paint. After the paint thoroughly dried, I peeled back the tape to reveal the pretty stripes. Make sure you add a matte coat of clear finish over the top so that they’re safe to hand-wash.  And of course, presentation is everything — I wrapped the set up in a  shiny silk ribbon to make them gift-giving-ready!

DIY Spoon Set 1 DIY Spoon Set 2 DIY Spoon Set 3 DIY Spoon Set 4

Looking for more DIY present ideas? Check them out here.

Ready for another simple handmade holiday gift? This is another under-5-minutes DIY — glittery rhinestone filled ornaments. To make these, I purchased clear ornaments from my local craft store, and filled them up with rhinestones in various colors, shapes and sizes. Then I added a bright pink silk ribbon to the top for hanging. While I sort of want to keep these shiny little decorations for myself, I think they’d make a great gift for your girlfriends, customized in colors to match their style. Or tie a few onto a wrapped present as a special decoration that the recipient can add to their tree!

Rhinestone Ornament 1 Rhinestone Ornament 2 Processed with VSCOcam

Looking for more DIY present ideas? Check them out here.

I am slowly recovering from my long weekend of feasting and am ready to kick-off some holiday-talk this week! Last year I had so much fun sharing DIY gift ideas, so I thought I would share a few new ideas this season too. This mulling spice kit is a super simple idea that would be great for hostess or teachers gifts — and it’ll take you only about 5-minutes to put together.  I purchased some stacking organizers from the Container Store and in each layer added in a different spice — cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, anise, allspice, are all common mulling spices you could use here — pick the ones you like best! After all of the containers were filled, I stacked them back up and tied some whole cinnamon sticks to the container with a festive red ribbon. Consider pairing these with a bottle of red wine, some spice-bags, and a little handwritten note with your favorite mulled-wine recipe!

Mulling Spice Kit 1 Mulling Spice Kit 2 Mulling Spice Kit 3 Mulling Spice Kit 4

Looking for more DIY present ideas? Check them out here.

Next week I have a few fun DIY ideas for handmade holiday gifts — but in the meantime I thought I would share a few of my favorite DIY gifts from last year to get you in the crafting-mood! My favorite of these is the festive bottle stoppers, I gave them out as gifts last year and they were a hit — plus I still have a few hanging around that I plan on using for holiday entertaining! Do you have any plans for homemade gifts this year?

Festive Bottle Stoppers | Cookie Mix Jars | Glitter Hangers | Polka Dot Candle Holder | Monogrammed Coffee Mugs

DIY Holiday Gifts - Ornament Bottler Stopper

I think is going to be my first post where I claim the ‘holiday season is upon us’ — because I officially saw them rolling out the roasting pan displays and racks of Christmas decorations at Target last night!  I did a little DIY project a few weeks back to create a custom chalkboard and I think this idea is perfect for adding a little rustic touch to your holiday decorating. It’s as simple as this: I found the tree stump slices at Michael’s and painted them freehand with black chalkboard paint, leaving a little border around the edge to show some of the wood. I think they would be just perfect for writing out your holiday dinner menu on, sharing your signature cocktail recipe (like I did below) or even a thoughtful note about what you’re thankful for at Thanksgiving.

Rustic Chalkboard1Autumn_Apples29

Photography (Image 2) by Bring to Light Photography and Florals by Little Flower Cottage

Excuse the grainy iPhone pictures here, but in my fury of preparations for last weekend’s bachelorette party, this was the best shot I got of a fun little item I added into favor bags. I refuse to subject my gal-pals to the hot pink/zebra/glitter products of the bachelorette aisle at party stores and went with a DIY approach to favors. Among the contents were these mini envelopes filled with Advil for the after-after party. I got the bags and stickers at Gus & Ruby Letterpress, and drew a few silly sayings on the closure labels to let guests know that recovery was on the way – and from my personal experience, they came in handy come Sunday morning.

bachelorette goody bag 3

I got such a rush of happiness this evening when I walked outside my office building and it was warm and still light outside! I popped on my sunglasses and might have actually skipped to the subway. Spring is in the air people, so I’m sharing a crafty little DIY to get you in the spirit. No drink is complete without a festive adornment so I whipped up some mini-pinwheel cocktail stirrers to have on hand for my weekend libations. Making them is super easy: first cut decorative paper into 2″ squares; next cut small incisions into the corner of the squares and roll the edges around a pencil. Finally, layer the four points towards the center and pin them (I use map-tacks) and tack the pinwheel onto a small stirrer. Voila! Now you just need to mix yourself a drink and cheers to spring!

RADSC_0071Pinwheel 1_edited-1ADSC_0072

Sometimes there’s wrapping paper that’s too cute to rip into and discard. Such was the case with this absolutely adorable hot pink zebra paper that wrapped up one of my birthday gifts, I just had to do something with it to keep it around. I used the top of a wooden box to create a small tray and with some paint and a little decoupage I can enjoy the paper every day now.  (I liked the paper so much,  I even went back to the store to get some more! You can find it here: Paper-Source).

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