pies and gossamer thread trees November 30, 2009

I hope you had a lovely holiday (or if you are not here in the US, a lovely regular) weekend! Our Thanksgiving was a very welcome break from an overwhelming wave of work, and we had a nice time cooking way too much food for ourselves and Pearl, and then getting to hang out with friends later in the evening for dessert. I even made my first homemade pie crust thanks to my friend Robin’s expert tutoring — my pie looked like this going into the oven with the pretty swirly crust edging,

pie about to go into the oven with the pretty crust

but it came out of the oven with crazy uneven crust edging.

pie about to be eaten with crazy crust

Regardless of how pretty it was(n’t), it tasted good. I was happy with my first attempt at real buttery pastry dough and I will definitely be baking a pie for Christmas dinner too! Maybe with a little less filling next time.

Gossamer Thread Tree 2

Speaking of Christmas-y stuff, each of the six of us who contributed to Crafty Tree Trimmings (me, Diane, Kayte, Betz, Patricia, and Linda) are making our own versions of another crafter’s ornament this month — to start things off, I hosted a little get-together in my living room for the Portland ladies and our distinguished Philadelphian visitor. Kayte made my ornament, Diane made Linda’s, and I made Diane’s — the gossamer thread trees!

fabric stiffener on the template

Diane’s instructions are marvelous — it was super fun to make my little trees. My additional tips are: 1) use serger thread if you have it handy (it winds more smoothly than a small thread spool), 2) if your fabric stiffener is watery, add a little Aleene’s Tacky Glue to improve the consistency, and 3) if you need holiday inspiration, listen to this box set while you are ornament-ing.

winding my thread for the first gossamer tree

It was a very well-documented craft session (as you can see by three cameras in action) — in fact, you will see posts all week from my fellow ornament-makers!

the very well-documented crafty tree trimmings marathon

I made a set of three trees in mint green, red and silver and varied the sizes by wrapping the thread lower on the cone on some (red, silver) than others (mint green).

gossamer trees on the mantel

I converted Diane’s lovely hanging ornament version to mantel decorations, I like having my tiny forest out before my Christmas tree is officially up.

glitter gossamer trees

I also added a final coat of Sparkle Mod Podge to make mine glittery,

gossamer trees with button stars

and since I can never resist the siren call of buttons in my crafts, I made a little extra decoration for my trees, a white glittered felt star topper with a pearl button on each one. The little tutorial I wrote to make them is up over here on my button blog if you’re interested!

button star toppers for my gossamer thread trees

If you have had a chance to make an ornament from the Crafty Tree Trimmings e-book, please add it to the flickr pool! We would love to see it. Thank you so much to everyone who has supported the project by buying a copy of the book, or posting about it — we are so excited that our donation to Project Linus is growing, and very appreciative of our crafty community!

p.s. The book is only available until December 31st, so if you have your eye on it, be sure to snap it up before then!

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