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Self-Improvement & Hobbies

Child’s play - Christmas crafts

Add a personal touch to your Christmas home decorations by roping in your child to help transform ordinary items at home into decorative ornaments.
CATS Classified In The Straits Times - October 22, 2009
By: Goh Mei Yi
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Child’s play - Christmas crafts

Instead of decorating your Christmas tree or home with store-bought ornaments, enlist your children’s help to “make over” the previous year’s baubles or create new ones. Christmas may be another two months away, but you can keep this project in mind as a post-exam activity.

Turn plain, coloured glass balls into shimmering orbs with a sprinkling of glitter or sequins. You could let younger children work with glitter pens to minimise mess.

Cut unused wrapping paper or colourful magazine pages into smaller squares and use them as origami paper. String up the origami and hang it on the tree.

Get your kids to contribute small toys which they have grown tired of, such as miniature dolls, cars, trains and teddy bears. Tie them up with some ribbon or fishing wire for instant ornaments. Alternatively, you can have a sports-theme tree and hang up light sporting paraphernalia like ping pong balls, golf balls and shuttlecocks.

You can also decorate your tree with edible goodies like candy canes or walnuts tied with ribbon. American families traditionally string up plain pop corn as streamers. You can do the same but do spray a layer of clear lacquer over the pop corn to prevent ants from getting to it.

The liberal use of spices like cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg in baked Christmas goods started in Europe when rich families wanted their homes to smell of these exotic goods to show off their wealth, as spices were very expensive commodities. The fragrance of spices remains associated with the Yuletide season to this day.

You can adapt this practice for your homemade decorations as spices are now cheap and plentiful. Bundle up a few sticks of cinnamon with lace or ribbon as tree ornaments or make a pot pourri with a mix of spices like cloves, star anise, bay leaves and cardamom.

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