12 Days of Thrifthearted Christmas – Day 7 – Home made ornaments

The Vancouver Sun has run a series lately inviting people to send in photos of their favourite ornaments. What’s not been surprising is that nearly all the reader contributions so far have been of home-made ornaments, made by their children. How can you not love a Christmas light bulb reindeer made by your child in kindergarten?

do you have one of these at home? this one made by Aaron, when he was much younger than he is now.

When I asked my husband John what his favourite ornament is, he just looked overwhelmed. “How can we possibly choose? We have 25 years worth of ornaments on our tree, all of them with memories attached!”

bought this cheeky fellow in Scotland this year

It’s true. John and I have a tradition of purchasing an ornament from wherever we travel, so we have ornaments from all over the world: Canada, the United States, Ukraine, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Mexico, and elsewhere. We also have home-made ones from our son Aaron and others that are gifts from friends. Unpacking and hanging these each year is such a joy because it brings back such good memories.

wish i could say i made this, but i'm not that talented. i bought this on Granville Island in Vancouver years ago, it's one of my favourites. the artist painted it on an oyster shell.

Home made ornaments are a wonderful gift and my friend Marlene shared a link to a great website called “Pretty Handy Girl” (don’t you love the play on words there?) This post shows you how to make beautiful ornaments by recycling old beveled-glass and brass lamp fixtures. I’ve seen these fixtures so often at thrift shops and you’d be able to make a whack of ornaments from one fixture. I think these would make great grandparent and teacher gifts. I’d love to include a photo here but her photos are all copywritten, so you’ll have to visit her blog and enjoy the photos there – she gives you step by step photo instructions!

What’s your favourite Christmas tree ornament?

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6 Responses to 12 Days of Thrifthearted Christmas – Day 7 – Home made ornaments

  1. I’m like your husband, I could never choose. I have one made by my daughter at age six, a pottery bell that no longer has a clapper now that she is 42 and one that my sister gave my son..who decided at age five that he couldn’t pretend to be any current superhero so he crowned himself Snoople and wore a special cape and “flying shoes”. She found a flat brass superman with a flying cape and had it engraved Snoople. They don’t sound like much, but I would never part with them and they are the ones that came to mind when I read your question, not the expensive or ornate ones that I love, but not with all my hear.

    • what a great story! i love that Snoople – kids are so creative, aren’t they? and what a cool gift from his aunt! i think that that’s just it: we make associations with items and it’s the association that makes it special, not the thing itself, necessarily… which is how it is with so many things: it’s the relationships with people that matter the most.

  2. Shelley Hilton says:

    I painted your oyster shell Santa and I’m delighted to hear that he is appreciated and has such a special place in someone’s Christmas collection.

    • angelika says:

      wow! that is so cool!! i LOVE him – and i remember so clearly having a hard time choosing because they were all so special. do you still make these?

  3. Heather Lee says:

    Just reading this now and have to say that Shelley is a wonderful and gifted artist. My partner and I treasure the astonishing outdoor hand painted on carved Wood Santa that Shelley created. We were truly taken by her wonderful talent and generosity of spirit when Shelley gave us the last she produced for our new home three years ago.

    Yes, cool to say the least and hope that at some point Shelley has time to return to creating these remarkable, cherished gifts made with love.

    Heather Lee

    • angelika says:

      wow, i’d love to see that! she really is a gifted artist. i think the facial expression on our santa is so … mesmerizing. like you want to start a conversation.

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