Monday 25 November 2013

Seasonal Countdown

December is coming, and with it a wealth of holidays, parties, and lots of important numbers. Children are counting the days until school goes on break, and in general counting seems to be the theme at this time of year. With that in mind, DT member Ashli challenges us to use holiday countdown as this weeks inspiration!
Whether you’re working on December Daily, doing an advent calendar, creating home décor with numbers, or perhaps just making holiday cards and counting down how many you have left to make Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge would love to see how you countdown during the festive period.
My children usually have a chocolate advent calendar every year so this year I thought I would make a little effort and try something a little different. I was looking around Pinterest a few weeks ago and stumbled across some advent ideas HERE and HERE and so I decided to try out a few ideas of my own. 
I began with pieces of wood which I adhered and then used nails to ensure each piece was secure prior to any painting.
The tree was then painted with a dark coloured paint (I used paint from one of the bedrooms I decorated recently).
Pegs have been added so that I could hang bags from each.
I wanted my tree to have an aged rustic feel and Vaseline is perfect for achieving this.
Apply the Vaseline around the edges of the tree, where you would expect pieces to age and add some Vaseline randomly around the tree. Do not apply in thick blobs, less is more with this technique. Then paint the tree with white or cream paint. I used white and applied two coats.
Once the paint was completely dry I then sanded the tree with some fine sandpaper. Wherever I applied the Vaseline the paint is removed easily and the darker colour underneath is revealed, giving an aged effect to the wood.
I love this technique and it's so simple and the finish is perfect to add that rustic feel.
My family also helped a little with this tree, my husband made the stand and my children Ryan and Laura had a great time picking out chocolate for the bags. However, I did add a surprise here and there!
I added hessian to cover the stand and tied a large twine bow to the centre.
This picture shows the ageing a little better.
I added a wooden heart to the centre of the twine and stamped the heart using the background stamp from the Season's Silhouettes stamp set. I also added a touch of colour to age using Frayed Burlap Distress Ink.
I added a heart to the top of my tree using one of Wendy Vecchi's Heart Art Parts.
This tree could actually be used all year round to hang gift tags or special pieces of art.
Next came the bags for my trees which I die cut from Kraft card using Tim Holtz In The Bag Die, this die was the perfect size to house seasonal treats. I aged each bag adding a touch of colour with Frayed Burlap Distress Ink.
I added numbers to each bag die cut from Tim Holtz Kraft Core Nostalgic Paper Pad using the Memory Box Advent Calendar Die.
Mini stockings have been added to each bag die but from Kraft card using the Mini Stocking and Candy Cane die. I also sanded each stocking to add to that aged feel.

For more great ideas please pop over to the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge blog and take a look at my fellow team members they have created some inspirational projects. Remember there is also the chance to win a $50 prize from Simon Says Stamp.  I always look forward to seeing your creations each week.

Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment, much appreciated.  Enjoy your week. Tracy x x 

Products Used:

Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous Season's Silhouettes Stamp Set
Tim Holtz In The Bag Die
Tim Holtz Core'dinations Kraft Core Nostalgic Paper Stack
Tim Holtz Mini Stocking and Candy Cane Die
Memory Box Advent Calendar Craft Die
Frayed Burlap Distress Ink
Black Archival Ink
Wendy Vecchi Art Parts Heart, Love and Stars


Inkypinkycraft said...

this is a fab idea , love the distressed feel to the wooden tree, what a great idea x hugs trace x

Helen said...

Totally gorgeous, Tracy! So much nicer that they can use it year after year too.
Hope they love the chocolates...

Barb Cady said...

Sensational piece of work! A real family heirloom, great work all of you! X

Candy C said...

Tracy...this is darling. Quite a lot of work went into this wonderful advent tree...but it was so worth it! I love your vintage tree. So pretty! And the little sacks clipped to each clothes pin are decorated so sweetly. As always, you've really done a beautiful job on this project! <3 Candy

Suzanne C said...

This is just brilliant and so charming! Love the burlap bag at the bottom with the beautiful heart and twine!

Suzanne C said...

I forgot to say thanks for the vaseline tip! I am definitely going to remember that for future use!

rachel said...

this looks amazing Tracy - I always do a chocolate christmas advent calender for the kids but its a fabric one with pockets that I just have to fill up!!!! Not too much work there then lol!!! Love your idea though and the vaseline tip is fab! Thanks for that x

Brenda Brown said...

Beautifully shabby and such a brilliant idea. I have bought the numbers but haven't made anything for them to go on yet. Hopefully I will get to try something out this week. Thanks for all your inspiration.
hugs {brenda} x0x

Anonymous said...

WOW! Beautiful idea and beautifully executed! I love it!

Paula Whittaker said...

what a fab project

Mona Pendleton said...

Super cute countdown calendar Tracy! Love all the adorable stockings and the beautiful tree that you made! Thanks for sharing the creative process!

Words and Pictures said...

Lovely idea, and such cool distressing on the wood... time to add Vaseline to my supplies! Thanks for the inspiration.
Alison x

AngelicaS said...

A great idea!! Love it! Looks so rustic and has a real vintage feel to it.

Meihsia Liu said...

Oh... this is such fun and awesome creation! Tracy. I love the cute stockings and the cloth pins on the wooden tree. :) Sweet!

Sandra said...

Amazing project, Tracy! Love the tree form you've created and what a great tip of the vaseline! It's so much fun! Hugs, Sandra

Anonymous said...

Such great fun and lovely that you can bring this out each and every Christmas creating a new family tradition.
Those bags are so sweet and all I can say is this.

email: said...

Gorgeous countdown, Tracy! I love the little stockings on the kraft paper :)

Simon Says Stamp!

Michelle said...

I love your project Tracy. This isn't just any project, you've created a family heirloom! I think that it's SO sweet that you included the family with this one. I think it's a fabulous idea and it's going to be so much more fun that eating those teeny-tiny chocolates. Love it!

Cheryl said...

How cute! I love the idea of a chocolate advent calendar! Way better than trying to find 24 teeny little gifts.

Annie said...

Love this Shabby Chic make Tracy..............and I am sure the kids will love it too. Thanks for sharing the 'How to'

CRafty Hugs

Annie x

Andrea Ockey Parr said...

Holy cow! You always give me such amazing ideas...not to mention practical tips that I think I could actually pull off! You inspire and make things doable and possible and that's what I love about your blog. Your tree construction on this project was so clever and the Vaseline trick was awesome. Thanks again for inspiring me!

barbarayaya62 said...

Thank you for your inspirational post! Love this tree! BArbarayaya

Greta said...

Incredible family project! This is wonderful! Thanks so much for the tip on using Vaseline--never would have known to do that.

Anna-Karin said...

Wow Tracy! This is fantastic!! Love the rustic tree you created and that bag die was perfect for this purpuse. Time to open the first one tomorrow!

Kezzy said...

Wow, your kids will love this, I love the wooden tree and all those little envelopes held up with pegs is amazing :-) Kezzy xxx

Arnoldo L. Romero, MLA said...

I really like your tree, because you could easily make different sets of numbers to hang on it to go with your Christmas decorating theme. It seems pretty simple to make too, even for people with little carpentry skills like mine. Blessings!