Saturday, November 8, 2014

Create a stylin' way to display your holiday cards.



I've come to realize the holiday season is just around the corner. Every year, I think I have all the time in the world to get ready for fa-la-la-ing and ho-ho-ho-ing. Truth is, Halloween is over, Thanksgiving is mere weeks away and then the Christmas/Hanukkah /Kwanza/New Year's/Eat 100 Pounds of Creamy Butter Cookies season is upon us.

Let's be frank here. It's not just waiting for me at the the corner of Candy Cane Lane and Holly Avenue with glittering lights and the scent of fresh baked gingerbread encircling my head like a wreath. Noooo....it is stealthily lurking around the darkest corner of the most serpentine alley, where clanking ghosts of Christmases past and future are waiting to scare the reindeer poop out of me when I realize there is no way I can get everything done on time and I have to start crossing activities off the list.So much for homemade advent calendars. Making personalized ornaments for the grandparents? Not going to happen. Cookie swap with the neighbors? Scratch that. Taking the kids ice skating in the park? They will have to make do with a hockey game on TV. 

While I may soon be downsizing my holiday list, at least this year I will have a fabulous and stylin' place to display the cards I receive.*

Hello everyone, it's Betsy Skagen of Paper Calliope here and even if I don't have of my own mail to display, I can at least show you how to make this card tray. It's fun and easy enough to get done before the actual holiday season hits. Besides, the tray is not limited to displaying cards. Since you protect it with sealer, you could easily serve up some holiday spirits or pile it high with those Creamy Butter Cookies and settle in for a night of continuous looping of "It's a Wonderful Life".



Tutorial to make a stylin' holiday card tray


Step 1
Carefully measure bottom, outside and inside of Walnut Hollow rectangular tray, making sure to measure to top of handle. 

Step 2
Cut Distressed Trees Specialty Paper to fit inside bottom of tray. Set aside.




Step 3
Cut two pieces of Red Classic Swirl Glitter Cardstock for the outside ends and two pieces of Red Classic Swirl Glitter Cardstock for the outside front and back (side pieces). Cut two end pieces and two side pieces from a red cardstock, a dark green cardstock and a light green cardstock that coordinates with the Distressed Trees Specialty Paper.





Step 4
Trace the silhouette and handle hole of both ends on the solid red cardstock pieces. Cut these out with an X-acto knife. This will be your back piece. Next, measure the inside end pieces from the base to the base of the handle opening. Cut two light green cardstock pieces to fit this height. Cut the last two dark green cardstock pieces so it is  ¼ inch shorter than the light green cardstock. Make sure you keep track which pieces fit which end of the tray. Set papers aside.

Step 5
Drill four very small holes evenly spaced along one side of tray about one-fourth of the way down. This will be the backside of the tray. 




Step 6
Test different distress stains and inks on inside bottom of tray, where it will not show after being covered by paper. As you can see from the photo, I tested Vintage Photo Distress Stain, Victorian Velvet Distress Stain, Walnut Distress Stain and Lime Dylusions. Pick which stain you prefer and stain the tray edges, inside handle edges and outside bottom of the tray. I went with the Lime Dylusions.




Step 7
Using matte medium adhere the three solid color cardstocks to the inside (handle) ends of the tray. Make sure the middle piece comes up to the base of the handle. Line up and adhere the same cardstocks to the sides of the tray. 

Step 8
Add a protective layer of matte medium over the inside paper.





Step 9
Carefully pound in four 2.5" hardwood trim nails, making sure they are straight. Leave about 2.25" inches of the nail exposed.

Step 10
Fold a piece of scratch paper in half and cut half a pine tree (the same way you probably learned to make valentine’s in elementary school) The tree should be about two inches tall. Use this tree as your stencil to make your four pine trees.

Step 11
Cut a strip of Hunter Green with Gold Glitter Cardstock approximately 12" x 5". Fold this paper in half along the long fold with the back of the paper facing out. You should now be holding a double layer of 2.5" x 12" paper.

Step 12
Lay your pine tree stencil along this paper and trace it four times. Cut these trees out. Since you have folded the paper in half, each tree you cut will give you two pine trees. Make sure you keep each pair of pine trees together so that they match up perfectly later on.





Step 13
On two trees adhere red and gold Ornament Mini Dewdrops to both sides of the trees and on two two trees adhere green and gold Dewdrops to both sides of threes. Let dry. 

Step 14
Trace the silhouette and handle hole of both of the outside ends of the tray onto the Red Classic Swirl Glitter Cardstock end pieces you previously prepared. Cut these out with an X-acto knife. Adhere the cardstock to one outside end with matte medium. Let dry before adhering paper onto the other end because the paper tends to move around a bit. 

Step 15
After adhering and drying the second end piece, adhere the two outside side pieces, making sure you leave enough dry time in between applications.




Step 16
While outside paper is drying, carefully add dots of glue to only one of the inside edges of each tree’s boughs and put trees together. Let dry, clamping if necessary. Make sure you leave one side open so that you can still later attach trees to the nails. 

Step 17
Adhere base paper to inside of tray with matte medium. Let dry. Apply another coat of matte medium to the entire outside of the box to act as a sealant. Let dry.

Step 18
Apply another coat of matte medium to the base to seal the paper. Let dry.





Step 19
Cut four approximately 5" pieces of wire. With a needle nose pliers make a small loop at one end. Add small beads. Twirl around nail about ¾ of way up, then wrap wire tightly around the nail twice, trim extra and crimp closed. Repeat for all four nails.

Step 20
Apply final coat of matte medium to all surfaces of tray.


Step 21
For each nail, wrap exposed part of nail above wire wrapping with glue dots. Center tree on nail, add small dabs of glue to  other inside edge of tree and press tree together. Clamp shut until dry.  





Step 22
Adhere evenly spaced Forest Brown Mini Dewdrops to top edge of tray.

That's it! Now you can show off those cards or serve your secret egg nog recipe in style!




* Never mind the fact that I won't have any cards to put in it, since sending out holiday cards has been the first thing that has gotten crossed off my holiday list for the last several years. Maybe some of you wonderful Robin's Nest followers will take pity on me and send me a card. Just please don't send me a picture of you naked with all of your 73 cats. And yes, I have received a holiday card involving nudity with cats before. And no, I still don't want to talk about it.




Great stuff I used

Walnut Hollow rectangular tray
Distressed Trees Specialty Paper
Red Classic Swirl Glitter Cardstock
Hunter Green with Gold Glitter Cardstock
Ornament Mini Dewdrops
Forest Brown Mini Dewdrops
Dark red, dark green and light green solid colors cardstock
Stain of your choice
Matte medium
Craft glue
Glue dots
Four 2.5" hardwood trim nails
Decorative wire
Small beads
X-acto knife
Drill
Scissors
Paper trimmer

7 comments:

Tonya said...

Such a festive Christmas card tray! Awesome job!

Joan said...

Fantastic tray!! What a fun way to display cards!!

The Robins Nest OCrowley said...

Your tutorial is fabulous! I hope you get tons on cards to put on it... I love the dancing trees :) fabulous job!!

Terri Sproul said...

fun project, Thanks for the great tutorial too

Diane - dCipollo Designs said...

Beautiful idea

Penny Lee said...

Love the trees....great project!

Bev Code said...

amazing tray.. great project with lots of eye catching accnets

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