I love December and I love Christmas, but I also love a relaxing build up. It's such a fun time of year that I don't want to rush it. I like to stagger the preparations and save some of the more magical moments, like putting up the tree in the living room and visiting Father Christmas, until school is out and my husband is close to finishing work for the year. And I'm not going to lie, it's also an attempt to contain some of my little ones' excitement. The big day's still three and a half weeks away which is pretty much a lifetime when you're two and five. Let's not peak too soon. But festive crafts? Festive crafts that involve paint? That, we can do.
I've recently taken delivery of a Cricut Explore One (I'll tell you more about it as I get to know it a little better) and wanted to try a simple papercut craft which you could recreate even if you don't have one. A steady hand and a craft knife will also work for this.
These simple Christmas-themed papercuts would make really nice gifts and are quick and easy to make. And the painting part for the children? Well, that comes with creating the most amazing wrapping and gifts tags, of course.
First ... the framed papercut.
You will need:
- a frame (I used an 8" x 6" one from George Home)
- coloured card (mine is from this docrafts Papermania pack)
- white card
- craft knife
- double sided tape or glue
1. Cut both pieces of card to the size of your frame - you can either use a ruler to do this or draw around the insert that comes with most frames.
2. Print the outline of your chosen shape on the piece of white card. PicMonkey is a great resource for seasonal shapes. Make sure you adjust your design and printer settings for the size of the paper/frame that you're using.
3. Using double sided tape or a spot of glue, stick the white card with the shape cut out of it on to your chosen coloured card.
It's better to use a contrasting colour so that the pattern really stands out.
4. Place your masterpiece in its frame.
Because our framed papercuts are going to be given as gifts, I let the boys loose with stamps and paint to customise plain craft paper and wooden gift tags. If you keep to a couple of colours, even messy attempts look really nice. I bought the stamps in Switzerland a couple of years ago, but everything else is from the One Stop Craft Shop. We then added ribbon and a Lindt chocolate figure to our parcels (two in the mouth from every one stuck to a gift is the rule, apparently) and now they're tucked away in wardrobe ready to be placed under Christmas trees in twenty five days time. Tick tock, tick tock.