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This year, I’m pretty darn glad that decorating for the sake of decorating is back in my life. Case in point: my living room mantel with a few new crafts thrown in, such as the Christmas stocking initials I made in about 30 minutes. It’s not rocket science (I mean, I wouldn’t be surprised if you already figured out how to make these by looking at the picture), but I figured I could share the details in case you wanted to DIY your own for just a couple of bucks.
All in all, this cost me about $2 for each one, and they definitely fall into the category I’ve called “lap crafts” in the past, because you can easily make these while watching an episode of TV (most of the time spent is waiting on things to dry, anyway).
- chipboard letters, easily found at any craft store or craft section in places like Walmart (ooh, these gold foil ones look cool too!)
- white paint
- glue/Mod Podge
- extra fine glitter
- gold floral wire
- berry and pine needle stems (I went with fake from the dollar store, feel free to use fresh if you’ve got it)
First, a tip about stockings: I got these on a Black Friday sale at Target, but they initially had a Santa-style belt on them (see the small sliver of black about halfway down the seam?). I clipped it off mainly because my stockings don’t have a waistline, and plain looked better to me. But these were much heftier than stockings I’ve used in the past, which kept twisting on me when I was trying to snap pictures. Dumb.
My solution: I have a lot of used tissue paper for wrapping around the ornaments when they’re in storage, so it was temporarily repurposed into filling the insides of each stocking. It’s perfectly crumpled and works great for shaping. Waste not, want not, much more aesthetically pleasing all around.
For each letter, I grabbed an inexpensive chipboard “C” and “S” at the craft store and painted them white. Once they dried, they each got a heavy coat of Mod Podge and a generous sprinkling of Martha Stewart “crystal fine” white glitter.
Next, I had to figure out how to hang them, so I raided my craft storage. I wrapped a loop of gold floral wire around the top to create a hook (the wire is flexible enough to bend with your hand).
If you’ve looped the hook right, there will be a small gap at the top of the loop to wedge branches into, suck as a small clump of berries and glittered faux pine needles that I ripped off a decorative stem I found at the dollar store. You can also hot glue them in place, but they stayed just fine on their own like this (and it means I can reuse the items in a different way next year if I wanted to).
There you have it. I took off one stocking detail to add another, but it adds more sparkle and ties in a touch more white and green to the upper area of the mantel. Done!