Monday, December 12, 2011

CRAFTS from the Past~Nuts for Christmas

While digging through the Christmas bins, I came across some oldies but goodies.  I talked about the pine cone baskets and wreaths in my last post.
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Some of you are old enough to remember the ceramics craze of the 70's.  As a  working young mother, I looked forward to one night a week to go to my friend Gail's house and socialize with other gals while working on our masterpieces.  :)
The Christmas Tree napkin holders still live as does the lighted tree and leaf dishes in the Lenox style.  Still put them out! My sister still uses the Holly Bowl I made her so many years ago,
Then the embroidery hoop wreaths...anyone still have them?  I have lots of hoops left over.
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How about the fabric wreaths with eyelet and ball fringe.  Everyone I knew got one as a gift!  Minimal sewing skills needed.
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My friend made me this stuffed tree.  I couldn't get rid of it, I washed it and it was good as new.  It's great for the tiny grandkids to play with, they can't break it!
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So my bins are teeming with blasts or crafts from the past, but I can't bear to discard them.   I look at them, then put them back in to decide another day!
I took my camera down to the basement to take their pic, and then back they went!
Two years ago I thought I would make a tons of these napkins you fold to look like trees.
Blog Labor 465_thumb[6]Cmas napkin

Blog Labor 466_thumb[4]napkin
I was going to buy fabric after Christmas cheap, and while away the winter creating them for gifts.  It never happened!
What Christmas  craft craze do you remember?  This year I see a lot of the wide mesh fabric wreaths.  I bought some, but haven't tried it yet
Saturday we were invited to a Mass and dinner in a friend's home , and she requested shortbread cookies.
I made them in the gingerbread man shape, some even had a heart.
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Then I used the Nut Molds from King Arthur I talked about before Tgiving. 
You press the dough into them, then put them together with a filling.  I used chocolate or apricot.
My friend Marigene, at In The Middle of Nowhere thinks they are a pain, but I guess I am easily entertained! :)
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I used the shortbread recipe for them too.
The one I use is from an old cookbook, Ina's is pretty much the same.
They are melt in your mouth good!
Finally, one my favorite tables.  I still haven't come to the bin with that pretty tablecloth!
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Blog Labor 082_thumb[10]Check Cmas
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Hope your holiday preparations are going well.  Trying to Simplify this year.  :)
Thanks for visiting,.
I am joining Marty for Tabletop Tuesday.
Natasha's Christmas Linky Party


  1. Oh, Kathleen I adore that tablecloth! And I thoroughly enjoyed that you shared some blasts from the past. I have kept all my Christmas things but, many stay in the attic. Thank you for this post - I will be rethinking some decorations this year :) (I just started decorating yesterday)
    One thing my adult children will not let me stop doing is using those big colored light bulbs I had as a child. They do scare me because they get so hot. But what a magnificent glow they give.

    And I so remember those fabric trees!

    Thanks for such a lovely post!

  2. Hi darling, I adore your tablecloth. What treasures your Christmas bins hold. I know each one you pulled out brought a smile to your face, they sure made me smile. hugs ~lynne~

  3. Some of these crafts really bring back mother was always hooked on one thing or another. One of her passions was painting ceramic pieces. She loved clowns and at Christmas she made some beautiful ornaments. I have some of them and a clown or two! They bring back fond memories of her.

    Your tablecloth is gorgeous! Is always nice to find things we packed away long ago!

    Your cookies look fantastic. I have to look up that recipe...shortbread is my favorite. All that butter!! Love it!

    Happy Holidays!


  4. Oh Kathleen, I did ceramics in the 70's and made those napkin rings, I gave them to a friend who hosts Christmas at her house. I had trees, wreaths and angels. I just found a small snowman and napkin holder that my Mom made, and she put the date on them - 1979. xo

  5. Oh yes I lived though those crafting eras with you. I have one of those embroidered hoop decorations but mine has a fabric painted tree on it. Love those walnuts! I always enjoy scrolling through your posts...

  6. Hi Kathleen,
    I had to laugh at each thing you are showing here in the beginning of your post! My Mom, me or Grandmother still has each of these! The napkin rings, the fabric tree. I don't think they have gotten rid of them either. Your cookies are very cute and I love that tablecloth!! Nice Christmas tablescape! Merry Christmas!

  7. These older 'crafts' crack me up! I remember all those things from the 70's...I still see them in the thrifts all the time. Love your table! I am a big fan of red and white and this is so festive. hugs, Linda

  8. Kathleen, I enjoyed seeing your "blast from the past" crafts! I also looked forward to that one night a week that I went to ceramics classes. I also made a set of the tree napkin rings, but have no idea whatever happened to them.

  9. Oh my goodness, I enjoyed your crafting blast from the past! When I was a kid, my mom always made those hoop wreaths. Haven't seen one in years! LOL

  10. Kathleen,
    I enjoyed seeing your collection of things from the past. Love your table cloth. Love your gingerbread men with hearts. Happy Holidays! Pat

  11. I really like your red and white checkered place settings. Just my favorite thing! Yes, I lived through all these stages. You didn't mention turning a Reader's Digest magazine into a Christmas tree by folding down the edges and sprey painting it. I am still making pine cones into Christmas trees and putting cloves into oranges like I did in Brownies in 1959!

  12. What a great trip down Memory Lane. I do remember ceramics because my mom also got together for weekly classes with friends.

    Those hoop wreaths and the other kind too were big when I got married. I had some, but I don't have them anymore.

    I remember the wooden ornament period. I got tons of little handmade wooden ornaments from my students.

    They are still in the attic. Had it not been for my students, I wouldn't have had much of a tree that first few years.

    And I love your tablecloth and table. I would love some of those dishes for my kitchen year round.

  13. I had napkin rings like those...had being the operative word!
    And the stuffed Christmas tree...I can't tell you how many I made of them for gifts...oh and by the way, I didn't keep one for me! Typical!
    Nice to see all the "old" crafts again!!

  14. I love that pretty tablecloth Kathleen and such cute things, specially that fat stuffed tree, sooo adorable...such handy work, really nice you kept it and I enjoyed looking at this retro 70's!, lol!. I love your checkered place settings. The cookies like nuts look awesome and all the others, so yummy looking. Merry Christmas.

  15. What a pretty cloth on your table. This year I put out my 24" ceramic Christmas tree. Between me, mom, my grandmother and my two sisters, we have plenty of ceramics! My favorite of the ceramics is the Santa plate that my aunt made for my mom. I'll try to take a picture and post it. I also made several hoops like yours;-) The good ole days!

  16. Beautiful tablecloth and plates, Kathleen but your cookies are really making me hungry,. I don't remember making any Christmas crafts at all in the past except sewing some initials and stuffing them and then hanging them on trees.....Christine

  17. I wish I still had some of my hoop pictures I made in the 80's. You were wise to keep them. Your table setting is so pretty!
    I look forward to following your blog!


  18. That is a beautiful tablecloth and table. The cookies look day I will drag those walnut molds out again to see just how much of a pain they really are!

  19. Kathleen, had to smile as I scrolled down through memory lane. Been there done much of the same. ;-)
    Hope you find that pretty cloth. It's perfect for those dishes. I used my set of these last year at Christmas. They are some of my favorite dishes. ~ Sarah

  20. Going through the Christmas bins is a little like an archeological dig isn't it.
    Lots of projects here that have never come to fruition but I keep trying.
    I love the Christmas tree napkin though.

  21. What a fun trip down memory lane, Kathleen! Yes, I do remember those things... I have finally gotten rid of some of them. That tablecloth, though, is so pretty! And your table is great, and your gingerbread boys with a heart are too cute! I'm dying to make the nuts--even if they are trouble according to Marigene, because I love shortbread--and with chocolate? Heavenly! It looks to me like you are ready!! Enjoy and thanks for visiting me and commenting on my vignettes post! ~Zuni

  22. K those napkins are absolutely adorable-I've never seen them before and think that's such a great idea! Also lovin' that cute gingham tablecloth! Shortbread seems to be the cookie of my dreams this year too, I've even looked into some of the molds. Happy Holidays-have fun:@)

  23. I went to ceramics classes when I was young, mom got a lot of ash trays that were supposed to be bowls :) Such pretty things. I love those napkins.

  24. All these years..we've been making the same crafts:)

  25. Those cookies at the bottom look a little like pistachio nuts, and I'm sure they will taste very good. Richard

  26. What fun it must be going through your holiday bins, Kathleen! I think my sister still has some of the ceramics that I made during that craze. Another one of the crafts I did was making Christmas ornaments from styrofoam balls cut in half. I'd put a family photo on the cut side and then I'd pin all kinds of beads and sequins around the outside. Not sure if any of those have survived.

    I hope you find that tablecloth - it's beautiful!

  27. I didn't catch on to the ceramics craze until the early 80s. I remember going to a class...hated it! I did it at home by myself and enjoyed it, though. I just had to take my creation somewhere to get it toasted in the oven! ;-)

  28. I so enjoyed this post. My mom had one of those stuffed Christmas always sat on our piano. Thanks for digging out and sharing!

  29. Oh my goodness girl, talk about a blast from the past. I just had a good fun chuckle to myself with the cute memories. Hey I LOVE, LOVE LOVE your nut cookies. When they are this cute I'd be easily entertained too. They are absolutely adorable. And the cute gingerbread people minus the gingerbread (smile). Your short bread recipe must be dynamite. I'll look around your blog to see if its in an earlier post. Your tablecloth is charming as is your tablescape. You know how to do it up right Kathleen. Such a joy coming here to your blog.



  30. What a fun post! Yes, I remember doing ceramics! I made a Raggedy Ann and Andy and still have them!

    Love that tree napkin, teach us how to make that after Christmas! So cute! I also like the tree napkin rings.

    Funny how most of us bloggers were into crafts, probably still are!


  31. What a fun post! I remember my mom making a lot of your crafts and I think she still has some of them packed away! My oldest came home with a pine cone tree today, so I guess I have to start a new collection! Your tablecloth is beautiful.

  32. I have the very same stuffed Chistmas tree, Kathleen! My sister-in-law made it for me may years ago. I still take it out every season.

    I love your gingerbreadmen and walnut cookie shortbreads!

  33. Boy, this was a blast from the past! I did several of those crafts but none of mine turned out so nice. I really like that little Christmas tree napkin & will have to google how to do it.

    I remember that beautiful tablescape & I still love it as much as I did the first time!!
    I am still having issues with my arm & hand, so not much blogging lately. :( but I had to come say "hi" & see what you were up to.


  34. You're so crafty! What fun there is at Casa Kathleen! Merry!!!

  35. One of my favorites of yours is your red and white theme tablesettings.
    Nut molds are adorable.


  36. I so understand how you can't part with the old treasures. Thank goodness for the bins! I'm still not done decorating! Love the hearts in the gingerbread men.

    - The Tablescaper

  37. Oh, and I forgot to say how much I LOVE those Christmas tree napkins. I've never seen them. I think you should aim to make them this winter. And maybe give some to someone who has a Spring birthday. Hint, hint.

    - The Tablescaper

  38. What a blast from the past! Thanks for reminding us of all of the fun crafts we have done and given away. Your table is so pretty with the red and white. I really love the lidded soup tureens. they are magnificent.

  39. I think I remember doing most of those crafts! Most of mine have wound up in yard sales or the charity bins, I guess -- I really don't know what happened to all of it.

    The red and white table is so festive -- probably my favorite look for Christmas.

  40. I lovel shortbread and these look so very delicious!!! Wishing you well! Cathy

  41. Hmmm...wrote a long comment and it totally disappeared. Here's a condensed version. I'm as bad a saver as you are and one of these days I won't have a choice about cleaning out the garage. I love your red and white table, Kathleen, and those fun little nut cookies too.

  42. That is such a cute tablecoth and you know anything red appeals to me. It is so funny to see your craft collection from the past. The thing I remember most is my mom's lit ceramic tree. I wish I could have kept it. I also made a counted cross stitch Christmas scene in a hoop from my MIL, and she displays it every Christmas. We must have got all these same ideas from the magazines (not Pinterest then!). Joni

  43. Your table looks wonderful. I love the reds. I absolutely love your blog header. It would be so good to have a white christmas.

    Kelly @ Craft Until Your Art's Content

  44. Kathleen, that tablecloth just makes me smile. It is beautiuful. I still have a Santa face plate that I made in ceramics shop. When I get it out of the holiday closet, my husband always laughs at my effort! One year, I gave everyone on my Christmas list macrame plant holders! Yuk! I'm sure nobody held onto those very long! laurie

  45. I recognized every single one of the crafts with the exception of the Christmas tree napkins and the walnut cookies. Guess that gives my age away. There are two ceramic trees floating about in the family that are not being displayed. I most fervently want one of them.

    Now don't you think that this Blah uary could be the year to make those napkins? They are sweet.


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