Christmas

SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS :: DIY Felt Play Food Tutorial – Lussekatter for St. Lucia’s Day

A few years ago, Scandinavian-American blogger Linnea wrote a lovely overview of the Swedish holiday known as St. Lucia Day, and she’s back today with a tutorial for the most darling little felt lussekatter (Swedish saffron bun) toys!  When Aveline was the same age as Linnea’s adorable little, projects like this were very popular in our house. The supplies needed are so minimal — felt, needle and thread, polyfill — but just look at how captivated babies are with the final product! Beyond cute. 

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter

DIY Felt Play Food Tutorial – Lussekatter for St. Lucia’s Day

by Linnea Farnsworth

I’m so excited to have had a little girl of my own to be a Lucia in our home! I’ve always thought that felt play food is so darling and fun, so this year I made some felt Lucia buns for her to play with.

I got a few sheets of the golden felt at Michaels, it is a perfect color. Other things you need are thread, embroidery floss in a matching color, and some batting to stuff the insides. If your Lucia is older you could put some dark beads or buttons on to be raisins (they are a bit of a choking hazard for my little Lucia, though!)

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog

Start with a piece 3″x9″. My felt sheets were 9″x12″, so I could get 4 buns from each sheet.

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog

Fold the piece in half and pin. Sew along the long edge and one short edge, leaving a 3/8″ seam allowance.

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog

Clip the corner – this make it easier to flip the corner right side out again.

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog

Turn your tube right side out and stuff it. You want it to be stuffed firmly, but not overstuffed – it needs to have some give so we can roll up the edges.

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog

Stitch the open end closed.

Now we are going to roll the felt much like we would the dough in real life. I found it easiest to roll down the edge just a little first, and anchor that with a few stitches. Here I used 3 strands of embroidery floss because it was a bit stronger and required less stitches.

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog

After that is secured, roll it down a little further and anchor with a few more stitches.

DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog

Do the same to the other side, only roll it the opposite direction for a traditionally shaped Lucia bun.

Sew on any buttons or beads for raisins if you are adding them, and you’re done! If you’d like you can experiment and make other fancy shapes with your Lucia “dough.”

Glad Lucia!
DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog
DIY Felt Food Tutorial for Swedish Lussekatter, by Linnea Farnsworth for the Oaxacaborn blog


Linnea Farnsworth is a self-described Scandihoovian, a Washington DC-area photographer, and mom to the cutest little sweet pea. Linnea has also shared previously about her Swedish heritage on both the Scandinavian Christmas and Midsommar blog series — Sankta Lucia Day and Linnea’s Swedish Midsommar Celebration. (She really throws the best mid-summer parties, you guys.) Don’t forget to follow her on Instagram at @linneaanne!

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Christmas

SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS :: Advent Calendar Ideas

Whether you spell it advent calendar or adventskalender — or even  julkalender  — we’re just two weeks away from December 1.  Time to get this Scandinavian Christmas series underway!

The first advent calendar example comes from Elisabeth Heier in Norway. She made this kalender tree from painted white boards — and then attached the paper bags to the tree using nails and wire. It’s really striking — and the black and white design keeps it from looking too cluttered.

Elisabeth Heier Kalender Tree via SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS Advent Calendar round-up on the Oaxacaborn blog
Advent Calendar Tree / Kalender tre via Elisabeth Heier

This next advent calendar, from The Merry Thought blog, cleverly strings up an evergreen bough and then decorates with tiny plywood-covered matchboxes. The full tutorial can be found here.

The Merry Thought - Evergreen Bough Hanging Advent Calendar via SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS Advent Calendar round-up on the Oaxacaborn blog
Hanging Christmas Tree Branch Advent Calendar via The Merry Thought

Starting with a plain tree, and adding one decoration per day until the tree is filled at Christmas — what a good idea! This filigrantrae is Danish-inspired and comes from Nalle’s House blog. Bonus: her post has a full tutorial if you want to make your own dowel tree, although this ideas would work with any small tree.

Nalle's House DIY Wooden Dowel Tree via SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS Advent Calendar round-up on the Oaxacaborn blog
Danish Wooden Dowel Tree via Nalle’s House

Most of the advent candles I’ve seen in my life are a group of four candles, one for each advent Sundag leading up to Christmas. But I love the idea of a single large candle measuring the days, turning the candle into a daily tradition rather than weekly one. In fact, Tina over at Copenhagen’s Traveling Mama, has observed that’s the norm in Denmark!

Traveling Mama Advent Candle Numbered for Days via SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS Advent Calendar round-up on the Oaxacaborn blog
Advent Candle Numbered for Days via Traveling Mama

If you have an accessible staircase bannister, you could make that the focal point for your advent gifts, like Swedish blog Fröken Knopp did with newsprint and twine. (P.S. How cute is that painted floor?)

Fröken Knopp Advent Calendar on Staircase via SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS Advent Calendar round-up on the Oaxacaborn blog
Staircase, Newsprint and Twine Advent Calendar via Fröken Knopp

I can hardly get over Vibeke Design’s stunning advent calendar shop display. Paper cones, edged in lace, hung from a lichen-covered hardwood branch. Oh, so pretty!

Vibeke Design Christmas Shop Display in Sweden, via SCANDINAVIAN CHRISTMAS Advent Calendar round-up on the Oaxacaborn blog
Advent Calendar Display via Vibeke Design Christmas Shop in Sweden

How are you planning to celebrate and decorate for advent this year? I’d love to hear! And if you need more ideas, here are more advent calendar ideas and even more advent calendar ideas!


Want to contribute to the 4th Annual Scandinavian/Nordic Christmas Series? Click here to find out how!

Handmade

HANDMADE :: DIY Large Felt Numbers Tutorial

TUTORIAL - DIY Large Felt Numbers on the Oaxacaborn blog

TUTORIAL - Make your Own DIY Large Felt Numbers on the Oaxacaborn blog

This is a nice, simple project. Depending how long your little person naps (and how many numbers you choose to make) it just might qualify as a single-afternoon-project.

Since all the examples of felt letters and numbers I found elsewhere were tiny, I made my own template, especially designed for the 8.5×11” sheets of felt that are so cheap at the craft store. Not only are these large items easier to sew than microscopic ones, the resulting numbers are easy to hold, can double as decor, and won’t get lost in the toy box. And, you can print out the template on standard printer paper, without worrying about scale.

Aveline is just learning her numbers (two! free! five! nine!), so I wanted to lessen any confusion about backwards numbers. This was easily accomplished by using a different color for the back of each number. I used charcoal grey felt for the front and off-white for the back, because I really really love when toys match my living room. ;)

The seams are a simple blanket stitch, sewn with various colors of six-strand embroidery floss. I didn’t divide the strands, just used it straight out of the package.

It helps if you have extra-sharp scissors (the secret to cutting felt neatly and crisply.) Because felt dulls scissors quickly, I use these 3/$1.99 Ikea scissors and just replace them whenever I need to.

Make your Own DIY Large Felt Numbers - Tutorial on the Oaxacaborn blog

The project is extremely self explanatory, so I feel a little (a lot!) silly writing a step-by-step tutorial. :-P But here it is:

MATERIALS NEEDED

2 pieces of standard 8.5×11″ felt per number
Embroidery needle
Embroidery floss/thread
Polyfill for stuffing
PDF template (numbers 0-9)

1. Print out the template (numbers 0-9), and cut out the numbers you wish to make. Lest you inaccurately think I’m overly ambitious, I only made 1, 2 and 3.
2. Lay two layers of felt on top of each other, top color first and back color second, then pin the cut-out pattern to the felt.
3. Using extra-sharp scissors, carefully cut out the felt numbers. Take the paper pattern off, then without moving the felt, pin the two pieces together again.
4. Sew the two pieces together with a blanket stitch. When you have about two inches to go, stuff the number with polyfill, then complete the seam.

Voilá! If any of you are crazy enough to make 0-9, you have to send me pictures ;) And if you’re interested in seeing a similar template for large A-Z felt letters, let me know in the comments!

Christmas

CHRISTMAS :: 7 Inexpensive and Beautiful DIY Gift Wrap Ideas

This is the way I package orders for my shop, all year ’round. I love the simplicity and textures, the freedom to make the flags neon or neutral or a combination of both — and I love the fact that the little strand of pendants can be carefully untied and hung up somewhere in the recipient’s house.
Oaxacaborn Packaging

Here are a few of my other favorite ideas for wrapping Christmas presents inexpensively and easily, using kraft paper, fabric scraps, coffee filters, paper bags, twine and yarn, and newspaper. (You can find rolls of brown kraft paper at dollar stores, in the shipping section of office supply stores, and in the moving boxes section of home improvement stores.)

These examples are all so pretty, and at the same time simple enough to actually be achievable.

Floral Dot Ribbon from Knot and Bow -- More Ideas on Beautiful and Inexpensive Gift Wrap on the Oaxacaborn blog
Torn Fabric Ribbon via Knot and Bow on Etsy

Unbleached coffee filters as wrapping paper via The Creative Mint -- More Ideas on Beautiful and Inexpensive Gift Wrap on the Oaxacaborn blogUnbleached coffee filters via A Creative Mint

Felted Balls and Twine on Brown Paper Bags as Packaging  - Audrey Smit for The French ImportBrown paper bags via Audrey Smit for The French Import

Dictionary Wrapping pages via Sweet PetulaDictionary pages as wrapping via Sweet Petula on Etsy

Newspaper wrapping via MOA OG KAFFEKOPPEN -- And many more ideas on inexpensive and creative wrapping via the Oaxacaborn blogNewspaper wrapping and pink tape wrapping via Moa og Kaffekoppen

Burlap and Kraft Paper Wrapping - PHOTOGRAPHY SAM MCADAM STYLING GLEN PROEBSTEL for Home Life Australia
Brown paper wrapping via HomeLife Australia

Christmas

CHRISTMAS :: Printable ‘Made by Joel’ Paper City Nativity Scene

Made-by-Joel-Paper-City-Nativity-Scene-1

If you need me, I’ll be printing out this amazing paper nativity scene for Aveline to “color-color”. Thanks, Made by Joel!

[UPDATE: She loves it! Please excuse the sloppy, out-of-the-lines job I did with the scissors. She was quite literally climbing up my person while I was cutting the shapes out.]Aveline's version of the Made by Joel Paper Nativity