Thursday, February 3, 2011

My Valentine Tree

Let me just start off by saying I'm no Martha Stewart. Or any kind of crafty person, for that matter. But sometimes I get the urge to create something, so I put my meager crafting skills to work. Though I rarely decorate for Valentine's Day, this year I had the creating urge. Hence the Valentine tree.

The first step was finding a branch with many, um, branches. That was easier said than done! Though we have a forest of trees in our backyard, none of their branches were low enough for me to reach. And before Christmas we had cleaned up the front yard and removed any fallen branches. All of that meant I couldn't find anything bigger than a twig to use for my Valentine tree.

My friend Suzanne came to the rescue! She lives out in the boonies and is surrounded by branches. She very kindly cut a fantastic branch off a scrub tree and presented me with it. She even supplied me with white spray paint to paint the branch with, too! Love that girl!

So I spray painted the branch and let it dry. I wasn't going for a snow-white look, so I left so some of the natural wood color showing through. Of course, if you want the branch to be eye-popping white, just keep adding more coats of paint until you get the look you want.

Charles anchored the now-white branch in a planter for me and filled it up with landscaping gravel. I had some river rocks from the craft store I was going to use, but I liked the tiny gravel better.

Then came the fun part, decorating the tree! I used sparkly foam hearts from the Dollar Tree, hand-stitched felt hearts I had made, and some vintage Valentines I had printed out and laminated. Oh, and some lips. Those were Charles' idea.

I'm not all that fond of sewing, but making the felt hearts and lips was fun and easy. I used a blanket stitch for some and a whipstitch for others. I wasn't going for perfect stitches, either, as you can see. I stuffed the hearts with cotton balls that I pulled apart to look like batting. And finally, I hand stitched ribbon to the backs of the felt decorations so I could hang them from the tree.

My lovely Valentine tree is sitting on the library table in our foyer now to welcome guests.

I love how it turned out! So how do you decorate for Valentine's Day?

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