I am really, really in love with color. Be it hot pink or a dang awesome chartreuse I’m all about bringing some color and fun into this new house. In the past I’ve been worried about appearing “grown up”. You see I get excited about silly things and laugh and smile a lot. This tends to give the distinct impression to people “this chick is a total idiot”. Or so I’ve been told. The first impression I give off is often less that I’m a happy person but more often a dumb one. And that’s freaking ridiculous.
For most of my adult life I’ve tried to properly “adult”. My first home was decorated in burgundy and navy and hunter green pops with a mostly beige or brown color pallet. I was told that was a “grown up” color scheme and so that’s what I did. I remember being at Kohl’s and being heavily encouraged to buy hunter green place mats that I just hated. I got them and used them and never, ever liked them. I freaking hate hunter green to this day.
I’ve decided now that I’m in my thirties, “screw that noise” and I’m going to live my life in as much technicolor awesomeness as I want. And since I’ve always allowed myself a bit of liberty with colors and fun when decorating for Christmas it only felt natural to go even further and bring this stuff into my home for the entire season. I mean, Christmas trees can be winter just as well as Christmas, right?
Because I’ve got so much going on color-wise these days I decided to keep the design simple for this project. Bright colors with simple lines. In the end I am so in love with my little office Christmas scene that I couldn’t be happier. Let’s make some colorful Christmas magic, shall we?
For this project you will need:
- Paper mache cones (these are similar but mine are from Hobby Lobby)
- Christmas craft items (blank Christmas tree forms, nut crackers, etc.)
- Battery operated twinkle lights
- Bright paint & brushes
- Mod Podge Gloss or other sealer
Take your drill and using a few sizes of drill bits make holes all around your paper mache cone. If the cone is closed on the bottom, use a craft knife to cut open a hole.
Use something smooth to rout the holes out and to help get that frizzy paper mache off. In some cases you might need a craft knife if your drill got extra crazy. We are going to repeat this step after the cones are painted so a quick pass is all you need. Don’t worry about perfection.
Now I wanted to make sure that my holes would actually be enough to produce some light when lit from the inside.
Good enough for me!
Because it’s so much cheaper I try to use craft acrylic paints (the 2 ounce little bottles by Folk Art or Apple Barrel, for example) rather than spray paints. Spray paints are way faster but you’re going to spend more money for less color options and then you have something much larger to store in your crafty stash!
After you have pained the cone and while it is still wet do the paint brush end trick again. The paper mache will get soft from the wet paint and will clean up super well.
I also snagged this Christmas tree shape at Hobby Lobby and painted it a bright, fun blue.
And a solid wood nutcracker got some plum good treatment. Get it? Plum? Like the color? I crack myself up!
Now it turns out plum paint can kind of suck. I used 3 different brands, including the thickest I have found, Martha Stewart, and they all didn’t cover worth half a hoot. This one is actually the Martha Stewart color. I wound up using spray paint I already had on hand but just so you know plum paint is thin as all get out for some reason.
To give everything a nice, glossy color and make the paper mache look more like expensive ceramic I took glossy Mod Podge and gave everything a nice little sheen!
Remember to add your Christmas lights for a pretty little glow!
I am totally digging this set up on top of my little shelf with black and white storage cubies in it. The pop of color is just what I was hoping for and it’s so simple at the same time.
In the end this was a pretty inexpensive project and using craft acrylics I got the EXACT colors I saw in my head! Now if you aren’t down for the brightest brighties like I am that’s totally cool. Heck, if you love hunter green run with it! The great thing when you DIY is that you can make whatever you want however you want :) Yay for individuality!