Monday, November 30, 2015

Kicking Consumerism in the Teeth

Step One
Gather a stack of old catalogs and/or magazines. Bonus points if they feature Best Gifts of 2015 guides or any single item priced over $30. Triple bonus points if they try to make you feel bad about buying a roll of red and green paper along with a bag of those stick-on bows from Kroger and calling it a day.

Step Two
Gather additional supplies.
  • circle paper punch (I found mine at Michael's but this one is similar.)
  • scissors
  • spool of white thread
  • tape (double-sided is best!)
Step Three
Make a cup of tea in a winter-themed mug, because we aren't barbarians here. 

Step Four
Queue up instrumental Christmas hymns or Broadchurch on Netflix. Whatever. It's up to you.

Step Five
Page through your catalogs, scouring for interesting color and pattern.

Step Six
Punch circles until the cows come home or you know who killed Danny, whichever comes first.

Step Seven
Sandwich two circles onto the thread with a tiny piece of double-sided tape, spacing somewhat evenly between circles, but it's not like anyone's going to take a tape measure to it...


Step Eight
Fling your finished garland about. (The tree! The walls! The headboard of your bed!)

You can't possibly imagine how therapeutic this entire process is.

I laugh in the face of Cyber Monday! I toss my thinning hair over my bony shoulder in righteous indignation over your $270 throw, Garnet Hill! I refuse to buy into the lie that normal children make their beds, Land of Nod! Serena and Lily, YOUR PRICES ARE WHACK!

But you sure do produce lovely circles for my garland, and for that, I thank you.


Hey, hey. It so happens I have an extra catalog garland burning a hole in my pocket. Leave me a comment telling me anything holiday related - anything in the world! - and I'll send it to one of you.

Merrily,
FPFG

*Check out my other junk-magazine crafts right here.

61 comments:

  1. I'm actually making one gift each for my 3 daughters in law...you have NO idea how miraculous it is that I am being "crafty". I've decided that I am 50 and free and if my crafts don't turn out the first time I can scrap them and start over...or just add a coat of paint! FREEEEEDDDDOOOMMMMM!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I never saw myself as the paper punch buying type, but this might just do it. Just finished mopping the floors so making holiday crafts seems like the next logical step!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All I can say is that it's a slippery slope. I bought a heart-shaped punch 6 or 7 years ago, and now I have 3 shapes and I can't stop punching all my junk paper. :)

      Delete
  3. Was super motivated to put up decorations this weekend! Yay...but finally got to put up our tree and now am boycotting putting on the lights because...just ugh! I hate doing the lights! Maybe by the end of the week. Also...Wish you were helping at Camp Create in the spring. Then I'd be able to meet two 'famous' peeps I follow in blogland! Tell Meg you NEED to be a helper again please!!
    Happy Christmas Season! Love your Blog!

    ReplyDelete
  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  5. This is very cute and my pitiful tree would love some new digs! For the first time in my entire 38 years of life I am looking forward to Christmas! Holidays are hard in my family, but we decided to change it up and flee to California to spend it with my brother and family! We are very excited!

    ReplyDelete
  6. My first year in many years not handmaking any of my presents (grad school, brother's wedding, full time job, being married)...gave myself permission to say no to that...Amazon Prime and I are going to be BFF.

    ReplyDelete
  7. still in kitchen makeover mode...and it feels never ending...not sure I'm even going to decorate for Christmas this year..what do you think about making one out of home depot receipts...I sure do have a lot of those hanging around!! Great project...I don't have a paper punch, but I'm sure I could get one...

    Cheryl @ The Creative Me and My McG

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love this idea! Only problem is, I throw catalogs out as soon as I get them so I'll have to see if any friends kept theirs! I don't believe in paying retail price for anything so I only shop clearance sales and thrift shops! Looking forward to making some creative gifts lke this for friends' Christmas presents, thanks for the inspiration!! Liz

    ReplyDelete
  9. This is super cute. I'm knocking around the idea of sewing my four year old a puppet "stage" that goes on a tension rod in a doorway... But my motivation is fading fast and Etsy might just be my answer to my crafty aspirations.

    ReplyDelete
  10. i found your blog this summer and remember reading your post on how you make your tree different every year (i think it was the number tree last year?). that lovely tree has stuck with me and i've decided to join you in making allllll the christmas decorations this year. we always do the paper snowflakes and popcorn garland but i love the idea of making paper garlands/ornaments (like lori harris just posted) for the tree and house.

    thanks for being so crafty and wise shannon!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Cute! One of my favorite garlands comes from my kids....a finger knitted garland. I was so happy to finally find a use for those finger knit strings. ; )

    ReplyDelete
  12. this is the perfect coping solution to my fair trade gifting paralysis. next blog idea: "how to have conversations with family about the crap you don't want them to buy your kids and the type of gifts you're willing to buy others."

    ReplyDelete
  13. Awesome! I'm on it!! And Broadchurch? I think it's a good reason to rewatch it. ;). Lol!!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Awesome! I'm on it!! And Broadchurch? I think it's a good reason to rewatch it. ;). Lol!!!

    ReplyDelete
  15. my kids declared ridiculousness when i pulled out all of my Christmas garlands yesterday. Yet, I can't get enough, and I will undoubtedly add to my collection this year. give me a stack of carddstock, a pair of scissors, and a ball of twine and I'm a happy camper. FYI, Dollar tree has cute mini clothespin garlands at a price that I can approve!

    ReplyDelete
  16. The older I get the less I want to buy to decorate with when it comes to the holidays. I like to make my own decor to decorate with because girl, like you stated above those stores that inspire us and have beautifully decorated rooms in the catalogs is whack!!! During Christmas I like to keep my decor simple and Christ centered.
    Thanks for sharing the tutorial on the garland. Now I need a circle punch. ; )

    ReplyDelete
  17. This year when 75% of the lights on the tree weren't working, I let the kids relight the tree and hang ornaments to their hearts content while I sat back in my chair drinking sweet tea and not caring that everything wasn't hung just right! Best. Tree. Ever.

    ReplyDelete
  18. "we're not barbarians here" <-- best.

    I am so not crafty but for realz might need a hole punch.

    ReplyDelete
  19. We quickly discovered that little one can't keep her hands off the tree...thus it has been banished to the play room (a gate on the doorway will keep it safe) and it only has sad plastic snowflake ornaments on it. I've reached a new level of "oh well" parenting. Maybe next year we can put it in the usual spot with all the ornaments, but if not that's ok, too. She's only going to be a toddler for a season..

    ReplyDelete
  20. Sinterklaas is this Saturday and when making their list I refused to give my kids any inspirational catalogues. The list was so them thus year!!!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I LOVE this... Why did I just throw out 8 million catalogues?!??! Oh well- I'm sure I'll get another million this week. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  22. I made my SIL an afghan and am currently crocheting an infinity scarf for someone - not sure who yet.

    ReplyDelete
  23. I have no circle punch. 😪 I used to back in the day but I'm a thrower. Maybe it's time to buy a new one so that I can be crafty like you.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Love it. Particularly the snubbing of consumerism and the celebration of creative alternatives. Yay!

    ReplyDelete
  25. The perfect craft for the kiddos to help me with! We did the magazine Christmas tree thing a few years back - also very therapeutic!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I don't even get any of these catalogs! Take that, consumerism! Paying cash for Christmas this year! yeah!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Here's your holiday story: my son is 2, and this will be his 3rd Christmas. For the past two years we have wrapped up toys he already owns and he has been excited to unwrap them. I'm going to see how long we can keep this streak going.

    ReplyDelete
  28. This is my first married Christmas! I got the socks blessed off of me by this guy, because, it turns out, that he cares about festive decorations as much as me. (No sarcasm, either). We had so much fun decorating our house together!

    ReplyDelete
  29. One of the local thrift shops near my house (yes, the owner knows me well!) has a TON of yarn for 50 cents a skein so I have stocked up and I am making scarves and dish cloths for everyone for Christmas! I really do not like to buy anything new if I can buy it second hand. I just got a Crate and Barrel catalog in the mail, I am thinking maybe some Christmas ornaments for the tree? Love, love, love your garland!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Um...these wreaths are SCREAMING your name!
      http://www.flowerpatchfarmgirl.com/2012/12/wreath-party-at-my-place.html

      Delete
  30. oh my gosh I love this and you so much. Also, Caden makes his bed. Strangely enough. And did I mention we were in a Gerber commercial today? Also strange.

    ReplyDelete
  31. So cute! We were looking for an easy craft for a little decompression this weekend. We're closing on our new home tomorrow and with the final move in happening the week before Christmas I've been pining over being able to have a little holiday cheer in our lives. It just doesn't feel like Christmas quite yet.

    ReplyDelete
  32. My son is 17 and simple inexpensive gifts are on the agenda this year. Keeping Christmas about family and tradition cause I don't know how many more Christmases my husband and I will have him to ourselves.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Having a difficult time embracing Christmas this year. Love your approach to crafting and the beautiful words you share. You give me hope.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Brilliant! Love this. Certainly doesn't have to be elaborate to be festive. Merry merry!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Bird and Bloom Magazine would be great. My crafting skills are right up there with washing windows. But your garland looks stupendous.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Love that you're kicking consumerism this Christmas!! I thought I was the only one who thought prices and standards outrageous. I just had my family over for our annual craft day this past Saturday. Next year we will be making this garland for sure!!

    ReplyDelete
  37. I love this! And I love you are giving consumerism the boot! Garland always makes me happy, no matter where I hang it. Haven't tried the bathroom yet, but...
    Homefire - annual craft day?? What a great idea!

    ReplyDelete
  38. My sisters and I just had our 6th annual Baking Day on Saturday...so fun. Youngest sisters kids are 15 and 12, and other sister and I now include our daughters-in-law. Would love to have a craft day and do something like your darling garland. I am increasingly rejecting the buying, and Chrustmas has become so much more meaningful and less stressful.

    ReplyDelete
  39. I'm presently making s bottle brush tree wreath whilst sucking down coffee. Glitter used to drive me crazy Bc it'd get stuck between floorboards... now I see it and can't care. It's just sparkle I'm leaving in my wake. Lol Now this garland is on my to do list.
    I've missed it over here. I'm a slacker about blog reading or IG. I'm too obsessed with binge watching The Good Wife.

    ReplyDelete
  40. I love it. Especially the tea and netflix crafting combo. I'll check out Broadchurch, you've got me curious. This past week has brought me much glee with the delete button on the batrillion emails about SALLLLLEEESSSSSZZZZZ. Just stop email monster. Stop it.

    ReplyDelete
  41. A grandma of five and cutting back on ALL things this year except Christmas goodies....hey, a girl can't go cold turkey, right?

    ReplyDelete
  42. My second Christmas as a retired gramma.... you would think I would have a good plan to tackle Christmas... but it still seems to be sneaking up, quickly! Love your posts, Shannan :) And love the garland idea! My daughters have decorated their nurseries with colored circles Hooray for a circle punch!!

    ReplyDelete
  43. Would love to see a picture of your entire tree. This is something I am seriously going to do!

    ReplyDelete
  44. Opened the Sundance catalog. Beautiful photos and clothes and accessories AND furniture...o! And jewelry. Give me a break. Prices?!!!$ ridiculous. Anthropologie, your 25% off sale. Absurd! We all appreciate creativity and beauty.
    There are many people struggling to buy gas, milk, bread. Look at the price of one loaf of bread when you put a couple of loaves in your cart.
    There are honest poor everywhere. We all needed help at one time. Thank you to everyone who helped us. Give and Live!! Thanks! Shannon!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for the lovely comment! And yes, Sundance is on the Whack list.

      Delete
  45. Opened the Sundance catalog. Beautiful photos and clothes and accessories AND furniture...o! And jewelry. Give me a break. Prices?!!!$ ridiculous. Anthropologie, your 25% off sale. Absurd! We all appreciate creativity and beauty.
    There are many people struggling to buy gas, milk, bread. Look at the price of one loaf of bread when you put a couple of loaves in your cart.
    There are honest poor everywhere. We all needed help at one time. Thank you to everyone who helped us. Give and Live!! Thanks! Shannon!!

    ReplyDelete
  46. My daughter and I just finished making our Jesse tree ornaments and we are all fired up to make miles of paper chains this afternoon. Perhaps our of all the Christmas catalogs. Excuse me whilst I go rescue them from the kitchen trash...

    ReplyDelete
  47. I love this idea! I just recycled a few holiday catalogs -darn!

    ReplyDelete
  48. I just recycled a stack of magazines/catalogs because...really?... when will I use them again?? Noooooo! Haha too funny. Great post and great idea. I'm going to make ones of these ...somehow.

    ReplyDelete
  49. I love this! My cousin made similar garland for her wedding with white garage sale dot stickers. I was inspired by her garland and your newspaper heart wreath blog post. I made garland with newspapers, maps, and a heart punch for my Christmas tree. I also added jingle bells and tied on fabric scraps. It turned out great! http://ryanandtobi.blogspot.com/2013/12/cheapskate-christmas.html

    ReplyDelete
  50. I'm currently eating leftover mashed potatoes and pretending to be productive. Who am I kidding...I'm perusing the world wide web, debating on finishing off the rest of the leftover pie and listening to "Modern Christmas" on Pandora. Very, Very Productive over here!!

    ReplyDelete
  51. Love it! And finally got our tree up. This would look great in my house! I might just make one myself, too.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Love it! And finally got our tree up. This would look great in my house! I might just make one myself, too.

    ReplyDelete
  53. I tend to fail at crafts but this seems like a no-fail idea! Praise the lamb. Christmas lamb that is for holiday points

    ReplyDelete
  54. Dang girl, we're kindred catalog repurposing souls! I tear out pages to create mosaic backgrounds for a Visual Prayer journal. Particularly love Anthropologie's thick papers with their vintage architectural themes, but any of the gazillion catalog pages (arriving unsolicited in the mail) provide an abundance of free papers. Embellish with white pen ink pens (on dark) other choices of great markers...shazam, art is made! And...I love your honest reflections on soul bending angst.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't get Anthro anymore, but YES. They are works of art! And I love the white pen idea.

      Delete