DIY Christmas Gift Baskets

For Christmas this year, we decided to make gift baskets for some of the couples in our family. I wanted to make a potpourri, which gave me the idea to do gift baskets that would include my homemade potpourri! It ended up being quite a cost effective gift, but of course it all depends on what you want to include in the basket, and how elaborately you want it decorated… The gift basket in the picture below is the one we gave to my grandparents (“Grumpy and Crummy” is their goofy nick-names from their grand kids…).

We bought the galvanized tubs from Dollarama for $4.00 CAD each, and we bought the white paper stuffing on sale at Michaels. I was worried it wouldn’t end up being enough, but I spent some time really pulling it apart and stretching it out so that it filled up the baskets well.

I used some burlap ribbon that I had on hand to wrap around the baskets, and top them with a bow. Because of the curved shape of the baskets and the width of the burlap, I brought the ends of the burlap together higher up on the front of the basket than the back. I used a glue gun to stick the burlap to the basket.

To make the burlap bow, I referenced this link from Pinterest: https://www.onsuttonplace.com/how-to-make-a-perfect-bow/ I didn’t end up following it exactly, but it was a great post on making the perfect bow.

In each basket we included things like bath salts, candles, potpourri, wine/non-alcoholic beverage, some sweets and a card. I had some pine cones and faux acorns that I placed in the open spaces in the baskets to finish them off.

These gift baskets were a fun way to put together gifts for the family! I definitely plan to do gift giving like this again in the future.

Hope you liked my post, thanks for reading.

Nicole

Homemade Winter Potpourri

I can’t believe how quickly Christmas came and went! After a busy Christmas day, I decided that my boxing day should consist of sleeping and relaxing. Especially with the weather here being minus 20 degrees Celsius… So since I have already done a lot of lounging and dozing off on the couch today, I felt it was appropriate to make a post about the winter potpourri that I made.

I had already dried out a bunch of orange slices in my oven a few months ago with the intent of using them for this potpourri, but there were some other ingredients I wanted to include that I needed to buy. I went to Bulk Barn and bought star anise, cinnamon sticks, and cloves, and then i bought some cinnamon scented pine cones from Walmart. I already had some decorative filler for potpourri, so I mixed it all together.

The oranges still had quite a distinctive smell, and the cloves, star anise, and cinnamon came through nicely so I didn’t end up adding much more in the way of fragrance. I left the mixed potpourri in a freezer bag for a few weeks before transferring it to these cute Christmas-themed gift bags, a couple days before Christmas.

Thanks for reading. Stay tuned for my post about the DIY Christmas gift baskets that included this potpourri!

Nicole

First Try at Homemade Potpourri

I got married in July of 2017, and I saved some of the flowers from my bouquet to use in a homemade potpourri. It was my husband’s idea to get more use out of them – he’s got great ideas 🙂

I started by drying out rose pedals in the microwave with paper towel, and it worked well. I then dried out some ferns from the bouquet using the same method. I also had some baby’s breath which was already mostly dried out, so I set that aside to use in my potpourri as well.

I saw some ideas on the internet and decided to dry out some lemon slices in the oven on low heat for a couple hours. They ended up getting quite brown, but they add a nice touch to the aesthetics of the potpourri, and they smell good too!

Once I was ready to start putting it all together, I mixed all the dried items together in a freezer bag. I had purchased a couple bags of decorative filler for potpourri from Dollar Tree, so I threw some of those in there too.

For the fragrance, I decided to use cinnamon, vanilla fragrance oil, and a bit of cherry fragrance oil. I read that coriander and cinnamon are both good to use as “fixatives” for potpourri, so I mixed together the cinnamon, coriander seeds, and the fragrance oils in a small dish, and then sprinkled the mixture into the bag with the rest of it.

After a week or so, I went back to the potpourri and mixed it around again. The fragrance was strong, so I put some on display in a cute dish that my mom gave me a while ago. The lid has lots of little openings, so the smell comes through nicely. I am happy to say that my first try at making potpourri was a success!

Hope you enjoyed my post 🙂
Nicole

P.S. stay tuned for my upcoming post all about my winter-themed potpourri!