A Cozy & Crafty Winter

The weather has finally started to chill here in our little California desert.  I’ve pulled out the sweaters, fired up the heater and stocked up on my supply of hot chocolate!! While we don’t get snow (when we do it melts about the time it hits the ground!) we do get freezing temperatures. I absolutely love this time of year—it’s BOOT season for one, and I love layering on the sweaters, scarves and hats.  Also love curling up with a big cozy blanket, a warm mug and a great book if I’m lucky. One draw back to winter is early sundown, which means more time indoors for most of us. Likely why winter was always a big craft season for me. Although my mom may have started that winter ritual.


My mom was good for coming up with winter craft/family projects. One year it was decorating jar tops to be filled with spices—or maybe it was cookie dough. The most memorable family winter craft was these yarn wreaths. She took wire hangers and made circles and gave each of us kids a square cardboard and bundles of green yarn. We’d wrap the yarn around the cardboard twenty-five times, pull it off and then tie it with a small piece of yarn. Those little yarn bundles were then tied to the wire—and after a gazillion bundles were wound and tied on, it made a really cute wreath, to which my mother fastened other decorations. We must have made ten or fifteen of those suckers—a hundred bundles each!  I have clear memories of sitting by the fire in our blanket robes (anyone else have one of those blankets that snapped into a robe?) and likely our super-hero Underoos underneath *lol*, and winding yarn, and trying to keep count while watching some Christmas special on TV 😀   For anyone interested in these yarn wreaths, I found a blog which details the instructions for making these exact wreaths! Just click on the pink and white wreath.


Now that I’m a mom I’m really in awe of how clever my mom was to keep us kids busy during those cozy winter evenings 😉   In the past I’ve had my winter projects of ceramics, toll painting, ornaments…the year before I started writing I sewed about fifteen snowmen dolls out of fleece. My hubby used to get miffed because I never kept any of my crafts—but we can visit our relatives and see all kinds of creations that had been gifts. The past few years my winter craft has been books 🙂   This year my winter project is finishing my HOUSE. We are remodeling and currently living in a rental…and hoping to move back home the week of Christmas!


We already got a peek at one of Pam’s winter crafts—love those glamour gloves!! Anyone else turn crafty over winter? Anyone in the midst of any winter projects…have memories of past winter projects?


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40 thoughts on “A Cozy & Crafty Winter”

  1. good morning!
    I always seem to have something crafty going on, no matter what the weather. My big project right now is a batman themed ‘art’ quilt for my brother. He’s quite the fan. 🙂 Although I must admit most of my time during our ‘craft nights’ is spent writing now.

    Your yarn wreath reminds me of some I made years ago. The place where I worked used a ton of computer paper that’s perforated with the lovely chits on the sides. I took that and some 10 inch brass rings and wove the thin paper strips on the ring in a nicey loopy fashion. You can squish a lot of paper onto one of those rings! And they actually looked pretty good when dolled up with bows and such.

    And in the past I’ve financed my christmas by making customized bears and soft sculpture dolls. That was a fun year! 🙂

  2. I LOVE the yarn wreath!

    I’m a crafty person but I don’t have any winter project planned… I haven’t done any winter projects in the past couple years either 🙁 I should though…

  3. I’m not very crafty. I do love to decorate for the holidays. I always go all out in that regard. I also love baking cookies around the holidays. Does that count lol? My mother-in-law is quite crafty. She started making wreaths for fun, but sells them now due to all the requests. She customizes them, so they are really unique. She’s done two for me, one with angels and another Alabama Crimson Tide wreath. Roll Tide! Sorry, it just comes out. I can’t help myself. 🙂

  4. I’m not real crafty 😀
    But I totally respect people who are.

    I used to knit and crochet a lot. I sort of regret losing that. I’d sit in front of the TV and crochet, it’s amazing how much you can get done if you have your work conveniently at hang and get in the habit of picking it up every time you sit down.

    These days I still sit around in front of TV but I don’t care enough about what’s on to pay attention. I’m always reading a book instead. Can’t read a book and knit.

  5. I tend to piece quilts in the winter. I usually don’t get started until about January after the holidays. Right now I am wanting to make some Lone Star baby quilts to put up for baby gifts.

  6. Good morning, all!! For anyone who clicked on that wreath and didn’t get the wreath site–I fixed it 😀

    Hi Lizzie! Wow, that paper wreath sounds neat!! The dolls adn bears sound adorable. I have to say, I really enjoyed making the snowmen. My mom and I had a crafty business for a while and would have booths at the craft shows, which was extra fun during the holidays 😀 Thanks for sharing!!

  7. Hi Danielle! I miss having a crafty project too–though I’m not sure my family misses the fabric, paints, etc. strung across the table and couch all through December *g*.

  8. I’d say cooking counts, Zara! I do tend to bake more over winter too 😀 Favorite winter recipes are pinto beans and corn bread and cabbage stew. Here lately I’ve been wanting to make potatoe cheddar soup…hmm? I have had a few years where I went nuts making holiday candy 😉

    How great that your mother-in-law sells her custom wreaths!! Sounds like it would make a special gift 😀

  9. Mary, crocheting is fantastic craft skill!! Both of my grandmas crocheted and I’m bummed that I didn’t pick up that talent. I have blankets they made for me. My mom-in-law also chrochets and made blankets for both of my boys which they have on their beds 🙂 When I was around twelve or so I did those latch-hook rugs–made quite a few *LOL*

    Like you, I’m not a TV watcher–I’ve tried. My guys love it…but I can’t get into it. I tried renting some old western movies a few weeks ago, but I can’t get myself to sit down and watch them *lol* Maybe I need a craft 😉

  10. Hi Crystal! Isn’t that white and pink wreath gorgeous!! The thing about those wreaths, is they really are easy. Though you have to do a lot of winding *ggg* – a great TV project 😉

  11. Oh, I love quilts, Quilt Lady!! My mom’s mom was a quilter and I always loved seeing which fabrics she’d piece together. There’s nothing cozier than a quilt *ggg* That baby quilt sounds adorable!!

  12. My mom and grandma were wonderful with her hands and were always making things. My sister inherited the gift. She knits, crochets, does tole painting and hardanger (a traditional Danish embroidery). Everything she does is beautiful.
    As for me, alas, I was swimming elsewhere in the gene pool. Just don’t have the patience to sit down and make things. Truly admire those who do. Thanks for a fun blog, Stacey.

  13. Hi Stacey! I love that yarn wreath! It is so pretty! I don’t have much luck with crafts, I’m afraid. I do love to bake for the holidays. Every year I’ll make dozens of Christmas cookies and also Christmas candy. I usually give it away as gifts.

  14. My family (Mom and sibs)were always into craft
    projects. I cannot even begin to list the many, many
    times we enjoyed new crafts. We have all carried these interests on into our families. Our own
    children have also enjoyed being “crafty,” passing
    along the interests to their children. One of my
    favorite projects was making pillows and blankets
    for my children, using designs involving their
    special interests.

    Pat Cochran

  15. Stacey, that’s a beautiful wreath! And it looks easy enough to make. I may have to pop over to the website for the instructions. 🙂

    I’ve never been one to make things by hand though except in school. We were always making Christmas ornaments and things. I wish I’d kept those but I didn’t. They got thrown out when I was doing some spring cleaning. That’s usually what happens to my craft projects. Oh, but I forgot the sequin Christmas tree I made last year out of styrofoam balls. It turned out real cute and I still have it.

    Great blog! 🙂

  16. Hi Stacey! Gorgeous wreathe. I recall meeting your lovely mom at the RWA literacy signing in SF and how full of energy she was.

    Hubby and I generally make something for the neighbors. One year we layered mason jars with the ingredients for killer chocolage chip cookies. Another, it was reindeer ornaments made out of wine corks. This year we’re using glass paint to decorate cleaned-out food jars (e.g. pickle, pasta sauca), he’s making wire hangers, and we’re sticking beach sand inside with a candle for little lanterns.

    The grandbaby is coming to spend the night so we’re gonna start our gingerbread house tonight!

  17. I’m crafty and enjoy decorating and creating new and unique decor each year. It is fun and gets my mind off many other things.

  18. Stacey, what a vivid picture of you and your mom and siblings making those wreaths! I did a lot of rug-hooking with my daughter, and painting little ornaments, and we’re crazy about 1,000 piece puzzles. We have 3 going right now! One just finished, one’s half way through, and we’re saving the biggest one for last. We glue them to cardboard when we’re done and have a big stack we’re going to mount in the basement rec room when it’s finished. Lots of fun!

  19. I used to do crafts all the time but it seems the internet has all my spare time now (excluding reading lol). A Christmas craft that I remember the most was also a wreath but it is made with tissue paper. A kazillion little squares that are twisted around a hanger. I used white paper with glitter but you could do it in any color. Then I would add little groupings of tiny ornaments and a big red bow. I made half a dozen for my office one year. The only problem is having room to store them. I found out the hard way that if you put anything on top they get too bent out of shape.

  20. I have moments of craftiness, but not always. I dipped pretzels and peanut butter crackers yesterday in vanilla candy coating, but as for actual crafts, I made handprint snowmen ornaments for the grandparents one year with each of the kids prints on different balls. I used to do plastic canvas crafts all the time, but pulling yarn through those little holes always flared up my allergies. The last plastic canvas craft I did was little mailbox ornaments with each of our initials on it in 2002 when my daughter was born.

    I love the yarn wreath though, so I might have to get out my old bag of yard and give that a try. Very cool.

    I have also dabbled in painting, sewing, and sweet treats.

  21. I have no time to be crafty but enjoy admiring all the various and special crafts this season. Just amazing and lovely.

  22. I’m not very “crafty” but my aunt used to make quilts, blankets, booties….you name it, she could knit or crochet it!

  23. When I was working midnights or weekends in the military, I longed for the days I could retire and sit around and cross stitch or crochet.

    Now that I’m retired, I spend my days writing while the kids are in school. After supper while they’re all watching TV is my reading or net surfing time.

    I’d love to get back to crafting but for now, I prefer writing.

  24. Hi Tanya! My mom had so much fun at the SF literacy signing and the conference 🙂

    That is so cool that you and your hubby make stuff together 😀 Love those crafts!! The lanterns sound adorable 🙂

  25. I love crafts! I am currently making jewelry, cards, and chrocheting. I love to knit and sew but I will put them all down for a good book!

  26. when Mom was still alive her and we girls used to get together to make a Christmas craft; one year we made a tree from hangers and garland, another year we made a wreath from pinecones, nuts, etc., another year we made a deco from a clay pot and ornaments to hang outside.

  27. Hi Jenna! I agree.

    Kate, what FUN projects to have with your daughters!!! I’d forgotten about puzzles. My boys and I used to do them when they were younger–I’m thinking puzzles might under our tree this year 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  28. Hi Jeanne! Those tissue wreaths sound so pretty. Yipes on the storage–I know what you mean. Most wreaths just don’t last long…if longer than a year. We toss most of our old decorations this year…and likely won’t get new until next year 🙁 Maybe next year I’ll get crafty 😉

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