Sunday, 24 November 2013

The Festive Face Off

It must be every crafter's dream to take delivery of a huge hamper of craft goodies and be able to make whatever you like with the contents, but that's just what happened to me! The reason is that I am one of the bloggers taking part in the Festive Face-Off which has been arranged by Country Baskets.

Thirty of us have received a hamper of goodies from which we each need to create a decoration. The entries will be judged and there will be prizes, but more importantly the finished decorations are to be donated to charity, along with a cash donation.

My hamper was crammed with all kinds of gorgeous goodies - artificial flowers and foliage, ribbons, lace, stacking boxes, baubles, wires, buttons and much, much more.....


The stacking boxes were what immediately caught my eye, closely followed by the artificial flowers and foliage. I haven't done any flower arranging for many years, but I could just picture the hamper itself as the container for a festive arrangement, with decorated gift boxes incorporated into it.

I started by decorating the boxes. I painted them with acrylic paint, applying it with a fine sponge rather than a brush as I found it gave a more even covering. Then I stuck some of the beautiful lace around the rims of the lids.

Next I made faux bows from ribbon loops and attached them to the lids, topped with some of the little flock snowflakes from the hamper.



Then I turned my attention to the hamper. To bring the arrangement up to the top of the basket, I had to stack three blocks of flower arranging foam, one on top of the other,  and I didn't want that and all the necessary fixings to show through the open wicker of the basket, so I used the hessian in which the goodies had been wrapped to line the basket. I covered the rim with lace to match the boxes.



Before starting on  the arrangement, I decided to make some extra bits to include in it. There was a roll of green wire provided, which I curled around the handle of a wooden spoon to make some "springs" - after all, the arrangement would be springing out of the hamper! Also provided were some wonderfully velvety soft artificial stachys leaves. I couldn't see any immediate way of attaching them to anything, so I glued them together in pairs over a piece of wire.



The tiny glittered apples on wires came from the hamper, as did the matching garland of miniature baubles which I threaded around the base of the stems to hide any bits of foam that showed through. Finally I tucked the gift boxes in behind the flowers and added a spray of glittered wooden leaves on leather thonging (I absolutely LOVE these - I'll definitely be using them again in the future!) to add some interest to the front of the hamper.





I'd like to thank Country Baskets for providing such an amazing selection of materials - the contents  of the hamper were truly inspiring!
 
 

44 comments:

  1. Jane, I LOVE your work, it's just BEAUTIFUL. I love, too, how you put your talents to such good use in creating amazing works of art to be out towards fundraising for those so much less fortunate. You are an extremely generous lady so am wishing you all the luck in the world with your challenge x

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  2. Wonderful job, Jane, I especially like your idea to use the hessian the goods were wrapped in so you made use of everything. If you have the time and inclination these would make wonderful presents for Christmas if you wanted to do again. Do you know which charity will benefit?

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    1. The overall winner will get to choose the charity that all the decorations go to. We can either send in our work so it can all be handed over together, or, since most of the decorations will be too delicate to post, hand it in to a local branch or a charity of our own choosing. I already know where I'd like mine to go!

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  3. Well done Jane, beautiful ideas and display and very talented, im sure someone would love this basket for any time of the year. :)

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    1. Such a gorgeous arrangement. Some of your ideas are so clever.

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  4. They look fabulous, I wish I had even a tiny bit of your talent for things like this!! x

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  5. Helen Humphries
    This is lovely Jane I do love the evergreen colours and natural feel. (I do get a teeny bit bored with the perennial red & gold)

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  6. Wow, Jane, your creations are fabulous! This one too is up to your usual standard.
    I really like the way you've used all the different bits and bobs, including the packaging, pulling them together in such a way as to make not only an attractive eye catching decoration, but one which is worthy of being the focal point of any Christmas centre piece. If I was to receive such a item, it wouldn't matter what was actually in the boxes themselves!

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  7. Nice work, Jane. A really great arrangement!

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  8. wow - absolutely fantastic. Lovely arreangement. Anyone getting this will be delighted. Well done. x

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  9. what a beautiful arrangement. This is very professional and would make an ideal festive gift. Especially as you can keep it forever.

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  10. Wow, they are so beautiful. Love the colours, very festive this time of year but a gorgeous colour anytime of the year. You're very creative and skillful

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  11. Thats beautiful! I think I'm going to have to use it as inspiration for my Christmas centrepiece

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  12. It's a beautiful arrangement, good luck Jane! You can see lots of time and thought has gone into it.

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  13. Wow this is stunning, love the green! What a fab gift.

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  14. Posted by Sylvia Robbins
    You should have been a Florist or a Window Dresser.
    What a beautiful basket, It would look so nice in our Inglenook fireplace
    to replace the baskets of conkers and leaves from the liquidambar tree.
    (No! not lit fires yet, still waiting for the Sweep).
    I hope your chosen charity appreciates the effort you have put into creating
    such a lovely arrangement. Thanks for sharing it with us.
    Sylvia

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  15. Don't know how you do it, such intricate detail, and lovely ideas

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  16. What you have created is beautiful and great step by step instructions too - thank you! :)

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  17. Jane what a great talent and lovely goodies. Well done
    Sam G

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  18. Wow, that's a fab hamper. I love the idea of a hamper with boxes to put gifts in, but you have gone one step further and decorated the hamper too. Great idea, I'm sure the recipient will love it.

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  19. That is so pretty! Im jealous... i wish i could make such pretties :) I love the step by steps, think ill have a go myself... wish me luck :D

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  20. Well done Jane, you have done an amazing job, wish I had just a little of your creativity :)

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  21. Some very "nickable" ideas ...thanks

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  22. Wow - I adore that basket! Looks so gorgeous! xoxo

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  23. So inspirational- you make it look so easy!
    @kohsamuirosie

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  24. This is absolutely beautiful Jane. Especially love the shiny springs in amongst the leaves and apples, which I think adds a very unique touch. Good luck in the competition!

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  25. Wow! That is beautiful. What a lovely creation - I have nowhere near the creativity or the patience to do anything like this!

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  26. lovely and festive

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  27. Jane, you are so talented and so inspiring! The nearest I get to flower arranging is the occasional stint at church, but I'd would love to find the time to have a go at something special like yours!

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  28. how amazing, that is fabulous, I have to say from the ones I have seen I am going to be embarrassed to put my post up...

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  29. Love how crafty and talented you are. You've made a beautiful and tasteful wintry display which looks lovely without being too in your face Christmas :-)

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  30. Wow that looks amazing, very festive.

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  31. Great job Jane. As a fellow crafter I know how much time, trouble and creativity goes into your creations. A fantastic finished result and a lovely idea to donate the end results to charity. Good luck :-)

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  32. As a wannabe crafter, I stand in awe.
    The things you create are lovely - how special to receive a gift which is handmade with love.

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  33. Wow gorgeous arrangement, the finished results are great! It has inspired me to try some crafting for Christmas. Good luck Jane :)

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  34. Jane ..you are so talented !! So creative ! Lucky folks who are on your gift list this Christmas !

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  35. These are all lovely, well done on all the work that went into them.

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  36. Love how you incorporated the beautiful hamper into your creation.

    Amethyst Skies

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  37. That's lovely Jane! Good luck!

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