Every year, I try to have an original Christmas tree. And every year, I love coming up with the idea for the tree: there has been an agave and cookie tree, a tree painted on the wall and even a bamboo teepee tree with clay ornaments .I’ve been doing this since we moved to the farm. I think it’s because sleigh bells and snow just don’t have any relevance in 40 degree heat. In fact, since I was a child, we’ve spent Christmas on South Africa’s West coast: a rough and rugged coastline with icy water and lots of wind. It is what I have become to associate with the festive season: wetsuits and sunblock, lots of fresh seafood and plenty of cold wine.
So in honour of my roots, I decided to have a coastal Christmas in the Winelands this year. The tree is still a green fir of the plastic variety – I don’t want to cut down a perfectly good tree and put it in my house for 4 weeks only to then throw it out, but instead of the traditional red, green and gold I went for blue, copper and white. After every holiday on the coast, we come back with a handful of shells and I thought that they would make the perfect tree decorations.
You will need:
- Spray paint
- Drill with fine drill bit
- Heavy duty cotton thread
Place the shells on some paper and start spraying. I sprayed one side and waited for it to dry before turning them over and finishing the other side.
Using a 2mm drill bit (my 1.5mm bit broke after about shell #22), carefully drill holes in each shell. I was quite surprised at how easy this was and I expected many of them to break. But out of the lot I did, only 3 didn’t make it to the tree.
Loop heavy duty cotton thread through the holes and hang it up – that’s it!
I finished the tree with silver balls, fairy lights and some of the air-dry clay hearts that I made for the tree a few years ago.
While the shells are really small on the tree, I love the way you have to look closely at it to see what the tree is decorated with. Too often, we decorate the tree and then it really just sits there without getting much detailed attention. Now everyone is walking up to the tree to see what exactly these pretty little copper things are.
I will tell you more about the stockings and present bag tomorrow!