I’m always looking for new and different items to use in crafting and decorating, so I was intrigued when asked if I wanted to try some of the Martha Stewart Home Office products from Avery*** in my holiday projects and gifts. Hmmm…office supplies. Ok, I’m up for the challenge. Actually, it really wasn’t much of a challenge once I saw what I had to work with.
The first thing that really caught my eye was the chalkboard decals and tags in lots of different shapes and sizes.
I love the idea of using the decals to mark glasses for a party. Just put the decals on your glasses ahead of time and then have chalk out so guests can tag their own glass. The decals remove easily without leaving any adhesive behind which means you can use your real glasses. So much classier than plastic cups and a sharpie. I think the border on these decals looks perfect in a cocktail set up.
I cut up a larger decal and used the smaller pieces to make these reusable reindeer place markers for the table. (See the bottom of this post for details on how I made these.)
I also like the tag version of these, especially for food gifts. I hate putting stickers on canning jars and bottles of home brew, it is so hard to get them off to reuse the containers. These are now completely reusable right down to the tags. I was worried that the chalkboard wouldn’t erase cleanly, but a soft cloth brought them right back to looking like new. There are even easily removable stickers made for items that go in the fridge or freezer that will stay on even with condensation or washing, perfect for marking a dish at a holiday potluck.
In certain circles of my family, making fabric gift bags has caught on. They are easy to make, great for wrapping strange shaped items and reusable. Plus we all know how much buying new wrapping paper costs every year. They can be made from any fabric, but I like to use dishcloths and even placemats.
I made this bag with two placemats that I got for cheap at Ikea last year. All it took was sewing up three sides and adding some eyelets across the top for a ribbon to run through. You could do buttonholes or just a drawstring tunnel instead of eyelets as well. And what I’m a putting in the bag? How about a really high-end looking bound journal and calendar? The journal is great for the entertainer as it has lots of tips for the Martha Stewart folks at the back.
Or a really pretty tablet case and matching wristlet bag. I don’t know about you, but I always like something new to dress up my electronics and this is such a nice pattern.
We always have a problem with the regular to/from stickers not sticking to the fabric bags, come Christmas morning there are always a few gifts that need to be peeked into to figure out who they are for. Now I have two solutions for that. The Martha Stewart name tags are made to stick securely to fabric. The shape and silver border give them a fancy enough look to use on gifts. Then there are the chalkboard tags again. These are great because they can stay right on the bag and even the tag can be used again next year.
Even basic things like address and shipping labels have been dressed up for the holidays.
I love all the different designs and that you can match the address and return labels. But really, I’ll be using these are my to/froms on paper wrapped packages this year. It is the one thing we never have enough of at wrapping time.
Finally, I am thinking of the new year and my constant resolution to get more organized.
This set will be staying with me to help me organize my ideas for projects throughout the year. I like the fact that you can write on the tabs of the dividers and erase them later. That means I can use it to rotate projects or just change my mind about how I am using it without buying new dividers. You can tell I like to be able to reuse stuff!
Reusable Reindeer Place Markers
- 1″ wooden ball with a flat bottom, available at craft stores
- tacky glue
- white glitter
- wooden reindeer cutout, I got mine at Michael’s and have seen similar on Etsy
- Martha Stewart chalkboard decals
1. Coat the round sides of the wooden ball with glue. Cover in white glitter. Let dry
2. Use a ruler to measure a square the size to fit on your reindeer from the chalkboard decal. Cut out at stick on the reindeer.
3. Put a dot of glue on the glitter ball and set the front of the reindeer on it, so it will stand up. You may need to use a glass or something to support the reindeer until it dries.
Write names on the decal with chalk.
You can purchase all the Martha Stewart Home Office products at Staples. Plus you can get a coupon for 25% off though 11/23. Also come back on Wednesday when we’ll be giving some of these lovely products away!
*** I was given a selection of the Martha Stewart Home Office products to try and review. I was not compensated in any other way and all opinions are my own.
© 2005 – 2013 Kathy Lewinski & Susan Cornish