Monday, November 30, 2009

gingerbread and peppermints

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving as we spent time with family and friends. I'm still feeling rather stuffed from all the great food. On Friday, the girls and I helped my mom decorate her house for Christmas and then we decorated our home on Saturday. I just love pulling all the decorations out of the boxes and remembering special significances about each item. One of my favorite decorations (which I say about most of them) is my gingerbread man and peppermint garland. I made this about 9 years ago and I still enjoy pulling it out and hanging it up every year. It was so simple to make and the bonus is that it doesn't require any tricky sewing! I've added the pattern and the directions to my side bar so that you can make one yourself.

You'll need:
Warm and natural batting or wool felt in cream
Gingerbread brown fabrics (any variety will work)
Cranberry red fabric -scraps
Red and white striped fabric
Wonder-Under® (iron on adhesive web) I used the heavy duty type to make the gingerbread men a bit sturdier
Black paint
Needle and thread
Button thread or sturdy yarn for stringing the gingerbread men and peppermints together

Trace the gingerbread man onto the paper side of the Wonder-Under®. Cut this out leaving some space around the traced shape. Iron this onto the wrong side of your gingerbread fabric. Cut carefully on the traced line. Now you can peel off the paper backing and iron your gingerbread man onto the Wonder-Under®. Iron him right side up, the adhesive should be on the back of the gingerbread man. Cut out, leaving a ¼ inch showing of the warm and natural batting. Repeat for as many gingerbread men as you desire. Next, trace the heart onto the paper side of the Wonder-Under®. Cut this out leaving some space around the traced shape. Iron this onto the wrong side of your cranberry fabric. Cut carefully on the traced line. Peel off the paper backing and iron the heart onto your gingerbread man’s chest.

To finish off the gingerbread man, iron on the heart and glue on a button. Dot his eyes using the end of a pencil dipped in black paint. After his eyes are dry, use a q-tip to apply some blush to each cheek.
To make the peppermints, trace the circle onto the wrong side of your fabric. Fold under the edge of the fabric to the wrong side and stitch on the fold, through both layers of fabric, using a needle and thread. (For more help with the peppermints, Heather Bailey has a great yo-yo tutorial here.) Make your stitches a bit long and that will allow the center to be drawn tight when you gather the stitches together. Once you’ve stitched around the edge completely, pull your stitches taut and secure with a few stitches to hold everything secure. Tie a knot and trim your thread. Flatten your peppermint with your hand. Ta Da!

Now just stitch the gingerbread men to the peppermints alternating until the garland is the length you desire! Hang up and enjoy! Merry Merry!
I used a small brown check and a solid brown on my gingerbread men, but they'd be cute in non traditional colors for a kids room. Feel free to leave the hearts off and put letters on their little bodies to spell out a special sentiment. Or just make some single gingerbread guys for creative gift tags. Anyways, you guys will come up with your own way to make them yours, I'm sure! Enjoy! If you make a set...send me a picture, I'd love to see them! Merry Merry!


Meg said...

The garland is so cute! I may have to bookmark it for next year!

knittinbrit_in_wi said...

This is so cute. I'm definitely going to have to whip out some of these. I like the idea of putting them on gifts.

Sigrun said...

That garland is too cute. Can't wait to get home and check my stash. I'm sure I have everything except the batting.

Green Acres in the City said...

Very cute!

~ The Jolly Bee ~ said...

Oh Lisa -- Your house looks beautiful. So festive and jolly. Nicely done....Just I would expect from you! We got back from our Thanksgiving festivities and before unpacking my youngest was begging to begin decorating for Christmas. I promised him on Friday evening we would go to town. Maybe I can squeeze in making a gingerbread garland between now and then. Wish me luck!

Debi said...

I love the garland... so cute! And it looks easy enough that even I could do it! Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

very cute miss lisa!! we have something like that...just no peppermints and the gingerbreadmen are smaller and we didnt make them. LOL =) love you!! see you tomorrow!! =)

Stephanie said...

I love the garland so sweet! I too may need to make one. :)

Audra said...

I love that! We are helping the kids decorate their rooms for Christmas and they would love one of these garlands. Maybe on the door! Thanks for the idea!

Ruth said...

That is precious!! I have some things hanging on our windows but I will have to find a place to add one of these. Thanks for sharing it.


Carolyn said...

What a cute project!

Kristyn Knits said...

I still have this pattern in my Holiday Planner binder. I think of yours each year as I pull it out to plan for Christmas. This is a great tutorial to get me Christmas crafting! Thanks for sharing all the details.

larissa said...

Lisa, that is the best pattern! I may have to do gingerbread men and then stars of david for hanukkah. Now I need to go check if my wonder under still works. I am exhausted - on mondays we have taekwondo til 7:30pm and the kiddos come home hungry,cranky and sleepy and there's tons of homework and greg's working - but I feel better now. your home looks so warm and welcoming and all your decorations are happy and playful - what a beautiful place for your kiddos to grow up in.

Hip Mountain Mama said...

super cute! What a great holiday item to use year after year!!

Tracy said...

Thank you for this well-made and fun tutorial, Lisa... just love that jolly garland! Those "peppermint" yo-yos are a sweet addition. And with the red gingham curtains... it really says Christmas! My young nieces would probably like to make these. I have them coming over on Saturday for a little Christmas crafts party... wonder if I can get some supplies in on time. Thanks for the ideas! :o) Happy Days ((HUGS))

Philigry said...

those are so sweet! thanks for sharing the pattern!

Heather said...

The title alone got me! What a wonderful project, thank you so much for sharing

The WoodLand School said...

Adorable! Thanks for sharing the pattern :-)

Journeying Five said...

So nice it really makes your window look festive and cozy.

Gigi said...

Your garland is so cute! There are so many things I want to make this time of year. Wish I was one of those organized people who started their Christmas making in January. Maybe 2010 will be my year and this adorable garland will be on the top of my list!
Thanks for sharing!