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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Peppermint Topiary Trees

Last week Stephanie Lynn over at Under the Table and Dreaming invited us to be part of her Handmade Holidays series using STYROFOAM™ Brand Foam.  We were super excited to be featured with several other talented bloggers!  Here is the project and post I shared with them:



Some of my special childhood memories of Christmas center around holiday candy.  Peppermint sticks and marshmallow Santas and those creamy bits of heaven called Lindt balls were stocking standards in our home.  I would savor my stocking candy for weeks, trying to prolong the magical taste of Christmas.  Santa always left Starlight mints for us among the cookie crumbs on his plate, and although I enjoyed them year round, those enchanted drops touched by The Man Himself always tasted special and different on Christmas morning.

Last holiday season my friend brought a peppermint-covered decoration to our girls' craft night.  The sight of her ball brought back vivid memories of Christmas-morning delight and crispy-coolness melting in my mouth.  I knew I had to make some peppermint topiaries for my home as well!  With her permission, I'm sharing my interpretation of her idea.  Thanks Tiffany!

Materials needed:


Pot or container for the base
Peppermint candies, about 4 1/2 11-oz bags
Red duct tape
1" dowel
Decorative accents and ribbon as desired

I painted my dowel white, since I wanted a cute, whimsical look to match the red and white candy.

Cut the dowel to 24".  Finding the exact center of the STYROFOAM™ Brand Foam cube, gently twist the dowel into the STYROFOAM™ at the center point until it is firmly embedded in the cube, approximately 4-5 inches deep.  Secure the cube into the bottom of the container with hot glue.

To hide the white STYROFOAM™, I cut a piece of square cardstock to size and let it rest on top of the cube, cutting a hole in the center for the dowel.  Before gluing the dowel into the cube, twist the other end of the dowel into the STYROFOAM™ Brand Foam sphere, about 5-6 inches deep. Pull the sphere back off the dowel.
Using small strips of colored duct tape, cover the surface of the sphere.  Be careful to leave the hole for the dowel uncovered.  Smooth down any rough edges or wrinkles in the tape, and then glue the sphere onto the dowel.


With a glue gun, begin at the top of the sphere and attach unwrapped peppermint candies to the tape.  Of course, you'll have to suck on a few of the chipped mints as you work.  Just remember that they won't taste as good now as they will on Christmas morning.  After the entire sphere is covered, spray generously with a polyurethane spray to keep the candies from becoming sticky or melting.  Down in these parts we've been known to have 80 degree temperatures at Christmas time.  That just feels wrong somehow.

I added green tinted glass gems to the top of my cardstock to give some extra sparkle, and a big bow for accent.


Depending on the length of your dowel and the size of your sphere and container, these Peppermint Trees would make a cute centerpiece on a table, a festive arrangement at the base of the staircase, or a welcoming display near the entry.  As for me, my trees will be right next to the fireplace, waiting to welcome The Man in Red on his Christmas Eve visit.

Merry Christmas!





UndertheTableandDreaming

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