Autumn Crafts

Autumn Leaf Lantern

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These autumnal lanterns are so easy and cheap to make, I usually save empty jam and coffee jars to use as vases and candle holders so I always have some handy in the cupboards.  This is also a perfect excuse to get wrapped up and go in search of the prettiest autumn leaves you can find (my favourite part).  Big leaves, small leaves, orange, yellow, brown leaves, whatever you prefer is fine. Once you have your jars and your leaves all you need is some Mod Podge (the Matte or the Gloss finish, whichever you prefer), a glue brush and some twine or raffia.

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Choose the leaves you want to add to your jar lantern and decide how you would like them to be arranged.  You can stick them on with a small piece of double-sided sticky tape first to make sure you are happy with the arrangement.  When you are ready to stick the leaves to the jar, simply apply a thick layer of Mod Podge directly onto the outside of the jar in the area where you would like to stick the leaf.  Carefully place the leaf onto the glued area and immediately apply another layer of glue on top of the leaf.  Make sure to cover the leaf and the surrounding edges with glue to ensure it has completely stuck to the glass.  Once all the leaves are stuck down, give the jar another coat of Mod Podge all the way round the outside to make sure it looks even and leave to dry overnight. Once the jar has completely dried and the glue has gone clear, tie a length of twine or raffia around the top of the jar and finish with a bow to secure in place.  Your lantern is now ready.  Simply place a tea light candle in the bottom of the jar and enjoy the cosy glow!

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Pumpkin Centrepiece

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Pumpkins aren’t just for making Halloween Lanterns – if you are planning a dinner party or get-together this autumn, this simple but very striking pumpkin vase centrepiece is sure to impress your guests and make your dinner  table look extra special.

You will need: 1 pumpkin, 1  block of oasis, Your choice of foliage, berries and flowers in autumnal colours

Cut around the top of the pumpkin and scoop out the inside (you can use the flesh in one of my yummy pumpkin recipes).  Once the pumpkin has been hollowed out, soak the oasis in cold water before cutting it  down to size so that it fits inside and is level with the top of the pumpkin.  Next, cut your chosen flowers and foliage down to size to that they can be inserted firmly into the oasis but don’t stick out too far..  Start with the berries and other foliage before finally adding the flowers.  Once all the oasis has been hidden and you are happy with the arrangement, your pumpkin vase is ready to take pride of place on your dinner table.

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