I have a quick craft to turn those corks into holiday trees, which make great gifts for a hostess or wine enthusiast, or just some extra decoration around your home.
I’ve seen many types of Christmas decorations adorned with corks, but I’m particularly fond of this one because it only takes 13 corks and a hot glue gun to make each one. (If you have lots of corks, experiment with making bigger trees, or covering a foam wreath).
Another great thing about this craft is it doesn’t make a big mess, which is essential during the holidays, when my craft room also serves as gift storage and wrapping station.
Start out by hot gluing three corks together in a row — this will be the base of the tree. They don’t have to all be the same length, but try not to have a really long one next to a really short one. Next glue four corks in a row, then three again, then two (you should have a single unglued cork left). As in all craft projects, try to keep the amount of visible glue to a minimum.
Next, stack the rows of cork into a tree shape. Start with one of the three-cork rows, then center the four-cork row on top of that. Glue the rows together where the corks meet; be sure and hold it tightly until the glue dries completely.
Top the four-cork row with the other three-cork row, then the two-cork row and then the single cork. And now you should have a tree shape.
I tried to keep the wine-stained end of my corks all facing the same direction to give it some color.
Decorate with bows, tiny ornaments or leave unadorned.
If you don’t have a cork collection (mine was left over from my days in college and a box that was passed down to me through friends), I’ve seen them for sale in thrift stores and at yard sales. Or, since it’s party season, see if you can get friends to save some for you.
Etsy gift finder
Need help finding that perfect gift for one of your friends? Yup, there’s an app for that. Just go to Etsy.com/gifts and log in via Facebook, and Etsy will recommend gifts from its handmade vendors for your friends, based on their interests.
Fair warning: Your mileage will vary depending on your friends.
There’s a wide variation in results between friends; as you can imagine, friends with several different kinds of interests will produce more results.
One of the gifts suggested for my sister was a pair of underwear with lobsters on it. Her interest? Red Lobster.
But for another friend, who has tons of interests ranging from Nikola Tesla to Crayola, the gift ideas were amazing. The jewelry that came up for “pomegranates” was beautiful.
You can narrow the results by price range, too.
But many of my Facebook friends, like me, have nothing listed under interests. So you’ll have to use your own good judgment on them — or make something yourself.