HOW TO MAKE… A DINING SET
MATERIALS For the crackers
White paper Black ink pad Toilet roll tubes Cracker snaps Ribbon Pencil with a rubber Double-sided tape Scallop-edged scissors Craft knife Metal ruler Small cracker gifts
For the placemats
Leaves Blush pink linen Two ink rollers Black fabric paint Paint brush Scrap paper
For the candles
250g soy wax flakes per candle Dried rosemary Rosemary essential oil Black porcelain paint Candle wicks Glass jars Glass bowl Glass jug Saucepan Paint brush Forget stately, majestic settings – when it comes to our Christmas dinner table, we’re all about simple Scandi chic, accented with a handful of winter foliage.
This relaxed tablescape – perfect for family and friends – taps into two of this season’s biggest trends, blush pink and natural details.
Follow Teri’s instructions to make crackers, placemats and candles, then check out her tips on page 60 for styling your table on the big day.
Making the crackers
Using the template on page 96, draw a cracker shape onto white paper, transferring on the markings. Press the rubber end of the pencil onto the black ink pad, then stamp it onto the paper, creating a dotty pattern. Leave to dry.
Cut the two short edges of the cracker with scallop-edged scissors, then fold the paper along the six lines across the width.
Using a craft knife and metal ruler, cut around the outer shape of the cracker. Next, cut out the diamond shapes marked within the three parallel lines at either end.
Stick a length of double-sided tape across the centre of the cracker, parallel to the folds.
Remove the backing from the tape and position a toilet roll tube along one long edge of the paper, aligning the tube ends with the folds. Roll the tube along the width of the cracker, wrapping the paper around it, and keeping the ends in line with the folds. Secure the end with a piece of double-sided tape.
Push the cracker snap through the tube, trimming at the ends if it’s too long. Tie one end with ribbon, drawing together the diamond cut-outs, then insert a gift into the other end. Draw the second end closed with a length of ribbon, then repeat Steps 1-6 to make as many crackers as required.
Making the placemats
Cut a 30 x 45cm (117/ x 17 ") piece of linen, then gently pull away a few threads along all four edges to fray them.
Protect a flat surface with scrap paper and lay a leaf on top. Use a paint brush to completely cover one side in black fabric paint.
Use an ink roller to lightly roll over the painted side of the leaf, removing any excess paint. At this point, you might want to practise printing on a scrap piece of linen, experimenting to see which leaves print the best impression.
Lay a sheet of scrap paper onto a flat surface and place the linen flat on top. Position a leaf on the linen, ink side facing down.
Lay another sheet of scrap paper on top of the leaf, then use the clean ink roller to gently roll over the paper, transferring the paint from the leaf onto the linen.
Continue printing in this way, using different leaves and alternating their angles. You’ll need several leaves, as they can only be used a few times.
Once you’re happy with the pattern, leave the ink to dry, then repeat Steps 7-12 to make as many placemats as required. Making the candles
Start by decorating a glass jar. Use a paint brush and black porcelain paint to cover the jar with a dotty pattern. Start at the top, working in sections and spacing the dots evenly. Once finished, leave to dry.
Boil water in a large saucepan, then turn it down to a low heat. Carefully lower a glass bowl into the pan, and pour the soy wax flakes into the bowl. Stir them occasionally as they melt.
Place a peg at the top of the wick and position it across the centre of the jar, making sure the wick touches the bottom. Trim the top of the wick to fit. Dip the metal base of the candle wick into the melted wax, then position it back in the jar with the metal base resting on the bottom. Hold in place until the wax is dry.
Add 15 drops of rosemary essential oil to the jar, dripping it down the sides and into the base, then fill the jar halfway with the melted wax. Add 15 more drops of rosemary essence and a sprinkling of dried rosemary on top.
Fill the rest of the jar with the remaining wax, covering the outside of the jar with a tea towel to stop the wax from cooling down too quickly. Leave to set, then trim the wick. Repeat Steps 14-18 to make as many candles as required.
Teri Muncey Teri is a DIY and interiors blogger and designer living in West London. She spends her free time dreaming up new craft tutorials, drinking copious amounts of loose leaf tea and cooking up a storm in the kitchen (usually a spicy one)....