On the 8th Day of Christmas: What to do with Christmas Leftovers

Leftovers in their less visible form are called memories. Stored in the refrigerator of the mind and the cupboard of the heart.
~Thomas Fuller

Do you ever have leftovers after the holidays and just don’t know what to do with them? I actually hate eating leftovers, but I love BEADING leftovers. After making all the ornaments and necklaces and earrings and bookmarks and other beaded goodies, I ended up with a lot of leftovers and a great idea… make a potluck! A potluck Wrist Garland, that’s what!

I started with some ‘simple truths’ initials in red and green to spell out L-O-V-E and J-O-Y. I have been making these as sweet little initial pendants and bookmarks for my family and friends so I hade bunch left over. Why not spell out a message for the New Year? I picked those two words because they are more than just holiday words, but ones that work all year long. I kept the colors fairly traditional in red and green, but you could mix it up and combine colors or use other ones like blue or purple if that is your thing. The key is to use up your leftovers, so see what is in your prodigious stash and let that color be your guide. If you don’t have some ‘simple truths’ lying around, how about an assortment of other art beads in the same color family?

Next, find a sturdy bit of chain in your left over bin. You don’t have leftovers bins? Just wait… you will! Fish out a jump ring or round link to add to the chain and a trigger clasp. If you want to get even more fancy, check out the tutorial I posted on dressing up your plain clasps.

Then I went to the bowls and containers that cover my desk filled with the leftover bits and pieces from the past six years. I am notorious for not cleaning up after myself, so every once in awhile I just dump all the pieces that didn’t make it into bowls. I keep buying more pottery bowls for my table. I have them for pieces of chain, art beads that I didn’t use, and all manner of beads. If I were smart I would sort them into colors, but that would be thinking ahead too much!

Sort through your leftovers and pick out beads that suit your color scheme. Then just wire wrap them all on headpins and start attaching them to the links in the chain. I prefer to wire wrap them directly to the chain (this is where a ChainSta would come in handy for me!) or you can just make the wrapped head pins and then add them all at once with jump rings. Your call.

Et voila!

I thought these looked like little garlands you might hang on your tree but are instead for dressing up your wrist. Wrist Garlands! Enjoy using up your leftovers. πŸ˜‰

Wishing you JOY and LOVE in abundance in the New Year!

P.S. Psssst! I am giving away one of these bracelets! Just hop on over to my blog Treasures Found :: Inspiration is Everywhere and leave a comment! Winner will be chosen from comments on my blog only and announced on December 27th! Merry Christmas!

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16 Comment

  1. Cece
    December 22, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    Both bracelets are beautiful, but that red one is a jaw dropping lovely.

  2. Shirley
    December 22, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    Girl! You come up with the best ideas! That is a lovely wrist garland for the holidays. I can just see all the sparkly movement and fun. Wishing you all the best, and a very Merry Christmas!

  3. Alice
    December 22, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    Just beautiful! They do look like miniature bejewled garlands!

    Lately I've been wanting, or rather needing a ChainSta….(pssst Santa!). Just another thing to add to my ever growing wish list.

    Have a Blessed Christmas!

  4. Janet
    December 22, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    Just beautiful Erin!!

  5. Marie Cramp
    December 22, 2011 at 6:03 pm

    I need to better organize my leftovers! LOL! right now they are just everywhere, workbench, floor trays, you name it! πŸ™‚ Thanks for the inspiration! Merry Christmas!!

  6. JeannieK
    December 22, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Oh La La. These would be so fun to wear together.

  7. Michelle Mach
    December 22, 2011 at 6:37 pm

    Very pretty! I love the idea of placing leftovers in pottery bowls. That would at least give the illusion that my workspace was tidy! πŸ™‚

  8. Sherri
    December 22, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    Those bracelets are just gorgeous!!

    Merry Christmas to you!!

  9. rosebud101
    December 23, 2011 at 2:34 am

    Wow! I love these bracelets! Merry Christmas, Erin!

  10. Anonymous
    December 23, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    Beautiful bracelets! I'm a new subscriber who is really enjoying your blog and in love with your work. Your Christmas preps sound great. Merry Christmas!

    moushka26 (at) yahoo(.)ca

  11. Hadar
    December 23, 2011 at 6:43 pm

    Really beautiful! πŸ™‚

  12. Gaea
    December 23, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    Super festive! JOY indeed!

  13. I LOVE color!
    December 24, 2011 at 4:28 am

    Erin, You are sooo thrifty and smart. I adore both bracelets. Chink-a-chink dandley
    [email protected]

  14. stregajewellry
    December 24, 2011 at 4:39 am

    Ooooo, I love that green. I like that idea for leftovers too. I had mine sorted by color in 2 muffin tins………BUT the cat knocked them off the shelf and now they are all mixed up in a drawer. Someday……….

  15. Rebecca
    December 24, 2011 at 11:23 am

    I love eating leftovers and I love beading leftovers! In fact, the way I store my beads, is often in a big mish mash, trying to keep Czech glass in one bit, gemstones in another, and art beads in another….but inevitably they end up getting mixed. Says something about my brain and the way it works…..! These are absolutely lovely, the bezels you've put the initials in – gorgeous. They have a kind of Victorian elegance to them.

  16. Shaiha
    December 25, 2011 at 5:15 am

    You know I have that Chain thingey and I never use. And your leftovers are ones that I could enjoy.

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