“Cardinals in the Snow” Gift Jars

I’ve been using our left-over grape stems in a lot of projects lately.  They make perfect little trees!

Here’s one project I finished recently that I thought would make nice Christmas gifts.

First, eat up all your grapes and trim the stem into a nice tree shape…

Next, wrap brown floral tape around the bottom of the stem to form the ‘trunk” and give it added support. You can also combine several smaller stems to create one tree by doing this.

A section from an egg carton serves as the perfect tree stand.

Mix some 1 part white acrylic paint to 1 part light molding paste. This makes a thick “snow” paint.  Using a small brush, coat your little tree with frosty paint, letting blobs form in the creases and places where branches separate. I painted the egg carton stand, too.

These look just like the live oaks we have down here in the South.    I added glitter to this one, too.

For the cardinal, I took Paper Clay and shaped some birds by hand and then painted them red. You could also use some tiny resin cardinals, I’ve seen them in the craft stores.


When the tree is dry, glue the cardinal onto a branch and then slip it gently into a quart jar.

I’ve tried everything for snow: poly-flake, salt, flour, icing, sugar..My favorite ‘snow’ is confectioner’s sugar.

For this jar I also made a sturdy hanger with white floral stem wires…

After you put the lid on and secure it tightly, you can wrap up the top any way you like.  It’s fun to come up with different ideas.

I wrapped a torn strip of burlap garland and added a stamped tag with a red feather.


On another one I tied a strip of white organdy around the jar.  For the accents I used a tiny piece of grape stem that had fallen off, some red berries, and  tag hand-stamped with the word ‘peace’.

For the third jar, I did something a little funky. I wrapped wide strips of muslin and burlap garland around the top.

I cut a tag from a Valentine’s doily, added a dried tendril from the grapes, and a red feather, all held together with a tiny clothespin.

There are so many fun ways you could finish these off.   It’s fun to make each gift unique.

I hope I’ve inspired you to make home-made gifts this year!

And to eat more grapes.  🙂






  1. I love it; I love red cardinals and how vibrant they are in the snow. I saw one last winter, gorgeous! I so love the Peace one best, really beautiful~
    Celery roses, candy corn owls and grape stem trees…I want to come visit you!
    Thanks for the inspiration~ You had snow with your hot chocolate, impressive!

  2. You are absolutely amazing!

  3. Wow! I could never think of something like this. Stunning project! I would be tickled to receive such a gorgeous gift. Very inspiring indeed. I love each design and the red feather is a wonderful tangible link to the cardinal nestled away in the snowy treetop. And the “peace” stamped tag has such a beautiful, simple elegance. Before I write a book 🙂 , I must finish by saying your handmade molded cardinals are delightful and the confectioner’s sugar really does look like freshly fallen snow. Amazing!

  4. I’ve never seen this done before. Very creative! The end result turned out great. This is one that would be fun to do with my granddaughters. Thanks!

  5. The teacher in you really came out in this posting. Your step-by-step process was perfectly presented and what a great way to use ordinary items to create an extraordinary presentation. Well done!

  6. Oh my goodness..All the grapes I’ve eaten, and all the Stems I’ve trashed…You have such amazing ideas! Next bag of grapes I buy, the daughter and I will create some of those lovely Snowy Cardinal stems….I love it! I have some old Mason Jars that would work ~ What a great Christmas present this would be! Thank you for showing us step by step so we can create one too!
    LOVE it! xoxo

  7. Beautiful! i just love the idea, the Cardinals in snow; what present could be better? Thank you for sharing! ~s

  8. Oh my goodness… that is so sweet! What a great use for grape stems. They really do look like trees. I had never realized that before! So, so creative! I love cardinals. 🙂

  9. I am amazed at how darling these are. i want 2 or 3 just for me.
    Just rescued some grape stems and then I will work on this at a more sensible hour this morning, Thanks for such a great idea. i love it and so will my neighbors and co workers.

  10. Wow, so creative! And beautiful too.

  11. @Ella –Thanks! Yep we got out the hot chocolate, and then had to put on our shorts the next day! That’s Texas for you!

    @Daniele– You are so sweet, Daniele, thank you so much!

    @Vanessa –I’m glad you liked the little details, Vanessa..there are SO many other ways you could finish them of, too. I’m glad you like them!!

    @Connie –I think you’re right, this would be fun with children…they would get a kick out of painting the stems. I have a project in mind with the stems for my daughter, if it turns out, I’ll post it! Thanks so much!

    @Sue –I love cardinals so much, too, so there may be some more red bird projects before long, thanks so much, Sue!

    @Jennifer –Thank you for visiting and checking out my latest project!I love cardinals, too…we have a Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal always stopping by our back yard!! Thanks so much!

    @Dee –Thanks, I like to see how things are made so I make the effort to show the ‘how to’ for things I think people may really want to try. I appreciate your comment and see you Tues!

    @Sherri –Thank you for your sweet comment! I’m so glad you liked the little trees…it’s hard for me to throw away stems now! lol, hope you’re able to give them a try! Thanks for stopping by ~

    @Karen –Awesome! I really hoped someone would want to try this, they turn out great! Like I said above, now I’m saving them all the time!! My husband looks at these little dried up stems on the dryer and give me a funny look-lol. So glad you came by and I appreciate you taking the time to leave an encouraging note!

    @Becky –Thanks, I appreciate you coming by and leaving a note…hope you’re having a wonderful weekend creating in your nest. 🙂

  12. wow! I am always amazed by your creativity and ideas. I love everything about these. I have been eating a lot of grapes lately, maybe I’ll give it a try!

  13. Thats a great project!

    How I wish I could had a real snowwy white christmas, its always HOT here! lol!

  14. Oh my goodness…I have never seen anything so sweet…I love your creativity my friend…I soooo want to do this. xoxoxo Hugs

  15. Scarlett, these are absolutely delightful! I LOVE that you used grape vines…how brilliant. We are getting grapes this week. 🙂 Thank you SO much for visiting my blog & commenting. It means so much to me. I can’t wait to see what brilliant idea you come up with next!!

  16. This idea is fabulous!!! Love the use of powdered sugar, looks so awesome =) Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment…come back soon…Xoxoxo ~Ashley

  17. @Julie — Thanks so much for stopping by, your comments are much appreciated! Hope you’re having a great week!

    @Annmaree –I know!! Here, too!! That’s why I have to make snowy things….it’s the only way I get to see it! 🙂 Thanks so much!

    @koralee –You are so kind to leave such an encouraging comment, thank you so much, I’m glad you like them!

    @Jen –Lol, that’s great! I’m thankful to you for coming over and visiting my blog and I’m so glad you thought the little trees turned out well, have a great week!

    @Ashley –Thanks, Ashley! I’m so glad you came by. So glad you like the ‘snow’ in the jars–I love powdered sugar as snow, but even more in desserts! 🙂 Happy to find your blog!

  18. I have no words! It ‘amazing what you did!


  19. You amaze me! This is brilliant! Just brilliant . . . xoxo

  20. These are fantastic!!! Love your creativity!!! The cardinals are too cute. I never would have thought to use the grape stems as trees. They came out beautiful! ~Sophia

  21. Wonderful idea, thanks for sharing!

  22. Wow, this is so creative! I love the idea, thank you for sharing!

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