When my parents-in-law were newly married and both in school, they faced decorating their Christmas tree with no money to buy ornaments.
The solution came from what they, as young students had in abundance… white typewriter paper. They folded and cut and soon their tree was blanketed in beautiful, elegant snowflakes.
As the years passed and they had the money to buy more expensive ornaments, they found they could not give up their beautiful handmade snowflakes. After nearly 45 years of marriage, they still decorate their tree with paper snowflakes along with their favorite ornaments. Some of the snowflakes are many years old, some were even cut by loved ones who have passed away. Each year the best snowflakes are carefully saved between sheets of cardstock.
Most of my husband’s siblings, our family included, have carried on the tradition of hand cut snowflakes. It started for us, just as it did for my in-laws… out of necessity, but has continued out of choice.
I know we all did this in grade school, but in case you can’t remember, here’s how we cut our snowflakes:
Start by cutting an 8 1/2″ x 11″ sheet of printer paper into a square- 8 1/2″ x 8 1/2″. Cheaper, thinner (light weight) paper is actually best for this project.
Fold your sheet in half.
And then half again, so you have a small square.
Now fold your square into a triangle, in thirds.
Once cut, I open them up gently and press them with my iron on the lowest setting. Be very careful not to catch and rip the snowflakes when pressing.
Tie a length of string onto the snowflake and hang them on the tree… or from the ceiling or wall. I love this tradition, because every member of our family can contribute and each snowflake is unique, lovely and festive. But, best of all each year we create wonderful new memories.