Design to Dish: Sugared Pecans

With the holidays in full swing, you’re undoubtedly in need of lots of gifts. Besides the ones to go under the Christmas tree, there are gifts for neighbors, teachers, co-workers, party hosts and hostesses, and not to mention unexpected visitors who drop by! These sugared pecans are the perfect solution to all of those situations—they’re easy to make in bulk (each batch yields about four cups and takes about five minutes) and they last a loooooong time if stored in a sealed container. And, most importantly, they’re delicious—great on salads, cheese plates, ice cream, holiday desserts, and, let’s face it, straight off the pan. Package this sweet homemade gift in cellophane with a sprig of greenery and a cute holiday tag from Minted, like these “Holly Jolly” gift tags by Toast & Laurel.

Handmade Holiday Gift Idea: Sugared Pecans Sugared pecans (recipe below) | “Holly Jolly” gift tags by Toast & Laurel

Handmade Holiday Gift Idea: Sugar Pecans

Keep reading for this sweet and easy holiday gift recipe…


DIY: Scratch-Off Gift Tags

Gift-giving season is here and that means wrapping. Loads and loads of wrapping. Up your game this holiday season with these scratch-off joke gift tags—the recipient will get a kick out of scratching off the label to reveal the punch line. They’re like lotto tickets for children! Grab the free printable below.

gift tags printable

Click through for the free scratch-off gift tag printable


Free Printable: Handmade Holiday Gift Tags

Written by Sara Albers and Melissa Fenlon from  Alice & Lois

We love making handmade gifts for the holidays: baked goods, hot cocoa mix in a jar, hand-stamped dish towels, the list goes on. And if you’re into handmade presents like we are, then you’ll love this free gift tag printable—it’s the perfect way to top those gifts!

Handmade Holiday Gift Tags free printable | alice & lois for minted Handmade Holiday Gift Tags free printable | alice & lois for minted

Printable gift tag #1
• Printable gift tag #2
• Printable gift tag (small)
• Card stock


1. Print the gift tags on card stock and cut out. You can punch a hole to tie onto present.

Handmade Holiday Gift Tags free printable | alice & lois for minted

Photos: Sara Albers

More Holiday Ideas:
• DIY: Gold Holiday Laurel Leaf Wreath
• DIY: Glowing Star Garland with LED Lights
• DIY: Retro Painted Ornaments
• How To: Tie the Perfect Bow


DIY: Fabric-Covered Christmas Tree Box

Written by Sara Albers and Melissa Fenlon of  Alice & Lois

I love creating holiday decorations that can also be used long after Christmas is over, which is exactly the case with this DIY project. During the holidays, display festive tabletop Christmas trees in these patterned-fabric boxes, then re-purpose them later as storage containers for all your random odds and ends.

DIY Fabric Christmas Tree Box
DIY Fabric Christmas Tree Box Tutorial

Click through for the step-by-step instructions


Mariam’s Family Heirloom, Turned into a Custom Art Print

My family loves to cook—we’re definitely in the “live to eat” rather than “eat to live” category. My grandmother, Sophie Sun, was a great cook and loved making food for me. She was born in Shanghai in 1918, moved to Hong Kong in the early 1950s, and then to California in the 1970s; she passed away in 2004, during a trip back to Shanghai. I was lucky enough to spend time with her as an adult and wrote down some of her recipes as she gave me cooking lessons. Recently, I was going through some old papers and found Sophie’s “Chicken Plus Soup” recipe, which she had written for me in a lined notebook. It’s a great winter recipe that includes traditional Chinese ingredients like dried scallops, ginseng, and ginger, and my grandmother swore it was a restorer of health. She encouraged me to have this soup often when I was pregnant with my first child.  (For those of you trying to read the recipe, there is a good interpretation of the same recipe here.)

This year, I realized I could take advantage of Minted’s new Completely Custom Art service and turn my grandmother’s handwritten recipe into a framed, foil-pressed art print, which I’ll be giving to my mom, aunts, uncle, and cousins as a gift this Christmas. (Our talented design associates are able to turn pretty much anything into a beautiful foil-pressed keepsake—kid’s drawings, your pet’s silhouette, you name it!) Check out how it turned out, below. And, of course, I ordered one for myself, too—I’m planning to hang it in my kitchen in honor of Sophie.

—Mariam Naficy, Founder & CEO of Minted

Holiday Gift Idea: Family Recipe Keepsake Art Print




DIY: New York City Advent Calendar

We’ve got advent calendars on the brain today and here’s one you can quickly put together today just in time to crack open the first box tomorrow. All you need are matchboxes and our free New York City-themed printables. Let the holiday countdown begin!

homemade advent calendar

Click through to download our free advent calendar printable


DIY: Modern Christmas Ornament Advent Calendar

Written by Olivia Kanaley

For the young and the young-at-heart, nothing quite tops the anticipation of Christmas morning. What’s more fun than counting down the days with an advent calendar? This one is easy to make and you can reuse it year after year.

• 1″ glass ball ornaments (24)
• 1/2″ brass cup hooks (24)
• 16″ x 20″ or larger piece of wood (we used a wood painting panel)
• Paint
• 1/4″ vinyl number stickers
• Foam brush
• Drill and 1/16″ drill bit
• Pencil
• Scissors
• Printed template (print on letter paper and tape together)


1. Print template on four sheets of letter paper, tape the edges together, and cut out. Center the template on top of the wood and tape in place. Using a pencil, mark the three corners of the triangle on the wood board.

2. Using the black dots on the template as a guide, pre-drill holes for the cup hooks (drill right through the paper template).

3. Remove template and use pencil dots as a guide to tape off the three sides of the tree.

4. Add number stickers 1-24 securely about 1/2″ below each of the pre-drilled holes. You can go in numerical order or randomly apply them.

5. Apply paint to taped off area and let dry completely.

6. Carefully remove the tape and vinyl numbers. Screw in cup hooks. Now you’re ready to add one ornament to your tree on each day of December to count down to Christmas.



DIY: Fabric-Covered Christmas Tree Ornaments

Written by Sara Albers and Melissa Fenlon of  Alice & Lois

This year, trim your tree with these easy-to-make handmade ornaments. I picked up these tree-shaped cardboard ornaments at my local craft store—they were plain and simple, and ready to be turned into something beautiful! All it took was some glue and pieces of fabric (I chose designs from Minted’s line of fabrics) to turn the plain ornaments into ones with personality! These would look beautiful on your tree, of course, but would also make a sweet gift topper. Keep reading for the easy step-by-step instructions.

Click through for the DIY instructions…


DIY: Holiday Pom-Pom Garland

Looking for a quick way to decorate your house in time for Thanksgiving? This simple pom-pom garland will add a cheerful touch to your holiday. Best of all, it’s customizable, so you can personalize it with any festive, season-inspired message you like!

christmas garland
thanksgiving garland

Click through to download this free holiday pom-pom garland printable


5, 4, 3, 2, 1…Happy New Year’s Challenge: Special Prize Winners

5, 4, 3, 2, 1…let’s get ready to toast to 2016! Each year we see New Year’s cards become a bigger trend among customers who are too busy having fun over the holidays. We asked you, our talented Minted community, to really wow the world with original designs that ring in 2016 with a bang! We’re raising our glasses to all the winners and runners-up – congratulations everyone!

For the most unconventional, unique design 
that you wouldn’t find on any other site

Diamond New Year” by Chica Design

For the best way of displaying the numbers “2016 
2016” by Cass Loh

Runners-Up: Bubbly” by Leah Bisch | “Glass of Bubbly” by GeekInk Design
Mid Century New Year” by Pistols

For the best clever, witty or funny card 
Bubbly Birth” by Lori Wemple

Runner-Up: So Last Year” by Carolyn MacLaren

For the card that uses clever wording to 
reinvent the typical new year’s greeting 
Countdown to 2016!” by Lily Metcalf

 For the most elegant, timeless new year’s design  
New Year Wishes” by Erica Krystek

Runners-Up: Deco” by Fine and Dandy Paperie | “Classic Type” by Kelly Schmidt

For the best design that celebrates what’s
 new and exciting in someone’s life  
New Year, New View” by Bethany Anderson

Runners-Up: From the Crib, No.9” by Frooted Design | “New Story” by GeekInk Design
Ringing” by Lauren Chism

For the best design that showcases multiple photos  
Intertwined” by Ann Gardner

Runners-Up: Engraved Numerals” by Jennifer Wick | “Thatched” by Fig and Cotton Paperie

For the best full-bleed photo card 
Confetti Toss” by Lehan Veenker

Runner-Up: Festive Flourish” by Kristie Kern

For the best design with elements
that would truly shine in foil
Gold Etched” by Erica Krystek

Runners-Up: Gilded Pointillism” by Aspacia Kusulas | Jewel Frame” by Ana Sharpe
a-MAZE-ing” by Kissyfish

For the best design that puts personalizable details on a curvilinear path 
2016 New Year Swash” by fatfatin

Runners-Up: Golden Cheers 2016” by Helen H Wu | Party Hats” by Hanna McShan

For the best design from a first-time entrant  
MMXVI” by Tina Kuczaj

Images created by Leah Conroy

Celebrate Innovation Award – will be announced at a later date

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