Have you started decorating for Christmas yet? Most of mine will wait until this weekend, but I have done just a few things. The first thing I did was something that I wanted to do last year and never got around to. So, I’m either early for this year–or really late for last year. I’m going with early. Anyway, I’ve seen a lot of pretty snow scenes made with old jars and such, and I wanted to make my own. But I wanted them to be quick, easy, and temporary so I didn’t have to store a bunch of jars with my Christmas ornaments. I knew I wanted to use my large apothecary jars since they collect dust most of the year. Because of their size, I tried to come up with something inexpensive and disposable that would work for snow. My mind immediately went to the kitchen: salt? flour? sugar? powdered sugar? baking powder? baking soda?
YES. Baking soda! It’s white; it’s powdery; it’s cheap. So I bought a big generic box of baking soda (last year). And it worked as expected. Except it was kind-of lumpy. I’m not sure if it was because it was a generic brand or because it was a year old. I tried to break it up with a whisk, but I ended up having to sift it to get rid of most of the lumps. Since baking soda is super-fine, I did the sifting on the back porch because it was floating everywhere. Is it possible to get a buzz from a cloud of baking soda? Never mind.
Anyway, my smaller boxes of Arm & Hammer soda have never been lumpy, so I’ll probably stick with that brand next time so I can skip the sifting.
For my snow scenes, I used Christmas ornaments, pine cones, and miniature trees and a truck meant for Christmas villages. The Church (back left) is an ornament with the string removed. Sifting the baking soda and washing all the dust off the jars took longer than anything, and I think I finished all of it in less than ten minutes. And they look really pretty and wintery on the piano top. I’ll take some more pictures when I get the rest of the dining room decorated, but I just wanted to share these since they were so easy.
I liked the composition in the first batch of photos I took (like the one below), but they were missing something. So, I moved the jars forward and hung a strand of lights behind them.
I thought it was interesting what a big difference a small change in aperture made on the way the lights looked. Below the aperture is f/2.0, and the lights are more blurred; they look too big and distracting, in my opinion.
ISO 800 50mm f/2.0 1/125 sec
What do you think?
I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!