Seashell Holiday Crafts – Give A Little Bit Of Hatteras Island This Holiday Season

While basking in the sun and strolling along the shoreline during your Hatteras Island vacation, you are bound to have come across many unique and beautiful seashells. You collected them in buckets, coolers – even pockets – and took them home with you at the end of your stay.

Now what? Since the holiday season is rapidly approaching, (oh who are we kidding – it’s HERE!) why not take some of those treasures you have collected and use them to create one-of-a-kind holiday seashell crafts? They are the perfect way to have a little bit of Hatteras Island for the holidays! They also make wonderful gifts to give to your loved ones. What’s better than receiving something someone else put love and care into?

We have compiled a few simple craft ideas you can try. Don’t limit yourself to just these ideas though. The possibilities are endless!

Holiday Wreath:
What you’ll need: Seashells, wreath, clear nail polish, a glue gun or crazy glue, ribbon, and decorations like bows, ornaments, strings of beads, glitter, etc.
Best shells to use: Whole scallops, clams, and arc shells.
How to do it: Paint all the shells with a heavy coat of clear nail polish so they look like they just washed up from the ocean – or – glue white glitter on them to make it look like sand or snow. Once your shells have dried, place them where you want them on your wreath (available at dollar stores and craft stores). Using a glue gun or crazy glue, glue them to the wreath. Continue gluing bows and/or other decorations you want on the wreath. Once dried, add a hanger or ribbon to hang your pretty creation on a door or wall.

Holiday Ornaments:
What you’ll need: Seashells, clear nail polish, a glue gun or crazy glue, ribbon, and decorations like strings of beads, glitter, etc.
Best shells to use: Whole scallops, clams, moon snails, and arc shells.
How to do it: Paint all the shells with a heavy coat of clear nail polish so they look like they just washed up from the ocean. Once shells are dry, loop a ribbon or string of beads into a circle, and glue it to the back of the shell, creating a “hanger” for the ornament. (If you have two similar shells, you can even glue them together, with the loop of ribbon in between the two shells.) Then decorate each individual shell any way you’d like: add glitter, glue a string of beads along the edge of the shell, or even paint holiday designs on the shell.

Mirrors, Picture Frames, Trinket Boxes:
What you’ll need: Lots of shells, a glue gun or crazy glue, clear nail polish, and a plain mirror, a frame you can decorate, or a trinket box. (You can also get cut pieces of mirror at a hardware store, and simply add a hanger to the back.)
Best shells to use: Small, decorative shells, or pretty shell pieces.
How to do it: Glue the shell pieces around the mirror, overlapping each other so that there are no spaces of mirror visible. Once the glue has dried, coat the shells with nail polish to make them shine.
Have fun and get creative, and don’t forget that these ideas are just the start of the number of projects you can do with your seashells. Grab a little glue, polish and paint – there’s no limit to the number of remarkable, one of a kind craft projects you can create with these treasures.

Wall Hangings:
What you’ll need: A nice thin piece of driftwood, approx. 12″ – 18″ long, seashells, rustic twine, fishing line or strong thread, nails or tacks.
Best shells to use: Small decorative shells with tiny holes in them, large enough to pull thread or fishing line through.
How to do it: Create strings of shells by looping the fishing line or thread through each shell and tying a knot, creating an even 8″ – 12″ long string of a dozen shells or so. If the driftwood is sturdy enough, space tacks or nails along the piece of driftwood and tie on each string of shells. If not, simply tie each string of shells to the piece of driftwood. Essentially, you’re forming a “beaded curtain” of shells along the piece of driftwood. Once this is complete, add hardy twine to each side of the piece of driftwood, or around each of the nails, gathering and tying the individual pieces at the top, and creating a hanger for the wall hanging.

The following craft ideas and pictures are via Better Homes and Gardens:

Beach Detailed Flower Holder:
Repurpose a tin can with beach finds. Gluefabric or paper around the clean can. Add desired beach details. To use on a chair back, cut a hole near the top and the bottom of the back of the can, then tie with ribbon threaded through the holes. Or set decorated tin on the table as a centerpiece.

Shells and Twine Bookmark:
Craft a lovely bookmark to remind you of days at the beach. Natural string fits right in with seashore finds, such as shells, buttons, and bottle caps. Knot eight 18-inch-long strands together at one end to make the main bookmark; knot 8 inches below the first knot, or farther depending on
the size of the book. Drill holes in items to attach to the string ends or use hot glue.

Seashell Candles:
Clean shells and let dry. Melt small chunks of a paraffin block or old candle stubs in the top of a double boiler. Cover the work surface with plastic or newspaper. Slowly and carefully pour melted wax into shells. Quickly put a wick in the center of the wax. Let cool about 30 minutes. Never leave burning candles unattended.

Beach Memory Jars:
Bring home beach memories to store in a jar. Collect clear jars and bottles. Put shells and sand inside. Label each container with rub-ons or stickers to spell out the name of the destination.

Have fun with these projects! Happy Holidays from your friends at Surf or Sound Realty!


Hatteras Island's Studio 12 To Be Part Of The National Christmas Tree Display

Hatteras Island’s very own Studio 12 has been chosen to have an ornament they have designed and created displayed on North Carolina’s tree at the 2011 National Christmas Tree Display in President’s Park in Washington, D.C. and for the Christmas tree at the White House Visitor Center. The tree lighting ceremony will take place Dec 1st.

Studio 12 worked with Locomotion to create the limited edition ornament, and a portion of proceeds from the sale will be donated to Locomotion. Locomotion is an organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of Hatteras Island youth by providing programs for students in grades 6-12. For information on the organization, contact director Kathy Kiddy at klocomotion@embarqmail.com.

Studio 12 is located on Highway 12 in Avon and is owned by artists Carolyn and Gary Schena. The studio is a wonderful place that offers a unique experience to paint pottery and create mosaics and glass fusions. To purchase the limited edition ornament, click here. For more information on classes or anything else Studio 12 has to offer, contact Carolyn Schena at carolyn@studio12hatteras.com or call 252-995-7899.


Helping Hatteras Island for the Holidays

As Hatteras Island still recovers from the lasting effects of Hurricane Irene, this holiday season will be especially difficult for many local residents. Surf or Sound Realty has received numerous inquiries and questions as to how our friends and neighbors can help in this time of need.

We have compiled a list below of the many Outer Banks organizations that are preparing meals, collecting Christmas items, coats, clothing, toys and monetary donations to ensure that this holiday season is still memorable and special for the children and families on Hatteras Island.

We are grateful for the assistance from these organizations and charities and humbled by the outpouring of support from our vacation guests, homeowners and friends both near and far.

Angel Tree
Christmas is organized through a coalition of churches, businesses and individuals who work to provide Christmas to all children in need on Hatteras Island. The coalition collaborates with Toy for Tots and Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative (CHEC) “Operation Santa Claus” programs. Sponsored children receive clothing and gift items. Dare County Department of Social Services assists in receiving applications and facilitating various donors.

Sponsorship Specific Requests: Individual children and families can be sponsored. Contact Dare County DSS (252-475-9320) or Megan Vayette (252-216-7176) to sponsor a family.
For information on specific toy requests, see Facebook www.Facebook.com/hatterasislandangeltree where you will be directed where to drop-off or mail your presents for specific requests.

CHEC “Operation Santa Claus” Toys can be dropped off at their offices in Buxton. Items can be shipped to this address (except those for a specific child) at 47109 Light Plant Road, Buxton NC 27920.

Irene’s Giving Tree

Two Cape Hatteras Secondary School seniors are raising funds and collecting donations for Christmas trees to be given to at least 30 families, including a tree, tree skirt, lights and ornaments. Visit their Facebook page for more information.
Monetary donations for Irene’s Giving Tree:
PO Box 71
47468 NC Hwy 12
Buxton, NC 27920

Monetary Donations for Hatteras Island

Our Lady of the Seas Catholic Church
Attn: Angel Tree (also in memo line)
PO Box 399
Buxton, NC 27920

Operation Santa Claus (also in memo line)
PO Box 9
Buxton, NC 27920

Coat Drive:
Little Grove United Methodist Church is collecting coats, hats and gloves (new items only) for distribution across the island. Contact Pastor Cory Oliver for further information at (252) 996-0256.

Donations for the Coat Drive:
c/o Hatteras UMC
PO Box 310
57665 NC Hwy 12
Hatteras, NC 27943

Sparkle Bags/Dinners:
Hands of Love is organizing “Sparkle Bags” and Christmas dinners for families. Contact Kim Martin (252) 996-0919 for more information.

Mail donations to:
Hands of Love
PO Box 43
Frisco NC 27936

Older/Disabled Adults and Children in Foster Care Dare County Department of Social Services coordinates items for these special populations. Call (252) 475-5500.

From everyone at Surf or Sound Realty, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your help! We will continue to post updates on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/surforsound


Celebrate a joyful island holiday with a variety of upcoming community events

The holidays are just around the corner, and on Hatteras Island, ’tis the season to celebrate with friends and family with a variety of upcoming community events. If you’re in the Outer Banks area, check out these festive activities that are open to everyone, and get a jump start on generating a little holiday spirit.

Community Christmas Dinner in tri-villages is Dec. 5
The Rodanthe-Waves-Salvo Civic Association will sponsor a Community Christmas Dinner on Saturday, Dec. 5, at 6 p.m. at the Community Building. Beautifully decorated by volunteers, the Community Building will come alive with singing and a visit from Santa. Turkey and ham are provided by the Community Building board and attendees are asked to bring a side dish or dessert.

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