DIY Classics: How to Preserve Memorabilia

Mementos, keepsakes, and souvenirs are part of every American family. They are special items that instantly call to mind memories and even transport people to the past.

Of course, these objects need to be preserved and taken care off. Tree Classics gives you a quick and easy guide on how to preserve these precious objects for the next generation to appreciate.

a wonderful collection of photographs

1. Organize Your Memorabilia

a collection of precious mementos beside a staircase

Organizing keepsakes is always the first step. Take all the memorabilia you want to preserve and display. Arrange them by material. Make sure all the objects made of paper are together. Keep everything made of wood separate from those made of metal. For items composed of two or more materials, place them in the pile of the material they have more of.

2. Choose a Suitable Location in Your Home 

a superb collection of mementos elegantly displayed

The location of your memorabilia is vital in the preservation process. Most materials are affected by factors such as heat, light, and moisture, so it’s important that the environment is ideal.

First off, attics and basements are not good choices. These are usually breeding ground for dust, and the extreme temperatures in these locations are especially harmful to delicate items. The best locations are those that are found at the end of a corridor or in the corner of a room.

The temperature has to be between 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. The light coming in from the outside must be minimal. Most importantly, the location has to be far away from hazards, such as pipes, air conditioners, and any ventilation shafts. It’s also smart to put memorabilia in a place where children or pets won’t be able to reach them easily.

3. Store Your Items Properly 

mementos encased in safe and elegant frames

There is a difference in how paper mementos and normal items are stored. Objects made of paper are usually encased in frames. Before being sealed off, however, they have to be mounted on acid-free or archival copy paper. This is especially important for photographs.

When attaching clippings and pictures, use acid-free mounting corners. Pins, paperclips, rubber bands, and tapes can damage your mementos. For comic books and newspaper clippings, transparent polyester sleeves are excellent options. When it comes to frames, pick out something with a thick glass frame. This will be additional protection against light and moisture.

an elegant display cabinet filled with precious mementos

Cases should have glare-free conservation glass. This will prevent any discoloration caused by sunlight and heat. It’s also important to pick out a stable and durable case that has several levels. The multiple levels will give you the opportunity to arrange your items properly.

When mounting the items in your display case, avoid using pressure sensitive adhesives, such as tape, glue, and superglue. Use acid-free mounting corners. This is the safest option for your mementos.

4. Clean Your Memorabilia Regularly

Maintenance is vital to taking care of your memorabilia. Cases and frames need to be wiped clean at least once a week. Using a normal cleaning spray can do the trick.

Paper does not need to be cleaned. In fact, it’s actually better if it remains untouched inside the frame. Wiping the frame with cotton swabs dipped in warm water is enough. Make sure to clean every inch of the item and leave it to air-dry before displaying it once again.

Keep your precious memorabilia and mementos safe for the next generation to enjoy with the help of this guide from Tree Classics.

DIY Classics: 5 Gorgeous Ways to Make an Autumn Wreath

Nothing celebrates this gracious time of year quite like a homemade fall wreath. Tree Classics features five gorgeous wreath projects that you can make yourself to help you add a statement of hospitality to your front door.

1. Fall Wreath with Fancy Bow from Tidbits & Twine

Elegant yet inexpensive, this fall wreath can be transitioned from season to season. You can use a bare twig or grapevine wreath as the base, and just wire in accent pieces that depict the season. For autumn, faux berry stems, pussy willow branches, faux hydrangea, pine cones, a small sign, and a fancy burlap bow are just perfect! Learn how to make this gorgeous décor from Tidbits & Twine.

Tidbits and Twine Fall Wreath with grapevine wreath as the base, Autumn accent pieces like faux berry stems, pussy willow branches, faux hydrangea, some pinecones, a small fall sign and a fancy burlap bow.
Photo from Tidbits & Twine

2. Moss and Pumpkin Wreath from 320 Sycamore

Inspired by a pricier counterpart from Williams Sonoma, this wreath by 320 Sycamore captures the festive spirit of autumn with its pumpkin patch appeal. Best of all, it’s easy and affordable to make. All it requires is a crown, reindeer moss, faux pumpkins, plus a rustic burlap ribbon!

320 Sycamore fall wreath with moss and pumpkins
Photo from 320 Sycamore

3. Dried Hydrangea Wreath from Julie Ree

Enjoy these beautiful flowers well after they blossom with this dried hydrangea wreath. With its browns and whites and touch of green, this wreath by Julie Ree gives your front door the perfect autumn look that is subtle and romantic.

Dried Hydrangea Wreath from Julie Ree
Photo from Julie Ree

4. Potpourri Wreath from Sweet Something Designs

Unique and rich with the stunning colors of autumn, this wreath by Sweet Something Designs is a gorgeous way to add warmth to your home décor.  Old potpourri in red and orange hues is upcycled to replicate a vibrant fall palette that would look great in both traditional and contemporary homes. A beautiful checkered bow makes a nice finishing touch.

5.  Wheat Wreath from Thrive

Bring natural beauty into your door front with a simple yet elegant wheat wreath. This traditional harvest wreath may look challenging to make, but it’s really very easy to. The base of the wreath is nothing more than cardboard wrapped in scrap fabric. Wheat was attached using generous beads of hot glue. Make this at home with DIY instructions from Thrive.

wreath made of wheat by Thrive
Photo from Choose to Thrive

Celebrate autumn with Tree Classics’ selection of five gorgeous DIY wreath projects and fill your door front with warmth and style.

How to Throw an Autumn Picnic

an autumn picnic with the family in a beautiful scenic spot

The fall season brings remarkably beautiful changes to the landscape. Before the cold settles in and the lovely rustic colors of nature fade into winter, clock in some quality time with the family and throw an autumn picnic. Here’s a quick guide you can use for this unforgettable outdoor meal:

1.  Pack the Essentials

a picnic basket filled with the essentials

Make sure to have everything in a large autumn-inspired wicker basket before you take off. Pack a big picnic sheet and several blankets in case the wind gets crisp and chilly.

Bring paper plates, paper cups, utensils, and condiments. Check if you need other kitchen tools, such as a bottle opener, cheese grater, or pepper grinder. Bring garbage bags and cleaning materials so that you can take care of any mess afterwards.

2. Choose the Ideal Location

a quaint place perfect for an autumn picnic

The perfect place for an autumn picnic is one that truly showcases the exquisite splendor of fall. Head out of the city to the nearest state national park. A beautiful setting should feature the wonderful colors and delightful blooms of autumn.

3. Prepare a Wonderful Autumn Menu

a delicious and refreshing cheddar and potato bacon

Prepare easy-to-pack but warm and filling food choices for your outdoor meal. Start off with a delicious autumn salad or Naked Avocado’s Paleo Chicken Caesar Salad or Simply Potatoes’ delicious and creamy Cheddar and Bacon Potato Salad.

a filling ham, brie and apple sandwich

Sandwiches are always an excellent choice for picnics. Thy can be prepared early on and are easy to manage. A delicious recipe is Fabtastic Eats’ Chicken, Sun Dried Tomato, and Asparagus Pesto Sandwich and Serious Eats’ Ham, Brie, and Apple French Toast Panini.

a delicious glass of strawberry iced tea

Dessert is always a plus. Prepare a crunchy and yummy apple pocket pie or a delectable peach cobbler. Don’t forget to blend refreshing drinks, such as Gimme Some Oven’s Sangria and Deep South Dish’s Southern Strawberry Iced Tea.

4. Play Games with the Kids

an exciting game of frisbee with the kids

Before packing up, spend a few hours in your picnic spot and relax. This is a wonderful opportunity to have a little fun with the kids. Take out the old pigskin or Frisbee and have a short game of catch. Or take a nice walk and see the gorgeous sights. Catch up and swap stories. Take a lot of pictures.

5. Wrap it Up before the Day Ends

a scenic view to end the day

Autumn evenings can get real cold. Make sure to end your picnic before sunset. Pack up your things and clean up your picnic spot. Don’t leave anything behind. Take a last group picture against the backdrop of your picnic destination! Turn this into an annual tradition so that your family will always have a date to look forward to every year.

Have a lovely and memorable autumn picnic with your dearest family members with this guide from Tree Classics!

Photo Credits

Photo by jplust via flicr. CC-BY-NC-ND-2.0.

Photo by twopolishedpennies via flickr. CC-BY-NC-ND-2.0.

Photo by Devon Miles via flickr. CC-BY-NC-2.0.

Photo by roboppy via flickr. CC-BY-NC-2.0.

Photo by rosemilkinabotle via flickr. CC BY 2.0.

Photo by Diamond Geyser via flickr. CC-BY-NC-ND-2.0.

Photo by James Marvin Phelps via flickr. CC-BY-NC-2.0.

DIY Classics: How to Tell a Story with a Family Quilt

For decades, quilts have been used across cultures as a form of narrative art. Its lively colors and intricate designs often portray momentous events in a family’s history. From weddings to births, these stylish patchworks have symbolized our celebration for life. In this edition of DIY Classics, we take a look at how these colorful quilts are used to tell heartwarming and unforgettable family stories.

Sewing a Family Quilt
Photo from rickpilot_2000 ia flickr. CC BY 2.0

Baby Quilts

One of the most well-known patchwork projects around is the baby quilt. Commonly sewn to celebrate the arrival of a new member of the family, these quilts feature simple yet colorful patterns that represent joy and excitement. Compared to other storied cloths, baby quilts are easier to make because they do not take as much fabric. Families often embroider the baby’s name and date of birth on the quilt and hand it down from generation to generation.

Baby Quilt
Photo from normanack ia flickr. CC BY 2.0

Begin your own patchwork tradition by creating adorable baby quilts for your family. You can try sewing your own baby blanket design or a full-sized flannel quilt blanket.

Graduation Quilts

Sewing a graduation quilt is another popular American family tradition. This special patchwork project features patterns that represent the years spent by a family member in high school. It includes embroidered pictures of friends and classmates. Some graduation quilts also show high school varsity uniforms such as basketball or football jerseys. In this sense, sewing a graduation quilt is more personal, and it is often taken along to college later on.

A T-Shirt Quilt
Photo from normanack ia flickr. CC BY 2.0

Celebrate memories from your high school years by making your own graduation quilt. Try collecting old shirts and uniforms and sewing them into a stylish t-shirt quilt.

Wedding Quilts

Quilts are also used to tell stories of romantic unions. In many cultures around the world, wedding quilts are sewn by relatives and friends of brides-to-be in honor of the occasion. These patchworks feature vibrant colors and elaborate patterns to echo the esteemed family background of the woman. Wedding quilts are considered one of the most challenging to sew because of the fine details associated with their patterns.

A Wedding Quilt
Photo from DanaK~WaterPenny ia flickr. CC BY 2.0

Create the ideal wedding gift for your loved ones by sewing them an intricate wedding quilt. Start with this chic asymmetrical design to understand the concepts behind this storied cloth.

More than just mere decorative cloths, quilts have become part of hallowed family traditions. These sophisticated patchworks chronicle a rich and colorful history.