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Beautiful Finds Make Wonderful Gifts (Just Be Sure to Get Them Home Safely!)

Trips with family and friends are a great way to make memories. Finding items and creating gifts for people to celebrate the trip is always a special treat. I personally can't wait to give everyone the items I made for Christmas! I'm sure they will all be a hit!

When you find delicate things like seashells on vacation that you plan to take home with you to create gifts, it is important to protect and package your shells securely for the trip home. The way I did this was to buy cigar boxes at a local thrift store to package my shells in. I also saw cigar boxes available at liquor stores. These boxes are lightweight but sturdy, and were made to protect delicate cigars, so they are perfect for protecting shells! The cigar boxes I found were super cool because the previous owner wrote which Florida Keys islands they bought the boxes of cigars in! So the boxes had a little extra fun to them.

If you cannot find cigar boxes, try wrapping your shells in some clothes and place them in a spare pair of shoes in your checked luggage. I have also packed and carried delicate items onto a plane in a separate bag just so I could make sure they would not get bumped around.

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These three vintage cigar boxes are the way I got all of my shells home safe and sound. I loved that I was able to find them at a thrift store for $1 and that they were from the Florida Keys!

I hope all of you have a very happy holiday season and a wonderful New Year.

Corene Painter signature
Corene Painter
Editor, Simply Beads update

Corene began crafting and beading at a very young age, learning how to bead through Girl Scouts and a day camp that had an American Indian influence. Through the years, Corene has expanded her crafting and art skills to include photography, candle making, paper crafting, crochet and knitting.

After college, Corene opened a bead and candle shop that specialized in organic and gemstone beads. The shop featured her own jewelry creations, as well as jewelry created by other local beadwork designers in Corene's hometown of Fort Wayne, Ind. Corene's beadwork and paper creations are often featured at a local art gallery. At the request of a number of gallery patrons, Corene also teaches classes in both media several times a year. Corene still enjoys living in her hometown, and in the past, has been the technical editor of Simply Beads Kit-of-the-Month-Club, Creative Girls Kit-of-the-Month-Club, CardMaker magazine, beading books and numerous paper-crafting books by Annie's. She was also a past writer and designer for the CardMaker blog.

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