Prep For Christmas With DIY Magic

Sure you can do some last-minute holiday decorating and celebrating with store-bought goods, but that's no fun. We've rounded up some fun holiday-related DIY projects, ranging from quick-rip wrapping paper to Christmas cannons.

Build An LED-Fuelled Christmas Card:

Instructables user Improviser took a design for an edge-lit Christmas card and improved upon it with a new design and layout. His version includes multiple colours and fade outs. It's not the cheapest Christmas card to send but it's about the geekiest one you could put together to impress your friends.

Synchronise Your Christmas Lights To Music:

Every Christmas you'll find no shortage of videos online showing crazy synchronisation of music and lights. The video above isn't the most extreme one you'll see, but it does include a step-by-step guide to constructing your own light show.

Animated Christmas LED Snowflake Window Decoration

Positive you want to work some electronics and lighting into your holidays but definitely sure you don't want your neighbours to burn your house down in a rage after you follow the synchronisation tutorial above and rock the neighbourhood with the most moving rendition of Dr Demento's Christmas album in LEDs the world will ever see? Fair enough. Keep things a bit lower key by building the above LED-animated snowflake for your front window. It's 1/100th the pedestrian-blinding illumination but just as much electronics-tinkering fun.

Rubens Tube Yule Log

Still stuck on the idea of synchronising holiday music to something, but positive your neighbours would strongly disprove of an outdoor lightshow? Build a Rubens tube for your fireplace and create a yule log that dances to the music. What's a Rubens tube you ask? Only one of the most awesome physics demonstrations in the world. Flammable gas is piped into a tube that has a series of small holes drilled along the top. Speakers supply sound to the tube and as the music plays the lit gas moves according to the sound waves. The video above is of a Rubens tube in action, but not the same one from the Instructable — that one is currently unavailable.

Turn Your Christmas Tree Into A Platform For A Laser Light Show

You know what the problem with your Christmas tree is? It's boring. The only way you could possibly blind yourself with it would be to run full speed into it and put a branch right into your eye. Everything is better with lasers and Christmas is no exception. The laser-loving folks over at Novalasers decided to bring the Christmas tree into the 21st century with lasers.

Quick-Open Wrapping, Or How I Learned To Love The Rip Cord

This might not be as big a hit with your older relatives, but it's sure to go over big with the younger ones. With a little wrapping ingenuity you can add a rip cord to your presents so excited recipients can tear into their gifts like nobody's business.

Build A Christmas Cannon

Not excited about the holidays? You just need the right tool to get you in the holiday spirit. Like a cannon that helps you decorate for Christmas like you're trying to tear the house down. The Christmas cannon is a light-weight sibling to the spud gun and instead of firing window-smashing potatoes it fires bursts of tinsel, streamers and fake snow.

Light Things Up With A Sparkle Ball

Sparkle Balls are an interesting tradition in some parts of the United States. They are made from strands of Christmas lights and clear plastic party cups, neither of which sound like the basis of a really neat and sparkly holiday decoration. Once you're done assembling it however you've got a sparkling and brilliant ball to hang out in your yard. Want an even easier way to achieve a similar effect sans the sparkle of all that plastic? Check out our previous article on Lighted Christmas Balls.

Speed wrapping, lasers, cannons and LEDs galore - everything a geek needs to get in the holiday spirit. Have a holiday-related DIY project you're dying to share? Let's hear about it in the comments.


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