Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Beyond Bath Salts: A Handmade Christmas

Yes, I realize Christmas was less than a week away, but don't you already miss it? Well, maybe not yet, but I can't possibly spring this on you at the last minute next year, so I'm giving you plenty of time.

I've received some amazing handmade gifts for Christmas in the past. No matter what they are, they are always the most beloved gifts I receive that year because of the thought and time that went into them. I saw several bloggers announce that they were taking the "handmade Christmas pledge" this year and I'll admit I was intrigued. Of course, teens are still going to want their video games and Ipods, but still a little something made by hand, made with love would still be treasured.

So I'm starting early. I hope. And to inspire you to do the same, I've scoured the internet and crafting blogs for good ideas. Ideas that go beyond bath salts and chutneys. We can do better than that. If I start early, maybe I can give to more people, and I can definitely save at least a little money. And have fun in the process. Oh, and don't forget there's always birthdays all year long as well!

Cute block calendar From Lark and Lola. This is adorable! And just by changing the papers you could get an entirely different look. This would make a great gift. Coordinate it with your recipient's decor.

Fabric Dollhouse from UK Lass. This is too cute. Seriously. Almost makes me want to have another little girl. I love the tote-ability. You could make a little clothespin family to go inside. Or, for a boy, look at the variation for a farmhouse.

Crayon Roll or simpler Felt Crayon Roll from Skip to my Lou. Yes! Love this! Toss one in the diaper bag, or as I like to call it, "Mom's Bag O' Tricks". So cute! And no more tearing the helpless Crayola box.

Oil-cloth lunch sacks also from Skip to my Lou. Go green. Save the forests and the landfills and make reusable lunch sacks. My mother did it to me. I mean, for me, and I do it for my kids. Sew up a batch of these and they'd make a great family gift, would they not?

Rice Heat Therapy Bag from Sew, Mama, Sew! If you don't have one of these, make an extra for yourself. They are phenomenal. You can make a pair of them too, one for heating, and a smaller one to keep in the freezer.

2 Easy, Cute scarves from Craftzine. These wouldn't be hard to whip up, even for a novice knitter like me. It's all in the yarn, ladies. Great husband/father gift.

Etched Casserole Dishes from the Happy Valley Knitter. This is a great Christmas gift, but would also make a great birthday or wedding gift too. Make a set of them in different sizes, or add in some baked goods or kitchen utensils. The other thing I like about this is that when you take dinner over to someone, it will be very hard for them to forget to return your dishes!

Cargo Scarf This is a cool idea from Instructables.com, is it not? We could do a better job on the fabric choice, but it is a great idea. Better yet, make one for every member of the family to wear and load them all up like pack mules. Never carry another thing again!

Bath Bombs. Bath salts are not my thing, but these things? Are the bomb. They are so fun! And teens love them too. You could make them in a variety of colors and fragrances and add them to a pampering basket. Directions at Instructables.com

Literary Clock another great idea from Instructables.com I mean, c'mon! The possibilities are endless! Anything from children's classics to favorite novels, to medical guides, to cookbooks! A clock for any room or office anywhere!

Hope something here inspires you! I'll be on the lookout for more great ideas! And if you have some, send them my way!


Wonder Woman said...

I'm impressed at all your hard work!! And I absolutely LOVE the block date thing. I could TOTALLY do that.

YogaNana said...

You're not suggesting sacrificing a real book, are you????? (shudders!!!!!) :o)

But all in all, some very cute ideas there. When I saw the lunch bags, I wondered if you remembered having one of those. :o) I used a regular brown paper bag as the pattern, and I know you thought it was geeky, but hey! It was also ... green.

Btw, the little house reminds me -- I've had patterns for YEARS for a little cottage sort of like that with the Three Bears and Goldilocks inside, designed so they fit one inside the other and one closed with a zipper and one closed with snaps and one closed with buttons ... you get it. Like another version of a quiet book. The tiniest part, inside Goldilocks, was a bowl of porridge. Never finished making one though.

YogaNana said...

***I did see you commented about having had the bag done to you. Didn't complete my response. Ooops.


templework said...

Loving the ideas!!!

(and for those young and energetic crafters - there are still "quiet books" - not to mention covered albums for ALL occasions - smile)

Sarah said...

These are some great ideas, Jenna! I love the blocks and the crayon roll especially! Too bad I don't sew! I could make the blocks though for sure!

Misty said...

i am so proud of this post of yours because we did quite a lot of those for part of OUR handmade Christmas! :) The rickrack trim on the crayon rolls is adorable. I wish I'd thought of that though...

I love your background! did you set it up yourself?

Luisa Perkins said...

I love the etched glass casserole dish. I must do that.

I am hoping to knit linen placemats this year. They are beautiful and useful!

Abby said...

I decided about a month ago that this year I'm totally doing a handmade Christmas for the fam. I'll say you have my idea down there..partially. I won't say which one..but I'm way excited!