I know the holidays are pressing closer and time is getting short but if money is also short here is a great list of crafts that make cute gifts. And if you've already finished your shopping list, most of these would make fun projects to do with kids home from school for the break.
Last year's list can be found at Crafty Gifts to Make.
1. Make Homemade Fruit Cordials. Did you ever read Anne of Green Gables where Anne intends to serve cordial to Diana at a private party but instead accidentally serves her friend wine and gets her drunk? As a child I was fascinated about what cordials were--if Marilla gave some to Anne did that mean they were okay for kids? They sounded tasty, what were they?
Towards Sustainability has the recipe to make your own cordials which would be fun to bottle as gifts for friends--or to use for your own Avonlea party, who knows? At any rate I'm going to give them a try.
2. Knit Some Pleated Ballet Flats. Coco Knits has a hip pattern for these warm and cute slippers that you could whip together before the holidays if you got right to it--though the days are shrinking and you'd better hurry! I'd make them in black I think.
3. Make Your Own Designer T-Shirt. Neither Hip Nor Funky has a tutorial on using freezer paper to decorate a t-shirt and I've had this in my bookmarks for over a year.
I just reread that last sentence and it's rather confusing if you didn't know that "Neither Hip Nor Funky" is the name of a blog. Oh how I love the intricacies of language!
I keep meaning to give this idea a try but haven't so far, maybe I can squeeze in some time when the kids are home and looking for a fun project to try.
4. Make Strawberry Bread with White Chocolate Truffle Icing. If the name alone doesn't convince you to make some of this white-chocolatey goodness I don't know that I could say anything more that would do the trick. What part of "truffle" or "strawberry" don't you understand?
5. Make Lotions and Lip Balms. I'm not sure why but it's very satisfying to make your own skin products--maybe because you get to play around with scents and essential oils, finding the blend that smells just heavenly. Indie Fixx has a tutorial on making them and having made some before I can promise that they really are very easy to put together. Wrap the finished products up in a piece of tulle tied with a ribbon and you've got a sweet gift.
6. Make a Felt Playmat. Felt Jungle has the cutest (I repeat THE CUTEST) pattern for making a felt playmat. My kids have always loved little plastic animals, we have so many around here that we've had to segregate the animals into separate bags for reptiles, dinosaurs, cats and insects because they all couldn't fit in one bag (though my kids thought it was because we didn't want to leave the herbivores to the mercy of the carnivores vicious habits).
This playmat would have been a fun gift to make for them and would have gone to good use. Wonder if they're too old for it yet?
7. Make a Fabric Dollhouse. And if gluing felt is too easy then you can crank it up a notch and make this toteable fabric dollhouse from UK Lass in the US which makes me run for the tissues it's so adorable. Boy they never had cuteness like that when I was a kid. Just those crazy ugly Monchichi dolls [shiver].
8. Make a Cake Stand. If you have friends who love to entertain or spend time in the kitchen try making this gorgeous terra cotta cake (or cupcake) stand from Once Wed. You'd never guess what it was made of would you? Okay maybe I gave that part away but still . . . very creative huh?
9. Make a Magnetic Flower Vase. This Curbly tutorial so cool that even if you don't try it yourself you have to at least click and view the video and appreciate someone else's creativity. WOW. All I can say is "WOW!" Well, that and that I might have to make a trip to Lowe's this afternoon to pick up the parts.
10. Make a Canvas Outdoor Chair. For the outdoor enthusiast on your list make up one of these portable camping chairs that really look quite comfortable and stylish. The tutorial at Instructables looks manageable enough--and even I could enjoy the outdoors with a seat like that. Assuming it was placed on a beach. With sand. And LOTS of sun.
11. Make a Wooden Bookmark. Again from Curbly, one of these classy and sophisticated bookmarks would show the reader in your life how much you love them--or that you really want them to read more, I'm not sure which.
12. Make Some Hamster Ornaments. The word "hamster" paired with the word "ornaments" should be enough to get you to try these cute little guys from Snarky Dork. What says Christmas more than "rodent under glass"?
13. Make a Gold Leaf Journal. Buy an inexpensive notebook then dress it up for something fancier with this tutorial from Maquette.
and one more for good measure just because it's so "WOWZERS!"
14. Make a Trailer Camper. Just in case you have too much time on your hands and are just kicking around waiting for things to happen here's a project to keep you busy. Until next summer. The ULTIMATE do-it-yourselfer.
And if you don't have time to make gifts and need suggestions for quick things that won't require a trip to the post office can I suggest the following?
Real Memories is an online site where you can upload a photograph, pick out custom framing materials and the company puts your order together for you and ships it out to your door. They gave me a chance to try it out and I was really, really impressed. We uploaded our 8 x 10 inch family portrait, picked out a maple frame and custom mat and it was put together and shipped out to us within a week.
If you're looking for a good gift that you can ship with just a click (anything to avoid that post office, right?) and that has lasting value this would be it. The photo and framing are top-quality and the cost is very reasonable. To have something that size custom framed here in town runs at least $100 but the price of this framing was under $75--and that's with $30 in shipping to Alaska.
Good last minute ideas for those who shudder at the thought of tackling a craft project. You can't go wrong with a framed photo.
Sponsored by Dimples and Dandelions--for the Serena and Lily Bedding Collection for Children.
Technorati tags: Christmas, crafts, holidays, gifts,