Friday, November 16, 2012

My Favorite DIY Gifts

Once upon a time, my handmade Christmas gifts were knitted items. I welcomed every October (far too late to start, as any seasoned knitter probably knows) with an ambitious list of gifts matched to recipients. I always failed to complete most of the list, but it didn’t stop me from repeating my habit the next fall.

Until last year. Having a Christmas baby changed the way I think about holiday gift-making and gift-giving. I knew well in advance that only a crazy person would try to knit gifts for everyone while preparing, and subsequently caring, for a new baby. Unless you count the many sweaters I knit for Adelaide prior to her arrival as Christmas presents, not a single person received a hand knit from me that year.

This holiday season, knitted gifts will be nearly as absent from my “to-make” list as they were last year. I do have a couple of exceptions – a stuffed brontosaurus for Addie’s birthday and a well-fitting winter hat and pair of mittens for her Christmas stocking. Since I’m knitting the latter two in miniature adult, they won’t take me much longer than a weekend (next weekend my ambitions self says), and the boogie woogie brontosaurus? With three weeks to go until the big birthday [party, he’s only lacking in the leg department. By December 8th he will have ample legs upon which to boogie. I promise.

Those who might have made it onto my knit list in prior years? They are still getting handmade gifts. Just not of the fiber variety. I’m not going to divulge too much, as prying eyes may be reading, but as a concession, I’ve put together a roundup of my eight favorite DIY gift ideas. My near-term weekend plans may or may not involve making a few items on the list. Tutorials are linked to the photos.

I adore chalkboard paint, especially when applied to surfaces that are not playroom walls. So I maybe swooned a little when I discovered this how-to. Added bonus: check out the link to a tutorial that shows you how to turn any paint into chalkboard paint

A good book ranks high on my list of ideal gifts for giving. Pair it with one of these adorable pompom bookmarks, and it’s even better.

This is one of the cutest felt boards I’ve seen. Sure, it requires a pretty significant time commitment, but the finished result is fabulous.

I know the “in a jar” trend is nothing new, but I’m still as in love with the idea as I was when I first discovered it. These jarred pumpkin pies look delicious and gorgeous – a perfect food gift for the holidays.

Keeping with the “in a jar” theme, I love the minimalist look of this Christmas in a Jar potpourri mix

And one more gift in a jar – homemade finger paint. This recipe uses common household ingredients that won’t harm little ones should they happen to ingest a bit of color.

If I had a decent sewing machine and few afternoons worth of time, I’d sew a stuffed fox for all the little ones in my life. The cuteness. It slays.

I don’t often consider making wall art to gift, but this tutorial, which shows you how to transfer images onto wood has me reconsidering.

1 comment:

  1. That layered pumpkin pie in a jar looks fantastic! I don't know that I'd get around to gifting them to people if I made it though :)