I wish I had the time, resources and creativity to make handmade things for everyone on my lists but I barely squeak by with just a few each year.
I do try and rotate around so that everyone gets handmade things every now and again from me... here are some of the things I made as gifts this year.
Of course, food always makes an appearance. I made lots of mozzerella this year for friends and church people. And flavored butters. (We love our cow.) Chex party mixes and chocolate popcorn and fudge (for neighbors and garbage/mail men.) And many men in my life wind up with home canned goods- apple butter, blackberry jellies and this year, thanks to a bumper crop of H.O.T. peppers, most men got a jar of Hot jalapeno mustard.
But all of that is boring. Let's get to the good stuff, shall we?
I have had this one sweater sitting in my mending basket FOR.E.V.E.R because I thought the red and white was so striking and SURELY I'd find a nice way to repurpose it. (seeings how it stopped fitting a decade ago.)
Actually, I had the leftover PARTS of a ripped up sweater. (I must have made something with it long ago.)
This year I said ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. I used it up and threw away any leftovers.
First- I made ourselves a 12 days of Christmas garland to be filled with little notes pertaining to the daily surprises of Christmas.
And then, a soft little baby doll for my one year old niece.
(Don't ever take off the belt or it looks REALLY weird.)
And a nice little stocking cap for Mister Moses.
For my sister in law who happens to love watching The Great British Baking Show, I made a little British inspired basket including some towels with little catchphrases from the show. Having never actually SEEN the show, I am taking Googles' word for it.
(I tried using printable iron-on fabric tranfers and failed majorly. I wound up using fabric paint, hence the imperfect handwriting. I'm STILL mad about the waste of $7.00 for that printable transfer paper.)
A hat for my brother Cameron, modeled by Judah.
Why didn't I get Cameron to model it while visiting, you ask? I have NO idea.
I'm mad about that too.
A few star trivets... these were very last minute but very fun and easy to make. And, I think, so so beautiful!
This project will appear again next year I am sure- I have leftover wooden beads! wah ha ha
(The how-to is here)
For my sweet little Ineke and her ballerina dancing cousin, I made matching swan leotards.
(Well, the black leotards were on clearance at Walmart for $3.00... but I made them into SWAN leotards.)
I used tons of different little bits of lace, cloth, trims, tulle and fur to make all the different layers.
My lace remnant pile is dwindling!
A few years ago, a friend made me a beautiful table runner for me that I love so much. I knew my Mom would love one too. So I traced and copied it as best I could. I used fabric and lace I had on hand. After a slight panic, having no flesh colored fabric, I found an autumnal owl print that had just the tiniest spots of plain tan every now and again. Thankfully, the head and arms were pretty tiny too... so it worked.
In like fashion... Matt also copied a gift idea that HIS good friend made for us... a monogram stump formed with a chainsaw. He made this for his Mom to put down at their new lake cottage.
What can I say? We have very talented friends!
(And I have a very talented husband!)
This next gift is one I did not make for Christmas but for my nephews' birthday. I never posted about it at the time but want to share it now because it was one of my favorite handmade's of the year- a little gnome post office where my children can give their cousin letters (gnome postage is cheaper these days...especially when he lives just a few hills over.)
I hope to make one for OUR gnomes next.
I used a plain wooden birdhouse from the craft store, an aluminum disposable pan, sacrete and stones, and an old tile from the pile languishing by the milkhouse. And then I had Adele' cut moss from tree stumps in the woods.
While I am at it... here's a hat that I knit for Matt for Christmas LAST year.
I never got a picture of him wearing it though and it certainly deserves a place for posterity...
... particularly because of those handsome eye wrinkles it so perfectly frames.