Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Handmade Holidays 2017

Every year, I try to make gifts for the holidays. It has been overwhelming in the past, but I've figured out that if I start in October or early November, I can usually give out about half of my gifts handmade. This year I made less than usual but they are good ones!

It's my personal goal to make all of my (6, soon to be 7) nieces and nephews a memorable sewn gift every year. They get so many gifts for the holidays (and the couple December babies, like me, are getting gifts all month) so I really try hard to think of something unique and special.

I've done so many different gifts now (my oldest nieces just turned 10 and I've been a part of their lives since they were born), but these personalized drawstring backpacks are amongst my favorites. I attached a note to each one and filled them with little goodies to unwrap (mostly creative stuff). Each bag has specific fabric tailored to each kid, plus their initial. :) I used a great tutorial over at Sew Can She to whip these out in a day at our guild's November sewing retreat. I hope they can and will use them for many years!

I made potholders with Insul-Bright for the first time - these were fun to make and also a great way to use up holiday fabric scraps. There are two layers of Insul-Bright for stability. I hope the recipients can use them in their holiday decor next year!

I also made a couple knit infinity scarves for special coworkers using this tutorial from Sew4Home (the tutorial uses voile but it's even easier with knit - less pressing needed!). They are so warm (I had to test them, after all) that I want to make myself one sometime.

I also made a quilt for a family member, but more on that later in the week! Did you make any gifts this year?

P.S. Blog business: lately, I've seen a huge upswing in spam comments, so I've changed commenting (registered users including OpenID, and I'll try out comment moderation). It was getting really overwhelming, and hopefully this helps so that all who want to comment will get theirs through, and others won't. Thank you!


  1. All great gifts. I usually give handmade gifts also. Happy holidays to you and your family.

  2. My husband and I self-publish a weekly photo calendar as our main gift at Christmas each year. It's a lot of work for us both, and I love hearing from people as they look through it. Bummer about the spam comments, I hope it gets better!

  3. One insane year I gave 7 quilts for Christmas!! Lately it has been Christmas stockings. I always prefer handmade gifts...I know the time, energy and love that goes into them.

  4. Those are all wonderful gifts. I always make pajama bottoms for the grandsons and a Christmas ornament every year to share with family and friends. Last year I made many potholders so I passed on that this year. I made Mug Rugs for some of my quilting buddies this year. I hope the spam stops.

  5. Lovely gifts! I made three handbag organisers and a pair of oven gloves :-) All ideas that popped into my head after 1st December! I agree that starting Christmas gifts earlier in the year is a lot more sensible!

  6. I make hand made teacher gifts each year. The female teachers have always been easy. I made the tote bags that have always been greatfuly received but this year for the first time I had a male teacher there see for. But I was very lucky that he recently married our teacher librarian and they are expecting their first baby in January. So I made them a giant lone star picnic rug that they both love. I’m always afraid to see more for Christmas because I’m so busy and I tend to procrastinate badly then end up in a fluster on Christmas Eve. Hopefully I can do more this year.
    Hope the comments get better. I just don’t get spam comments? Why bother.

  7. I like the idea of the initialled back packs, my niece would love one of those. I always make some small gifts every year for my friends. This year they all got pouches which flood dover and fastened with a ribbon and button, I still need to make one for myself. I also made a stocking advent calendar for a close friend. My eldest daughter has a birthday on 26th December and she has received an EPP knitting bag. I love the christmas crafting, but need to get it all done before December just to save my sanity.

  8. Greta gifts, I especially like the bags with the initials. I made one quilt as a Christmas gift for my son's boy scout leader (who has been his leader for 5 years). Other than that, I was baking cookies as presents :)

  9. I love those backpacks! They're such a fun and useful idea :) I made a few gifts this year (and just finished a blog post about them). Happy New Year!

  10. What lovely handmade gifts! I love to give gifts from the heart and hands, too.


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