Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Make 'making' your New Year resolution

This Christmas I set out to make as many presents as possible myself. What surprised me was that I  received several handmade gifts myself - as well as the means for making more - materials, equipment or instructional books. So much so, that on Christmas morning we all started yelling "Craft!" in unison every time someone opened a present that was either hand made or related to making or creating.

If you visit Make it and Mend it often you may have seen some of the gifts I made - some when reviewing books such as this cute felt pincushion and lavender bag and some where I've shared instructions with you such as this tea cosy and these cushions.

But here are a couple I don't think I've shared on the website. First is this apron for my sister-in-law. She wanted a 1950s style pinny and her brief was "Surrendered Wife" (if you knew her you'd know she was being deeply ironic!). I already had a coupole of metres of retro fabric in my stash on the theme of "How to keep your Husband Happy", so with the addition of some contrasting fabric for the straps and pocket - also from my stash, plus a bit of frilling, I made her an apron that perfectly fitted the bill. She was thrilled and asked me where on earth I'd bought it!

I wanted to make something for my six year old god daughter that could be something she could keep forever, so I made her a quilt. I was pretty worried that she might be disappointed not to get something to play with, but half an hour after opening it she'd dragged it off to her room and was later found curled up under it fast asleep! 

And I didn't only make an apron, I also received one - made by my sister -  monogramned with my intials, Masterchef style. (You can find out how to make an apron on the website.) She'd been very busy, using transfers to add motifs to homemade aprons for almost the whole family.
She also gave little jars of her scrumptious Chilli jam.

My brother-in-law made a most fantastic gift for me. In fact I think it's my favourite present of all. It's a lamp made from an old tree trunk. I love the way he's used the place where a branch was to place the flex. Fabulous! He also made a beautiful wall plaque for my sister to hang her jewellery on, and a similar one for sister number 2 to hang her keys. All from beautifully turned wood.

The pleasure of hand made gifts can't be over estimated. Knowing that someone has spent time and effort making something personal is so much more touching than anything bought in a shop. But doing it requires planning and time. So if you want to make it your New Year resolution you need to start right now!

What hand made gifts did you make or receive this year?

Clare Flynn

1 comment:

  1. These are amazing, you really are inspirational