The countdown to December 25, 2019 is underway– but If you get started crafting now, you still have time left to make handmade Christmas gifts for at least some of the main players on your gift list this year.
If you can’t wait for Christmas, and you’ve already started making Christmas projects, you’ll be able to crank out zillions of these between now and December 25, 2019.
If you aren’t in the mood to get started on Christmas crafts yet, no worries — you can grab this pattern now, file it away in your pattern stash, and you’ll have it handy when you are ready to fire up and get going on your Christmas projects.
For those of you who celebrate Christmas, I think this is an ideal pattern to have on hand:
It doesn’t require much yarn.
If you used green yarn for any other projects lately, you may even be able to use up your green yarn scraps using this pattern.
This pattern is great for making ornaments for ornament swaps.
You can personalize the decorations you put on the wreath — try adding charms, beads, sequins, buttons, bows, pompoms or embroidery. Or keep it simple and go with the decorations suggested in the pattern — whichever you prefer.
For just a moment, let’s briefly discuss the uncomfortable topic of unwanted Christmas gifts. All too often, it happens that people inadvertently end up giving their loved ones gifts they neither want nor need.
In my “real job” as a freelance writer, decluttering and organizing are two of the topics I write about most frequently. I’ve had to research these activities thoroughly and write dozens of articles about them. As it turns out, holiday gifts are one of the major culprits responsible for causing massive quantities of clutter — at least, in North America and in Australia, the two major markets I write for.
As far as I can tell, there are 3 easy solutions for avoiding wasting money on unwanted gifts and creating clutter for your gift recipients in the process. Solution #1 is to ASK your gift recipients what they might like to receive as gifts. Solution #2 is to give a gift certificate to a store you know your gift recipient patronizes. Solution #3 is to give a zero-waste gift that is intended to be consumed by the recipient instead of lingering in his or her home to create clutter: organic nuts, brownies, soaps, candles, lotions, lip balms and personal care products all qualify (unless your gift recipient is a teacher — in which case, s/he will be getting zillions of each of these items — so choose things like pencils, craft papers, glue, erasers and stickers s/he will be able to use in the classroom so s/he won’t have to buy these items out of pocket. This pro tip comes to you complements of Mike’s sister, who is a teacher).
This holiday season, I invite you to give some serious consideration to applying these clutter-free solutions to your own holiday shopping.
Since this is a craft website, let’s take a look at a few resources you can use for clutter-free holiday crafting, with the intention of making your own clutter-free gifts. If you’re interested in the possibility of making your own candles, soaps and similar craft projects as gifts for your loved ones, I have suggestions for some excellent resources you might find useful:
The “Make & Give” Series of Books by Leisure Arts:
Make & Give Home Apothecary gives you recipes and giftwrap ideas for making all-natural body care products such as sugar scrubs, lip balm and bath bombs.
Make & Give Home Candle Making offers you step-by-step instructions and gift presentation ideas for making delightfully beautiful candles and wax melts.
Make & Give Home Soap Making empowers you to make luxurious and useful soaps in a tempting variety of styles and fragrances (or you can opt for unscented if you suspect your gift recipient may have sensitivities to fragrance).
One of the best things about these books: There are step-by-step photos and instructions for making each project. The projects are all beginner friendly, and the giftwrap and presentation ideas are outstanding!
Soaps, personal care products and candles are all useful items your gift recipient is likely to have a genuine need for. Out of these, I think soaps are one of the items that would be least likely to morph into clutter — because everyone would be likely to eventually use soaps. But I think all of these ideas have the potential to be truly useful ones.
I wish you and yours a blessed holiday season this year. Happy holidays, and happy crafting
‘Tis the season for toy shopping, but shopping for toys isn’t your only option. Have you given any thought to the possibility of making the dolls or toys you’ll give to the children on your gift list? It’s totally do-able considering there are many, many patterns available for sewing,knitting and crocheting adorable toys.
You aren’t limited to these craft techniques, by any means. Lately my daughter has been begging me for tiny, cute needle felted toy animals (which I don’t know how to make — so I have no recommendations for needle felting patterns. Yet.) Right now, knitting and crocheting are my top craft techniques, so this post will focus primarily on pattern recommendations for crocheted and knitted toys.
Knitted Dolls and Teddy Bears
If you want to knit truly wonderful holiday gifts for anyone in your inner circle, my top pattern book recommendation of the moment would be Arne & Carlos Favorite Designs. This book isn’t specifically intended to be a toy pattern book, but it does have some fantastic options for fun toys you can make — including a vibrant and colorful teddy bear, bunches of different dolls and doll clothes, plus assorted other toys. The book also includes patterns for slippers, socks, and all kinds of other gift-worthy items.
There are a whole lot of outstanding amigurumi crochet patterns available for making toys and dolls. If you were to ask my opinion about the absolute best choice for a pattern book for Christmas 2019, the book pictured above would be my pick.
Bunches of reasons:
So far, this book offers you the best value out of any of the choices I’m aware of; it has the best per-pattern price out of any of the amigurumi pattern books I’ve reviewed.
These patterns are super fun, super cool and super cute. Well, OK, not all of these designs are cute, but most of them are.
There are designs suitable for both boys and girls, so the boys are not left out of the fun.
The book format is totally logical and user-friendly, with gorgeous full-color photography and readable fonts.
If these ideas aren’t quite what you had in mind, I invite you to check out our page of knitting and crochet patterns for dolls and toys to find even more suggestions. Happy crafting, and happy holidays to you and yours. I hope your family will have a delightful holiday season this year.
If you enjoy creating gifts to give to your family, friends, and colleagues, you might enjoy Mags Kandis’ colorful, creative craft pattern book called Gifted: Lovely Little Things to Knit and Crochet. Interweave publishes this book, which features a wide variety of craft patterns. Most of the included items are reasonably quick to make, and there are items that will suit many different recipients. The majority of patterns featured are knitting patterns, but there are a few crochet patterns included; there are also ideas for felting, needle felting, sewing, and even a few recipes.
My three favorite projects in the book are a pair of knitted socks, a simple but elegant crocheted scarf and a colorful felted granny square tote bag. I think the granny square bag is especially clever. If you crochet a lot of granny squares, I think you’re going to enjoy seeing how this bag is put together. It is soooo simple, yet the finished results are totally fabulous.
The holiday season is coming up quickly. September is almost over, and next month is Halloween. Then the following month is Christmas, followed by the New Year.
Are you ready?
Now’s a great time to make a list of all the most important thinks you want to get done before the holiday rush. This is particularly important if you want to make holiday crafts. You can’t do everything, much as you might like to. Having the list prioritized on paper makes it so much easier to remember the most important things, and to not get sidetracked by less important stuff. Your list can also be a helpful motivator for accomplishing your most important goals.
Our free holiday craft patterns and tutorials could help you with any of these worthy goals. You’re invited to load up on free patterns and instructions for any of the holiday (or other) craft projects we’ve posted.