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A Handmade Christmas

Handmade items make wonderful presents – beautiful and/or unusual things, often unique.  Most Christmases I have a rush of blood to the head and decide to make presents, and most Christmases I’m still working on Christmas Eve to finish them.  So this year I decided to let other makers do the work for me – partly to support them, and mainly because they were making lush stuff.

So here’s what I bought (stupidly I didn’t take pictures, but in most cases you can follow the links to have a nose):

  • A while back I’d spotted Layla Amber’s lovely shop on Etsy.  She makes gorgeous laser cut wooden jewellery, and as December approached I bought myself a lovely Christmassy  Winter Robin necklace and robin earrings, which I wore lots.
  • They were so nice I bought some more earrings as my office Secret Santa gift, and a Winter Robin Brooch for my Aunt.
  • I’ve also been Folksy stalking Sue Trevor – she makes gorgeous machine embroidered badges, bowls, mirrors, decorations and generally lovely objects.  I used to do some machine embroidery, and would like to come back to it one day (obviously with added beads!), so I’d be watching Sue’s work with interest, and when she listed some lovely decorations I couldn’t resist.  So my sister-in-law has a lovely autumn coloured apple for her Dorset cottage, and my Mummy now has a fabulous bird watching from a small window in Tudor Cottage.  I suspect Mummy will also be inspired by Sue’s work – as a quilter she’s done some similar work in the past, and Sue’s use of hand-dyed and other interesting fabrics is right up Mummy’s street.  Again I got quite carried away, so my mother-in-law has a great badge, and as I bought a couple of ‘spares’ I have both a bigger badge , a pocket mirror and best of all a supercool peas in a pod brooch:

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  • Slightly less ‘handmade’ but no less appropriate as presents were some mugs from We Are Paper Plane on Etsy – a fun graphic design team.  It’s the bigger boy’s teacher’s first year teaching so we thought she wouldn’t have too many ‘best teacher’ type presents yet, so she got a named mug.  Daddy is famous for his jokes, and definitely needs some new ones – this should help.  And our wonderful childminder is quite keen on prosecco, so this mug should give her an adequately sized vessel to put it in!
  • And finally for my beady little sister, something for her to handmake – a very un-Christmassy Boneyard Bauble from Spellbound Beads.  Jean Power was making one at bead group a while back, so I grabbed one for Susie at the Big Bead Fair.   The skeleton in particular is brilliant, and picked up a little kit for some tiny spider earrings to make for myself as well, for which they have a free pattern.

And now the really good bit – I suggested to my husband that if he or anyone else is ever stuck for presents, he could just look at what I favourite on Etsy or Folksy and he embraced the idea with gusto!  So I now have a wonderful collection of beautiful items:

  • From Kate Ramsey Felt, a completely wonderful scarf in my colours, along with a cuff and a keyring.  These are just so gorgeous, and as a bonus they smell gorgeous, presumably because of the soaps used in the felting process.  I’ve been watching Kate’s work for many years, having had a dalliance with wet and needle felting a while back (which I now feel the need to revive).
  • From another Kate at Kate’s Little Store a lovely rocket – space is a big favourite in our house and it’s nice for me to be able to join in.

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So all in all, a lovely handmade Christmas – everything arrived promptly and beautifully packaged, and was a real pleasure to give or receive.  Thank you to everyone who helped!

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