Working Wednesday: Gift Crafting and Other Tragedies

Those of you suckered into a gift-giving holiday, are you making your gifts?  How far behind are you?  ARGH>

23 thoughts on “Working Wednesday: Gift Crafting and Other Tragedies

  1. Susanne says:

    Working Wednesday: I’m beavering away, cleaning every drawer, closet and cupboard by the end of December. I actually cleaned the balcony (including the glass) and put up Christmas lights. So pretty.

    If all goes well (hah) I might bake some cookies as gifts. We give cash to the younger generation and books to the parents. I missed out on the gift searching gene.

  2. Diane says:

    I’ve mostly given up on making gifts. I’ve found too many people do not seem to value or enjoy a hand crafted item. I put too much of myself into making them. I think a lot of people are so used to cheap consumer goods, and have so many things, that they don’t realize how much goes into a handmade item and can’t really value a new item because it’s just so much clutter to pile up with the rest of their stuff.

  3. JenniferNennifer says:

    Cookies as gifts, but otherwise not because all the people I still give things to already have everything else I know how to make. Or for some reason don’t want a pipecleaner crown.

  4. I must start writing recipes into the blank recipe book I bought for my nephew. I keep thinking I’ve got all my presents: but his needs a lot more work.

    I went to collect my Christmas cards from the copy shop, and found I’d forgotten my purse. So can’t start writing cards yet.

    I have a nasty feeling there’s going to be a last-minute rush again.

  5. Janet says:

    I made lip balm and face cream for a select few but purchased from arts and craft shows for others. I do some online shopping as well but am making an effort to shop locally whenever possible.

  6. MJ says:

    I am making myself a present after Christmas.

    Over the years I’ve done various wacky art projects (for instance, longtime ReFabbers know the Halloween dragon that delivers candy from our attic to the sidewalk). I want to gather the photos into a book.

    Otherwise, I’ll make a couple cards. We have fewer gifts to buy; my main goal with these is to support local stores. And hey, it’s only Dec. 6!

  7. Sharon Bates says:

    I am mid-way thru the cookie baking. Already made the assorted jellies-48 jars. Everyone on my side of the family gets cookies and jelly since none of my sisters or sister-in-laws bake. I usually bake 80 dozen assorted cookies so that I have enough for family, friends and neighbors.

    I agree with Diane on making handcrafted items. One year, I labored over a quilt for my sister only to find it out in the garage on the floor! They had taken it to the beach and spilled various things on it. ARGH!

  8. Janet says:

    That’s a shame about the quilt! I have 4 quilts made by 3 of my sisters and I cherish each and every one of them.

  9. Carol says:

    I am midway thru the shawl for my friend’s 60th birthday, which was in September. A little behind on the handcrafted…

  10. MJ says:

    Okay, now I’ve done it. After posting this, I volunteered to put together a photo book for a family member’s Christmas present. The rush is on!

    However, I am not baking 80 dozen cookies (the mind boggles), so it’s all good.

  11. I’ve actually lost my purse somewhere in the house, which is not a new problem, but I need to go out today and of course, that’s where the keys and billfold are. I also need to find my phone. I feel the same way about my phone that Milton does about my laptop. He keeps trying to close the lid with his nose. I just want the phone to go away. And damn, it did.

  12. My theory of gifts is this: Once I’ve given it, it’s theirs. They can set it on fire on the front lawn if they want, it belongs to them. I want to give a gift of joy, not of guilt. Of course for me, most of the joy is in making whatever it is. I love making things. So my happiness is complete when whatever it is is complete.

    Mollie and I have an agreement that anything she gets from me that she can’t use or doesn’t like can go out the door, which is why some of my gifts come with the caveat “If you don’t like it, give it back, Krissie likes it.” I usually check with people if it’s something I’ve worked a long time on: “Do you want a (fill-in-the-blank)?” and then if the answer is yes, I ask for what colors they want. I learned this from dealing with my mother’s gifts. She’s a beautiful knitter, but she likes white, grey, beige, and black. I’m a color addict. So after a lifetime of neutral beautifully made things sitting in closets, I do not do that to other people. At this point, I mostly makes hats and scarves for other people. Which is why I have stacks of crochet sitting in my house.

    Right now, I’m making a wheelchair shawl for my mother out of natural alpaca from Knitpicks. It’s gray. I hate working with gray, but this is for her, not me. Damn it. Also this stuff is gorgeously soft and it only comes undyed which means the color of the alpaca is the color of the yarn. This was a nice gray alpaca. I am yearning to put beads in the border, but that’s not going to work since the shawl will come between her and the wheelchair. I have more from a nice charcoal colored alpaca that’s going to be a scarf and hat for my son-in-law, who while having a forceful and outgoing personality, would still prefer charcoal for his work in the city (NYC publishing doesn’t seem to lend itself to bright colors). I’m going back to get a creamy alpaca for my daughter’s hat and scarf. The kids are getting good acrylic for their scarves (good old Brava). Along with a lot of Legos and Pokemon and Our Generation stuff . I have to admit, the Our Generation stuff makes me squee like a little kid. The picnic table came with hamburgers!

    And now back to my gray alpaca wheelchair shawl. Which is beautiful so far, so there’s that.

  13. Jessie says:

    Before I became a sculptor, I did very fine thread embroidery. I loved it, it is one of the few things I do very, very well and I loved creating the designs and I learned close to a hundred different stitches and techniques. It is extremely time consuming with silk or fine cotton. After giving it as gifts a few times and discovering that the recipient was lukewarm (after all everybody can sew and what is the big deal of it being reversible) I kept it for myself.

    For which I am now glad because I can no longer easily do single-thread thread count or needlelace and really I would rather sculpt or paint. It’s easier. And people I give gifts too would really much rather have a car polishing kit or an immersion blender which is useful.

    My husband does make lemon curd to give as gifts because almost everyone like lemon curd and no one likes to make it except him.

  14. Jill says:

    Our daughter gives us calendars of our grands activities every year. And she makes photo books for us and her kids of special family events.

  15. Jill says:

    I had a stockpile of quillows. I have learned to gift them to people I know will appreciate them.
    And I have learned (the hard way)that once a gift is given it is the property of the givee

  16. Maine Betty says:

    Alpaca is the best. I have a dark grey shawl/scarf that is one of my prize possessions, also a sky blue blanket ( I got paid for cat-sitting in alpaca). The best is the alpaca socks, they’re like a Nancy Meyers movie for your feet.

    I don’t knit because I don’t count well, but if I did, it would be socks. But I don’t.

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