5 Classy Christmas Gifts to Create

Not to stress you out, but Christmas is in 8 weeks. I just got the first two Christmas catalogues from Target and Eddie Bauer this week. One family in our neighborhood has their tree up already! We love to give gifts from our farm in one way or the other. I love making things with my hands, and some of you who are the recipients of my annual gifts can attest that over the years, they have been indeed “crafty.” Some of the gifts I’ve given in the years past include: homemade mulling spices with dried orange peel and cloves, white bowls printed with sayings or verses, prints of my latest artwork. I do try to stay away from the super -crafty-craft-store-kit-pompom-kind of things, and keep it classy. I love giving thoughtful, individualized, meaningful gifts and when I say “DIY,” most of these things are semi-homemade, like Sandra Lee. Anyone else ever watch that show? So, I've searched pinterest, MarthaStewart.com, and google for fresh DIY items to create and gift this year. Don't panic, we still have plenty of time to get it done, but somehow the last few weeks of the year always fly by much quicker than the rest. I know if I don't plan now and set a date on my calendar to make these gifts, it won't get done in a classy fashion. I'll end up either throwing things together at the last minute or run to the mall and buy whatever I can find. Neither of those is a good option, so hopefully this list will help you decide on a gift to make or spark an idea for something else. Don't miss the wreath links in #5. These are beautiful and after the overwhelming response to my watercolor workshops, I'm thinking about hosting a "Wine & Wreath" workshop making these! 

So this year, here are my top five farm style DIY (semi-homemade) Christmas gifts to create:

1.       Signs.  If you’ve been following, you know we just cut down an old black maple so we have lots of extra wood laying around, which we’ve turned into slices and chunks. An afternoon of sanding and some hand lettering could produce some gorgeous signs for gifting and decorating. Check out this blog for a unique idea using stencils. http://www.makingjoyandprettythings.com/personalized-nursery-wood-slice-name-sign/

Also, these tree slice coasters are perfect! http://www.unoriginalmom.com/diy-painted-wood-slice-coasters/

2.       Mason Jar Dispenser. Nothing says farmhouse style more than a mason jar. Here is a link to a great tutorial to create your own soap or lotion dispenser out of a mason jar! I have two in my kitchen and I used old pumps out of hand soap bottles instead of buying new ones. http://montanasolarcreations.com/2014/03/diy-mason-jar-soap-lotion-dispenser.html

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3.       Block printed linens, pillows, napkins, bags, or anything else fabric. This one is near and dear to my printmaking heart. Martha Stewart has a great tutorial for printing hand carved dogwood leaves, but use your imagination to draw and carve any kind of design: https://www.marthastewart.com/269906/block-printed-table-linens

Alternately you can create block printing designs using found objects like string or buttons. Martha Stewart also has a great tutorial here: https://www.marthastewart.com/906821/block-printing

4.       Spice Rub for meat. Not for your vegetarian friend, but everyone else would love to receive a hand mixed spice rub! This link from sheknows includes 10 different recipes for rubs! http://www.sheknows.com/food-and-recipes/articles/1083246/dry-rub-recipes

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5.       Wreaths! Thank you, Jo for keeping wreaths trendy! I know that I’m going to make at least one of these for my own house this year (I am loving the triangle!), but using some fake flowers and greenery would be a way to gift a wreath that can last. These wreaths are not too Christmas-y to come down on the 26th. In fact, they could stay up until Easter and then be redecorated for spring! https://www.papernstitchblog.com/2016/12/13/how-to-make-asymmetrical-holiday-wreaths/ This wreath is also always popular using an old book or hymnal. All it takes is cardboard, staples, hot glue, and a couple hours. https://www.rhfarmnc.com/blog/2017/4/26/every-farmhouse-needs-a-wreath 

Let me know if you make any of these, or what you plan to make this year!

Happy Holidays!