So this year, due to budgetary concerns, and my own resourcefulness, I tried to make as many of my holiday presents as possible.
For my roommate I created a design with a stencil and bleach pen. I would like to note for anyone else thinking about this project, use a plastic stencil. I used a paper one, and upon hindsight, I should have at least laminated it. It turned to mush after it served it purpose one last time. It was one of my favorites, and I feel like I should have played taps.
Mom asked for a Kindle cover. I began looking on line and was inspired by all the covers that look like books, even saw some made from books. I saw one made from a Nancy Drew book, and I thought surely I can find a tutorial online and make my own. I definitely wanted to make the Nancy Drew cover, because that was one of the introductions to reading that my mother grew up with and got me into.
I used this tutorial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPKXzJao41A
I also made some jewelry for my friends. I’ve seen the button bracelets going around Pinterest for a while and wanted to give it a go. I’m always looking for things that are simple and mostly a reuse. I’ve been saving buttons indefinitely and haven’t found a good purpose for them, but until this point.
I also made button rings. Some materials held with crazy glue, sometimes I used Modge Podge (because it is essentially white glue, and what I had handy). I have to thank Eric for giving me the antique buttons he didn’t need. I was also quite proud of the one that I used 2 buttons on, one inlaid inside the other. The ring base are readily available at your local craft store.
I also had a clear square glass block that was just begging to be made into a statement ring. I painted on the underside of it with acrylic and glued it onto a ring base. I had debated finding an image to use, as opposed to painting. I may try that next time. I like the abstractness of the ring with the warm colors.
I also had some charms to make earrings from. I had bought them over time, but never the fish hooks, so I used them all over this holiday. Sometimes it pays off to be a pack rat…
Over Thanksgiving “break”, I got my car inspected. (I know, you’re saying “How does this relate?” Stay with me…) We ended up at the decaying Century III Mall during the waiting game. At the mall I discovered a wonderful dollar store and wide wooden bracelets there. They also had matching earrings that I may need to go back for…
But back to the point, the bracelets. I thought right away about decoupage. Specifically decoupaging pages from a book as a gift for a literary minded friend. I had pages from the Kindle Cover project and who doesn’t like Nancy Drew? I had also previously found a really cool typewriter stamp and thought of the same friend. The only problem I had was that the stamp was bigger than the bracelet, so I tried to use the stamp so you can still see some of the typewriter detail. This was the result.
I thought it came out quite well.
Everyone really seemed to like their handmade presents, and I did get a few “Wait, you *made* this?” Which makes any crafter feel good. We always aim to not have it look like it was made at summer camp. To hear it looks semi professional warms the cockles of the heart. Hopefully they will be practical enough for use, because that is what honestly tickles me pink.