Monday, December 28, 2009

Handmade Christmas in Review

Now that the big day is over, I can finally share with you the thrifty gifts I made for my own family and friends. I guess this could be considered part of the Thrifty Gifty series.

First off, my kids wanted Snuggies. Now, they are not terribly expensive, but 1) I still knew I could make them for less, and 2) Firstborn particularly wanted the free booklight that comes with it, but that only comes with the adult sizes. When I started looking into making them I also discovered that the back is open, which neither my kids nor I knew. Since they are just as likely to lay on their stomachs reading as they are to sit on the couch watching TV, I knew this wasn’t ideal for them.

I looked for fabric to repurpose at thrift stores, but didn’t find anything suitable. I ended up getting fleece throws at Walgreens. They were on sale for $1.99 each for a 50”x60” throw, and I needed two for each Snug-EEE (my version).

Basically, I put the two throws together and sewed a T shape, leaving an opening for the head and cutting away the shaded areas (also leaving the ends of the sleeves open, of course). I should have had her stand with her arms stretched out, but wasn’t thinking ahead.IMG_5035b

I left them long to keep feet covered up, though I probably should cut a little length off since they’re tripping over them.


As luck would have it, I found book lights at Dollar Tree. I decorated the outside of the box, so they would “get” it. Cost for each Snug-EEE/book light set: $5.


For Craig, I made a felted hat from a $1 thrift store sweater, using this tutorial. It is grudgingly modeled here by Skippy.


For the kids’ teachers, I made the salt scrub. Hobby Lobby had scenting oils for body products in the soap making section. I did a peppermint-vanilla combo. Including jars, gift bags, etc, this came out to about $5 per teacher (plus I have lots of supplies left over). The kids didn’t really understand what was so great about salt scrub; when I told Skippy to write a note to his teacher on the card, he wrote “Mrs. B, this is some kind of salt”.


And for Dixie, who at Thanksgiving kept hinting that she was jealous of my sweater pillow, I made three similar ones, again from $1 thrift store sweaters (but I forgot to take a photo). I already was planning to and had the sweaters at Thanksgiving.


For me, Dixie made this adorable felted sweater pincushion, Betz White -style! I’ve been wanting one for a while, and then a few months ago the dog chewed up my old tomato pincushion, pins and all, so I really needed one! The dog, btw, showed no ill effects whatsoever.


It was a good hand-made Christmas!


Linda said... you are the "THRIFTY QUEEN"...great gift ideas! Hope you have a HAPY NEW YEAR!


Christi said...

Great job! Your family is very lucky to have such a thrifty and crafty mom!

Meg said...

Girly, you are so talented! I got a snuggie for Christmas, it's fabulous because it is Florida Gators, I am sure it was pretty easy for you to make! It looks like your DD loved it! The pushpin is adorable! Granted I have a huge sweet tooth, so a cupcake anything works wonders for me. :) As for the sweater pillow...I want one! I really need to figure out how to make it! :) You rock.

Mandi @ Finding Home said...

What great ideas! I loved that you made your own Snug-eee's. I had never wanted one before, but seeing your kids all cozy in theirs made me want one, lol! I love that you made a sign to go with them.

Country Dreaming said...

Cool ideas. I love thrifty.
I bet the kids really like their "Snuggies."


Sheryl said...

Holly, I love all your handmade gifts! Last year I was so good...this year not so much. I hope to make more for next Christmas. Thank you for your inspiration.

Tricia Anne said...

Your handmade gifts are great!
I love your pillow!
I have a sweater that I am looking forward to creating into a pillow.
Sincerely ~ Tricia Anne

Anonymous said...

I never liked snuggees BECAUSE they are open at the bad, but I LOVE your version. You need an etsy store to sell these. Your son demonstrates the snuggee really well. Regarding the length, that's a tricky problem; I agree with you re having enough fabric to tuck in your feet, but as you said this causes tripping problems when walking. Knowing how creative you are, I bet you can solve this - let us know when you do.

Anonymous said...

Oops - I said "bad" in my comment when I meant to say "back". Major typo.

Rambling Girl said...

Great stuff...gotta try the salt scrub. I think I will have to do this for a Valentine teacher gift.

Molly said...

Great ideas. I plan to start early and make gifts all year this time. Funny about the pin cushion. I have a cute piggy one made by my MIL. My dog stole it and plucked about 100 pins out. he seemed quite proud of it too.

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

I loved your thrifty gifty series, Holly, and I am all set to participate next year. :) I made sure to take pictures of my projects this year...I was thinking like a blogger. ;) You had some wonderful, fun ideas!!

gina said...

Oh, my girls wanted snuggies- this was a good comprimise you came up with!! My mom had a tomato pin cushion. :) I love your cute new one!! The sweater pillow IS pretty fabulous!