Crafty Stories

I like to tell stories through the creative arts. I may be slightly obsessed with books, movies, TV shows, yarn and fiber. Wanna hang out?

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Handmade for the Holidays

So, some of my husband's co-workers wanted to know what types of things I can make. Rather than try to send all that in an e-mail I thought I would make it into a blog post. For the rest of you readers who are also crafty, maybe it will help you get ideas for your own handmade holiday gifts as well!

Let's start with knitted/crocheted items.

For gifts, I love hats, cowls and fingerless gloves. They're fast, almost anyone can use them, and you can drastically alter the cost of the project by careful selection of the yarn you use. Here are some of the items I've made in the past:

These are the Lovisa Armwarmers, made in one color instead of doing the colorwork suggested in the pattern. I used handspun I received in a swap, and I wear these things ALLLLLLL the time!

For another simple armwarmer pattern that looks great in handspun, I love Toast and Toasty!

For a budget-friendly, masculine option, I made these mitts for my dad out of a wool/acrylic blend chunky yarn:

The pattern for these is Scrummy mitts. I also made a hat for him that matches:

Another super simple pattern, the Brangelina hat!

A few more hats I've made recently -

This one I made out of handspun 2ply Polwarth. It was a real dream to knit!

This pattern is the Lotus Hat and it's probably better suited for solid colored yarns but I still like how the texture shows through the colors I used.

I also crocheted this lacy beret for a swap partner using my own hand dyed sock yarn:

The pattern for that one is The Columbia Beret and I like how it's lightweight and feminine, which works well down here in the South where we don't always need a super warm, bulky hat.

How about those cowls? I love cowls because you can make them long and loopy or short and close-fitting. Either way they look great and they're a fabulous addition to any winter wardrobe. Here are a few of my favorites:

I made this one for my sister last Christmas from some silvery handspun. I love how you can loop it up to three times and it's lacy but also warm:

The pattern is my own design - the Infinitely Simple Lace Infinity Scarf pattern.

Here is one I knit up using some handspun that I got in a swap. I just did a garter stitch border and stockinette for the middle section, so there's no real pattern. For extra warmth you can wrap it up around your head or loop it twice around your neck and head area.

I can also make baby items! Baby items are great for any time of the year; they're always being born, after all!

Here are a few baby items I have knit - I especially love hats and blankets because every baby needs plenty of those.

This one is the Big Wool, Little Hat that I knit for my son a little over a year ago. I love the pointy top and the braided tassels!

I made one of these Beth's Little Star Afghan blankets for each of my children -

I also made one for a friend's baby using the colors of her family's favorite football team. That one was a hit!

In addition to hand-knits, I also like to sew gifts for people. I made this blanket for my sister to give to her friend (the baby's last name is Martini, so you don't have to be too disturbed by the fabric choice, ha!):

I also love to sew toys. I made this pink dinosaur (with a bad boy's heart, LOL!) for my son, whose favorite color is pink!

And I made these patchwork pillows to match the futon in my kids' play room:

There's really no limit to handmade gifts if you just use a little creative thought and put in the time. I'm happy to take custom order requests for any handmade (knit, crochet, sew, quilt) gifts for your loved ones this holiday season or any time! Just leave me a comment on this post and I'll get back to you!


  1. Great post! My goal is to be handmade for the second year in a row...

  2. Oh my gosh! This is a great post! But I must admit, I kept thinking if someone were to order now, from me anyway, there is no way I would have anything finished on time.

    I have revised my own Christmas knitting this year to one birthday (which is close to Christmas) and one Christmas that may not be finished on time.

    Of course it doesn't help that it's crunch time in IT right now. ;-)

    I do hope you get plenty of orders... handmade IS the best. :-D

  3. These are some of my favorite handmade items too - unfortunately, I'm not very good at sewing, which can be way faster than knitting! Of course, I'm not opposed to buying other people's handmade items to give as gifts.

    I love your pink dinosaur - the tattoo just makes it!