A Handmade Christmas

christmas2016_candy_spiegelWhen my kids were little, I started a tradition of making them something special that was just from me. When I married my husband, I extended the tradition to include him. This year, I added my son’s fiance to my list.

Over the years, I have made my children personalized ornaments, albums, mirrors, calendars, posters, mugs, frames and more — all featuring photos I have taken. This year, I wanted to do something a little different. Since I am learning how to sew, I decided to make them each something from fabric.


For my son, I cut up a sweater I found at Goodwill featuring embroidered hula girls. It is so him. But, since it was a girl’s sweater, I added it to a pillow for his couch. He loved the fabric I chose and didn’t notice the imperfections in the sewing!


I figured my daughter has not gotten a new pillow since long before she moved out of our house four years ago (I was right, by the way). So I bought her a new pillow and made her a super-soft flannel pillowcase to go with it. It was a tough project … I waited in line for 2 hours to get the fabric on sale on Black Friday — only to discover that it would not work for the pillow. So, I went back to the store and started over. The pillowcase was supposed to take an hour to sew … it took me six hours, including a few times of ripping out the seams and starting over. The good news is she loved it and I now know how to do a French seam!


My future daughter-in-law received a sewing machine for Christmas, so I made her a mason jar pin cushion to go with it and filled the jar with a variety of twines, ribbons, fibers and lace. Although this is a fabric project, I actually used paper-crafting supplies to make it. Check back on Thursday for a tutorial of this project.


But, it would not be Christmas without at least one paper-crafting gift … so I made my husband a calendar on a clip board. This is a brand-new system from Doodlebug. They come in a rainbow of colors, but I kept this one simple in black and white for him. (He had been wanting a clipboard to provide a smooth surface to write on on his desk. I thought this would be perfect.) I included all of the holidays, birthdays and anniversaries he needed to know, along with some of the crops I will be attending, hunting seasons and gun shows in the area.

It was a wonderful Christmas with my kids and their significant others. We had tons of presents, plenty of Mexican food and lots of laughs.

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