Sunday, January 9, 2011

2010 Handmade Christmas Gifts I

Spending time with each of our families during the winter holidays was fantastic. Other than additional time with all of them, we really could not have wished for more.
  First, we spent the week surrounding Christmas with Nathanael's family in Wisconsin, where we got in a much appreciated dose of real winter. We went caroling, had some snowball fights, built a snowman (even though the snow was too cold to stick and we had to bring water out), went sledding, and appreciated the dog and chickens. On Christmas Eve the whole family sat around the table and made tamales, which were my favorite of our food of the holidays, however, delicious food was present in abundance..over abundance even. By the end of the week there were just too many delicious options available for indecisive individuals like myself.
  For the week around the lasts and firsts of the years 2010 and 2011 we were in New England with my family. We had the opportunity to go snowmobiling, see my older sister and brother-in-law's progress on their house, go to their New Year's Party, pick up their new dog with them (he's quite splendid), and go contra dancing with my good friend Lucy. We also saw the winter constellations and the Milky Way, which have always been visible at my parent's home, but look even more spectacular after having been away for a while.  Since Nathanael and I had been in Wisconsin on the 25th, my family delayed the Christmas celebration until after the New Year when we could all be there. I was so glad that Nathanael and I had finished all of our present making before we flew, and could just relax and look forward to being together and giving our fun gifts.

 Project #1 Colorful Art Tote for Asher


 Project #2 Floral Art Tote for my Mom

For the two of these I followed the Art Bag Tutorial on the blog From An Igloo, one of many blogs I discovered while I was searching for handmade gift ideas for our personality filled family. I changed the tutorial just slightly by turning what was supposed to be a ruler pocket into a brace to keep pencils or brushes flat. For Asher's I used three solid blends (blue, red and yellow) with 100% cotton bird fabric in the same colors to accent it, and I did my first covered button. For my Mom's I used two 100% cotton florals, which are some of my favorite fabrics that I have worked with, so you will be seeing this combination from me again. Both are padded with unbleached 100% cotton batting.

Projects #3 and 4 Turtles for my sister Melissa and Nathanael's Mom

 Those of you who have been reading for a while will recognize this, one of my first original patterns, from its premiere here in October. Since then I have added hand embroidered eyes and explored other fabric options. Melissa's has a body composed of a moss colored blend, and a 100% cotton shell (reversible, with opposite side unbleached muslin). Toni's has a body of yellow tie dyed 100% cotton and a shell similar to Melissa's, but dyed differently. Both are stuffed with unbleached 100% cotton batting.
    Now, you may ask yourself why I gave two grown women stuffed toys for Christmas. First, because they are amazing and the shells are reversible! Second, because in addition to the other Christmas presents, I had/have been making turtles like crazy because I hope to soon open an etsy shop! You can look forward to more news on that soon, but since my family members have been cheering on my sewing I thought they would enjoy a few of my first products.
(Ok, I admit we gave these two ladies other gifts too, like pecans we collected and granola we made.)

Next up I will show you the present I made for my Dad and two of the presents Nathanael made, so stay tuned!

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