For most of us, handmade gifts are a holiday myth—like the Elf on the Shelf or new year’s resolutions. We love the idea of getting crafty and personalizing gifts, but we never actually do it. So this year, members of the IN team and friends decided to pick some of the fun ideas that have been gathering digital dust on our Pinterest boards and actually make some stuff. We hope you’re inspired to do the same.
Yarn Pom Poms
These little balls of pouf can be used for just about anything—especially this time of year. Ornaments, package decorations, shoe clips, even luggage tie-ons. You can even string them together and make garland. And it really is easy—we promise.
Supplies You’ll Need:
• Pom pom maker (available in most craft stores)
• Yarn in whatever colors you fancy
• Open one side of pom maker
• Wrap the two pieces together with yarn. And keep wrapping. Seriously, wrap enough yarn around so that when you close it, the side fits in snuggly. You want some pouf to these poms, right?
• Repeat on other side
• Following the groove in the middle, cut yarn on both sides. (If you’ve used lots of yarn—and we hope you have—you may find it easier to cut in layers.)
• Slide a long piece of yarn inside the center groove, pull very tight and double knot.
• Time to free your pom—grab the white part of the pom maker on either side and pull apart. It feels like you might break it but trust us, you won’t. Ta da—you’ve got a finished pom!
• Trim any extra long or weird pieces of yarn to get that perfectly round ball of fun look.
Stuffed Animal from a Child’s Drawing
Bring a child’s drawing to life by making it into a stuffed animal. You only need to know how to sew a straight line in order to make your child’s imagination jump off the page.
Supplies You Need:
•Notions (buttons, ribbon, etc)
•Thread and needle
•Hot Glue Gun (optional)
•Make a pattern from the drawing and cut out fabric. You can freehand the pattern or use tracing paper
•Put the right sides of your fabric (the nice sides) together, facing inwards, and sew the pieces together. Make sure you leave a 1 or 2 inch opening toward the bottom. Your creation should now be inside out.
•Pulling the fabric through the opening, turn your creation right side out.
•Using the opening, stuff your creation with polyfill.
•Using very small stitches, stitch the opening closed.
•Add notions such as buttons for eyes, embroidery thread for the mouth or accents, or ribbon.
Nothing says “happy holidays” quite like a dose of sparkle and shine, so we decided to give some standard hair barrettes a glittery upgrade. It’s the perfect gift and easy craft for the girly girl on your list. And don’t feel limited to just barrettes—because you certainly aren’t. Mason jars, magnets, shoes, coasters, iPhone cases—the possibilities are pretty much endless.
Supplies You’ll Need:
• Glitter (whatever color or combo you fancy; we suggest super fine glitter)
• Barrettes (or really anything you want to add some sparkle to)
• Mod Podge
• Paint brush
• Measure out a 1 to 1 ratio of Mod Podge and glitter and mix them together—and make sure you mix them good
• Using the paint brush, cover the desired parts of your barrette in the mixture. Don’t worry if it looks too light or glue like—the Mod Podge will dry clear
• Keep applying layer after layer until the barrette is covered and sparkly
• Let it try and then apply more if it’s still not glittery enough
(note: If you’re like us, you’re probably going to end up with way too much of the Mod Podge/glitter mixture, so you’re going to have to find more stuff to glitterize—that’s the fun part!)