Monday, December 10, 2012

Handmade Christmas

A peek into 2011 Christmas cookie madness

After a decade of baking piles of cookies at Christmas, I decided to take a break from them this year.  As much as I love trying to beat my own records of how many cookies I've made in previous years, it was time for something new.

Two years ago, I invested in soap and candle making supplies with the intention of making soap and candles as Christmas gifts. However, Christmas cookies took precedence and I didn't have time for anything else, and the same scenario was repeated the year after!

I decided this year was going to be different, and scratched "Christmas cookie making" off my holiday "to do" list.

I started making cold-process soap in the spring, and we've enjoyed using it throughout this year.  A few extra autumn batches were enough to use for gifting.

The unused candle supplies were tempting me, too, especially after my friend Katy gave me a homemade candle for my birthday.  I decided to completely scrap Christmas cookie-giving this year, and instead pour all my creative energies into candles, soap, and lip balm. Eventually homemade granola was added to the list of "giftables". After finishing eighteen container candles, two batches of soap, three of lip balm, and five of granola... I was ready to drop, but it was worth it!

The usual round of holiday sewing included "dress-up" bags for all four kids. These have been in the works for a while, but Christmas giving was the impetus I needed to complete them.  They are large enough to contain the boys' wooden swords and bows, close with a drawstring, and have a strong loop to use for a handle or for hanging them from a hook. The boys' bags are sewn from Ikea Tidny black on white fabric and can be coloured in with Sharpies to personalise. Coo's bag is bright and cheerful Fredrika, at £4 per metre great value for money.

When Coo asked for "my own tiny bunting" for Christmas, I could not refuse.  It was the smallest string of bunting I've made yet, and she was over the moon about it.

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