Cymru Culture

Fashion and Designers / Ffasiwn a Dylunwyr

Christmas craft ideas

(December 01, 2017)

Christmas craft ideas

As much as I enjoy searching for Christmas gifts amongst the hussle and bustle of the high street or, alternatively, supporting local artisans for bespoke and more original pieces, I also like to hand-craft items as gifts for friends and family each year. 

Here are some of my crafting ideas, which make individual and beautiful gifts for loved ones, and are relatively easy to make (and of minimal cost).

These crafting ideas are perfect for a relaxed and therauptic Sunday afternoon, whilst watching a Christmas film and accompanied by a mince pie and, possibly, a mulled wine or three.

 Felt reindeer

I made this felt reindeer using a Scandi-influenced image that I found on Pinterest (a great source of ideas and inspiration), converted the image into a paper template, which was then used to draw and cut out the shapes in felt fabric (available in multi-packs from The Works) and Melin Tregwynt fabric. 

The reindeers have mutliple uses, and below is how I have used the reindeer design (and others) to produce a range of co-ordinating items such as Christmas decorations (garlands), Christmas tree decorations and a decorated notebook.

 

Sequin notebook

Christmas notebook

 

This fun and sparkly notebook could not be easier to make and is a great crafting project for a crafting novice to begin with. 

The notebooks I use are plain black and are available for all major stationers (I always buy my notebooks from Flying Tiger Copenhagen (Cardiff/Swansea/Carmarthen available instore only and not on-line) as they are excellent quality, good on price and come in a wide range of sizes to suit many projects. 

I have covered the notebook with light green sequin fabric which I purchased from eBay. The notebook is covered using strong glue – UHU all purpose adhesive (available from Poundland) is ideal and I added one of the pre-made felt reindeers to the front (also glued). 

The felt and slightly padded reindeer gives a lovely tactile feel to the notebook.

You could also make personalized felt items to represent dearly loved pets, or comedic versions of friends and family. Alternatively, you can buy wooden and felt embellishments from shops such as The Works... So many possibilities, and the choices are entirely yours.

This gift is not only useful but a totally unique, and is sure to be treasured.

 

Felt covered notebook

Christmas reindeer notebook

This crafting project is perfect to do with little ones (once the hand-stitched felt hearts have been made beforehand), and at relatively little cost.

To make this gift I used a smaller sized notebook to the one used to make the sequin version (which retails at £1.00 from Flying Tiger Copenhagen), and covered it with dark red felt (purchased as part of a multi pack from The Works).

Then I added a padded handmade felt heart to the front (to pad the heart I used crafters' stuffing – available from The Works), which makes it really tactile.

 

Velvet decorated Christmas notebooks

This idea could not be easier or more effective. Flying Tiger Copenhagen are selling this year velvet covered notebooks starting at £2.00 each, and I bought a number of these in Christmas colours to decorate and give as gifts.

Keeping the design simple and with a strong Scandinavian feel, I have simply added some wooden embellishments purchased from The Works to the centre of the notebook.

An elegant and simple gift.

 

Handmade felt Christmas Garland

Christmas garland

Christmas garland (detail) 

 

This garland is time-consuming to make. But once each individual felt character has been made, it is relatively easy to assemble and is very effective.

Over the course of a few days: I created templates of the figures and characters I wanted to use to make the garland; cut them out of felt; hand sewed them together; stuffed them; and decorating them. 

You will have a lot of fun when making the characters, and I especially love the glam and sequin decorated version that I created for my sister, complete with pink net ballerina skirts! 

Customizing each character is part of the fun and you can use all sorts of items to decorate them... I have used scraps of Melin Tregwynt fabric to create scarves, pom-pom trims to represent tinsel, festive coloured buttons to represent eyes and baubles and velvet ribbon, to name but a few of the decorations and embellishments you could use.

Remember, you will need two of each design to make the garland hang evenly and symmetrically.

Once you have arranged your characters (I use my ironing board so I can see them assembled before starting to sew), sew them at the two points at the top (or at the arms), so that the fastening is sufficinently strong to support the weight of the garland when hung.

To fasten or attach the garland, I have added a strip of velvet ribbon to each end.

 

Handmade Christmas Cards

Christmas Card

You can also use the felt characters to decorate and personalize handmade Christmas cards. Below is a design I came up with that I am really pleased with.

Both cards measure 8 inches x 8 inches and are decorated with glitter or gold embossed card, which gives a luxury feel to the card. The size of the card ensures that the card is more stable, as there is quite a weight to the front and you don't want it to fall over all the time?

I have then added felt characters to give a really tactile effect and a Christmas themed (raised) header, for a more professional look.

 

Christmas Card

 

Christmas tree decorations 

Gingerbead man

 

These have been made as before (this time in a Gingerbread man style), but when they were hand-stitched I included a loop of velvet ribbon at a central point, which enables the decoration to be hung evenly.

These can also be dabbed with essential oils and hung in wardrobes to fragrance your clothes and (if you use lavender) to deter moths. I have also seen ones given previously to friends and family swinging from door and drawer handles.

They can also be used to decorate present boxes and I use some to decorate bottles of cordials or wine in hampers.

You dont have to restrict yourself to traditional Christmas themes, I have also designed some cats this year (as a cat lover).

Claire Meredith, December 2017

Useful links:

     Multi pack of felt: 'The Works' - assorted colours available
     Christmas embellishments 'The Works'
     Card blanks; 'The Works'

If you liked this, you'll also like:

      Stylish present wrapping ideas; Decemner 2017
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Get crafty this Christmas; December 2016

Christmas gift guide, December 2016
Upcycling home accessories: part II; March 2016
Upcycling home accessories: chalk paint; June 2015
Steampunk #1, photo frame; March 2015
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Crafting: felt accessories for your home; March 2015

Crafting: 'vintage' frame; March 2015
Vintage-inspired gifts; December 2014

Handmade cards; December 2014
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Shades of Grey; Caregos Couture new collection; September 2011
History of costume Jewellery; September 2010
Statement pieces from Caregos Couture, September 2010
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Stylish party canapés, September 2009

George Thomas Hospice 'Style In the City' event; May 2009
Whitefriars Glass, March 2009

 

cylchgrawn Cymru Culture magazine
Published by/Cyhoeddwyd gan: Caregos Cyf., 2017
  

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