Tuesday, 27 December 2011

The Home-made Christmas

One of the first things I made were some felt biscuits (as you do!!!) having been inspired by the cover picture on Mollie Makes magazine a couple of months ago. I thought they looked fun, and they are delightful to sew. I thought the Jammy Dodgers were a bit too big from the pattern given, compared with the other biscuits, but they looked good all the same. The felt was all taken from a selection of felt squares I had already, some of which came from a wonderful £2 auction box a couple of years ago. I am sure its original owner would be delighted to know I am still using her craft things.

The pretty pressed glass plate they're displayed on was £1 from the car boot sale. It's the sort of green glass I collect myself, but it was just right for what I had in mind as part of G's Christmas present . . . I happened to have the crochet doily amongst my collection of such things . . . as was the tablecloth beneath in the photos.

G had been saying that her bedroom was very bland and she wanted some colour in it, so I decided on turquoise as a colour theme, and bought some ready-made pillowcases from a certain well-known supermarket, and put pretty edgings on (fat 1/4s from the patchwork shop). Not as well-done as the lovely ones on Morning Minion's blog - I shall add that extra border another time - bu she was pleased with them all the same.

Then I did the same for her sister.

The scarf is a very simple pattern called Old Shale. I seemed to be knitting it forever as scarves need to be long, but it was eventually finished and G pleased with it.

This frame was 50p at the car boot sale. The Aida material was some from a big bag of Aida fabrics from a charity shop (£1 the lot). The embroidery floss is something I use regularly and carry on adding to my skeins. The design of the House Martin and Swallow comes from a booklet of Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady designs I must have had 30 years now. I return to it still to work more of the same designs or try a new one. This was to accompany a little blue bird brooch for T, which I found on an antiques stall at Wells Market back in early Autumn.

I also bought some hand towels and used fat 1/4s to give a pretty border. This one went to one of my aunts, and there was a 2nd I forgot to photograph, which had a pretty dark green and red patterned border.

This one was more purple than puce and I had to use the ONLY design that matched for colour, and I did deliberate long and hard as it was part of a wonderful parcel of materials that Mornings Minion sent me and which is destined to become a quilt for our bed - perhaps this winter now that I have some time to spare (I hope). The photograph doesn't do the print justice as it is just the PRETTIEST design I have ever seen, with purple hollyhocks.

And of course, you already know about the bunting . . .


  1. Wow, what fantastic gifts. I'm sure your girls will treasure such lovely presents filled with so much care and love. I know I would :D

  2. BB - the sense of satisfaction you have got from making these must be tremendous. When I read of all the unwanted gifts which are already for sale on E Bay or are being taken back to the shops today I despair that it has all got out of hand and gone are the days when a small gift given with love was much more meaningful. You have proved me wrong.

  3. Thank you Weaver. Much love DID go into the making of them. We simply didn't have the money for shop-bought things this year (apart from my son, as I can't knit DVDs or CDs!) but I did get the girls lovely original earrings from the Craft Gallery in town, which they love and are fare more individual than the Made in China or Taiwan crap which is in every clothes store.

    Yarrow - I hope I have given you some ideas for net year. I wanted to get some big width Paisley material to make T a bedspread, but could only source it in America where the postage made it prohibitive. I shall look again in the UK.

  4. Beautiful work, BB. Just beautiful.
    Gifts that truly come from the heart.
    Have a wonderful New Year. I am praying and hoping for better things that come all of our ways, where ever we live.

  5. You are so clever BB. Those biscuits look edible! I can imagine how thrilled your girls, and the Aged Aunties, would have been with those lovingly crafted gifts.

  6. Thank you Denim and DW. Denim - it certainly had to come from the heart and not the bank balance this year!!! DW - the biscuits were such fun to sew. I wonder if your little grand-daughter would like some to play house with? I could photocopy the instructions for you if you like.

  7. You made some lovely things and I'm sure that they were all much appreciated. Just shows that you don't need to spend a fortune on things.

  8. I've been thinking it is much harder to make gifts for the males of the family, where-as we 'girls' are so delighted when someone presents something hand-crafted. I had to ponder a moment re the hollyhock- fabric--then realized it photographed much lighter than the actual colors. That appeared in several of my 4-patch quilts.
    Your pillowcases are elegant. Such little touches give us a colorful place to draw the eye. If any of your readers ever want the directions for the ones with both cuff and piping I have a word doc which can be attached to an email.
    I've been wanting to do some crafting with felted wool, but am wary of acquiring more materials.

  9. MM - if you could e-mail it to me, then I can put a note up and anyone can get in touch with me and I will pass it on.

    Rowan - I brought penny-pinching to a whole new level this Christmas!