• Eccentric Shepherd

Homemade Christmas

Over the years we have made many different types of Christmas gifts. I hope they were received with the same joy that they were created. If you are looking for some handmade ideas, I hope this will spark your imagination to create your own gifts.

Chalkboard Announcements

Christmas chalkboard

This is a simple gift that I cannot take the credit for, a friend made it for me. It is a small 8×10 piece of 1/8″ thick plywood that was painted with chalkboard paint and two holes drilled for a ribbon. It has been hanging on our door knob for over 25 years! For each season or event the picture is changed.

Wooden Ornaments

Wooden Christmas Ornaments

For several years we made a different ornament of the year. Here are a few of them. We made about 20 a year that were given to family and friends.  All these years later it makes me happy to see that they are still given a prominent location on family trees. They were cut out with a scroll saw (which is a fantastic tool for the creative person), then I used a utility knife to carve the edges and paint. Some have bits of added accessories, the reindeer has a couple of small twigs for antlers, a Christmas tree has a small string of plastic lights, the angel has a wire loop halo and mittens are connected by a bit of yarn, snowflake has sparkling clear glitter. For the ornaments that I made for our kids and ourselves I also write some important events from the year.

Gingerbread Man with Some of the Years Memories

Glass Painted Vacation Ornaments

National Park Handpainted Ornament

Handpainted Ornament

In the past, each time we went on a family vacation I would purchase a Christmas ornament that reflected our travels for our tree and one for each of the kids. I found that there were poor selections for many of the National Parks that we were visiting, so I decided to create my own.  I like the frosty clear balls.  I have also used frosty white balls, but when I spray the clear coat on them, they turn silver. The paint I have used in the past is an acrylic paint that can be purchased for about $1 a bottle at a craft store.  I am planning to try model paint next year to see if it will provide a less translucent painting. I look through photos we took and use some of those images. Some balls have several pictures on them. I can personalize them for the highlights of our vacation. I also use a Sharpie to write the year and other information, then I spray them with a clear matte spray paint. As you can see, they are not highly detailed or serious works of art, but they do give a little reminder of the fun we had as a family.

Message Blocks

Wander Blocks

Dream Message Blocks

These are really easy to make, they are just various length pieces of 2×4 lumber that are sanded smooth and painted black. Then we used various pieces of scrapbook paper cut to fit the blocks and cut out the letters for the message. On the Wander blocks we added small picture hanging hooks on the back to hang them on the wall.

Gourd Art

Gourd Art

My daughter made this gourd and several others with various themes. This gourd is a birdhouse gourd that we grew a bumper crop of one year. It was dried, and the top was cut off.  The outside of the gourd was scrubbed and sanded to create a pleasing finish then she used a wood burner with a find tip to burn the horses into it. She also made one with moose for her grandmother.

Quote Message 

Quote Message Board

I made this for my daughter who is an avid reader. I used a 11×14 stretched canvas that was purchased at a craft store. I painted it black with chalkboard paint then used chalk to write out what I wanted to paint on it. Then used off white acrylic paint from a bottle to write the words. You could use stencils if you want a more uniform look. 

Snowman in a Jar – Snow Globe

Snowman in a Jar Snow Jar

I just love this little guy, it is so easy but fun. You could put anything that in the jar to make it more personal for the recipient. For this one I sewed the muslin snowman and glued the buttons, eyes and nose on and tied the scarf around his neck.  Using a hot glue gun, I glued him to a piece of cardboard that fit down into the jar. I also added some sprigs of pine for trees. Put some glue in the bottom of the jar to glue the cardboard in then add an inch or so of “snow”. Paint the lid and ring of the jar black and tie a raffia ribbon on to complete it.

Mosaic Items

Mosaic Candle and Birdhouse

The nice thing about mosaic is that in the big picture of stained glass is that it doesn’t require any serious tools. You can cut strips of glass, but you can also drop a china plate or any other piece of glass and use those in your mosaic piece. For these I glued the glass pieces to the base with Tacky Glue and after it was dry, I used floor grout to fill the gaps.

Food, the Perfect Gift

Homemade Bread

Homemade Jelly and Pickles

Everyone eats! Food is the perfect gift, even if the recipient doesn’t have a lot of room or if you are not sure of the style someone likes food always works. I like to give homemade bread and jelly or homemade pickles.

Needle Felted items

Needle Felted Pillow

Felted bag

Needles for needle felting are available at most craft stores and there are so many felting possibilities. These are a couple of the many things I have made. The pillow was made by felting onto a pillow. This technique can be used on clothing or jackets also. The bag was just a long rectangle that I felted then folded it over to create a bag and flap. We sell wool on our website https://www.windridgefiberfarm.com

Some Other Items:

Some of these items either take more time or special tools, but may give you some ideas.

Sock Monkey

Wooden Cow Cut

Glass Snowflake

Woven Stockings

These were made from scraps from a larger project that I wove but could also be made from scraps from a woven table cloth or other items that you can upcycle into a new item.

Woven Table Runner

Quilted Table Runner

I hope these give you some ideas of your own to make Christmas giving a little more personal. I would love to hear about items that you make too. Leave me a comment with your ideas.

#christmasgifts #woodornaments #handpaintedornaments #handmadegifts #Christmasornaments #HomemadeChristmas

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