Tag Archives: gifts

Christmas 2013 – thoughtful gifts from lovely people


I love choosing (and often making) gifts for people, and I love opening gifts too! Working in a school means that I’ve ended up with boundless supplies of chocolate and all sorts of other goodies. But I want to show you some lovely gifts from people that know me very well indeed!

This first gift was from my lovely friend Helen. She’s a crochet addict too, so is great at choosing gifts I’d like!


The book is really cute and I’m looking forward to trying out some of the patterns. The purse is for all those odd bits and pieces that go along with crochet – scissors, darning needles, stitch markers, etc. I’ve already attached a safety pin and stitch marker to the zip (so I can easily find them) and filled it with all sorts of other things!


Another crochet related gift was made by my wonderful friend Ness. She’s a crazily busy lady with 4 young children, so the fact that she’s spent time making me such a beautiful and useful gift makes it even more special.


I’ve been meaning to make one of these ever since I took up crochet again – about 2 years ago! Somehow it’s just stayed at the back of my mind without becoming a reality. I love the little ribbon flower and button on the back.



And all the different red fabrics are great.


Here are my crochet hooks, all nestled in their little sleeping bags!


This next item was made by a girl in my class (probably with some help from her Mum!) and it’s so cute and lovely! And it certainly makes a nice change from a box of chocolates ūüôā


For our Boxing Day Family Gathering we did secret Santa presents this year. I had a gift from my cousin Рbut as she lives in America I think her Mum, Debbi had a lot to do with choosing it for me!


Debbi is a quilter and knows I’ve done some in the past (and generally like all things crafty!) so this is a perfect gift!

I had some great gifts from my parents too. They bought me a ticket to a craft fair in February – very exciting! I’m going with a couple of friends and I’m sure we’ll have a great day! They also had some family photos printed for me.


My Granny passed away earlier this year and Mum found all sorts of old photos as she was sorting out her things. I love family history (although there are so many ancestors it all gets quite confusing!) and I’d asked for some of the photos. I love how they’re arranged. The individual portraits are my great-great-grandparents, James and Emma. The top right family photo is of them on their Diamond wedding anniversary with their 4 children. The bottom left family photo¬†was taken on their Golden wedding anniversary and is of¬†their 4 children + spouses and 6 grandchildren. The boy on the right of the front row is my Grandad when he was 6!

Over the years Granny wrote lots of poems. They were found in all sorts of notebooks and pieces of paper (all quite organised) which my Aunty took and typed up.


She presented each of us with a book of poems at our Family Gathering. It was a lovely surprise and one that I’m sure we’ll all treasure.

Christmas gifts #3 – unfinished placemats


A few weeks before Christmas a friend invited me to go Ikea shopping with her. I leapt at the chance as I just love Ikea! There are just¬†so many things that are completely necessary (even though I’ve never heard of them before) and I love discovering more of them every time I go. During this particular trip I ended up with 20 jars (at the time I had no idea what would go in them, but I knew they’d be useful for Christmas presents somehow), 2 metres of fabric and a trolleyload of other ‘essential’ items.

As soon as I saw the fabric I loved it and knew it would be useful – for something. (Can you spot a pattern emerging here?) I gave it a lot of thought over the next few days before finally deciding that I would turn it into sets of placemats. I apologise in advance for the quality of the photos – they were taken on a very dark and gloomy day!


Now, they weren’t unfinished in the sense that they weren’t sewn up. That would just be rude. But unfinished in the sense that the final touches would be put in place by the recipients.


Along with each set of placemats I also included a box of fabric crayons so that the recipients/their kids/the neighbour/the dog could personalise each set.


I just love the quirky design, with so many seemingly unrelated things all jostling alongside each other.


As well as the fun of colouring them in, they also work well as a jigsaw!



You can see a much better picture of the pattern here.

Just while I’m here, thanks to everyone for your comments on The One Year Giveaway post. You have all been most kind and complimentary. You still have a few more days to enter if you haven’t yet!


Christmas gifts #2 – Fab Tags


The wrapping on my presents was not particularly special. I quite liked the paper (from good old M&S) but it wasn’t exactly unique. So I thought I’d add a little personal touch with the tags.

I was browsing through facebook about a month before Christmas when I noticed a post from Jenny Arnott Textiles. It doesn’t take much for me to get distracted and I soon ended up looking at her Not On The High Street shop, where I came across some really lovely badges. And even better, she was offering a discount! I already had in my mind how they would work perfectly on Christmassy gift tags, so I snapped them up.


I’ve had these brown tags for a while and use them for so many things. And they went so well with the colour scheme of the paper and ribbon. I just added a couple of small stitches at the bottom of each tag to pin the badge on to and Ta-Da¬†–¬†a¬†fab tag!


Busy making


Once again it’s been a while since I was here. But this time I actually have a good reason – I’ve been busy making things! It’s taken me so long to get a good balance between school time and me time, and I think I’ve finally managed it.

Of course, it’s now nearly the holidays and there is a lot less planning to do at the moment (our Nativity has taken up a lot of time along with all sorts of other lovely Christmassy things) but I’ve actually had time to be crafty again. And it’s wonderful! I don’t think I’d even realised how much I’d missed it.

However, nearly all the things I’ve been making are presents, so I can’t show you much at all! But I’m taking pictures as I go along, so hopefully will have a lot to show you in the New Year.

Just today I finished making, wrapping and packing gifts for the Christmas Swap.


I’ve really enjoyed finding and making gifts for someone I don’t know – in some respects it’s been a lot easier than finding gifts for family members. I think there isn’t the same pressure of finding something they’ll like – I have no idea what Julie will like or hate so it’s a complete gamble! I’ve been looking at her blog and it seems that she loves Christmas, as there are all sorts of lovely Christmassy pictures there.


I really like all the things I made/found, so I hope Julie does too!


Apologies for the picture quality – I guess a lot of you are finding winter light levels a little tricky to work with too, but it’s still a bit frustrating at times!



So those are the gifts that will be making their way to Julie next week. How are your Christmas preparations going?