Friday, November 26, 2010

Holiday Shopping.

I don't want to go to the store to do my holiday shopping.
This isn't to say that I want to do it online, per se.
I'm lucky, because four blocks down the street today there is a huge craft fair.
I like hand made gifts.
Repeat: I like hand made gifts.
I like to handmake gifts out of upcycled materials best, then simply to give gifts I handmade, then handmade by local artisans, then handmade by artisans, then factory made and purchased locally, then USA factory made purchased locally, USA factory made and purchased online... can you spot the trend?

Here's who I'm giving gifts to this year.

My mom, my dad, my tween, my toddler, my nieces and nephews, my spouse, my mother-in-law, my aunt, my brother, a couple close friends, and then whomever receives my gift exchange present.

I think this covers just about everyone. Right? Kids, grown ups, men, women, aged and youthful.  So here are some hand made ideas for this year that might help you do some less "Made in China" and more "handmade with love" shopping.

Sock Monkeys/Dolls. All children recieving gifts from me who do not already own one, will be getting a SOCK MONKEY. Actually, a Sock Punky. Why? Because I make them, I sell them on Etsy, and you're right now noticing the bizarre lack of a link.  That's because this is about suggestions and not trying to sell you something.  It doesn't have to be a Sock Monkey to be a great idea though. Handmade bears, dolls, zombies, moties, owls, octopuses, bats, three eyed monsters, they're all fantastic gifts which will be well loved.

Blankies.  This year I'm handmaking blankets for at least four of my nieces and nephews. There are lots of great handmade blanket retailers out there, and some of them will be more than happy to make one that fits the wee one in your life's personal style.  My kidlet has a great space blankie from one of them, what would yours like?

Tutus.  Another two of my nieces are getting hand made tutus this year.  They're super easy to make, and it's super easy to find quality handmade tutus online and at craft shows.

Unisex grab gifts-
This year, I'm going handcrafted artisan soaps.  Look for cold process and goat milk soaps for super rich and delightful lather without the nasty carcinogenic ingredients in a  lot of the stuff we're using to wash ourselves off.

I also love wool dryer balls.  They make great kidlet gifts too.

What about a hand-bound journal?

For the women in your life-

Handmade aprons make me smile.  There's a great deal of diversity in style and print available when you look at handcrafted, so they're delightfully unique and treasure-worthy.

Jewelry.  I'm looking at procuring some sweet steampunk necklaces this year, each hand crafted and a work of art in itself.

And for the men-

Though women love 'em too, carefully knit hats, gloves, and scarves are extra nice for the winter months.

I like t-shirts with rad designs silk screened by the designer.

Making a gift for grandpa? Maybe  the kids can help you design the perfect business card case, and maybe you can make yourself one while you're at it.

So go, be creative.  Make something or buy something someone personally made.  It'll feel good and be a gift appreciated.

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