Tuesday, December 20, 2016

It's not too late to make more gifts!

There are still a few days left to come up with some creative, quick handmade gifts this Christmas.
Here is just one example, one of our most popular Christmas gift ideas, tiny book charms!

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With the holidays approaching I am once again struggling to come up with some inexpensive, original gifts for my family. How about you?
 First order of business for me: a present for my mom. She has a home filled with festive dishes, Matryoshka dolls, quilts, tea sets and books. I try to make her a gift every year. My mom is rather obsessed with the Bloomsbury Group. She collects their various first editions, gives a dramatic slide show detailing their capers and love affairs and for many years even had a big picture of Virginia Woolf hanging in her sewing room. (If you would like to see the Virginia Woolf quilt she made it is on Tumblr) So it did not take much imagination to determine that I should make her something featuring her favorite tortured author. I decided that at the same time I could make my daughter something for her dollhouse.

I started out by locating some book jackets on the internet. It is really easy to use Google images and locate the cover of your choice. Unless you obtain both the front and back image cover you will need to add on a rectangle that will be the book spine and back. I just filled the rectangle with color or texture and tried to match the cover. No one is going to look at the back of your book! I then reduced them in size and had them printed out at the copy store so they would be really high-quality images.

I cut out the covers and gave them to my husband, who is a woodworker. He cut me some wood scraps in the right sizes. The covers are all a little bit different so you might need a different size piece of wood for each one. Some are tall and thin and others are shorter and wider. If you don't have someone who can easily cut wood for you you might try using balsa wood, which is easily cut by amateurs with a knife. You also could stack and glue folded paper inside to fill the covers.

Some of the books will reside in a doll house and do not need a hook for hanging.  Others will need  to hang so that I can transform them into ornaments or jewelry. (Someone else in my family is getting a Nancy drew bracelet for Christmas!) To add a hangng ring glue on a short bent piece of wire prior to attaching the cover. Later on you can add a ring to the wire if you want.

Check out our this creation: turn your old swingset into a play fort.

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