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scheherazade
05-12-2009, 05:45 PM
I'm looking for some good ideas for homemade gifts. Have you ever made/received any clever homemade things as gifts?

askcb
05-12-2009, 05:47 PM
Do you sew or bake or have any other hidden talents? Who are your recipients?

sassandgroove
05-12-2009, 06:24 PM
Homemade Gifts I've made:
Jam
Cookies
picture frames
Bowls out of old vinyl records (you melt them in 200 f oven. Lots of fun. relatives weren't too sure though.)
Christmas ornaments - stocking with their name on it and little goodies hot glued at the top.
Christmas ornament picture frame
pot holders
scarves (i crochet but you can knit too)
Oh- I am sure there's more but that's what I can think of right now.

Oh- My mom made a family cook book, with some of Grandma's best recipes and a recipe from every aunt etc then she added family pictures and printed it out with her computer. It was nice.

Also a calendar. She made one with family pictures on her computer but you can also get them at Zazzle or Cafe Press.
Last year for Christmas I ordered personalized gifts at cafe press, some aprons with family photo, a calendar, a keepsake box with a family pic, and personalized note cards.

A friend of ours gave us a couple gift baskets she put together herself. One for hubby's b-day with a DVD and movie snacks. For both of us at xmas she put several DVD's and snacks she knows we like with hot chocolate and such.

Maryn
05-12-2009, 06:31 PM
Like askcb said, it depends on what your skills are and whether the intended recipient has any interest in what you can do.

Sewing, knitting, crocheting, tatting, felting, petit point, crewel: It's hard to come up with anything a male would enjoy, except young boys, LARP folks, and re-enactors. Think outside the box a bit, beyond clothing. An apron for woodworking, a do-rag for yard work or biking, a tote strong enough for firewood, a go-bag with pockets for every necessity...

Baking, candy-making: everybody likes home-made bread, cookies, candies, etc., but not everybody can handle the calories, fat content, and such. Plus shipping can present freshness problems. But for those who don't have should-I-eat-this concerns and live nearby, receiving home-made goodies is a lovely treat.

Computer skills: Whether you have genuine expertise or just the willingness to put in some effort, you can probably do something cool. Digitize the family photo album from the recipient's childhood, returning it to whoever owns it fully intact. Rip somebody's entire CD collection, or generate first-rate playlists to their taste. Reformat their hard drive without losing any content--well beyond some people's comfort level, but who doesn't like a computer that runs faster and better?

Woodworking: Even if your skills are no more than basic, most people would like a custom shelf, picture frame, printer table, or other simple item which exactly fits the place it would be used.

Dolls, toys, etc.: Highly individualized, but for the right recipient this can be a lovely gift. The dollmaker in our family has gifted her metal-loving adult brother with a Satan doll and is making him a brain for his birthday. (Shh, don't tell him.)

Maryn, who's getting something from the dollmaker soon, she says

Edit: Sassy, I'd love details on the record-melting

Wayne K
05-12-2009, 06:48 PM
My wife sewed angel wings on my brother's beanie bear the Christmas after his death.

It was the greatest gift I've ever received.

Calla Lily
05-12-2009, 06:51 PM
I make homemade chocolate, hard candy, hand lotion, soap, and (when I had more time) knitted gloves, socks, scarves, and hats. Gender-neutral stuff.

regdog
05-12-2009, 06:54 PM
Depends who the gift is for. I've made photo collages (sp?) fro family members. One was of me and my sister with my dad and Aunt from us as babies through adulthood. My sister's wedding, our high school graduations etc.

Another was of my niece from birth through that Christmas

sassandgroove
05-12-2009, 07:04 PM
Edit: Sassy, I'd love details on the record-melting
Thanks. My roommate in NYC got her hands on a bunch of old records and had seen a melted record bowl in a specialty shop. I use a 45 as a paper clip holder and I use bigger ones in my closet to organize band aids and nail polish etc. I sent a list of possible uses along with the bowls including planter (hey it has a hole already). My cooler relatives liked it but one aunt emailed me saying "THanks for the bowl?" I didn't know what to make of that. Probably didn't go with her decor.

I did things like place them over upturned pots and let them melt into the shape of the pot or wore gloves and maniulated them into wavy bowls with my fingers. It was a lot of fun.

Pagey's_Girl
05-12-2009, 08:22 PM
I make jewelry - I even made a freshwater pearl necklace and earring set for a former manager of mine when she took a new job. (This woman was one of the absolute best people to work for ever.) I also made a set of matching napkins and placemats for a friend who was getting married. She loved them.

Button
05-12-2009, 08:36 PM
I make little kits that other people can do. I make plant growing kits, with pots, some peat pellets and some seeds, with some instructions. Sometimes I send cookie kits, with sugar cookie mix, some cookie cutters, decorations, etc. It depends on the person I'm giving it to.

Kid love the kits and often enough adults do, too. My dad usually makes tins of fudge or candy he made. My sisters will make jewelery.

I like the melted record idea. I've never tried that. The other ideas are great, too! Making gifts for others is always fun!