(Christmas Eve night with Mister’s family)
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas full of joy and love, and I hope that you all got something special you were hoping for. I know I certainly did. Mister and I had about five different Christmas celebrations between Christmas Eve and Christmas day, and although travels were stressful, we got to share the holidays with many wonderful people. Now that Christmas is over and (the majority of) gifts have been given out, I can finally share with you the special gifts that I gave to those I love and care for that had that special DIY touch. I honestly believe that the presents that have extra time and handmade love put into them are the ones that mean the most. What all did I end up making? Well, let’s take a look.
This was the first ever afghan I’ve ever made. It’s crocheted in a never ending granny square, which I learned by watching this video on Youtube. (Just FYI – check out some of the other videos from mikeyssmail for some other fantastic crochet tutorials) I made this one for Mister’s family, and I think they really enjoyed it. His little brother even slept under it Christmas Eve night.
Unfortunately, I ran out of time to finish the afghan I started for my sister. I did, however, give her a picture of her future gift-in-progress.
It’s been awhile since I’ve sat down with my pencils and tried to draw anything at all, so I was really just hoping for the best here. I wanted to do something special for Mister’s brother and his girlfriend, and Mister really liked my portrait idea. While I’m not completely happy with it (which I don’t think I ever really am when it comes to any drawings), they were really happy with it and thought it looked just like them.
Another special portrait I couldn’t really take credit for. While I have to have a photo of the subjects posed just the way I want them to look, my brother in law luckily doesn’t. So when I came up with an idea for another gift, I turned to him for assistance. When Mister’s Nanny passed away, his whole family was heartbroken. At the gravesite, Mister’s mother was crying, and he put his hand up on her shoulder and sang “Amazing Grace”, a family favorite especially for Nanny. Later, his mother sent him a text saying how that was a moment that should would never want to forget…so for Christmas I wanted to give her something that would always help her remember. Major thanks to my brother in law for making my vision for this portrait a reality. I absolutely loved presenting this gift. Not many pictures were taken at this point since we were all lost in happy tears.
Another fun gift I can only take credit for the concept…Mister’s little brother is developing an interest in the culinary arts, and I wanted to have a fun DIY present for him. A friend at work has a sister who owns one of the super duper heavy duty embroidery machines, and I asked her if it would be possible to put his name on a chef’s hat. I explained that I wanted to stuff it with kitchen goodies. Much to my surprise, she also made an apron to match and had his name put on the pockets. Such a fun, simple gift that was definitely enjoyed.
Another personalized present came along as somewhat of an accident. I was at an auction and snuggies were up for bid for very very cheap. The auctioneer said the color of the snuggie was blue, as that was what was pictured. It wasn’t until I got home with my new snuggie that I noticed “Support Your City – Pittsburgh” labeled on the box. “Uh-oh,” I thought, and opened it to discover a black and gold snuggie with Pittsburgh embroidered on the pocket. That just wouldn’t do. I’m not a sports fan, and neither is Mister, but black and gold are the colors of his fraternity. One seam ripper and some iron-on letters later, the AXN snuggie was born and was a major hit with Mister.
This was by far the best received gift, and I couldn’t be more thrilled about the emotional response it received. My sister saw a pin on Pinterest of an idea to have your little girl photographed in your wedding dress (it also suggests that one day you can display it at her wedding). My sister merely mentioned it once how much she’d love to have pictures done of my neice like that, and the lightbulb went off. How difficult could it really be? The only difficult part was getting my neice away from my sister long enough to play a little bit of dress up. I have to give my neice credit, she was a fantastic secret-keeper as well. She told me that she had told mommy that she and Aunt E were going to do crafts so she told me we had to do at least one craft so she wouldn’t be lying to mommy. I had wanted to get one printed on canvas, but aside from not being able to pick just one, it had taken until the last few days before Christmas to be able to sneak my neice away, which didn’t leave much time for printing. Instead, I got a few small favorites framed and tried out the faux canvas printing at the local Walmart, which I had a coupon for (woohoo!). I’ll refrain from posting all the pictures of my sister’s extremely emotional reaction, but let’s just say I’m pretty much the best sister ever.
I hope you all had a fantastic holiday, and have a happy New Year. Best wishes to you all! There’s sure to be many more adventures for Creative Chronicle in the new year…