I have noticed my crafty side really coming out lately. We leaders of our mom's group at church wanted to do a really special gift give-a-way at our last meeting of the semester, which was Thursday. We wanted to put special things together that we could show the moms and explain how to do it at home to make special, home made (or home-put-together) gifts, that would also help cut the expense of gift-giving. Then we gave away what we made. We called it gift-giving from the heart.
I put together a couple things - a spa basket filled with good-for-you, paraben-free face and body care products, scrubby bath mitts, washcloth, and floating bath candles. I found a cool sparkly star-shaped basket at Hobby Lobby for 1/2 off so I filled that up with my goodies.
The second thing I did was much more time consuming, but also less expensive. I made felt Christmas ornaments. I bought felt and embroidery thread for super cheap and then went to town. I used cookie cutters to trace some shapes onto the felt (I have angels, Christmas trees, stars, and candy canes). I really wanted snowmen so I had to draw my own pattern for that one. Cut a front and back for each ornament, plus any other decorative things you might want to put on your ornaments (like a scarf and hat for the snowmen). You can also use sequins, buttons, and other decorations to embellish your ornaments. Important - stitch your embellishments on the front side before sewing the front and back together! Then stitch the fronts and backs together (some people like to stuff the ornaments with fiber-fill, but I left them unstuffed). I used a blanket stitch to finish everything off, which I actually didn't know how to do, so I looked it up on Google and found this video. Plus, I also found a blog post with some great info as well - Futuregirl.com's blanket stitch tutorial. To finish, use ribbon, string, twine or something to make a hanging loop. Thread the ribbon through a stitch or two at the top and tie. They really came out cute!
There were so many other great things that everyone came up with for giving: homemade bath salts and soaks, lots of baked goods, a movie night bucket (popcorn bucket with movie rental gift cards, candy and popcorn - you could also put this together with a great family DVD inside), handmade barrettes/hair bows, handmade glycerin soap, there was so much more I can't remember it all but it was a really great time and the moms loved all the give-a-ways.
Sorry I don't have more pics, but here are some of the ornaments.