Making Christmas Gifts
Christmas can be a
stressful time of multiple shopping trips and planning
events, and so on. Or you can choose to make Christmas a
time of family and giving instead.
One way to make Christmas more personal
is to make some gifts yourself.
Why would you want to make
the time to make gifts?
it is often cheaper to make a small
gift than to buy its equivalent
it is more rewarding and personal
for you and the receiver
you can make it a social activity
by involving your children or having a craft session with some friends
you can make enough that one
creative session can solve a number of gift decisions
you know that you are presenting a
quality item without excessive packaging and (for food gifts) additives
it gives you a chance to slow down, avoid crowded shops and enjoy 'getting
your hands dirty'
But you doubt your
you don't have to be Picasso or Collette Dinnigan to be able to make some
lovely gifts. Use other skills, follow patterns and be creative.
when you make something yourself, it will have more character than a factory
produced item that is one of millions so don't strive for 'perfection'.
gather materials that will require less artistic alibility from you - for
instance, use a photo instead of drawing something, glue on some pretty
ribbons instead of painting borders or select unusual shaped containers as a
get your children or a creative friend to get you started or to do the bits
you really don't trust to do yourself.
if your skills aren't quite so tangible (eg maybe you are great at giving
massages or tending a garden bed), consider making a voucher and offer your
skill as a gift.
Worried how your home-made
gifts will be perceived?
of it like this... You receive two photo frames as Christmas gifts, both suit
your taste and decor. One is obviously from a department store that your friend
passed on their way to see whereas the other has required hours of another
friend's time to create. Which would you save if your house was burning down?
live in a commercial world where everybody is rushed for time and pressured to
spend enough money to buy the 'right' gift. We also live in a time where it is
normal to buy what you need rather than make it.
home made gift stands out as unusual. Unusual in that it is not a shop-bought
repeat of many others and unusual in that someone has put their time and care
into making it.
you are worried that people will see your home made efforts as cheap, try the
add up the cost of materials and your time and compare it to what you would
have spent on them otherwise. Still feel cheap?
add a special label to your gifts, saying something like " Hand made with
love and care for Mary Love Tash" or "I invested my time and love in making
this so that you reap the rewards of knowing you are cherished and deserve
remember that your gift is likely to last whereas cheaper shop bought items
remember to present your gift beautifully as well - sometimes the only
reason a shop bought item looks good is the presentation. I've seen plain
mugs sold in shops for $15 or $20 if they have some chocolates and
be proud of your efforts when you hand over the gift and expect the
recipient to appreciate it. You may be amazed how much difference your
attitude can make.
Overall, make the gift giving process enjoyable for you as well as the people
you love enough to give gifts.
ideas or recipes to get you started? Read
this article for some ideas...
Tash Hughes is a Mum of two in Melbourne. She is also a writer and owner
of Word Constructions. Tash is available to write articles and profiles for any
business, as well as doing other business documentation projects. You can see
her site and services at www.wordconstructions.com.au
Tash Hughes 2006