Sunday, December 28, 2008

Homemade Gifts

I've always been a big fan of homemade gifts and have bestowed them as liberally as my time, skill, and imagination would allow. From clumsily hand-painted piggy banks for my friends back in junior high to flannel nightgowns, vests, crazy quilt evening bags, canned goods and lavender sachets, dried flower wreaths, patchwork pillows and painted gourds, I've inflicted homemade gifts on all of my nearest and dearest. John makes gifts too -- Shaker boxes, wooden implements, furniture -- this year it was a nifty set of knife sharpening ceramic rods in a beautiful cherry box.

I was especially excited about these things Justin and Claui made. Claui forged graceful holders for the blown eggs (emu, ostrich, and rhea) that John gave me several years ago.

Justin carved a sensuous set of condiment implements - a spoon of apple wood and two cherry wood spreaders. (He also took to the forge to craft a wonderful curved goblin sword, straight from The Lord of the Rings, for Ethan.)

More of Claui's work -- a fire poker and a hook to hang it on.

Our friends the Langsners came for Christmas dinner, laden with gifts from their garden, their workshop, and their kitchen as well.

Home made gifts -- a gift of yourself.
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Pat in east TN said...

It is also a tradition in our family to do homemade gifts of some sort, and it's always fun opening them to see who came up with what. My husband, who is a woodcarver, has done Santa's for family members, near and far, for years now.

I love all the homemade gifts you pictured Vicki ... really neat stuff!

Kathryn Stripling Byer said...

H Vicki, Christmas has become such a nightmare in these consumer-driven times. Going back to homemade gifts sounds like heaven---but where's the time for them? Well, I guess I could always write each person a poem/broadside. Maybe I'll do that next year.
By the by, how did you get your counter and use map set up? Which stiyle, et.?

Vicki Lane said...

Hey, Pat -- I'd love to see a picture of your husband's Santas -- they sound great!

Kay, I hear you re time -- no time for the flannel nightgown sewing or quilted vest making. This year I put together a book of photos for family and friend through an on line company -- you can see it on my Christmas Day post.

But I should think most folks would be thrilled with a poem from you -- and not even a special individual one.

About the counter and map -- just click on them and you'll be routed to someplace that tells you how to set them up. That's how I came by them -- seeing them on other blogs. The map thing is really cool -- I can see when my friends in Mali or Osaka have read the blog and I can wonder what the readers in Malaysia or China or Yemen make of it.

Ana - The Writer Today said...

It is funny that you talk about homemade gifts because I was telling my 13 year daughter about how next year she should start early and make homemade gifts for her friends/family. I have been out of work for four months since I relocated to North Carolina and was not able to buy as many things as I would have liked. I told her I value a homemande gift more than a store bought one because the person took of their time to make it for me and it is extra special because of this. I love homemade gifts.

Anonymous said...

Happy Holidays! In the vein of homemade gifts, Drew (Walton) has been dabbling in furniture making and his various woodworking projects and one of the books that Mom gave him was about furniture making. One of the very first pages that he opened to had pictures of Drew Langsner demonstrating techniques which was a welcome surprise to us, and a nice way to see the craftsmanship of Madison County out and about in the world. You guys are a clever and gifted bunch!

Vicki Lane said...

AVR -- re kids and homemade gifts -- one of my favorite gifts from my boys when they were young was coupons for so many hours of garden work or other chores-- often embellished with cartoons of them performing said chores.

Amelia -- we are a crafty bunch, indeed. As are you and Drew.