Amanda Soule, of the fantastic blog
Soule Mama, teaches us how her and her children made these wonderful, embroidered portrait bookmarks.
The best thing about these personalized bookmarks, is that you can make them from your scrap fabric since they only require small pieces. Soule also notes, "... I'm intrigued and in love with the portraits they create of those they love. I'm always so impressed at the elements of personality they manage to convey in their portraits despite their young years and new drawing skills."
Stuck on You
It's hard to believe that
I Love to Create's adorable photo magnets are simply made from just recycled bottle lids. We love this idea for a holiday gift and truly believe that one can never have enough magnets; especially personalized ones!
And as I Love to Create's Vickie Howell says, "With this project, you'll preserve family memories
and a little space in our landfills." We could not agree more! Check out the full post for an excellent tutorial.
Got some extra Crayolas hanging around the art table? Consider remaking them into multicolored crayons in fun letter shapes like these pretty ones featured on
This craft is super easy and could make for an excellent stocking stuffer, teacher's gift, or present for a close friend's artsy brood. Plus, you'll be able to reinvent your crayons that have been whittled down from past drawing and art projects -- always a major bonus!
A Very Chia Christmas
We can't get enough of
Little Home on the Hill's clever idea for making homemade Chia pets. What a fantastic gift idea -- and surely one that'll grown on you.
By simply using nylon for the pet's body and water cress seeds for its hair, your tot will get a kick out of personalizing their Chia pets by adding on silly faces or other fun characteristics. Overall, a great Christmas gift idea for the green thumb in the family!
Holiday Chalk Fun
Got a young Picasso living nearby? Consider including some homemade sidewalk chalk like
Mad Maggie Designs' in with their Christmas gift this year!
Though the chalk may need to be used indoors throughout the winter, this is one fun crafty gift that is sure to provide hours of creative entertainment -- and it's easy to make! As a bonus, this cool chalk can work just as well as gift for your child's favorite teacher.
Fun in My Backyard (FIMBY) gives an excellent pictorial on how she made these beautiful beeswax candles with her children two years ago for their advent celebration.
FIMBY lists many reasons why making beeswax candles is a really neat kid-friendly activity, including the fact that it's super simple (no 'crafting' experience necessary!), they smell wonderful (and help clean the air!) and of course, because they're absolutely gorgeous. FIMBY also suggests keeping little hands away from the boiling water and making sure to put down plenty of newspaper, as this project can potentially get a bit messy. But the best projects are always those that are a little messy... Right?
Christmas Apple Printing
Screen printed t-shirts are all the rage and
Twig and Toadstool's apple printed tees are just too cute not to share! Besides apples, there are plenty of fun fruits and veggies out there that would work great as stencils for making neat printed clothing or tote bags for friends and family this Christmas.
Simply purchase some fabric paint and get to work with your little one on stenciling and painting with your favorite fruits. All in all, a super fun project that's sure to make some super snazzy Christmas gifts!
Just Deanna's delicious idea for making gourment caramel apples as a teacher's holiday gift. Who could resist such a tasty, thoughtful treat?
Your children will love dipping the apples into the chocolate and caramel, and then dazzling them up with white chocolate drizzles (and plenty of colorful sprinkles). Make sure to save a few for all of your hard work! Be sure to also check out
Just Deanna's post on homemade hot chocolate mix for class gifts -- it's quick, easy and sure to be an instant favorite among your tot's classmates.
We can't get enough of
All Dressed in Blue's idea for a homemade moss terrarium. The greatest thing about this neat little landscape is that it's inexpensive, easy to make, and a truly unique gift idea.
All Dressed in Blue's Laura explains that she chose to use cactus soil to avoid overwatering and that she picked up her beautiful jars from Ross -- for only a couple of dollars! Laura as well features another terrarium in a smaller jar on her site that she found at World Market for only a dollar and all of the decorative gnomes, toadstools and other fun figures were found on Etsy. These fun little landscapes would also look perfect on your tot's teacher's desk!
Salty and Sweet
Seattle mama blogger Ms. Humble of
Not So Humble Pie has a fantastic recipe for fleur de sel peanut brittle. And don't let the fancy French sea salt name scare you off -- this peanut brittle is super simple to make and your child will LOVE smashing it into pieces after it has cooked and cooled. (Sometimes smashing can be a Christmas gift all in itself!)
After you are finished with your candy smash-a-thon, simply package it in some homemade gift wrap or in a jar and tie on a cute homemade note or card. This is one homemade tasty treat that is sure to be a smash!
Maya*Made shares a great and simple holiday gift suggestion for planting paper white bulbs and giving them as presents to family and friends.
Keep in mind that these bulbs take about 4-6 weeks before they bloom into beautiful flowers, so you may want to speed up your process at the beginning of the month. But, boy, do these flowers ever turn out to be gorgeous! Check out the rest of Maya's tutorial for tips on how she created this lovely gift, including photos of how the flowers will look once they've bloomed!
Christmas Cookie Cheer
Some of our all-time favorite homemade gifts that we've received in past years have been recipes in jars. We've gotten lentil soup mixes, breadmaking ingredients, and even a fruit cake once -- from a toddler! (Best present ever.)
Needless to say, we love the
Food Network's idea for making a super-chunky Christmas cookie recipe in a jar... Just look at the ingredients! Simply find a cute jar, have your child help you measure and add ingredients, and pin a cute card with the recipe onto the jar with a festive ribbon or string. So absolutely easy and yet, such a fun gift idea.
A Heart-Felt Gift
Shiso Mama has a great idea for making necklaces out of felt balls as Christmas gifts. Her and her son made the necklace shown on the left for his friend as a Christmas present, simply by using old wool with some warm water and soap.
Also to keep in mind: Shiso Mama notes that after they were finished working the wool into felt balls, she stuck a long skewer through the balls so that they would be easy to string after they had dried. Check out the rest of the post for the full tutorial.
Update: Shiso Mama's blog is now private, but you can find a similar tutorial here.
Jazz up a plain notebook with some cute patches of patterned paper and voila -- you've got a personalized journal that is perfect for a thoughtful gift for friends and family.
iHannah's Blog gives a great tutorial on this quick and easy kid-friendly project. And we have a feeling that the writer or journal-keeper in your life will love getting one of the beautiful patchwork notebooks as a Christmas gift! That is, if you can part with them yourself!
Block Printing Masterpiece
Seattle mama blogger Daria of
Glittergoods has a fantastic tutorial on how she created this styrofoam block printing artwork, that she's even done with a group of kindergartners!
We love how they've incorporated some of our Seattle's funky landmarks into the pictures (we see the Space Needle and the Smith Tower right away!). To make an art piece such as this, Daria includes that you can use scratch foam or styrofoam food trays, not-too-sharp pencils and block-printing ink. Overall, a great gift idea for artsy families -- and surely one that your tots will love personalizing.
This article was originally written in 2010, with links updated in 2012.