Monday, December 28, 2009

Handmade Holiday

The past few weeks have been a hectic whirlwind of holiday preparations and parties and the holidays themselves. This year, I wanted to approach the holidays with the mantra, local and handmade. Some things I made myself, some things were made by others and still more things were purchased locally. My family - really the only people I purchase Christmas gifts for these days - are pretty easy and most of their gifts came from great North Brooklyn shops like Word, Catbird and Houndstooth.

The rest of my holiday was handmade. A few images:

glitter covered snowflakes for holiday cards

piparkakut in the oven

piparkakut cut out and waiting to be sprinkled with sugar and put in the oven - 
pigs and squirrels (I also made seahorses and skull&crossbones)

Swarovski crystal and felt bib necklace

stuffed pork loin roast for Christmas dinner 
(I know it could've been prettier, but I had never frenched a roast before) 

a row of Les Enfants Terribles elephants to fill holiday orders

Thursday, December 3, 2009


This Saturday, dear ones, Martha Stewart is hosting her holiday craft fair in NYC.  I'm remiss that I will have to miss it, as I already have too many plans for that afternoon - but I recommend that you go and check out the crafts (many of them by people who work for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia) - and hey, if you happen to be chatting with them, tell them about my little blog!

I love the idea of craft fairs before the holidays - it seems to me, however, that most of the craft fairs around these days are chock-full of silk-screened T-shirts and tote bags.  Now, don't get me wrong, I like a good graphic and a girl needs a lot of fun Ts and totes, but there is so much more to crafting!

As I have been unemployed for a year (or so) now, I am trying to figure out the best way to keep my holiday spending at a minimum.  I know that no one is expecting anything expensive or fancy from me this year, but I love the art of giving - picking out a gift for someone that is thoughtful and all about them.  Something that they might not think to get themselves or something they really admire.  I am lucky to have friends and family who also love the art of the gift - some of the nicest presents I have ever received were found objects from flea markets or old framed photos of us together.  These things need not cost a lot, but they mean so much.  The gift really is in the thought (the actual thought) that goes into it.

So, this year, I will be taking a cue from Martha and making as many gifts as possible.  I will be making my Christmas cards (I send them out every year).  Also, to raise a little cash for the Holidays, I have been taking orders for my little stuffed animals - you can look and buy on my Etsy shop - or, if you're in the 'hood, message me directly.  Today is a gorgeous and unseasonably warm day here in Brooklyn, so I'm going to take a walk to the little Greenpoint yarn store and see what they have and get a little inspiration for my holiday crafting.

And if you are in the area, next weekend is the Greenpoint Hearts and Crafts Affair at Cafe Grumpy.  It's been going strong since 2006 and I coan only imagine that it will be better than ever this year.  Stop on by and check it out and by some unique presents for the people on your shopping list!