Friday, December 12, 2008

Handmade Holidays

It has been said that necessity is the mother of invention. I believe that. Because our funds are on the short side, it has necessitated that I become a bit more inventive as to how I am going to come up with the many gifts we have to give this year. With 5 kids the gifts add up, not to mention that one of them has a birthday this month, too.

So, I decided that this year as going to have to be a mostly handmade Christmas. I have a rather large stash of fabric and craft supplies that I have collected throughout the years. I figure if I use that as a base for my projects, I can eliminate a lot of cash outlay. This little doll in the photo is the perfect example of that.

I have been working on some felt play food for my daughter for her birthday this year because I know that grams and gramps are getting she and her younger sister a play kitchen for Christmas. But as I looked at what I have made, it looked pretty paltry, so I decided I needed to come up with something else. I got the idea that she would love a special little doll and set forth to find inspiration on the web. I LOVE the internet. Within a half hour, I had not only found inspiration, but a pattern, directions and a video showing how to make this little cutie. I had the doll pretty well put together that afternoon out of some of my scrap fabric.

That evening, I was reading Bend the Rules Sewing which I got from the library. There are instructions to make a cute lap quilt. The light bulb in my head went off and I decided that I would make a quilt for the doll. I used the same fabric that I used for the doll along with some scraps of fabric from the nightgown that I made for my daughter for Christmas. I have never made a quilt before and this was so much FUN! I am glad I that my first quilt was doll size because it was great to see this come together in just one afternoon. It is pictured here with the binding only partially finished. I machine stitched one side on and hand stitched the other. I am going to turn this into a cute sleeping bag for the doll because my daughter is really into her own sleeping bag right now.

I have enough fabric scraps to make the doll some PJs that will match my daughter's and I am also going to make my daughter a little tulle tutu and a matching one for the doll. I just know that she is going to love this. And the best part? The only thing I purchased for this was the quilt batting and stuffing. Everything else, I already had, so it only cost me my time. LOVE that!

I'll have to show it all off here once it is all done because I am pretty excited about it. If you are wondering about the doll pattern, it can be found here on the Martha Stewart site.

I have LOTS of other projects in the works, and it is my plan to start showing them off here as I get things done. Some I will have to keep hidden until after Christmas, though, because my older children actually do read this blog. (So nana boo boo, I am not showing you girls anything!) So do some of others that I am creating for, so I suppose that I will have to watch what I say!

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