23 December 2009

Making Christmas for Each Other

This year, my older children, ages 8 and 6, are old enough to stop thinking so much about what they are getting for Christmas, and more about what they are giving. Since we have had such a long break before Christmas arrives, I decided to help my children make presents for each other.  (Masochistic...maybe!)

The first project was a lot of fun. Using the Cozy Car Caddy tutorial from Handmade by Jill, the older kids made this for their 3 year old brother.  They picked out the fabrics, ironed on the interfacing and heat n bond, and even helped stitch things together with LOTS of supervision.  It was the first time I've tried freezer paper stencils...and it was fun, especially for my daughter. 

We used scraps of the David Walker fabric I used for POD Swaddlers, and denim cut from daddy's old jeans.  I didn't have belting, so I used doubled up grosgrain ribbon I had on hand.  This project was entirely made with stuff I had on hand...bonus!
This was my first stenciling effort, and so I still need some practice with how hot to get the iron to adhere the freezer paper.  My 6 year old had a ball painting the stencils.  They were SO excited to get this project put together and wrapped up for their brother.  It's killing them not to just tell him what they did. 
The next project was for baby sister.  Since she loves to have mom wrap up her doll and stuffed animals in blankets several times a day, I suggested we make her a swaddle blanket for her menagerie.  I shrunk down and adapted the POD Swaddler pattern for a dolly size, and the kids helped me to sew it together.  Typically, the kiddo sits on the piano bench in front of the sewing machine and operates the foot pedal while I help guide the fabric and give directions.  It was a little scary at times, but they were thrilled to say they were sewing.

Then, it was older daughter's turn to make something for her big brother.  He mentioned the other day that he'd like his own apron when helping in the kitchen, and so I used the pattern from Joanna at Stardust Shoes to make an apron.  We stopped Monday at the fabric store, since I don't have a lot of "boy" fabrics in my stash, and she picked out what she liked.  We tandem sewed it together last night:

(Ignore the mess behind her, please!)

The last project I forgot to photo before we wrapped it, so I promise to post it later.  Big brother wanted to make Sis a toy similar to the car cozy, but for girls.  He helped me to design a Polly Pocket Cozy based on Jill's design.  It's the same dimensions, but instead of a road, there is a couch, rug and bed for Polly to lounge upon, and two of the pockets have flaps to hold in all of her accessories.  It turned out really cute...I confess my inner little girl went a little crazy.  

The best part of this experience is that my older children got so excited about making things for each other.  It was SO worth being up past midnight the last two nights to see the light dancing in their eyes.  We will definitely be doing this again next year...with more planning in advance! 

4 happy thoughts:

Steph @ somewhatsimple said...

that is so sweet! thanks for linking!

Anonymous said...

Those are great! Thank you so much for linking it to Tip Junkie.

CraftCrave said...

Thank you! This blog post will be advertised on CraftCrave in the Handcraft category today (look for timestamp: [10 Feb 01:00pm GMT]).

elizabeth @ twelvecrafts said...

Great inspiration to get this going at our house.

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