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Holidays, Here They Come

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Heirloom Ball No-Sew Ornament Pattern
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Pinecone No-Sew Ornament Sewing Pattern
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Starry Night No-Sew Ornament Pattern

Are you the kind who spends spends months on a handmade quilt as a gift, or do you prefer quick projects that can all be made with little notice? Whether your sewing skills are renowned among friends and family, or are slowly growing as you have time, there are lots of holiday projects that can get you started.

If you need ideas for a craft sale or an ornament swap, or even multiples of one gift, think small. I like items that fit into stockings. Find watch faces at craft stores and craft fun bands from lace, ribbon, lacing or leather that can be swapped out to match any outfit. Create customized travel bags for cosmetics or medications (consider lining them with plastic to catch spills!).

What about cases for paints and paintbrushes for your favorite burgeoning artist, or an insulated lunch bag for the environmentalist? Pincushions can be made in any shape or size. Or you could decorate a plain pair of ballet-style slippers; I know one little girl who thought a hand-bejeweled pair were the best gift she had ever received. What about a lanyard to connect security, subway or parking cards for the busy professional?

If low-sew or no-sew projects are needed to use up bits of leftover holiday fabrics, try one of these fun kits. They are fast and easy and can be made with any fabric on hand or adjusted to match a certain color scheme. They would also be great to make in bulk for craft sales or a themed tree.

If you are looking for a cheap gift for kids, think completely outside the box to things that inspire imagination. Several people have reported that one of the simplest gifts for children costs them only a few dollars because they went to thrift and charity shops to find the craziest, most out-of-date attire possible. Then they replaced buttons and zippers, and repaired small tears or covered stains. These outrageous clothes became the start of many an adventure as dress-up clothes!

Since you want clothes that are really strange or out of fashion, and won't mind doing some repairs, you can get some great deals. Look for poufy 1980s prom gowns or bridesmaid dresses, loud vests or truly tacky polyester jumpsuits. Kids love nutty clothes, and you'll get the ultimate reward in seeing what a few dollars and unlimited imagination can become!

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