I love to make gifts, but I have to have the right inspiration. A little inspiration and a lot of confidence can go a long way (and when I say confidence, I want to be 250% certain that the gift I am taking the time to make will be cherished and prized by the recipient.)
But when I had to come up with a gift project for Stitch Gifts 2012, I completely froze. Give me a garment to design any day of the week and I will give you back three. But don't ask me to develop a gift accessory.
In fact I put more time into developing this project than almost anything I can remember in a long time. It was even narrowed down for me by the type of project that was needed. My assignment: A gift tag.
Now that seems pretty simple, right? Well, some people (probably with extensive art training) can spew out 101 gift tag ideas in a matter of minutes. I was stumped. From the beginning, I settled on felted wool. But, try as I could, I didn't know what shape I wanted and how I would embellish it.
After gnawing on this conundrum for far too long, I had a breakthrough. I was just trying to fit my square peg into a round hole. I needed an access point for turning felted wool into a gift tag, and for me that access point was fashion.
Once I thought of my gift tags as a fashion project, there was no stopping me. I drew templates of fashion wardrobe items. I layered the felt with silk organza to give it a soft sheen. Then I embellished with vintage buttons, pretty ribbon, perle cotton, and glass beads. I worked nonstop all weekend, completely enthralled. In short, I started having fun.
It's true that as the season of giving starts to weigh upon us, it can feel a bit overwhelming. All I can say is: Remember to have fun! Because if handmade gifts aren't fun, what's the point?
Happily, Stitch Gifts 2012 is now available for pre-order in the Sew Daily Shop, and you will get more than enough inspiration (51 projects!), plus the step-by-step instructions that will give you confidence to make them beautifully.
Have you ever run into trouble in making a gift for someone? I would love to hear about.