Okay, the blog posts will probably start getting more and more sporadic as the weeks go on, since more of my former computer time is apt to become crafting-gifting-making time between now and the 25th.
So here’s what I’ve got going (plus the things in the hopper for folks who I know stop by here every now and again!):
For my daughter, I did finally bid for and win on ebay several yards of 100% wool flannel at a really good price. It’s in the washer fulling as we speak. (Fulling or felting is when you intentionally wash wool in hot water and shrink it down so it’s tighter and softer…in this case, also less itchy.) I actually got enough flannel for two nighties, so I’m making one for me too. This will be seriously warm–maybe too warm, but what the hey. So that’s two nightgowns.
(The only drawback is that the wool flannel felted a little better than I expected it to–I’d done a swatch as well, but that didn’t do as well–and it’s almost too heavy for a nightgown now…so I may instead learn how to make bathrobes. I’m even thinking of adapting the flannel nightgown pattern I have to make a big flowy robe that ties just at the front top; I know I’d wear it, I have to think about whether my daughter would. This is good fabric, I love it. I know I could have left it un-fulled, but honestly with nightgowns for these two mess-prone women, I don’t want something that’s going to be high maintenance on the laundry front, and once you’ve done everything you can to a piece of wool, it’s fairly indestructible. Look at Braveheart.) (By the way, historical costumers laugh in derision at that movie…but the whole kilt thing is fairly ingenious, when you think about it…)
I’m also working on a little patchwork blanket for each of the kids–one made out of cut up jeans for my son and one made out of felted sweater squares for my daughter. I’m currently experiencing a little two-birds-with-one-stone goodness; I was looking for wool sweaters in the thrift stores in different shades of red and pink, but mostly what I found was white and cream ones. Only one pink sweater, in a very pale shade. (And I had a few red ones from last year, three different shades.) So just for the hell of it, I washed one of the white sweaters in the machine with the bright red brand new wool flannel, and now I have a lovely bright pink sweater. (Since I was “dying” to experiment. ) Very cool. So now I have some really nice contrasting colors to make squares out of, hopefully enough for a small throw blanket for her. Jeans will be no problem–I’ve been saving the jeans my son busted the knees out of for a few years now, plus the ones my husband has trashed.
Both blankets will be backed with colorful flannel–my son’s in rockets and planets and stuff, and my daughter in butterflies.
I’m also planning on making cloth napkins for the family, as a gesture of hope that we can start to eliminate some of our daily paper use–if I can make each of us several napkins in a person-specific print–butterflies for my daughter, sunflowers for my son, and who-knows-what for each of the grownups–we can at least use them for meals and toss them in the wash at the end of the week.
I have some jeans bags in the works too–way better than the ones I attempted last year; these should be very cute. But as I said, no photos, since some recipients might read this blog…
Other than that, there are the melt and pour soaps, and some folks will doubtless get jars of applesauce and apple butter, though I haven’t had the chance to make any more since the first batch. I also have more nuts and dried fruit than I know what to do with, so I may make a few batches of granola as well. Nice consumable gift the kids can help with. And mulling spices.
I got to listen to a friend tell of his Macy’s nightmare today, of long lines and incompetent and/or rude sales people, and I felt only slightly smug but deeply relieved that I just don’t. go. to. the. mall.