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Links to Gifts Kids Can Make for Other Kids, Family and Friends:

Gifts don't have to be expensive to be cherished. Below are some gift ideas.  

Here are a few inexpensive gifts you and your kids can do.

Hand Coaster    cute & inexpensive

These cleverly personalized coasters offer a fun, open-handed expression of your child's generosity: "Here," they seem to say. "I brought you a drink." For extra appeal and versatility, we've applied different fabrics to the sides of the coasters.

Materials
  • Card stock
  • Pencil or chalk
  • 2 coordinating or contrasting cotton fabrics (washed, dried, and ironed)
  • 1 package double-sided stiff fusible interfacing (we used Dritz Heavyweight InnerFuse, $7 at fabric stores)
  • Iron
Instructions
  1. Trace your child's hand on a piece of card stock and cut it out to make a template. Use a pencil or chalk to trace the desired number of coasters on one of the fabrics. Trim the fabric into a rectangle that contains all of your tracings, then trim the second fabric and the interfacing to match its size.

  2. Following the interfacing package's instructions, fuse it between the two fabrics with an iron (an adult's job). Cut along the traced lines with scissors.

Secret Hollow Book

Create a secret hollow book. Find a cheap musty old classic at your nearby Goodwill or used bookstore. Glue the pages together, use an X-Acto knife to hollow out the center of the book. Now the recipient can store his treasures!

Memory Drawings

Whether you’re artistic or not give a memory drawing: “Draw a very simple black-and-white picture of a memory that you have of you and the person (e.g. me and my dad playing NES back in the day). This could be a very simple drawing. Frame it and gift. The great thing about this (besides being cheap) is that you can give it multiple times to the same person. They will have a growing collection of ‘memory drawings’ from you.” Beck reports this gift is very well received by family members.

Family Trivia Game

Cobblestone offered a great idea: “For my cash hungry nephews and niece I make sure to do something creative to get the money. This year is going to be a family trivia game with questions that make them talk to other family members. It is much more interesting than a $20 bill.” Of course, it’s also possible to do this without the monetary reward.

Gift of Music  -  Personalized CD

Leanne has an idea that might be useful for college students looking for gifts on a budget. “I have a friend…who compiles a mixed CD every year and mails them out to all his friends. It serves as a holiday card, gift, and moment of reconnection (we get a sense of how his year has been/things he’s been dealing with or excited about based on the music he chooses) plus we get introduced to new music we might not have picked up ourselves.”

Memory Jar

Knip has a fantastic idea for a grandparent or other older relative: a memory jar. “The most wonderful gift I’ve ever given (it’s still talked about years later) cost me almost nothing. I spent a few months contacting friends and family members and asked them to send me memories and old pictures of my grandfather. Then I wrote one memory (or printed one picture)on each of 365 business card sized pieces of cardstock. I folded each in half and secured it with a bit of tape, then placed them all in a big jar I decorated. Every morning for the next year, my grandfather would take out a paper, open it, and see what other people cherished in him. He loved it.”

Bead and Button Tea Cup

Give someone an usual gift with this bead and button teacup. It's a great craft activity for kids who enjoy decorating things with fashion accessories.

What you'll need:

  • Solid colored teacup with saucer
  • Assorted decorative buttons and beads of different shapes, sizes, and colors.
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks.
  • Tweezers

How to make it:

  1. Make sure the teacup is clean before beginning.
  2. Use the hot glue and glue all of the buttons and beads onto the surface of the teacup. You can just do the top half or the whole cup if desired.
  3. Continue to glue buttons and beads to the saucer as well.
  4. Use the tweezers to help you place the beads and buttons on the cup. This will prevent you from getting burned, and will make it much easier.

Sock Monkeys

This is for all you Sock Monkey Fans!!!

MATERIALS:
1 pair of men's extra large (size 12-13) socks; preferably Original Rockford red Heel (r) socks.
1 bag of poly-fiberfil stuffing or cotton batting.
1 spool of white thread
red yarn
black embroidery thread
Optional two white buttons for eyes

INSTRUCTIONS:
Sock #1, body and legs:

A. Turn sock inside out and create a center line from the white heel to the top of the sock. Mark a line 3" away from the white heel, across the sock. Mark a notch 1 1/2" away from white heel on the center line. This will form the legs.

B. Beginning at the 3" line, stitch a line 1/4" away from the right side of thecenter line and stop 1/4" away from the top edge of sock. Pivot and sew a line across the top of the sock to the outside edge. Repeat on left side. Cut sock open on the center line down to the 1 1/2" notch.

C. Turn sock right-sie out and stuff using opening between legs. When body and legs are completely stuffed, overcast the opening to close hole.

D. Sock #2, mouth, arms, tail, ears, and hat:

1. Hat:
Cut off the white toe of sock making sure to leave 1/2" brown seam allowance to create roll. *DO NOT cut on fold, sock may not be symmetrical.

2. Mouth:
Cut off white and red heel, leaving 1/2" seam allowance to turn under when sewing. * Again, DO NOT cut on the fold.

3. Tail and Arms:
Divide upper section of the sock into three equal sections. To form tail draw a line from the top to the toe on the inside (long side) of the sock. Draw a line across the bottom of the remaining two sections (just above the heel) to form base of arms. Round off top of arms on white part of sock. Cut out each section. Sew each piece using 1/4" seam allowance, turn and stuff.

4. Ears:
Using remaining sock, mark two half circles for ears and cut out. Sew using 1/4" seam allowance, turn and lightly stuff.




E. Attaching Sections:

5. Mouth:
Place on front of monkey's face about 1" below white edge. Whip stitch top edge of mouth section first to secure, and stuff. Sew around bottom of the mouth to close.

6. Ears:
Place on sides of monkey's head and whip stitch in place. May choose to do a small running stitch 1/8" in from edge of ear to create rim.

7. Tail and Arms:
Attach tail at the seat of the monkey center in red of heel. Whipstitch closed. Secure arms on either side of monkey's body with whipstitch.

8. Tack hat to top of head.

Finishing:
* All finishing techniques are entirely up to the creator. There is no right or wrong. The following suggestions are based on a typical sock monkey style:

F.Sew button eyes on face of monkey, or embroider eyes. May choose to embroider eyelashes.

G. Embroider line across center of red mouth, and embroider nostrils.

H. Add red yarn pom-poms to hands, feet, around neck and on top of hat.

 

Dishtowel Angel

 

Materials:

1 dishtowel
1 washcloth
1 Pot holder
Ribbon

What you do

Fan Fold the dishtowel lengthwise (Fig. 1). Fold in half and tie off about 2 to 3 inches from fold, this forms the head (Fig. 2).

Fig. 1

Fig. 2

Fig. 3Fanfold the washcloth (Fig. 3). This forms the arms.

Fanfold the potholder with the loop along top edge (Fig. 4). This forms the wings.

Place the washcloth on top of the potholder and secure in the center with a ribbon (Fig. 5).

Fig. 4

Fig. 5

Fig. 6Lay towel on top of potholder and washcloth. Bring the arms (washcloth) around and tie together 1 inch from ends, this forms the hands and holds all the pieces together.

Angel Poem
An angel in the Kitchen
Watching the stew
Blesses your cooking
And all that you do.

Art Magnets

These funky art magnets put the "fun" in functional! Package them sweetly in a neat jewel case, then present them to a loved one you're just plain stuck on.

Materials

  • 10-mm jewel case
  • Decorative paper
  • Adhesive magnetic sheet
  • Small drawings
  • Double-sided tape
Instructions
  1. Remove the plastic CD holder and paper insert from the jewel case. To line the case, trace the insert on decorative paper and cut out that shape. Tape the lining inside the case.

  2. To make the magnets, adhere your child's drawings to a magnetic sheet and cut them out.

  3. Arrange the magnets on the decorative lining and secure each with a small piece of tape.

Felt Pens and Pencils

 

Great gifts for siblings, cousins, and friends, these friendly-faced pens are so simple to make, your child can create a zoo in an afternoon. Just be sure he keeps one for himself -- it might encourage him to write those postholiday thank-you notes!

Materials
  • Ballpoint pen
  • Felt
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Googly eyes
Instructions
  1. Fun Felt Pens  - Step 1 Cut a strip of felt as shown.

  2. Run a thin bead of hot glue along one edge, roll up the pen in the felt, and glue the other edge.

  3. Fun Felt Pens  - Step 2

 

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