November was a very scattered month, with little progress in crafting. This year, however, I am determined to give a few handmade gifts to friends and family. December seems to have got on a good start. Here ‘s what I made on Saturday:

Sleeping mask for brother

Drawstring bags, to give wristwarmers in

Zipper pouches with luxurious Chinese fabrics (one is for me, as I burned the zipper a bit and isn’t working very well…)

Here is one with its mouth open

I also finished a woolly hat and did some other stuff, but haven’t taken pictures yet. It has been very dark all day today. And it was the first snow of the year. O.k., of the winter, as it is still 2007…

I think the biggest surprise of making handmade gifts is how much I have been enjoying making them. Each one takes from under half an hour to several hours. All the while, I tend to think of the person for whom the present is intended, and trying to personalise it for them in each step. My colour choices, the very objects themselves, they are all an indication of how I interpret their tastes and preferences, their needs and whims.

The gifts are not ordered, some are even going to be surprises. It is a tricky path, I know. There is always the risk of making something with lots of enthusiasm and affection, only to be tossed aside by the recipient. I tend to be quite sensitive about my gifts anyway, and I know that this year as they ‘re all so special to me I will have even higher expectations of myself. It will be a learning experience in giving, then. I am not sure what I will learn from it, and if next year I will be even more inspired to give handmade gifts or I will find it too nerve-wrecking and will give up. For now, making presents is the only idea that makes sense, and I am having a lot of fun in the process. Whatever their reception, at least I will have enjoyed myself!

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