It is widely stated that Halloween is the ultimate maker holiday, with so many different opportunities for making and crafting in decorating your house, making costumes, and in creating party food and favors. But Christmas also offers huge opportunities for decorating, entertaining, and especially, creating handmade gifts and gift wrapping. Here are ten project articles from the Make: archives that should help get your handmade holidays going.
Knit Your Own Christmas Stockings
There is nothing more special than a hand-knitted (or home machine-knitted) Christmas stocking. If you give someone such a stocking as a gift, especially to a child, he or she will likely cherish it their entire life.
Link: Festive Fair Isle Christmas Stockings
Crochet Star Wars Ornaments
If you’re into Amigurumi figures, you’ll want to check out these Star Wars ornaments crocheted in the Amigurumi style.
Link: Rosaline’s Crochet Star Wars Christmas Extravaganza
Make Homemade Cthulhu Cookies
These creepy cookies might not be for everyone, but sci-fi and horror fans will certainly appreciate munching down on some delicious Great Old Ones.
Link: Homemade Cthulhumas Cookies
3D Print Your Own Christmas Ornaments
Even if you don’t have your own 3D printer, you can still get gorgeous, high-res prints of your custom-designed ornaments made at mail-order printers like Shapeways. Design your own and give them as gifts and they will blow away your recipients. Shapeways prints even come in little display bags that make your creations look like commercial products.
Link: Unique 3D Printed Christmas Ornaments
Make Grinch Characters from Toilet Paper Rolls
Here’s a fun, snowy day crafts project you can do with your kids. Turn lowly TP rolls into very characterful Grinch puppets. While toilet paper roll projects are something of a crafting cliche, they’re still a great way to teach your children to think outside the box and to see the things around them as repurposeable, materials that can be transformed into something else.
Link: Kid Crafts: Toilet Paper Roll Grinch
Use Fabric Scraps to Wrap Gifts
Gift wrapping can be one of the craftier, more improvisational aspects of holiday making. There are so many things that you can use as gift wrap. One of these is fabric scraps which can easily be used as unique wrapping material.
Link: How-To: Fabric-Wrapped Gifts
Knit Your Own Pocket Gnomes
If you’re a knitter, you can quickly turn some of your yarn scraps into these cute little “pocket gnomes.”
Link: Pocket Gnome Knitting Pattern
Make Origami Bows from Old Magazines
Turn the colorful pages of old magazines, destined for the recycling bin, into cool, colorful package bows.
Link: DIY Origami Bows From Magazine Pages
Carve Skulls from Christmas Tree Ornaments
What to do with all of those old dinged-up ornaments you never put on the tree, anymore? Turn them into skulls, of course. D’uh!
Link: Skulls Carved From Christmas Ornaments
Build a Color-Hunting, Christmas Tree-Controlling Robot!
For the ambitious, hyper-nerdy among us, here’s a robot you can build, using a BeagleBone Black and some motors, sensors, and a webcam. It can search out the colors in your house and turn your Christmas tree (and other CheerBot trees around the world!) into the dominant color. Really a cool, very 21st century way of feeling connected this holiday season.
Link: Color-Hunting, Christmas Tree-Controlling CheerBot