Handmade Holidays 2010

Christmas in our household has always been first and foremost family-oriented. And this follows through in the type of gifts we exchange: I would rather give (and receive!) fewer presents, but know that the few that were chosen were made or picked out with love and thoughtfulness. When we give gifts, we give things that we know the recipient with cherish, and something that will bring light and happiness to their lives. We do not give a gift simply because we have to.

This thinking also aligns itself with a more sustainable holiday season. By avoiding the mass-produced gifts that were shipped from halfway around the world, and supporting the local economy when purchasing locally-made products or supplies, we are trying to do our part.

But we are by no means perfect. We still, like most families, do some of our holiday purchases at the larger chain retail stores. Unfortunately for the moment, that is unavoidable. However, each year we do a little more ourselves, as we strive towards a holiday season that is sustainable not just environmentally, but economically and socially as well.

The idea for highlighting our Handmade Holidays was taken from Tonya over at Natural Earth Farm, where she's made a list of all the individuals and families who both blog, and who are participating in the challenge.

For us, the goal is not to have everything we give be home-made, (just not realistic at this point). But instead, to make an effort and make as much as we can, and then to purchase in a conscientious manner the remaining gifts and supplies.

Many of the gifts I will be making will be knitted, and here is my list to date:

Anklet Socks (Done. Hurray!)
Cabled Hat (Done!)
Fellowship of the Ring Dolls (which includes Gandalf, Aragorn, Frodo, Sam, Merry, and Pippin!)
Winter Gnome Doll (Done!)
Purse (partially made from a recycled fair isle sweater)
Neck warmer (Done, though not made with the recycled sweater. I made it instead out of Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Bulky in black, and made my own design using various cables.)
In the event that I finish the above ahead of schedule, I have several smaller projects lined up to work on as well.

I am highlighting the knitted gifts because they are all either of my own design, or have been modified from the original patterns in some way. Those that are my own designs will be eventually edited and published, and I will leave links to where they can be downloaded.


Below you'll find the posts covering the gifts that we make, as well as any that have to do with getting ready for the Holiday Season! We hope you enjoy, and find inspiration to share with your own family!

BBQ Sauce and Meat Rub Gift Sets

If not by MY hands, then by my Neighbour's

Preparing for the Holidays Part 4: Wreath Making

Preparing for the Holidays Part 3: The Magic of Wizards and Truffles

Our weekly knitting group

Preparing for the Holidays Part 1: Organisation

So from all of us at The Somewhat-Urban Homestead, may your Holidays be filled with light, laughter, and love!

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