Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and I hope you find time to really focus and be thankful for all of your blessings. Each year has ups and downs and the fact I’m still here should count for something!
Celebrating Christmas comes once a year (although we should celebrate the birth of our Savior all year long), and I love to try to make it so absolutely special for my family.
Because we make our gifts, it’s always fun to get my husband & kids involved, and work on projects together. Our favorite medium by far is WOOD.
Last week I shared Natural Bath & Body Gifts with recipes.
Ready for some woody fun?
My gang loves to give each other gifts, and instead of buying things for them to give each other, we encourage them to make the gifts they give. This usually entails working with them to create the gift, and that’s perfect for us to get to spend some quality time together.
My oldest son amazed me at the gifts he made for his siblings:
A Peg Bead Counter – just some dowel, beads, and a block of wood. Most all of the supplies can be found at your local craft store.
This was given to his younger brother who was two at the time, but all of us have had fun not only stacking the beads, but making creative games with it too.
A Spool Stacker – using a simple wooden box, dowel, balsa wood, and spools with matching scrapbook paper. Again, these can all be found at your local crafts supply. (Hobby Lobby, Michaels, and even JoAnn)
This is my favorite that he made. It’s so stinking cute and educational. My four year old girl just loves it.
The only added piece was a routed pine block that we also drilled to hold the dowels while the game was in use. The top was drawn on with a brown sharpie marker after using a transfer method I discuss here
Travel Tic Tac Toe & Tricky Triangle – wooden wheel pegs and a block of wood all kept in a basic drawstring canvas bag.
*this post does contain affiliate links so you can find the products I love too!
Travel games are great for anyone in the family and these will encourage brain stimulation more than any smartphone could do.
I had a blast making these clothespin dolls with canvas backgrounds mounted on dowels using yet another wood box and added woodden accessorices. Amazon sells a kit online
A simple felt lining to keep the pieces from rattling around inside and create a customized look.
The dresses were made using a small amount of scrap fabric from my stash.
You can find a tutorial on how to make those dolls from Going Sew Crazy and more ideas on my Pinterest board
Need somewhere to store all good stuff after the present rush is over? You can build your own under-bed storage or use an unwanted drawer and just add casters.
These drawers are under my boys bed and we did them in a horizontal design, but under our 3 girls bed we flipped the layout to a vertical design to fit all 3.
Just add a drawer pull and embellish as you wish using paint or a wood-burning tool.
Thankfully, we were able to salvage a large stack of chipboard from my husband’s workplace dump pile to line the bottom and create dividers that can slide out if needed. I’m seriously making some extra storage for myself under our own bed. We never get the fun stuff. hmpf.
Now onto some bigger projects…
A dreamy tree house with handmade bendy dolls, woodland creatures and accessories – using pine plywood, rocks and some imagination.
This water well was made by making a sawdust clay and then adding stones. I love it.
Isn’t that owl adorable? I cut all the animals with a jigsaw because we didn’t have our scroll saw at the time, then hand-painted with acrylics.
When I made this (all by myself – woot!) it was hard to stop from adding more and more. Can you tell I would have loved to have one as a kid? I live vicariously through my children. wink. wink.
This set is over 4 yrs. old and has been loved on to no end. It really was an easy project, even with making the dolls, furniture, and the forest creatures compared to the large-scale dollhouses we made for our daughters.
A must-have tool for this project is a Dremel – can I just say I LOVE MY DREMEL!! I’ve got a more advanced style, but you can find a basic set on Amazon
Although I could keep showing you some other projects we’ve worked on, none surpasses the kitchen in our wood category.
We never really use patterns, and this project was no different. Just some basic supplies, hinges, dowel, wood knobs, a steel bowl and creativity.
We used a 3/4″ birch ply from Home Depot, and most everything else came from a salvaged items, like a broken closet rod dowel, leftover bead board, and wood scraps.
I’ll show you how to stock your kitchen next time will all sorts of glorious felt food. I bought those tins in the clearance aisle at JoAnn, so this was really made for pennies compare to buying retail.
That’s it for now and I hope you’ve become inspired to give wooden gifts a try. They last forever and are so versatile.
Many blessings to you and your family this holiday season!
More Handmade Holidays for you!