Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Handmade Gifting Lesson #1

This is a random post about giving handmade gifts. A few of my girlfriends have gotten more into sewing in the last year or so and it is such fun to have partners in crime. This means we've all begun giving more handmade gifts. Yeah for handmade gifts!

But lately I've heard some of my girlfriends saying things I used to, things like: It's just handmade. Don't look too closely! It's really nothing. I remember saying these things and now wonder, "What was I thinking??" Even when my husband heard me say these things he would try and assure me but it took an embarrassingly long time for me to catch on.

I learned early on that recipients of handmade gifts are not critics (unless you have mean friends...). Instead they are touched by your thoughtfulness, impressed by your skills (no matter how remedial), and really appreciate the personal touches. They will almost certainly never notice a less than perfectly straight stitch. And, better yet, they are clueless as to what shortfalls you may see in the finished piece.

All this brings me to lesson #1: Do not apologize for your gift or your skills. Ever. Give confidently and joyfully because you poured your time, love, creativity and self into that little bundle in the gift bag/box/wrapping paper. And every time your loved one looks at that thoughtful, personal gift they will think of you and smile.

That's it. Now give confidently and know that your sister/friend/mom/neighbor/friend's kid will love it! Pin It


  1. Thanks Kari,

    That is exactly how I feel most of the time, when I give a handmade gift. I am always just a little unsure of myself, and how they'll really feel about it. Thanks for the encouragement :)

  2. Oh this is so true. Now to remind myself of this each time I give a handmade gift (which is now often as it's my goal to give only handmade this year!)

  3. What a sweet post and I do believe u are 100% correct. If they don't see the "time, love, creativity and self into that little bundle" then ur right, they are just MEAN!

  4. You're so right, Kari! Sometimes it's tough to stay quiet and accept a compliment with the grace that it's given, but it's a skill that a lot of us self-taught crafters need to hone.

  5. Your so perfectly right! Once i learned to keep my mouth shut i realized that the non-crafty moms actually wait with great anticipation to see what i have made. I now feel proud of myself and could never show up with out my handmade gifts.

  6. You are so right! Thank you so much for the reminder. I love to make things, but haven't given them out to friends for fear of them being not "good enough." Thanks for the encouragement!

  7. I always get a little nervous when I make something for someone. I've even chickened out a few times after making something and just given them something from my gift stash (you know the gifts you buy so you don't have to run out at the last minute).

  8. I'm so glad you all appreciated this! If I think of other handmade gift giving tips, maybe there will be a Lesson #2. :)


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