i can think of a number of important ways to spend my free time these next few days. thanksgiving prep. art fair prep. december birthday gifts. december holiday gifts. but i have to take just a few minutes for a very important task. honestly, with all the different prep going on around here, i haven’t thought about holiday gifts for my friends and family at ALL yet, so it took me by surprise when, this week, david started engaging in clandestine activities on my computer and told me not to go snooping in any packages that come to our door. is it already that time again?!
i have a confession. for as much as i love gifting, and i mean LOVE it, i must be among the worst gift recipients of all time. many things about receiving rub me the wrong way…i don’t enjoy surprises, they seem risky and frivolous, and then it puts pressure on everyone to be happy and gracious when maybe that’s not an accurate depiction of their true feelings. given my penchant for frankness, my inclination to plan, and my practicality, i am just not cut out for gift receiving or surprises of any sort. i know, it sounds crotchety and unfestive, but i’ve tried to change, and it seems to just be hardwired into my dna.
there is one way around this, however. it takes some of the glitter out of gift exchanges because the element of surprise is significantly diminished, but it seems the best compromise. the holiday wishlist! i get something i want, and i don’t seem like an ungrateful wretch. and before you write me off as a grinch, i ask you what is more magical than santa, and how did santa KNOW what you wanted? you gave him a list. and the magic of santa was represented in how he knew *just* what to get you. so actually, i’m keeping the spirit of christmas alive and well, if you think about it. my wish list is long, always growing, and exists all year just waiting for fitting occasions to knock a few items off. i thought i would post it here for my own family’s benefit, but maybe you too will get some good ideas for yourselves or other crafters. and if there’s *anything* i left out, please leave it in the comments! i’m always looking for new items to add
when i first started thinking about my christmas gift for this year, i thought i would ask only for this:
i’m always looking for new ways to manipulate fibers, and i was quite smitten with these projects on the purl bee. this is all a christmas gift should be…not impractical, but a stretch, something i wouldn’t hurry to get myself out of necessity, but something i’ll really love and enjoy. i wouldn’t mind adding a new gadget and skill set to my repertoire! i hear it’s faster than knitting and you can make some beautiful fabrics. you can also find it on amazon here.
as we move into cooler weather, my fingers just itch to knit. it’s not the most efficient activity, so it wasn’t a focus for all my art fair making. but my goodness, i love it. i’m definitely due for some additions to my knitting supplies!
i’d love to make this, this, and pretty much all of these for myself. all that knitting of course will require a lot of yarn…a gift certificate is never a bad option.
i also have a very vague long term goal of putting out an ebook of baby knitting patterns, maybe next fall. i always get a good amount of traffic here from the patterns and tutorials i’ve posted to ravelry, and i was really flattered by the response on instagram to the couple of baby knits i’ve done for art fair. i have a lot of ideas, but could use some more reference texts on the best way to translate them to straight forward patterns. this looks like a good resource.
and who are we kidding, sewing. i have an amazon wish list miles long of all the sewing books and supplies i’d like. if we’re being practical, i would say the following are top priorities for my sewing room:
one of these so i can stab myself with pins less frequently and have generally fewer surprises when it comes to fit, especially when i start winging it with my own designs. no more bra flashing, please! i also am desperately in need of a new iron… we have hard water here that has totally wrecked my current iron, ironing board, and several garments. i’m thinking about making it my new year’s resolution to replace the whole set up and start fresh with only filtered water. it offends me slightly that my iron will drink better water than my family, but these are the sacrifices we make. does anyone know of a good iron that won’t break the bank??
but since this is a wish list, we don’t need to limit things only to what’s practical, do we? i have a number of books i wouldn’t mind having on my shelves…
a few just for fun:
left, middle, right
and some to advance my education:
left, middle, right
any other recommendations for books in those categories (or others)?
i already have fabric set aside to make this and this, and i feel like this would be well used (now with long sleeve tutorial!) but i still need the patterns! ***grainline patterns are 20% off through monday, you guys!***
of course, all that sewing would call for quite a bit of fabric…
i shop a lot here, here, and here and almost daily, there’s a new thing i desperately want here, fabric and otherwise.
i haven’t paid ms. matatabi a visit in awhile…wouldn’t mind some yardage in any or all of these:
top left, top right, bottom left, bottom right nani iro just slays me constantly with this beauty. how do you do it, naomi ito? HOW?
and if i haven’t struck a chord with any of you yet, here are the last couple of items i wouldn’t mind finding under the tree/ in a stocking/ both:
you all know of my recent but profound love affair with embroidery. i’ve been dying to take on sashiko for months and cover my house and wardrobe with it. these stencils look awesome. sold out, i know, i already clamored about restocking.
you’ve probably hear of mollie makes, the uk crafting magazine. if not, it’s summarized this way: “curating the best contemporary craft from around the world into a beautiful and totally irresistible magazine.” the only craft related subscription i currently have is martha stewart living, which is aesthetically pleasing and full of inspiration. however, many of the crafts are unrealistic because of expensive or hard to find materials, and the instructions are lacking to say the least. i could start a whole blog just about debunking martha stewart crafts monthly (if i could figure them out myself). anyway, how delightful would it be to receive a new magazine in the mail every month totally devoted to crafting?! a gift that keeps on giving! i know it would have me running to the mailbox daily. unfortunately, the hard copy subscription is quite pricey for those of us not in the uk, and i’m not sure it comes with the little gifts (is this discrimination?!), but a more affordable 6 month trial version is an option. while i’m an old fashioned, print media kinda gal, the mobile devicers among us can get the digital version for a steal on iTunes, and your first issue is free!
little by little, i want to gain mastery (or at least exposure) to so many crafts. i have SO much yet to learn about yarn…i would love to spin and dye my own yarn…i would even love to own a sheep one day, but that remains a debate in our household. time limitations force me to pick and choose, and for this year, i’d like to learn more about natural dyes, even just for fabric, and about knitting. my sheep will have to wait, but this and this would be welcome additions to my night table.
and speaking of tables, i keep hearing about this book, and while i’m not invested in all the included projects, the coffee table appeal more than compensates.
so, that’s a rather exhaustive list (though i’ll have you know, it does not include even half the books on my amazon wish list…i just ran out of clever ways to display them!). frankly, i don’t even know enough people to receive all these gifts, even if everyone i knew were to give me a gift, which surely they’re not. however, i think this will serve as a nice reference for *some* people (ahem), and with all the wish lists and pop up shops materializing as the holidays draw near, i thought it would be fun to share some of the things i go to sleep hoping for on christmas morning. what visions are dancing around in your head?