So, here’s the thing. You still want to make gifts, Christmas is coming and it has to be quick – with a capital Q! Don’t panic, these five quick and practical gifts to sew will meet the desires of just about anyone on your list!
Wool Camera Wrap
Matt from the Design Sponge blog needed a protective, yet attractive wrap for his camera. It had to be quick to make and simple to sew and he wrote a wonderful post on what he made. You’ll need a piece of heavy wool fabric and canvas or leather for the straps. There’s no pattern, you’ll just trace around the camera for a customized fit. Because this is a simple sew, there’s no lining, but you will want to serge or narrow hem the raw edges to prevent fraying. The clever strap wraps around to hold the camera securely and the design includes a shoulder strap. It’s the perfect gift for the on-the-go photographer in your life! Click here for Matt’s tutorial.
Simple Phone or Camera Case
This smaller scale case is super versatile! It works well for a smart phone, mp3 player or small camera and uses just two cotton fat quarters. Add in a short piece of thin elastic for “fitting”, a button for closure and you’ll have everything you need. Rebecca, who works in the Sew Mama Sew online shop designed this quick, simple and attractive case in fabulous prints. If you’d like something more sophisticated or man-friendly, faux suede would be ultra- lush! Click here for Rebecca’s tutorial on the Sew Mama Sew blog.
Handbag Emergency Kit
Here’s a quick and practical gift that’s perfect for everyone. You’ll want one for yourself, too! Lisa from the Spoonful of Sugar blog designed this handy little Emergency Kit to fit neatly in a handbag. It’s big enough for a few essential first aid supplies and super cute, too. Stock it with basic supplies, but leave room for your friend or family member to add personalized needs. Made from four 5” x 5” charm squares, you can choose cottons, linens or canvas. The stand-out red cross makes it easy to find in the depths of your handbag or car glove compartment. Click here for Lisa’s tutorial for this quick and practical gift.
Cozy Laptop Sleeve
We all carry laptops or tablets these days and they need protection from the bounces and bumps along the way. Amber of the Crazy Little Projects blog designed a lovely sleeve that is quick to make and economical to sew. You’ll need about a half yard of wool felt and a few bits of hook and loop tape for the closure. You’ll make a pattern from the laptop so it will fit. To make it as a quick and practical gift, you’ll be able to find dimensions on the manufacturers web site. If all else fails, enlist the help of one of the elves close to the intended recipient. Remember to measure twice, cut once – so there’s no time wasted on cutting errors. Make it a bit larger and you can slip in a paper bound planner as part of the gift. Click here for Amber’s tutorial.
Skillet Handle Holder
You won’t carry this one around with you, but it’s a quick and practical gift that anyone on your list will love. Safety is a very good thing to give! Deby from the So Sew Easy blog suggests batting, fleece or an old towel to line the Skillet Handle Holder, but I am totally sold on Insul-Bright. For this job, it won’t take much and it’s the best way to protect hands from the heat. Be sure to use 100% Cotton fabrics and Coats Cotton thread when you make the Handle Holder, too. Cotton won’t melt like synthetics will and you want those holders to be safe. You can easily and quickly make a whole stack of these including some in seasonal fabrics. Wouldn’t it be fun to show up with a ribbon tied “batch” in holiday fabrics for the hostess!? Click here for Deby’s tutorial.
There! Are you feeling better now? It’s not too late and you can still sew wonderfully practical, handmade gifts for the holidays. And, no one will know you waited until the last minute except Santa. That’s just between him and us elves!
About the Author
Annette Millard began sewing at the age of three, made her first dress at ten and is always happiest with needle, fabric and thread in her hands. Annette feels very privileged to have spent most of her work life in the sewing industry and loves teaching, making her own handmade wardrobe and writing about sewing. She spent over ten years as the newsletter and web site content writer for the Pacific Northwest's largest locally-owned family of fabric stores and is now thrilled to have the opportunity to share her passion for sewing with the Sewing Secrets community.