Homemade Joy

There’s something about seeing evidence of a real human hand at work that makes a gift especially joyful. Of course, not all of us can be Ina or Martha. The last thing you want to do is stress about it. So here are a few tips on bringing a little handmade love to gifting.

  1. Go green. Last month, we got together for Vignette 101, where Jill + Orly Khon of Orly Khon flowers gave some easy tips on creating holiday vignettes with greens. Why not pick out a vessel you love and create something out of it using greens, pinecones, stones? Jill filled this vase with mini pine cones. It looks ah-may-zing. Anyone would love getting that for a gift.

  2. Get baked. We know baking can seem stressful, so we’ve unearthed literally the easiest (and it’s delicious) cookie recipe. All you need is almond flour, maple syrup, vanilla and baking powder and 13 minutes of your time. Bonus points for gifting the cookies on a beautiful horn tray s/he can use forever.

  3. Hi, Pie. Jill loves the idea of giving a pie. But honestly making a flaky crust seems really daunting. Smashing oreos with a rolling pin does not. We’d gift this with a faux bone pie server to luxe it up.

  4. Card stop. A homemade card is easy and a perfect touch. Create a card-making station for kids by lining the floor with newspaper and setting out cups of glitter, pom poms, washable markers, leaves, and glue sticks.

  5. Short story. One of the best handmade gifts we ever gave was a “story of us.” It sounds a lot more advanced than it is. Start with a pretty journal. Inside, tell the story (or just the highlights) of your friendship with iphone snapshots printed on a standard printer and simple penned notes.

p.s. If all else fails, just write a heartfelt message on a hand-printed card and call it a day. No judgement.