04 December 2007

dear m+m: gift giving to the crafty soul

Dear M & M,

I am in a bind! I want to give my best friend something wonderfully useful and thoughtful this Christmas, but I am bewildered as to what to get her. She is a crafty lady (she quilts, she bakes, she scrapbooks, she does it all). I feel like she already has everything she could ever need. I want my gift to be special but anytime I think I find a good gift, I tell myself, she could make that with her eyes closed! Any thoughts or suggestions?

Thanks you two!
Love, Giftless + Confused

marta writes:
what a great question! i am often wondering the same thing about my oh so talented friends. i usually make them something of my own and question if they are sick of receiving another martacreation. here are a few things i know i would love, being a crafty gal myself.

if you find something that looks like something your friend could create and it's of good taste, she might just love it! she'll know and appreciate the hard work (first hand) that went into it. for example, i make cards and journals to sell, yet cannot stop myself from adding to my growing collection when i see a gorgeous note card in a shop. don't assume you'll offend her, she'll be flattered that you know and understand her taste! i think this is why we love blog swaps so much, because we're all swapping items that are great additions to our stockpile. i've received things that i hadn't known would be so helpful in my crafty endeavors until they arrive on my porch in a package... and then i say, wow, teeny tiny binder clips really are genius li'l helpers.

crafty gals love new supplies too. give her your best leftover scraps, your favorite pen, a new spool of cute, argyle ribbon, or a great pair of ikea scissors. i once received beautiful file folders that have nicely integrated themselves perfectly into my 'creation' station. i love them. another friend gave me a brand new bulletin board with pins, ready for the collaging. every one loves a new surface to play on! if you're unsure of the specific supplies she might like, listen for where her top crafting stop is and get her a gift certificate there. if all else fails, a gift card at target will surely come in handy.

a quick look on amazon.com under her favorite subjects crochet, cooking, canoing, etc. might help you land on the perfect book to keep her inspired! one more idea, if you find something non-crafty for her, throw in your thought that counts. such as a little note saying, 'i think this lovely candle will make your beloved sewing room glow at this time of year.' or 'i thought your tired hands could use some pampering after a day of gardening.' or 'here's a sweet apron to tie on while baking up your famous holiday pies.'

M says:
I know your pain! It's intimidating to give to creative people. Maybe you could go around her talents and surprise her from behind. What I mean is this: If she quilts, her fingers and eyes must get tired. What about a lovely hand cream, or a lavendar scented eye mask? If she crafts, she might like a cute little box of clean up supplies--glue remover, cotton swabs, room deodorizer. A marvelous cook would appreciate a cookbook holder, or cute throwaway spoons for the inevitable taste tests. Write a note explaining why you thought of her when you saw this item. "Your glasses must get steamy when you're making that delicious soup. Here's a little eye-glass cleaning kit for your kitchen." could be the message on a vintage chocolate tin, filled with cleaning spray and colorful, lint-less square cloths. It would look appropriate on her counter and keep things handy. Thanks for your question! It's got me thinking.

happy gift giving, wrap it up with care and she'll know you are a true friend.
send your questions our way. marta@martacards.com


love.boxes said...

Those are all such lovely suggestions!

karla said...

You are both so clever - great suggestions!

Sarah said...

I agree with what you say about swaps... double sided tape in a dispenser? Genius! :)

Jake said...

for my quilting mother-in-law i found "quilter's hand lotion" and a book of quilt stories...she loved it and i didn't have to stitch a thing!!

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