December 8, 2008

The past few years, I’ve really been trying to avoid that horrible credit card bill that comes in January. So I’ve been putting my thinking cap on to figure out ways to make gifts instead of buying them. After all, I’m a creative, crafty person, right? Last year I unearthed some small stained-glass quilts that I’d made umpteen years ago, added some more quilting to them, wrapped them up, and sent them to all the relatives. This year I hit upon the idea of making some quilty note cards.

I had fused fabric to paper once before, when we moved to California and I decorated moving announcements that way. And, although I haven’t read it, I knew that Elly Sienkiewicz had done a whole book about it called Appliqué Paper Greetings. Elly Sienkiewicz Applique Paper Greetings: A Quilt Approach to Scrapbooking

blanks.gifA quick Google search found me, and I immediately knew what I wanted. A flecked line of blank note cards came in coffee, cream, and sugar LOL! I ordered the sugar.

A rummage through my stash turned up a set of pieced borders that had never made it onto a quilt. There were my fabrics, all color-coordinated! I drew some very simple appliqué motifs that would fit on the cards and printed them out in reverse for fusible appliqué.

I wasn’t sure whether I needed to use regular-weight or heavy-duty fusible for this, so I started with the regular. Worked fine. My favorite is Soft Fuse; your mileage may vary.

For fusing on paper, I didn’t bother with cutting out the interior of each motif (although that does make it easier to get the paper backing off) and I didn’t worry about precise placement either. I just eyeballed it, and used a dry iron throughout.

cards.gifHow simple, yet cute. A creative, crafty, handmade gift.

back.gifI even signed the back of each card. The relatives like that.

package.gifI slipped four with matching envelopes into some flat cellophane bags that I had had kicking around forever, and voila! Ready to put in with the holiday card, shipping cost an extra Nutcracker stamp.

When we were kids we used to ask my Scottish grandmother, “Grandma, what do you want for Christmas?” Or, “What do you want for your birthday?” She just would shrug and reply in her thick brogue, “I don’t need all that I’ve got.” Really, most of the people on my gift list have all that they need and want, for that matter. I think they really appreciate receiving something original and unique, even if it’s just a little something.

Now admittedly this isn’t going to fly for the teenaged nephews, but I think it’ll work for just about everybody else on my list. What’s your creative, crafty solution?

Until next time,
By Kay Mackenzie


One Response to “What I’m giving this year”

  1. Karen on December 10th, 2008 7:38 am

    What a wonderful gift!