Monday, 21 December 2009

Handmade Christmas...Button Earrings, Perler Bead Coasters, Origami Fairy Lights...

This year I've tried to hand make a lot of my presents, especially taking into consideration being more eco friendly. I'm a bit wary of giving homemade stuff, I'm the only one in my family who does it, so I generally supplement the homemade present with something bought as well, which kind of contradicts my point of handmaking something to cut down on consumption...hopefully by next year I'll have convinced my family to tone down the buying presents thing so I don't feel so guilty when they give me something shiny and expensive and I give them something wonky and weird and made with something from the depths of the drawer! Or even better - convince them to make stuff from the tat in the depths of their drawers too! Here are some of the things I've been busy with...

Button earrings - I had the buttons (from my Grandma's button tin), earring backs and glue already so it was just a case of putting them to good use!

Perler Bead Coasters - I already had the perler beads and felt and glue I used to make these - I copied a pattern on the internet that I can't find anymore (my laptop's died and I've lost all my favorites!), but if you google 'perler bead mario mushroom' then examples come up that are easy to copy - These are for my brother, he likes computer games so I thought he could use them in his games room, that is if boys use coasters at all!?

I think the glue I used for both of these projects was definitely NOT environmentally friendly (judging by it's smell!) but I think it's best to use up what I already have then I'll have to do some research on eco glue!

I've made two sets of these fairy lights for two of my old roomates - LED plug in lights (no batteries and LEDs are more eco friendly) covered in origami paper lanterns - I used white computer paper and I had to buy the blue starry paper - but it's 100% recycled gift wrap from Oxfam, so I think that's OK! I started making the lanterns from magazine pages but only managed to find 2 magazines in my house and they didn't have nice pictures - at least my magazine diet is working!!!
I still have a bit of sewing stuff to finish off tomorrow, I can't believe I've left it so late! Is anyone else having a homemade gift meltdown!!?


  1. Well done, Sooz!!!
    You haven't to be guilty for making eco-presents! They are fantastic! And hand-made, so you made them with your heart! They will appreciate this and perhaps they will reflect on... surely next year they will start to give less expensive gifts! ;)
    Merry Christmas and a very happy beginning for the New Year! ;)

  2. I love your gifts especially those lanterns! I made all of my gifts this year except for my boys & nieces and nephews, they each got a few toys. My family all agreed to make stuff this (again, except for my boys) so I'm really excited to see what my brother & sister made! My husbands family isn't really into making stuff so I made theirs and am just going to be happy because I love the gifts I made!

    Merry Christmas!!

  3. WOW! These are great!

    Not so sure about the coasters for boys (not sure what they are lol) maybe he'll learn to appreciate them later on?

    I'm not happy with glue either, some definitely smells iffy.. So far I only know of flour-water glue to be sort of natural & eco, not sure about other options! Do tell if you find anything!!
    What about sewing the beads on, or such? (Or using wire for jewelry where possible?)

    Those LED lights look beautiful! & the buttons/earrings are really beautiful too!

    You've found some really creative ideas!!
    We don't do gifts in our house anymore (after some disasters when both sis and I got terrible things lol, I'm pretty thankful for this!) Except maybe for some small things like chocolate etc - I wish more zero waste chocolate existed, lol! :)

    Anyway, hope you had a good/survivable Christmas! :)

  4. Hi Danda, I hope you had a beautiful Christmas and happy new year too :)
    Thankyou, they did like thier presents, and I hope you're right and next year I get far less presents!

  5. Hey Julia, I hope you and your family had a lovely Chrismas and that everyone liked your eco-gifts (I'm sure they did as they looked fantastic!)
    I made well over 80 origami lantern things - I would only recommned it if you start a LONG time in advance!!!
    I hope next year my family decide to do more handmade, eco-friendly gifts, but like you I have some manlymale rellies who probably won't be convinced! What are we going to do with them!? :)

  6. Merry Christmas Layla! Hope it was lovely!
    Coasters are things to put under your drinks to stop making rings on the furniture! Thats why I thought my brother wouldn't use them! His girlfriend liked them though and is going to make him use them in their lounge!

    You're right about sewing and using wire and such for alternative methods of attaching stuff to other stuff - but sometimes you just need glue don't you!? I'm going to do some good research when the time comes and my smellyglue runs out, so I'll defiantely post about it here!

    Thank you for the compliments :) I think everyone liked them so thats the most important thing! I think my brother would be very sad if he didn't get any presents!! lol! But hopefully next year we'll be a lot more toned down and give a lot less.

    We managed to find some foil wrapped chocolate reindeer for 80p each in the local cheap supermarket - they even had a vegan one for me!! yey! and there's actaully a lot more awareness of recycleable/zero waste packaging from manufacturers here for christmas/easter chocolates (eg, just wrapped in foil or just in a cardboard box with no plastic) so it's getting a little better slowly - eventually it'll spread I hope and then it'll be zero waste chocolate for all!!! :)


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