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Five Fashionably Crafty Gifts + Five Bonus Gift Ideas

It's the most wasteful time of the year! Okay that was a very negative way to start off. Don't get me wrong, I really do enjoy Christmas, and I especially enjoy being gifted items that I have been wistfully yearning over for months, which I don't consider to be unnecessary at all. But even though consuming things we actually need is a little more justified, you have to admit that a lot more consumption than necessary takes place around the holidays. However, just like every Hallmark Christmas movie insists, we don't need to consume to show our loved ones that we appreciate them.

As a self-proclaimed fashion girl (I did go into financial ruin for fashion school so I think I deserve that "title") I do love a gift that I can wear. And while fashion-related gifts are usually pretty consumption-y there are other options, for example, DIY! Crafting has been BOOMING in popularity since the start of pandemic considering people have more time on their hands to get around to projects they've been meaning to do (you should see the line at Michael's), and because of that, handmade items are more fashionable than ever. As an avid craftionista myself, I come to you this holiday season with five very wearable gifts for you to have fun making for the fashion girl in your life! Oh AND five more bonus gift ideas that are low-impact on the environment, and high-impact on the heart <3

Embroidered Tee

First up we have a gift that is a lower skill level, but does require some tools, an embroidered tee shirt! This gift requires an embroidery hoop (can be bought second hand, but they are pretty low impact), some embroidery thread, a needle, and a tee of course. As far as the tee goes you can go sustainable and hand make it (hard), buy from a sustainable brand, or if the person you are gifting it to isn't weird about it, get one second hand. After your tools are acquired, get personal creating a custom design for your loved one! It could be an embroidery of their favourite food, and inside joke between the two of you, or even their name! The possibilities are endless and really allow you to show how well you know them.

Tee by Read Receipts

Mask & Custom Chain

While this gift may be a reminder of the horrors of 2020, it's also something they can actually use every day, which is something I always take into account when giving gifts. After all, if it's in use then it's not wasteful. While mask wearing has slowly become a very necessary part of everyday life, not everyone has gotten around to getting cute masks that they actually like, which is a shame! As masks are pretty easy to make, and free patterns for masks are allllllll over the internet, make your loved one a cute custom mask in a textile of their style to show them that you care about their health. Then, to really make it special, add on a little embroidered initial (à la gift idea # 1), as well as a custom chain! I got into mask chains a few weeks ago and have been absolutely thrilled with mine since as it's such a convenient and cool fashion accessory. Literally all you have to do is put some beads on a string, and maybe even letters to spell their name (that's my personal favourite look) with some latches on the end and you've got a very handy, trendy and personal gift.

Crochet Top

Crochet has made a comeback in a big way this year what with Harry Styles' JW Anderson cardigan making waves on TikTok, and crochet pieces appearing in a variety of cool collections. But this 70s resurgence is actually not as hard to make as it looks, plus it's a very soothing project. Try your hand at a simple crochet top for your loved one this holiday season, and design your very own piece in their favourite colours. And if you're really feeling frisky and up for a challenge, an entire patchwork crochet sweater or cardigan could be the gift of someone's dreams!!! But don't overestimate your ability this holiday season, and make sure to have fun with it. This project is certainly a bit more time-consuming, but anything can be done with determination and holiday spirit.

Hand Painted Tote

Another gift that requires some (but minimal, I swear!) sewing skills, but a hand-painted tote is an incredibly personal gift option. Totes are quite easy to sew and don't even require a pattern (but here's a tutorial), that can be made from any sustainable cottons or canvas that you can find deadstock or second hand. Once your tote is assembled, get inspired with something they love, and create a masterpiece with a little acrylic paint. Personally, I am very inspired by Staud's hand-painted purse pet portraits (a very sweet gesture to your animal-loving giftee), but the world is your oyster, so consider every little thing that your gift receiver loves, even if it's oysters!

(Tote by Em Redfearn)

BIG Ruffle Collar

BIG lacy collars are the absolute LOOK of the season and nobody can tell me otherwise. A fun part about them is they're so easy to make as an individual piece that can be worn with any dress, top, or sweater to jazz up the look. While this takes a teeny bit of sewing skills (not much more than cutting and hemming, I promise), consider making your fashion girl a detachable mega collar from some second hand lace fabric. All you need is a thrifted table cloth or curtain with a fun statement edge, a free pattern which you can find online, and a little patience, and voila, you've given your giftee one of the most coveted and versatile scandi-girl pieces.

While fashion is our main focal point here at BADLANDS, we think that everyone on your wishlist should receive a low-impact gift. Here are five additional gift ideas that aren't clothing or accessories, but are sustainable and sure to stun:

Cookie Mix

I once received this in a secret Santa gift exchange. Creating a mix of dry ingredients of your own cookie recipe is very tender, and a fun way to give your giftee an excuse to get in the kitchen and make something fresh. Who doesn't love homemade cookies?

Painted Vintage Ceramics

Some people consider giving pre-loved items as gifts uncouth, but for us vintage lovers, a solid piece of vintage home decor is pure gold. Pick up a plain ceramic at your local thrift store and add some custom designs with a little paint to really make it personal.

Knit Blanket

Knitting is HARD. Knitting a square is less hard. Everyone likes to be cozy, so consider knitting your chilly friend or family member a comfy blanket this holiday season to keep them warm all winter long. Plus a blanket makes great decor as a living room throw.

Latch Hook Rug

Anyone who knows me know I am currently latch hook obsessed, but I would actually assert that all of Instagram is latch hook obsessed. Latch hook rugs make great wall decor or floor decor, and they're also so easy that literal children can make them (seriously, I first got into it at like 7 years old).

An Art Class

Millennials don't like ~things~ they like ~experiences~. That's baby boomer as hell but I also tend to agree. Get your loved one a pass to an art class whether it be painting, beading, ceramics, dance, whatever tickles their fancy! It's a fun way to get into a new hobby.

Happy gifting this season to all and to all a good night! May you not get too bummed out by the over-consumption of the holiday season.

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