12.19.2009

A Handmade Christmas


l.i.c., new york

About one week before we cracked open our advent calendar, I took the handmade pledge, agreeing to give only hand made goods for gifts this holiday. Since I come from a long line of creatives, I tried to impose a handmade holiday on the whole fam for our annual gift exchange, and sent them rallying email encouraging them to break out their band saws and thread their bobbin for good ole’ fashioned Christmas giving without the help of Amazon.

“But why?” asked the boys {brother, husband, father}.

“Because it’s good to cultivate our crafts, and support local artisans.” {me}

“So, I have to make something?”{brother}

“You can buy something handmade from an artisan, or make something yourself!”

“Do messes count?” {brother-in-law}

No, messes don’t count, though I can assure you I’ve made a lot of messes while creating my little bundle of holiday gifts for the ones we love.

My sewing machine broke within 24-hours of making the pledge {retribution for imposition of my beliefs?}, and since my “craft room” occupies the tiny precious real estate that once held spare socks, most of my handmade gifts come from the kitchen, and speak my love in faint whispers rather than boisterous bear hugs.

The fringe benefit of handmade holiday gifts from the kitchen, of course, is lots of beaters and batter bowls to lick, and the occasional double batch of your best that lands in your belly. And, its the oldest recession-friendly holiday trick in the book, made glamorous by a gaggle of gorgeous gift-wrapping designers {like the flourish collection} and the suddenly chic tone of recycled {formerly known as regifted} gift wrap, paper bags and grograin ribbon, which spiffs up mightly nicely with a swift hot iron.

If you’ve got empty jars, pretty papers, stickers and ribbons at home {and I suspect you do}, you’re half way there. As for the actual gift, think of your delish signature dish, the one everyone raves about, and see if you can make it giftable. Wrap it up with in all your pretty notions and prepare to tuck yourself deep into the heart or hungry belly of someone you love.

Stay tuned, 24-hours of last-minute holiday goodies from my kitchen and garden are on their way to you. Hey, I have to occupy myself somehow while A. hides out in his workshop crafting something for my sis.

3 comments:

Anjee said...

Cope my mom was inspired to enter the kitchen and make in-laws some tasty treats...raisin, cashew, chocolate drops to be percise. Poor thing didn't realize my father in law is diabetic. I told her afterwards...and she said, "Chocolate has no sugar..." I think she failed to remember she added to cans of condensed milk!!!

Heather said...

I love ALL of your ideas, and I'm sitting here wishing I had read this before the holidays. There is always next year, and a whole year in between to plan for it:)

~Sarah said...

I'm so excited, the beautiful Flourish Collection is offering huge sales before they unveil their new line. Check out their Winter Clearance Sale, discounts up to 75% and free shipping on orders over $40! Woohoo! Stocking up for all my sweet giveaways.

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New York City, United States
Sarah Copeland is a food and lifestyle expert, and the author of Feast: Generous Vegetarian Meals for Any Eater and Every Appetite, and The Newlywed Cookbook. She is the Food Director at Real Simple magazine, and has appeared in numerous national publications including Saveur, Health, Fitness, Shape, Martha Stewart Living and Food & Wine magazines. As a passionate gardener, Sarah's Edible Living philosophy aims to inspire good living through growing, cooking and enjoying delicious, irresistible whole foods. She thrives on homegrown veggies, stinky cheese and chocolate cake. Sarah lives in New York with her husband and their young daughter.