Christmas Gift Guide – Getting Down And Crafty


There are many among us who are keen on crafting, so young or old there is something to get you snipping, knitting, sewing, baking and much more this year…

9781409346463 (5)Crafty Dolls by Jane Bull

‘Simple steps to sew and knit adorable dolls’

As the tagline suggests, this book is crammed full of 30 different sewn and knitted dolls to create and love.

With complete patterns and simple, straightforward, illustrated step by step instructions, Jane Bulls takes the reader through how to make everything from fairy tale based dolls, to unique characters, super heroes, pocket dolls and all the accessories they could ever need, such as hats and bags! (There are even yarn dolls, which Erika tell us she used to make with her nana as a child).

Everything except the materials are included, templates, patterns and beautiful photographs!  A wonderful gift for any budding crafters, child or doll enthusiast!

Available from DK Books for £12.99


The SewistsThe Sewists by Josephine Perry

The Sewists is a fabulous book for the crafter, it takes a glimpse into the worlds of some of the top craft designers over an amazing 20 projects.

The projects range from jewellery to notebook binding, sewn greetings card to a constellation sweater, patchwork coaster to a bee applique cushion, it is packed with a fabulous array of techniques and expertise from people like the Felt Mistress Louise Evans and Sarai Mitnick of Colette Patterns.

The book has clear step by step instructions for each and every project and are illustrated with wonderful photos and hand drawn help!  The Sewists even comes with a CD that is full of all of the templates and patterns needed to complete every project.

Written by Josephine Perry who is a sewing workshop tutor based in London she is a regular teach at The Liberty Sewing School and Fringe.  Josephine has created a fantastic book for any age, level of experience or craft niche when it comes to sewing.  The perfect gift for any sewer is published by Laurence King for £14.95.

Baker Ross

Part of the fun of being a parent/carer in the run up to Christmas is getting the chance to sit down with the children and crafting some decorations to make your house feel that bit more festive. Baker Ross have made that a bit easier with their handy and brilliantly put together Christmas craft packs.

This Super Value Pack from Baker Ross (£12.99), containing all their best-selling Christmas Craft products, is a perfect way to keep those little ones entertained with a bit of festive crafty fun this festive season. With Crackers, Paper Chains, Magnets and 3D Foam Reindeers being just a few items in the bag, this bag will keep your little elves busy for hours and have your house looking  like a grotto before you know it.

This pack of 3 cute little Christmas Owl Decoration Sewing Kits (£3.75) and this pack of 5 ceramic Christmas decorations (£3.99), teamed with Brilliant Porcelain Paint Pens (£9.99), are perfect for those older children with a little more patience and a larger attention span.

They even have perfect little stocking fillers like badge making kits (£2.99) to keep them busy on the day.

These fun little festive crafts really do make the perfect, if not a little messy, family activity on one of those cold rainy days running up to the big day.

Vintage Knit jacketVintage Knit by Marine Malak with Geraldine Warner

It is very vogue to be vintage right now, but for years many have been fascinated with days gone by and the fashion of eras come before.  One issue with wanting to create your own vintage knits is that the patterns are very different to today’s, wool is different and sizes are of course also.

Vintage Knit by Marine Malak is a wonderful collection of knits and crochets from the 1930’s, 1940’s and 1950’s that have been ‘refashioned’ for the modern lady.  Each design has been carefully recreated into a contemporary pattern format, with a new more up to date design that is relevant to the fashions and styles of today.

The modern interpretations of the incredible vintage designs are well thought out and expertly executed in to patterns that are suitable for the intermediate – advanced knitter.  Complete with a summary of crochet and knitting equipment, terms and techniques, it contains everything except the wool and needles to get you going!

The vintage fashionista who has a craft streak will adore this book which is published by Laurence King and available for £17.95.

Edible Sweet Art

Does Santa always put gold chocolate coins in your little ones stockings? Well with the ChocolArt Coin Press by Tobar (£19.94), they can have them all year round! So if you have a chocolate lover or a secret pirate chum, they will love this awesome toy. It comes with enough foil to make 20 coins, but will only make 4 at a time so could take quite a while to do the lot. It also comes with chocolate flavoured chips but can be used with any type of chocolate chips, so you can just nip to the supermarket if you run out. This is for children age 6+ and will need some adult supervision but will make a lovely present for any chocolate lover.

painting-portraitsThe Essential Guide To Painting Portraits

Do you know a budding artist?  Someone who has always wanted to give it a go?  If your answer is yes to either those questions then this could be a brilliant stocking filler for them this year!

One of the most famous art critics, Brian Sewell, sits for three accomplished artists and finds out what secrets, tips and trips they have hidden in their wondrous brains that could help anyone learn to paint portraits!

  • John Ward CBE RA RWS RP – drawing with charcoal, pencil and white chalk.
  • Johnny Jonas – Grisaille, oil on board.
  • Michael Reynolds RBA RP – Tempera and oil on board.

Whether they are someone who has experience in painting or is completely new to giving it a try, this DVD is a great way to get started or learn a little more.

Available from Stitchcombe DVD for £14.99

Make Your Own Pony

Do you have a 6+ year old pony lover in your house this Christmas? This lovely little Make Your Own Pony kit (£4.99) from Tobar may be the answer to their ‘between presents and dinner’ Christmas dream. This cute little simple sewing kit containing pre-cut felt pieces, thread, yarns, buttons, ball lace, googly eyes, a needle and all the stuffing they need to make their very own patchwork pony, to keep and be proud of. This kit is completely for beginners and with simple instructions and child safe equipment it can be followed with and without adult supervision. It will be the pride and joy of their bedroom… until the following Christmas, when they ask for a more complicated one which you have to help with. Good luck with that.

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