Wednesday, December 03, 2008

advent season: day three, alternative present guide

Oh look, I did it again. Another year where I promised myself I'd be super creative and have all of my incredibly groundbreaking homemade goodies ready and wrapped by December 1st. Wildly overambitous, but with four weeks and three weekends left I like to think it's still possible to pull together some thoughtful presents, a mix of interesting delights found from the shelves of oxfam or worked on at home.

I always find those smug Martha Stewart-esque articles (especially the column written by danielle proud in the sunday times) relentlessly irritating. You know the type; they instruct you very vaguely how to whip up impossibly cool and naturally impossible presents in 10 minutes flat.

Giving is better than receiving (maybe..) when you can come up with some presents with a bit of personality, here are some of the
ideas I've had this year.

1. Screenprinted mugs

Never be a mug snob; there is plenty of dross out there, but your friends need a cool mug to drink their supersize doses of lemsip out of. Look through old photos and find a suitablly faded picture of you and your best friend aged 5 in crazy leggings and big grins for a bit of nostalgia. Or get their favourite film character printed on.

2. Make a Fanzine

This is really if you have a lot of time on your hands. I always wanted to do this, and cater each page to a subject I knew a relative loved. Whether they have a thing for Bob Dylan or Krispy Kremes, write silly poems and make collages dedicated to their favourite things.

3. Design their dream house

Whip out a ruler and a pencil, compass, graph paper, pop on a pair of glasses and pretend to be an architect
! Sketch a floor plan for your relative's dream house. Be outlandish. If they're a pro in the kitchen, add a dumb waiter, if they like animals, add a dolphin waterpark. Find some sparkly stickers and cut out items out of interior magazines to it ends up looking like a mishmash of coolness. Now frame it.

4. Fashion a mini hamper

Grab an old shoe box, and smother the outside of it with magazine cuttings. Pop a mix cd, a jar of pick and mix and whatever other little trinkets you can find along the way. If you're borderline obsessive compulsive and therefore everything must stick to a theme, then great...make sure everything in the box begins with the same letter as their name!

5. Second hand books.
If everyone buys their clothes vintage, then why not buy your presents second hand? Some people think it is stingy, but if you spend the afternoon looking around the charity shops, you can pick out some books with especially cool covers. Buy 3 or 4 (they're dirt cheap..) and tie then together with a piece of string or a belt ala 1920s schoolkids.

and last but not least. the faithful mix cd. stick on little joy, cut copy, psychdelic furs and go..


bohobum said...

I love these ideas! I've actually received the first & I treasure it. I use it for pencils cause it's to precious for coffee.
I've gotten & given the 5th gift also-but never belted-that would have so easily made it 10x more awesome.

Anonymous said...

i absolutely love vintage books a lot of time their much better than normal paperback and hardcover books. The house is all sorts of adorable

Fashion Tidbits said...

ABSOLUTELY FAB IDEAS! thanks so much

Meghan and Lana said...

LOVE the second hand books idea. I will definitely be doing that. I'm just soo excited for Christmassss

Mon Chér said...

Your Christmas-themed posts are quite possbily becoming the highlight of my day.
Your ideas are wonderful, my dear; and I am inspired <3

A. said...

these are some of the EXACT thoughts that have been running through my head (surprised?)

christmas gifts that are different & homemade but not in the typical way. something they will love, something you would love to get.

sigh, its really been difficult for me this year. ive only got three girls im buying for but they are the three most fabulous girls i know & therefore must have the most fabulous gifts.

you, included. i actually got a few little things while i was out tonight pour toi et your homemade xmas gift ;]

will be busy this weekend putting it together!

love xxxxx

Anonymous said...

great ideas! i think present are so much nicer when they are heartfelt!

Anonymous said...

Oh you can't beat a good hamper/care package



I think anyone would love to receive any of these presents! My favorites are the books said...

Love them all :)