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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Handmade, Homemade Frugal Holidays Gifts for Men, Men, Men MMMMMMMMen

Wow! From the comments on yesterdays post and the e-mails I received, most of you are already rockin & rollin on your gifting. AWESOME!!!!

The majority of the e-mails requested ideas for men. So, not to say this is all there is but its what I’ve come up with. PLEASE Link up if your posting ideas or completed gifts…if your afraid of a family spoiler send them to me & I’ll post them for you here. I’m all about sharing ideas and creativity!

Yesterday I spent about 2 hours listing all sorts of ideas & free links. This morning it’s lost in the bowels of my computer….and I can’t find it It’s frustrating as I was on a roll & had all these creative ideas……this is ( with my memory of a gnat) what I can remember…..& links for patterns or directions

Let me say handmade gifts for guys can be difficult. I mean pants shirt tie/uniform/work clothes….BORING! Not many want to make waves in the boring guy attire and actually wear the light up ties. If your guy is like mine they are pretty “no nonsense” in appearance. But depending on you sewing skills camp shirts, P.J. /lounge pants & Hoodies are generally safe. Flannels and fleeces are on sale with deep discounts making them affordable.

For the adventurous guy on the consider a back pack, rut sack or event tent! Free patterns here. Great way to repurpose denim, twill, heavy duck cloth or even camo!

For the grill master in the family(or one who thinks he is) Here is a free pattern that can be adjusted to ANY size. Have fun with it, what are his interests? If you just want to wing it with out a pattern….For the fisherman, use a shirt front for the bib area, pants front for the lower half & overlay black or green for “rubber boots” pockets (thinking of you Debby)…repurpose garments you have in the back of the closet or have thrifted. Carefully cut the sleeves & shirt front off, leaving the collar intact. Unbuttoned it can slip over the head as the neck strap. Separate a pair of shorts or pants on the side seams and lay on the “waist of the shirt.line up the edges and seam in place. Hem the sides and your good to go. I was laying in bed last night and thought of this…the possibilities are endless! Hawaiian camp shirts and shorts, tux shirt & black slacks…..use the shirt sleeves as hot pads….make it macho & he may wear it! Home made BBQ sauce to sweeten the pot! Use fabrics that you have on hand, denim or twill, even camo! How about a fish design or favorite team logo. Use the basic apron pattern but shorten for work mans apron/tool bag. Just make sure you have generous pockets!

As long as you have the sewing machine out,

How about a Shower wrap? My family all received these one year. Grab a towel (the nice thing is all the edges are done!) on sale or, dig in your stash. Back ? Ok,find center back (On a long edge of the towel), now take 6 inches of 1/2 to 1 inch elastic … mark your center…match that to your towel center..and pin in the center ( about 1/2inch from edge)….on one end, pull the elastic about 2 inches & firmly sew the end of your elastic. Do the same with the other end, when done remove the center pin. Your towel will have a gap that sags between. Fold the elastic edge down along the towel (wide enough to cover the elastic but not sew into the elastic) and sew the entire length of the towel. Stretch the elastic edge so it lays smooth for sewing. Careful not to catch the elastic. When done you should have a gathered section along the end. You’ll need about 6-8 inches of velcro or 2, 3-4 inc pieces. Wit the elastic on top, wrap the towel around your self or a handy person and judge how far the towel will reach. where your towel end touches is where you’ll stitch the hook part of the elastic. To the body of the towel is where you will place the soft loops. Do the same on the other end. Applique or decorate as you like!

For the Golfer in the family….Shoe bags. Nothing nastier than when they forget to clean the shoes before placing them in the shoe pocket on a golf bag. Lets fix that!

Golf shoe bags. Sewn, Made of flannel or cotton t shirt knit. Make sure you wash your fabrics so you do not have discoloration from the fabric to the shoes. Hand knit bags, with worsted weight, cast on 69, an easy knit 3 purl 3 rib,the appropriate length & kitchner or 3 needle bindoff to close. I recommend cottons or super wash wool as regular wool will felt if the shoes are wet & acrylic may scratch. Simple drawstring bags, one for each shoe to keep them from being scratched up & the club bag pocket clean. Nothing to big and bulky as they need to fit easily in the bag pocket. And, they can be tossed in the washer for easy care. My FIL will be receiving these!

Golf tee pockets that button/snap on the bag, knit, crocheted or sew. You can use a cosmetic bag as a pattern (but don’t tell him)!

Backgammom /Tic-tac toe board from fabric/quilted with wood disk or button markers. How about painting scrap wood with the checkerboard?

A “Stuff” container, most have a small pile of “stuff” they empty from their pockets at night…a small refinished/repainted wooden bowl will be handy to collect those items. Another idea is to use a small box; stationary, parts, child’s shoe box etc. Cover the entire box with small (less than an inch) irregular pieces of masking tape ( yes masking tape) top, bottom, inside & out. Cover the entire thing….then use wood stain or shoe polish and rub it down & watch it pick up the color. If using stain rub it off to shading of your choice & let dry 48 hours.

box & spider 005 This is the box Rachel or Aaron made Mr. Fix~It about 15 years ago. His “Leather Box”

Messenger/school/music bag from recycled jeans or unstained coveralls, carry bag for drum sticks~n music

Hats, scarves & mitts, socks, Reclaim yarn from thrifted sweaters or those you have. Great patterns here here here. About 10,000 free patterns on the web. Don’t forget the mail & UPS Delivery person!

Knit or, Felt a wool sweater to make a computer sleeve, it helps cushion with traveling & wool will not create static like acrylic.

Soap on a rope bag, knit or crochet, goats milk soap also

For those living in cold climates how about emergency/first aid/readiness kit with a warm blanket for the car.

Grocery/shopping bags man style! Knit or repurposed fabrics, here are 35 free patterns.

Seatbelt strap covers, made from fleece, or old stuffed animal you have laying around, add a layer inside for cushion & add velcro closures. Sewn, Crochet,

Beer can/bottle/mug cozies, knit or crocheted, can be felted How about using fabric scraps and even a quilted one? Patterns here, here, here, here

Ipod or mp3 holder patterns here .

Fire starters For those that love a fire, be it camping, fire pit or wood stove, Quick & easy. You probably already have everything you need. Instructions here…..you might want to read more while your there!

A simple quilt from shirting fabrics or even denim. Super warm but I would not want to launder it! What about a t-shirt quilt?

You might consider a home made cool book of family favorites

I wish I could remember the rest.

But forget the rules! Look at repurposing materials, a zippered garment bag can become a duffel bag or messenger bag. The zipper alone is worth $5.00-$10 , web belts can be used as straps, drawstring cords can be repurposed from shoelaces, old jackets & hoodies. Reclaim yarn from sweaters or afghans!

Look at items as “materials” not the garment or item it is!

OK, I’m done. My minds a bit fried right now. If you have other links to add send them! I’ll add to the list.


  1. Awesome links Katie! Most of my gifts are handmade this year as well. A true homemade, frugal Christmas is what we will be having and I can't wait! :)

  2. Thanks ladies! I love the information this blogging community shares.

  3. Great ideas! :o)

    Now... If only I were crafty.

  4. this is a really wonderful list that is sure to help me figure out what to make for my men this holiday season! You certainly have a great, informative blog here! I can't wait to see more. And, thank you for the felting link! :)

  5. this is a really wonderful list that is sure to help me figure out what to make for my men this holiday season! You certainly have a great, informative blog here! I can't wait to see more. And, thank you for the felting link! :)

  6. I'm going to send you pictures from what I finished tonight in a matter of minutes. Super easy but still qualifies as "homemade" uh, sort of. You'll see.


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