Christmas is upon us. Will you be up late on Christmas Eve trying to knit or crochet more items than you could possibly complete in a month, let alone an evening? If so, you’re not alone. Many people have big ambitious plans to handmade all of their gifts for Christmas.
Then, as the day nears, crafting ends up causing stress. Crafting is an expressive art. It should be a joy. While it’s great to gift items to others, it’s not necessary to handcraft items for every single person that you know. Let’s consider some tips for narrowing down the Christmas To Do list to make some last-minute gifts do-able without forcing you to stay up all night stress crafting.
Start with the Project that Excites You the Most
What you’re doing here is prioritizing your holiday “to do” list. You can brainstorm a list of every project that you would ideally like to complete for each person. Then rank those projects in order, so that you can start by crafting with the one that’s most important to you. That way, if you don’t get to the others on the list, at least you did those that mattered most.
The number one spot on this prioritized list should be the project that excites you the most. Even if it’s for someone that you’re not as close to as others on the list, begin here. Here’s why:
- The holidays are stressful. Knitting and crochet are joyful and relaxing. Therefore, you should spend the holidays doing the projects that bring you personally the most joy.
- If a project is fun, you’re more likely to give time to it, which means that you’re more likely to complete this project than others that are on the list.
- Starting with a project that really excites you can also renew your energy for holiday crafting. Then you might be more excited to tackle the other projects on the list.
Prioritize Items that People with Really Love
The holidays are best when you are able to gift something to a person who really appreciates that gift. After all, when you take the time to make a crochet or knit item for someone, then they give it a once-over and you never see them wear or use it, the whole experience leaves a bad taste in your mouth. Therefore, you should go through your holiday to-do list with an eye towards those recipients who actually enjoy your handmade items. If your sister is always indifferent but your friend’s mom gets excited every time that you make something for her then buy a gift for sis this year and give your crafting energy to that motherly figure.
Reschedule Overwhelming Projects
Sometimes we plan to make a project for someone we know will appreciate it but then it gets overwhelming. Don’t guilt trip yourself for not getting a project done by Christmas. Instead, give yourself permission to reschedule those gifts to give at another time of year. For example, gift it for Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day or the recipient’s birthday this year. It will likely be your only big project then, so you can truly enjoy it. Your loved one will appreciate just as much, or even more since it won’t be lost in the hubbub of the holiday season.
Of course, you might feel uncomfortable turning up to the holiday tree empty-handed. You could give the person a small holiday gift. Alternatively, you could let them know with a card, letter, or conversation that you’re making them something special but it’s time-consuming and you want to give it the attention it deserves so they’ll be receiving it in the new year. Another fun option is to let the person know exactly what you want to make them and give them the holiday gift of letting them choose the project or yarn colors.
Mix In Some Instant Gratification Gifts
As you reduce the length of your holiday crafting to do list, you might discover that you have more time than you thought. Choose some of the projects on your list that work up quickly. Look for ten-minute, under-an-hour, or one-skein knit or crochet projects. These will give you that great feeling of making gifts by hand without the stress of larger projects.
You can also make some small motifs that you attach to blank cards. Then write a heartfelt message inside the card. This is a really personal item that can take the place of larger gift ideas on your list.
Take Care of Yourself this Holiday Season
Holiday crafting really should be fun. If you’re not feeling the fun this year, take the time to pause and ask yourself why. Re-work your holiday to-do list so that you can feel better about it. Putting yourself first in this way isn’t selfish. It’s an act of self-care that makes the gifts you do craft for others that much more meaningful.