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Homey Homemade Gifts

Aug 17, 2007
Homemade gifts are always great for family and friends because they're thoughtful. So on a cold winter day before Christmas, rally the kids and get them to create an Indian notepad, cookie tray or colorful shelf trimming paper.

Indian Note Pad

An Indian makes an interesting drawing, and a note pad makes a useful item, so they ought to make a very good project together.

Trace an Indian with a pencil on a piece of stiff cardboard. Make it from six to eight inches tall. Be sure to include feathers, and other things common to an Indian of early days. He might even be holding a bow and arrow. Color the picture with crayons or water colors. Now cut the Indian out.

For a pad, you can either make your own from blank slips of paper, or buy one at the store. Be sure the pad is shorter and narrower than the Indian. Poke two holes into the top of the pad. Attach the pad to the center of the Indian on the colored or painted side, by running string through the pad holes and through two holes in the center of the Indian. Tie it in back. Your Indian note pad is ready to serve you.

Hang it on the wall in the kitchen, above the telephone, or in your room.

Cookie Tray

What is more pleasant to look at than a tray full of homemade cookies? But of course the tray must first be made. Here is how you can make a tray that will serve cookies, cold drinks, or anything else that you wish to serve.

Cut out a piece of flat wood, nine by 12 inches in size. Plywood is excellent, though you may use any kind of wood you have about. Sandpaper it until smooth. For a border, nail pieces of rope all around the tray, about 1/2 inch in from the edges. Make two smooth blocks of wood, about one inch square and two inches long. Nail them at each end to serve as handles.

You may decorate your tray with pictures, or paint a design on it. A coat of varnish will give your finished tray an attractive appearance as well as protect it from wear

A homemade tray makes a good gift.

Shelf Trimming Paper

Here is home handcraft at its best. Every home has shelves. Here is an opportunity to add a touch of prettiness to them. You can decorate the shelves in your room or in the kitchen or anywhere else where it is needed.

If the shelves already have shelf paper on them, you can make your own designs on the overhanging borders. If there is no paper at all on them, you can make the entire shelf paper. To do this, simply measure the length and width of your shelf and cut your paper accordingly, allowing enough paper in the width for an overhanging border of a reasonable length, according to the height of the shelf. Usually, two or three inches is good.

You have your choice of several methods of adding decorations to the overhanging borders. A simple method would be to cut out colored pictures or designs from old magazines and paste them on. In this case, gather pictures that form a similar theme. For example, for a sea scene, you could clip pictures of boats, fishermen, fish and the seashore. For a forest scene, you could use trees, lakes and animals.

A good final touch would be to cut a wavy edge on the bottom of the border piece.
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