The holidays are always a great time to gather together and make music. There’s just something about music that warms the soul and lightens the spirit. So sing, dance, be merry and make something for that special musical person in your life this holiday season!

Today’s Guest Curator: Emily Flippin Maruna

Emily Flippin Maruna lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and two little girls. She enjoys sewing, reading, making music, baking, party planning, teaching and bringing stylish design to everything she does. You can find her at The Handmade Experiment.

Look for her designs and creative works under the label Sew Flippin Cool.

From Emily: I’m so happy to be getting a chance to share some of the wonderful tutorials that I’ve found. Making handmade gifts is something that always makes me happy, especially around the holidays. It’s usually cheaper, more creative and a heck of a lot more fun than fighting the masses at the mall. I hope this list gives you some inspiration and joy. I’m sure feeling inspired after making it and my Must Make list is growing by the minute!

My Dad is a piano player, my husband plays bass guitar, my daughters trumpet and piano, and I play guitar and drums. You could say I know a thing or two about what a musician might want for the holidays. And I’m betting you know at least a few musicians too. If not, you at least know someone with an appreciation for rock, classical, country or soul. How could you not? Music makes the world go round.

I hope you find this list as inspiring as I do. May your holidays be full of peace, joy and music. Lots of music!

Make It


Quilted Ukulele Case
Don’t you want to sew one of these adorable Quilted Ukulele Carrying Cases from Mommy by Day Crafter by Night?! We love the fabric Ashley used!


Guitar Strap
You can never have too many accessories! The vintage flour sack patches that Ashlee from My So Called Crafty Life used in her Guitar Strap are so cool; we love all of the bright colors!


Piano Bench Cushion
Any pianist would love this comfy looking Piano Bench Cushion from Just A Slice of Life in Perfect’s Kathy Green!


Sheet Music Candle
This Sheet Music Candle by Misty of Cameo Events for Apple Brides would make a great hostess, holiday wedding or office party gift. They really are special!


Boombox Pillow
I’m Feeling Crafty’s Boombox Pillow is such a great “out-of-the-box” gift, and will look awesome on any music lover’s bed.


Lined Canvas Tote
Depending on the fabric you choose, this Lined Canvas Tote from The Inspired Wren would be a wonderful gift for any friend or family member who takes music lessons. A couple of lesson books, a book to read while they wait and a healthy snack would all fit nicely in this handy bag. Look for fabric with music notes or piano keys on it for an extra fun touch!


T-Shirt Rag Quilt
Jera from Quilting in the Rain turned old punk rock t-shirts into a T-Shirt Rag Quilt! If you’ve got a rock tee collector in your midst, this just might be the perfect gift this year. Make one for the new baby out of Dad’s old holey tees or even better, combine your t-shirt collections and make a quilt for the master bedroom!


Chevron Studded Jacket
Emily writes, “Man, I can still remember Christmas my sophomore year of high school when my Dad got me a black leather motorcycle jacket. I was SO excited! My boyfriend at the time came over and we immediately began distressing it by running over it with his car. Ha! I’m surprised my parents didn’t kill me. Definitely one of the best Christmases of my youth! I wish I’d had Studs and Pearls’ Chevron Studded Jacket tutorial back then! I think this would be a great project to do as a gift for your boy/girl friend. Rock ‘n Roll!”


Cable Cozy
What a great idea for all of those cords and cables! liveit.loveit.makeit.’s awesome Cable Cozy is a tidy organizing solution. No more broken cables due to bending and twisting!


Vinyl Record Book
For lyric writing, playlists or ticket scrapbooking, Homemade Ginger has a great Record Book that reuses old vinyl. Go to a resale shop and pick up some crazy records for cheap, or use ones the kids have scratched up and are no longer playable. Look for colored vinyl or interesting record art to really inspire. Maybe you could make a bookmark out of an old 45 adapter?!


Lace Tambourine
Erica from Honestlywtf made a bunch of these lovely Lace Tambourine as wedding favors, but we think they would also be a great gift for a teenage/twenty-something girl, a young kid or even as holiday decorations. Having a caroling party? These would make a nice party favor!

Related tutorials you might enjoy: Gifts for Music Lovers, Summer Reading Library Book Bag (Perfect for music too!)

Mix It


Natural Patchouli + Fir Homemade Hand Cream Recipe
If you have a friend who plays a string instrument they’re going to love this thoughtful gift. Using all natural ingredients, Rebecca from Soap Deli News Blog has come up with a recipe for those shredded fingers. Make a big batch of Natural Patchouli + Fir Homemade Hand Cream, scoop it into jam jars, stick a cool label on it and you can check a bunch of names off your holiday gift giving list!

Print It


Free Lyric Printable
lostbumblebee has taken a line from a favorite song and turned it into this nifty Free Lyric Printable. Framed or just rolled up with a fun ribbon, this could be a really creative, personal gift to give to someone you know who feels the same way. Even if you’re not an Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes fan, lostbumblebee has lots of free printables so pick your favorite! Just be sure to read her printing instructions if you have any questions.

Win It

Comment on today’s post for a chance to win one of these prizes!
Tip: If you’re hoping to win a prize that notes “US Winners Only,” include your state in your name (i.e. Beth in WA) so we can confirm residence and avoid any disappointment on your end. Shipping range is determined by the generous publishing companies that contribute prizes.

Here’s a link to all of our prizes for WEEK TWO!

Here Comes Winter: Quilted Projects to Warm Your Home
(US + Canada shipping, eBooks to international winners.)

Author: Jeanne Large, Shelley Wicks
Publisher: Martingale

Inspired by the frosty winters of Saskatchewan, Jeanne Large and Shelley Wicks are back with more of the whimsical designs that have enchanted quilters around the world. This cheery collection is packed like Santa’s sleigh with 19 festive projects.

  • Make your home cozy all winter with decorative projects ranging in size and shape from pillows and banners to wall hangings, table runners, and lap quilts.
  • Find lots of options for showcasing fun wintertime motifs including Christmas trees, lights, reindeer, snowmen, and a snowflake or two.
  • Enjoy the simple piecing, charming chunky appliqué, and earthy color palette that Jeanne and Shelley are known for.

Best of Stitch: Beautiful Bedrooms
(US-only shipping, no P.O. boxes.)

Author: From the Editors of Stitch Magazine
Publisher: Interweave/F+W

Stitch readers can’t get enough of pillows and other home décor accessories. Perhaps it’s because home décor items are among the most accessible of sewing projects: quick to make, no fitting required and fun to show off. And what better place to use and showcase these items than where you lay your head? Best of Stitch: Beautiful Bedrooms will bring together a colorful, sensory feast of favorite and fresh projects that are easy on the eye and just a little bit sultry. Readers will learn new skills and find creative ways to make their sleeping quarters a showplace for handmade items. The book will include 5 new and 15 repurposed magazine projects as well as sidebars and tip boxes on specific techniques that are used in the projects, offering tips and troubleshooting advice for construction, hand stitching, working with fabrics and embellishing. A “Sewing Basics” reference section at the back of the book covers sewing skills necessary for creating all projects.

Handcrafted Christmas
(US-only shipping.)

Author: Susan Waggoner
Publisher: STC Craft

Fans of nostalgia can craft their way through the holiday season with this newest volume by popular Christmas author Susan Waggoner. The 40 easy projects range from charming punched-tin votive holders, to Russian teacakes for holiday parties, to your very own edible gingerbread house (complete with miniature snowmen on the front lawn). Peppered with engaging facts about the holidays gone by, this is the perfect book for crafters who long for that vintage holiday look.

Stitch It Simple
(US + Canada shipping.)

Author: Beth Sheard
Publisher: Taunton Press

Instant gratification! These 25 stylish projects are aimed at novice stitchers and crafters, who find the gorgeous range of quilting fabrics inspiring, but are looking for easier, smaller scale projects. Best of all, they make up fast and beautifully. Simply explained with no-fuss sewing instructions, these are projects you’ll really enjoy making!

The Little Spark: 30 Ways to Ignite Your Creativity
(US-only shipping, eBooks to international winners.)

Author: Carrie Bloomston
Publisher: C&T Publishing

30 ways to cultivate a creative life and fill your days with a passion for living. You were born with a creative spark inside. Do you look at yourself now and wonder if the spark has gone out? Ignite that inner fire with the 30 engaging exercises, fun activities, inspirational images, and motivating ideas in this book. Learn what your Little Spark of creative passion looks like, how to capture it, and how to make room for it in your life. Read the book cover-to-cover and use it as a month-long creative road map or just dip into the exercises as your time and inclination allow. Either way, you will change your life.

  • Light your inner fire with 30 “sparks”: exercises, activities, and lessons that help you discover and nurture your creative passions.
  • Live a more creative life, whether or not you consider yourself an artist.
  • Do one spark every day, week, or whenever the spirit moves you.
  • Find the gifts that come from doing what you really love – joy, connection, meaning, and contentment.

Sewing Deal of the Day

Take advantage of 20% of all in-stock precuts and bundles at Pink Castle Fabrics with the code: PINKCASTLEPRECUT20 !

Don’t miss our Handmade Holidays photo pool, and check out our 2013 Handmade Holidays list for more fun, creative ideas.

Other ideas from our 8th Annual Handmade Holidays series:

We respect the copyright of all crafters. All photos are used with permission from the artist.