These Handmade Holidays ideas were compiled with the beginning sewist in mind. Each of these projects lends itself to sewing success, whether you’ve sewn for months or years. Have fun!

Today’s Guest Curator: Lynne Woods of Stitch Adventures
From Lynne: I am a sewer, quilter, knitter, weaver, spinner and textile lover. I travel everywhere to attend any kind of craft class I can– learning new techniques, old techniques and new ways of doing what I already know how to do.

I love to teach sewing to beginning students, and my blog features easy projects and detailed instructions for beginning sewists. For example, if you don’t yet feel comfortable with a sewing machine, how to read a pattern, or how to make an apron, I’ve got a post for that!

Make It


Upcycled Tote Bags
These Upcycled Tote Bags from Vicky Myers Creations include a lining, incorporating details from old clothing to make the bag special.


Necktie Zip Pouch
Necktie Zip Pouches from the Polka Dot Chair are easy and a nice gift idea for the men in your life. This is also a fun way to learn to include zippers in your sewing!


Stay-Put Scarf
This Stay-Put Scarf from Make It Handmade has a large buttonhole to put one end through, keeping the scarf in place. You can use a variety of fabrics, from knits or sheers to flannels and light woolens.


How to Make a Table Runner
Learn How to Make a Table Runner with Adventures of a DIY Mom!


Fabric Kite
Made by Marzipan shows you how to make a cool, Fabric Kite. It’s a unique, “wow” gift for kids and playful adults alike.


Microwave Potato Sack
It’s easy to sew and give a full set of Microwave Potato Sack with this tutorial at GYTC Designs.


Origami Drawstring Pouch
Harujion Design shows you how to make variations on this sweet and easy Origami Drawstring Pouch.


Hexie Bookmark
Ready to try some paper piecing?! Anjeanette K. will guide you through the process with this Hexie Bookmark. You can even add a favorite book to the gift!


Cage Comforters
Take care of furry friends with Cage Comforters from Sew Can She. (She even makes and gives these to her local shelter!)


Pillowcase Pattern with Pocket
The pocket is an extra-fun feature in this Pillowcase Pattern from Merriment.


Felt Coaster/Pincushion
This cute design from Tea Rose Home can either be a Felt Coaster or Pincushion!

Related tutorials you might enjoy: Check out our great selection of Beginner Sewing Projects!

Mix It


Oreo and Mint M&M Bark
Make a bunch of Oreo and Mint M&M Bark from The Girl Creative for neighbors, teachers and more. Just be sure to make extra for your family too!

Print It


Pac-Man Shirt Stencil
These t-shirts can even be a new-sew project with the Pac-Man Shirt Stencil from Minted Strawberry. (This project can work as a fairly subtle t-shirt “set” for couples!)

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.

Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples: Motifs
(US-only shipping, no P.O. boxes.)

Author: From the Editors of Stitch Magazine
Publisher: Interweave

More and more sewists and quilters are adding embroidered details to their work. While there are a bevy of embroidery stitch dictionaries currently available, this book goes beyond basic embroidery stitches to full-fashioned designs. A collection of 123 embroidered motifs that incorporate beads, this book allows readers to create designs that range from beautiful to whimsical.

Motifs vary in range from elegantly simple single motifs, to complex all-over patterns, to 3-dimensional designs. Along with step-by-step instructions are numerous examples of how to use and place the motifs on hems, pockets, cuffs, collars and handbags; or as home décor trim on pillows, curtains or lampshades. Patterns emphasize beaded edgings and trims, as opposed to heavy, solid beaded fabric motifs found in other beaded embroidery books.

Nap and Nod: 12 Adorable Baby Quilts
(US + Canada shipping, eBooks to international winners.)

Author: Myra Harder
Publisher: Martingale

Discover an irresistible collection of 12 quilts for Baby from talented designer Myra Harder. With these fast and fun designs, you can create the perfect quilt for a special little someone.

  • Learn techniques such as easy plush appliqué, curved seams and monogrammed lettering.
  • Choose from a wide variety of styles and showcase a delightful array of fabrics.
  • Create baby quilts that are so appealing, they can be used for wall hangings as well as for cuddling.

Sewing For a Royal Baby
(US-only shipping, no P.O. boxes.)

Author: Sew Beautiful Magazine
Publisher: Interweave/F+W

Sewing for a Royal Baby will let new mothers and grandmothers create a royal wardrobe for their new little one using the complete patterns and instructions provided with the book. These aren’t just any children’s garments, but elegant designs featuring heirloom sewing techniques. Some, like the Royal Christening Gown or a suit worn by a young Prince William, are inspired by actual royal attire, while others have been selected from past issues of Sew Beautiful magazine for their majestic style.

From bonnets and booties to breathtaking christening gowns and sweet toddler looks, Sewing for the Royal Baby lets the sewists create a wardrobe fit for a little prince or princess using a variety of machine and heirloom sewing techniques.

Adventures in Yarn Farming
(US-only shipping.)

Author: Barbara Parry
Publisher: Roost Books

Barbara Parry’s Springdelle Farm revolves around the sheep, llamas, and goats that contribute to her signature farm yarns. Follow Barbara through a year on the farm—from lambing and caring for her flock to shearing and preparing fiber for yarn—and get an insider’s view of life on a fiber farm, all told through the eyes of a veteran shepherdess and textile artisan. Along the way, discover techniques for spinning and dyeing natural fibers and patterns from top knitwear designers.

The Handmade Marketplace, 2nd Edition
(US-only shipping.)

Author: Kari Chapin Nixon
Publisher: Storey Publishing

Since its original publication in 2010, Kari Chapin’s The Handmade Marketplace has inspired thousands of crafters around the world to find the courage and know-how they need to make money — and even to make a full-time living — from doing what they love best. Now, this best-selling guide has been completely revised and updated to include solid information on the latest on-line and social media opportunities for sales and marketing, as well as fresh advice and invaluable tips from successful crafters and artists. With Kari Chapin at your side, you can live a more creative life and enjoy a lucrative career at the same time.

Novel Living: Collecting, Decorating, and Crafting with Books
(US-only shipping.)

Author: Lisa Occhipinti
Publisher: STC Craft

In this digital age, the fate of physical books remains in question. Even the concept of curling up with a good book conjures new images. But there remains a sensory thrill to physical books—to seeing and feeling them, to turning their pages—that makes many of us value them even more as digital reading grows in popularity. In Novel Living, artist Lisa Occhipinti celebrates her love for physical books by presenting us with her unique ideas for collecting and displaying them, for conserving and preserving them, and for crafting with them. Guided by Occhipinti’s artful eye, you’ll be inspired to build and display collections based on your personal passions and to use books for crafting, either by deconstructing or by copying favorite elements. Amazingly, most of the projects—ranging from easy shelving to a headboard constructed of book spines to napkins composed of scans of favorite text passages from books—require no special skills or supplies.

Sewing Deal of the Day

Sew Modern
Get 20% off all regularly priced fabric yardage with code SMS20 at SewModern.com.

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.