Welcome back for the eighth day of our 10th Annual Handmade Holidays series! Short on time this Holiday season? Nancy Zieman put together a list of Holiday projects that are super quick to sew! Don’t forget to enter the giveaway at the end too!

Nancy has also contributed Wall Pocket Organizers, Fabric Bins, and a tutorial on sewing French seams.

Today’s Guest Curator:
Nancy Zieman

From Nancy:
Nancy Zieman—author, designer, businesswomen, TV producer, blogger and national sewing authority—is the host of the popular show Sewing With Nancy®, which appears exclusively on public television stations across the United States and Canada.

Nancy has written numerous how-to sewing and quilting books, and released her autobiography, Seams Unlikely, in 2013. Nancy is the National Spokesperson for Baby Lock sewing machines and Nancy’s Notions®. She designs patterns for the New York-based McCall Pattern Company, designs sewing and quilting products for Clover Needlecraft, Inc., designs fabric collections with Riley Blake Designs, and also writes an interactive blog.

Nancy lives in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, with her husband, Richard. The couple has two children and two grandchildren.

You can watch Sewing With Nancy® online at nancyzieman.com and visit Nancy at nancyzieman.com/blog.

In as little as one or two evenings, you can stitch a Christmas project that will compliment your festive decor or be the perfect heartfelt gift for someone special. Gather fabrics from your stash, grab a new collection of fat quarter cuts, or start with readymade linen napkins! The sewing is fast; the end results are WOW!

Make It


Festive Tree Skirt
With a small investment of time, you can create a Christmas Tree Skirt that will showcase the center of your holiday decorations. Choose fat quarter cuts or use fabric from your stash to create the wedge shapes. The sewing is streamlined; the end result a boutique-style decoration.


Festive Napkins
I love to set a special dinner table with cloth napkins. Adding a simple, and I stress the word simple, design makes it even more festive. That’s when the idea dawned on me to use the Circles Sew Simple Tool to add the traditional ornament shape to napkins.


Pot Holders
Make these pot holders for your big holiday meal or as a unique hostess gift. The project can be created in minutes using a few simple tricks.


Christmas Tree Napkins
With two coordinating fabric prints and a little serging savvy, you’re on your way to creating functional as well as festive napkins. Give a set as a gift, or make a set for your holiday entertaining. It’s a fun project. Here’s a preview of the serging process.


Lumberjack Pillow
I call this recycled-garment project my Lumberjack Pillow, although you could make this from a loved ones’ shirt and sew a memory pillow as well. The technique used to fit the shirt around the pillow form allows for many shirts and pillow sizes to be created easily.


Wrapped Pillows for All Seasons
You can easily change your home décor with a little fabric and a great embroidery design with this pillow wrap project. Embroider a seasonal motif on fabric or choose an elegant fabric design to complement your décor.

Related tutorials you might enjoy: Christmas Tree Towel and a Reindeer, Gift Bag and Stocking set.

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 shipping 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 companies that contribute prizes.

Crochet Therapy: The Soothing Art of Savoring Each Stitch

Author: Betsan Corkhill
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams

Crochet Therapy will inspire you to pick up a hook and take some time out of your hectic day to dive into colorful whorls of yarn. Focus, relax, and become more mindful by making more than 20 simple and colorful projects comprised of crocheted mandalas, soothing circles, and other beautiful motifs. Each repetitive pattern helps you engage with your materials, increase your well-being, and unlock your creativity. Mindfulness exercises accompany the patterns and complement the therapeutic effect of crocheting for achieving calm, stress relief, and becoming “effortlessly present” in your craft. Clear instructions and a host of finishing techniques round out the pretty projects and crocheted bounty.

Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way (Guided Sketchbook): Sketch, Paint, and Doodle Through One Creative Year

Author: Jennifer Orkin Lewis
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams

To conquer the intimidating prospect of filling 365 blank pages, Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way is divided into monthly themes, with undated daily prompts that suggest what to draw each day. You can work through the journal from front to back, or jump around and draw whatever appeals to you at the time. Monthly themes include: a month of nature, a month of your favorite things, a month of characters, a month of print and patterns.

Jennifer Orkin Lewis (aka @augustwren) encourages experimentation with a one-page tutorial at the beginning of each month that outlines accessible ways to draw with different materials, such as ballpoint pens, colored pencils, paint, and collage. Coupled with sections of varying paper types, there is an unlimited canvas available to flourish artistically; brown craft paper pairs well with black ink and white pencil, black paper is great for white and metallic gel pens, and heavy white paper is included for painting.

The journal is not only useful as a stress-reliever and as a mode of personal exploration, but also as a way of changing visual thinking. And when completed, it will serve as a reflection of its owner.

With prompts, tutorials, and unique packaging, Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way is a must-have for those looking to sketch and doodle their way out of an inspirational rut.

Check out our 2015 Handmade Holidays list for more fun, creative ideas.

Here are our 2016 themes:

November 7: Gifts for Babies and New Parents
November 6: Gifts for Geeks
November 5: Stitched and Sewn Stocking Stuffers
November 4: Gifts for Playtime
November 3: Gifts for Four-Legged Friends
November 2: Gifts for Travelers
November 1: Gifts for Students

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