If you’re looking for a truly unique gift this Christmas, you’ve got to go handmade. Etsy is a great marketplace to find items that have been crafted by artisans and creatives so that’s where I’ve been shopping this year. Here are some festive gift ideas for all members of the family…
I mentioned in my Christmas tree decorating blog post last week that I commissioned ceramic artist Hannah Berridge to make some Christmas tree decorations for me. When I saw her cat decorations, I resist ordering two. I sent over photos of my cats Cookie and Muffin and Hannah immortalised them in ceramic! I love them sooo much and she’s captured their personalities perfectly.
But that’s not all Hannah makes. In fact, her Etsy shop Hannah Berridge Ceramics is packed full of ceramic designs, all of which can be personalised. Choose a mug for the coffee-lover in your life or a butter dish for toast fans. And if you’re going to buy festive flowers for your loved one, why not display them in a hand-painted jug?
When my husband bought me a zipper bag by Lovely Lydia for Christmas last year, I was hooked on her designs. Whether you need a travel bag for your toiletries, a make-up bag or a pouch for your glasses, her designs are hand-printed and beautifully lined.
Lovely Lydia also creates tea towels, cushions, aprons and so much more. I’ve already added more of her designs to my Christmas list this year too: these little Christmas carol zipper purses are so festive and would be great to use as a purse in the run-up to Christmas to keep you feeling festive while you shop.
Another Hannah has made it onto the list of my favourite Etsy shops, and this time it’s letterpress artist Hannah Farthing. You’ve probably read about her on my blog before because my home is decorated with no less than 4 of her unique art prints. I’ve got ‘good vibes’ and ‘look up at the stars’ in my home office, and ‘we are the dreamers of dreams’ in the living room. You can probably guess that I’m a fan!
In Hannah’ s Etsy shop you’ll find Christmas cards that have been printed on her Victorian press, along with beautifully designed letterpress prints. If you’re looking for stocking fillers, her lino printed notebooks are stunning (and a bargain at just £6!).
Here’s another of my favourite Etsy shops – CraftyCatsArt. I got one of their ‘cat off’ pin badges for my birthday last year and I love how cheeky it is! I also bought one of their cat prints after seeing it in an exhibition in Woodbridge earlier this year – I just need to sort out a frame for it then it’ll be proudly hung in my monochrome bedroom.
You can also get a portrait of your pet custom-made in sparkling gold foil from this Etsy shop. My husband commissioned the Crafty Cats to make a constellation print of my star sign for my birthday and it is fabulously glitzy.
You’ve probably spotted a lot of Unruly Print artworks in the photos of my home, so it’s no wonder that I wanted to include this printmaker in my gift guide. I’ve just commissioned a retro print of a record player, cassette and camera for my living soon so I’ll be sure to show you how it turns out. I love this cheese plant print, it’ll look great in my hallway once I’ve decorated in the Spring.
All the prints are hand-cut and hand-printed lino prints so each one is completely unique. Plus, you can make it even more individual by asking the artist to print your favourite design in a colour to match your home. Or you could even ask him to create a custom-made print of your home, car, pet or boat (which can also be turned into greetings cards too!)
HEY THERE STICKERS
If you’re buying for little ‘uns, Hey There Stickers is a great place to start. This Etsy shop sells sticker-making kits, refills and packs of stickers. I think it’s such a fun idea to let kids make their own stickers and, even though I’ve seen the sticker-making process in ‘real life’ at local craft markets, it still seems like magic to me!
This Etsy shop’s sticker making kit contains everything you need to make your own DIY stickers. I imagine it would keep children entertained throughout the Christmas holidays and you can easily order refills so that the crafty fun can continue all year round.
Another maker that I’ve admired for a long time is Jane Mitchell-Finch. I love her quirky stitched brooches and embroidered art, so much so that I bought one of her bird badges (similar to this bee brooch) for my mum’s birthday gift this year and my husband was treated to a machine-embroidered sneaker badge. In her Etsy shop you’ll find plenty of inspiration for unique gifts including framed pieces and plenty of ‘wearable art’ felt brooches.
What do you think of this wonderful selection of Suffolk makers? I hope you’ll consider buying handmade and local this year so please do share details of any other independent makers you’ve shopped with for your Christmas gifts in the comments below.