Remember when I bought yards and yards of holiday fabric dreaming of all the things I’d make? L O L. I have not had the time and when I have the time I don’t have the energy. This holiday season has drained me. (And it’s only December 2!) I haven’t even been able to make my Christmas-y masks yet. BUT! I wanted to make this post to share some homemade Christmas gifts you can make yourself. And I’d love to hear some of your ideas as well.


Frankly, there are few things more that I love than a handmade gift. Homemade bread and baked goods. A drawing from a little kid. Anything crafted. To me, it’s so much more than what the gift is, but what it means. And if it’s useful or cute? Even better! If someone has taken the time to make something? Talk about a gift!!!

homemade christmas gift floral hair bows


I don’t know if you’ve heard or not, but bows are *in*. You can buy handmade bows on Etsy– and they’re darling. But guys, they are super easy to make yourself. I think I’m going to do a few long ribbon barrettes that I’m seeing all over Instagram for a few of my friends and then embroider their initials or name on my machine. The perfect, personal homemade Christmas gift!

Recently I made a few fabric bows for my nieces and they are darling in person. I bought a pattern from Etsy, but you could probably get away without one if you’re well-versed with basic sewing concepts.


Grosgrain ribbon

Blank barrettes

Alligator clips

Printed fabric (great fat quarters work great)

Hot glue gun

– Lighter (to melt the edges of ribbon to prevent fraying)

Tying a Perfect Bow:

How to Sew a School Girl Bow:


It’s really as simple as making the bows and gluing them onto clips. Bam!

blue and white face masks


‘Tis the season for… festive face masks. I am obsessed with making masks and giving them to friends and family. It’s a satisfying, quick project and you can bang out a bunch in a short amount of time. Then add in the fact that they’re obviously so incredibly useful this year (and next). If you’re giving them for Christmas, it might be best to consider fabric that works beyond just the holiday season. I usually guesstimate what size face mask will work for each recipient.


Face mask pattern


Sewing Machine and Basic Sewing Essentials




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A post shared by Carly A. Riordan (@carly)

homemade christmas gifts embroidered cocktail napkins


I have a whole post about embroidered cocktail napkins! This can be time consuming or quick, depending on what designs you decide to do! It’s so relaxing and a great way to flex your creative muscles while creating some beautiful homemade Christmas gifts. The best part of these is that if you’re hand drawing your designs, the sky is the limit in terms of what you embroider. Customize and personalize to your heart’s content. If freehand drawing isn’t your forte, DMC offers free pattern downloads!


– Small Embroidery Hoop

– Blank linen cocktail napkins (50 for $60!!)

– Scissors

– Needle

– Embroidery Floss

– Pen

– Water Soluble Marker

– Paper

– Starch

– Iron

homemade Christmas gift blue and white monogrammed needlepoint ornament


These are slightly more time consuming, but they’re really special and would be treasured by anyone who received your homemade Christmas gift. I have a whole post about needlepoint for beginners. Note if you want to give one in time for this Christmas, you’ll have to finish the ornament yourself because deadlines for finishers were months ago. Have no fear, though, you can totally do it yourself!!!


Basic needlepoint supplies

Needlepoint Canvas or Canvas for Cross Stitch + Pattern

Tacky Glue

Embroidery Floss for Cording

Cotton Batting

1/8″ Acid-Free Board

Would love to know what your favorite types of homemade Christmas gifts! Trying to add to my repertoire!

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I agree, homemade gifts are the absolute best!
I just finished up making needlepoint ornaments for my boyfriend and his family and for my friend for Secret Santa! Finishing all five at once was QUITE the process but I’m obsessed with them. I wouldn’t have trusted myself to do them if you hadn’t shown the Nestle one you made last year for your mom!

Kelly C

These are so fun! I’m making embroidered cocktail napkins on my embroidery machine for some friends. I just started using the machine about a month ago and its been so fun to make my own things I normally would pay $$ for.


I love these cocktail napkins!!! Last year I made bows on velcro collars for dogs and stockings for my fiancé and I because it was our first Christmas together. This year I’m making baby bloomers/diaper covers for my niece and I’m keeping my fingers crossed they fit!!


I got the supplies to make the embroidered cocktail napkins last year, but I just did not get to it with finishing grad school, lol. So this is the year for that! And, can I just say how much I am loving the rebrand! 🙂


I love making gifts because they can be custom to the recipient—it’s so thoughtful that you size your face masks!

My mom started making reusable fabric gift bags and my family uses those for the gifts we exchange with each other. No real pattern—they are basically like drawstring bags in different sizes to accommodate smaller gifts like books or even larger gifts like appliances. The gifts under the tree still look cute and festive and we have really cut down on our waste! Plus “wrapping” is a breeze once the bags are already made.


I am sewing superhero capes for my three year old daughter and her friends! I found a free pattern online and I cut out felt initials and shapes to put on the back. Super simple.