Old Fashioned Homemade Christmas Gifts | 1886

SOME CHRISTMAS GIFTS  –  What To Make And How To Work Them.

It seems early to commence planning Christmas gifts, but by doing so we avoid the worry and hurry just before Christmas which tires us and takes from the pleasure of Christmas giving and receiving. By starting now we have time to make them leisurely, enjoying each one as pleasant thoughts are worked in with the brush or needle, and the greater part or all will be accomplished in good season. Some prefer buying to making gifts, but where they can be made by the giver they are usually more appreciated, than the same kind bought.

Time and money must be spent on them, therefore the necessity of choosing articles which are useful and durable as well as pretty. The tastes of those to whom the presents are to be sent should also be remembered and the gifts selected accordingly.

The following directions are simple, but if the articles are tastefully made, are very pretty gifts. The last few are very easy but they take the place of Christmas cards, for many Christmas cards are an expense, with little utility further than the momentary pleasure of receiving them.

Duster Bags.

A piece of duck or canvas stuff twelve inches by eighteen. Half a yard of ribbon two inches wide, one yard, one inch wide same color. Piece of wire twelve inches long. Paint a vine or conventional pattern on the duck, keeping the extremities of the design two inches from the top and three from the bottom. Lay the satin face of the ribbon against the painted side of the duck at the top. Sew on. Turn over and hem down on the inside. Run a casing below this of lighter material than the duck but of the same color, measure the bottom into six inch lengths, cut up three inches, turn back the ends at right angles. Cut off these three sided pieces. This leaves three points. Sew the sides together commencing at the top and then the sides of the points. Hem down one end of the ribbon on the other over the seam. Run the wire into the casing, bend the ends into hooks, catch them, sew the opening of the casing. Turn the bag right side out before running in the wire, Now turn down the top of the bag that the facing of ribbon may show. Sew each end of one half yard of the narrow ribbon, just below the facing on opposite sides, by which hang the bag. Of the other half yard make a bow for the points. Put a double cheese cloth duster in the bag.

Photograph Case.

A photograph case may be made of a plain dark colored plush or velvet bag five inches by eight, lined with a contrasting colored satin. Leave one side seam open two inches and fasten back the corner that the satin may show, with a bow or by invisible stitches if there is painting or embroidery on the plush. A spider web in gold thread with a gilt spider is a pretty design.

Handkerchief and glove cases are very convenient in visiting or traveling, as they are flat and soft, requiring less room and packing to better advantage than boxes, and if left without either, the handkerchief and gloves are very apt to be lost or mislaid in a trunk or even in a bureau drawer.

Handkerchief Cases.

Cases for handkerchiefs may be made two ways.

No. 1. Sew together, except one end, two pieces of satin or silk twenty-four inches by nine or twelve. Turn right side out. Place a layer of sheet cotton sprinkled with delicate perfume, between the satin. Sew raw end together, and quilt on the machine, in diagonal blocks one inch square. Turn up four inches of each end for pockets, and join the sides with ribbon sewed to each edge. Hold the ribbon full. Bows at the sides between the two pockets give it a more finished appearance.

No. 2. A simpler one is of dark satin eighteen inches by nine, same of contrasting color of satin, put cotton between and sew together, bind with a cord to match dark satin. Double this over as for a bag. Sew at one top corner. Turn back the other corner and fasten with a bow, and catch the new made corner Jo the side.

Glove Cases.

Make a foundation of two pieces of satin twelve inches square. Sew together on all sides. For the three or four pockets take a strip of satin, five by fifteen inches having a broad hem already turned down. Sew to the square, putting small box plaits at the base of each pocket. At the distances of four or three inches, according to the number of pockets tack the satin strip to the lining of the foundation. Run cord a over this sewing, along the top of the pockets and around the square. Fold square in half over the pockets and tie together with a bow. Pockets may be put on both ends of the case if preferred.

Lamp Shades.

No. 1. The amount of ribbon depends on the heights of the shade and the circumference of its base. Take an inch and a quarter wide ribbon, cut it, say into six inch lengths. Turn back both corners of one end of these ribbons to make it pointed. Hem the tops, sew sides of all the ribbon to a side of the next. Sew deep lace to this shade, about where the ribbon is turned back above the points. Put silk or plush balls at each point. Gather at the top with a thread run through the hem.

No. 2 is simply a screen for the eyes and can be used on any lamp, and raised or lowered at pleasure. Make a double velvet case or line it with satin, slip into it a stiff piece of card board six inches by seven, just to fit the case. Sew plush balls to bottom. Get a piece of stiff wire bent O thus, eight inches in length when completed. Baste it on to a card five by two inches, which cover with same material as lining. See that the wire will slip up and down. The hooks attach it to the shade or chimney and the bend at the lower part of the wire holds the screen off from the hot shade. Sew the top of the small piece to the top of the large piece. When finished paint on the velvet face in oils.

No. 3. Make screen part as directed above, omit the part with the wire. Buy a banner or table screen stand and sew the work to the arm.

Blotting Pad.

A blotting pad is made of four pieces of blotting paper eight by ten inches. Ornament the exterior by painting. If oil colors are used put them out on blotting paper which absorbs the oil and prevent them from running on the pad. Tie paper with ribbon like a book.

Pen Wiper.

For a pen wiper cut four pieces of chamois skin two and a half by three and a half inches. Decorate the paste board back like a book. On the front draw “Sketches from the Pen of … blank filled with initials of person to whom it is given. Tie narrow ribbon through the back and skin. Sheets of paper may be used, and narrow strips of court plaster of different colors run through slits cut in the paper; the outside decorated with the pen or brush.

Emery Bag.

An emery bag of the wrist part of an old castor glove or piece of chamois skin sewed into a bag two or three inches long and one or one and a half wide is very convenient. Work “emery” or something on one side of the bag. Fill with emery and tie around the neck with embroidery floss.

Source: Good Housekeeping

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