When I first heard the word handicraft I felt like I was eavesdropping on a Little House on the Prairie episode. I’ve since fallen in love with how beautiful, fun, and practical they really are. Here are some handicraft Christmas gift ideas that are easy enough for kids to make.
What Are Handicrafts?
It’s not the same as the typical craft tutorials you’ll find online. There aren’t any pom poms, glitter everywhere, or unknown objects made out of old popsicle sticks. Handicrafts are practical and useful items that take skill to make. Crochet blankets, knit socks, or a wood burned box are all examples of handicrafts.
Mason listed four qualifications for a good handicraft
- (The children) should not be employed in making futilities such as pea and stick work, paper mats, and the like
- They should be taught slowly and carefully what they are to do
- Slipshod work should not be allowed
- The children’s work should be kept well within their compass (aka at their level).
We’re encouraging our children to do their best work and teaching them step by step how to do it. In Mason’s day, handicrafts taught important life skills that would help students earn a living or provide necessary items for their future selves and families. I’ve crocheted since I was six and now I’m able to make hats and scarves for my little ones every year.
DIY Christmas Gift Ideas
Handicrafts are fun to make and useful, but you really only need so many of them. These projects make great gifts though for birthdays or Christmas time. Here are some handicraft gift ideas for your students to gift to friends and family this year.
Preschool and Kindergarten Handicraft Gift Ideas
These simple ideas are easy enough for the littlest hands. They will require some help and supervision though.
- Homemade crayons – melt old crayon scraps into a silicone mold like this Christmas themed one.
- Homemade candy cane playdough
- Cinnamon dough ornaments
- Salt dough ornaments
- Make a small bowl from air dry clay
- DIY Bookmarks
- Finger knitting
- Pressed flowers and leaves
- DIY beeswax candles
- Pine cone bird feeder
- Painted peg dolls or wooden crafts
- No-sew felt pillow
- Cross stitch
- Make Christmas cards
- Simmering potpourri (put it in a nice gift bag or jar)
Handicraft Gift Ideas for Older Kids
There are a lot of options so you can easily choose what your child is interested in or what fits their skill level. Handicrafts not only make good presents for others, but gifting a child handicraft supplies is another good idea. I’ve included handicraft supply kits and ideas for kids (like felting, needlework, and leatherworking) in this Charlotte Mason gift guide.
Leather Handicraft Gift Ideas
- Feather earrings from leather
- Leather holiday ornaments
- Fabric and leather clutch purse
- Leather journal cover
- Leather herb and plant labels
Cross Stitch and Needlework Handicrafts
These can be framed, turned into pillows and pincushions, or used as decorations on clothing or aprons.
- Free beginner cross stitch patterns from Love Craft
- Assisi rose pattern
- Free embroidery patterns from DMC
Sewing Project Handicrafts
- Felt flower pincushion
- DIY makeup remover or face cleansing wipes
- Drawstring bag from a tea-towel
- Felt pencil art case
- Reusable snack bags
- Hooded baby towel
- T-shirt pillow
- Reusable rice heat packs
You can use air dry clay (the easiest especially for younger kids), or regular kiln fired clay. If you don’t have a pottery wheel then pinch pottery or slab pottery are the easiest options.
- Ceramic coil bowl
- Pinch pots with air dry clay
- Pinch pot mugs (4 different ways)
- How to make clay vases
- Tile coasters
Crochet and Knitting
All of these projects are suitable for beginners or even more experienced crafters who are short on time. Love Craft is one of my favorite places to find free patterns for all experience levels. Most of the patterns below are from here.
- Crocheted snowflake ornament
- Crochet granny square tote bag
- Crocheted slouchy beanie
- Crochet square tote
- Beginner knit hats
- Knit criss-cross baby blanket
- Knitted dishcloth
- 25 easy Origami ornaments
- DIY watercolor stationary
- Handmade Christmas cards
- Homemade envelopes
- Hand letter cards and wall hangings with a calligraphy set
Beading and Jewelry Making
- Easy DIY jewelry projects
- Holiday themed beaded jewelry
- Leather knot necklace tutorial
- Make your own ceramic beads
- Complete guide to soap carving book with kid friendly projects
- 10 woodcarving projects for beginners
- Easy woodcarving tutorials
Have your kids made handicrafts before? What are some of their favorites? Leave us a comment and be sure to share this post with a friend!