DIY Last-Minute Stocking Stuffers

Stocking stuffers are almost always an afterthought for us, which is why, aside from some of the little toys knits I mentioned the other day, I really only started thinking about them yesterday. I made a quick stop at the store and gathered up some candy and a few trinkets from the dollar section. I was reminded by the fellow behind the counter just how exciting the stocking is to the little ones as he recounted his own memories of finding his filled stocking on Christmas morning. It’s funny the places we find perspective sometimes isn’t it?

I was happy he was so open with me because I really did need  a reminder about how special the little things are. Certainly special enough to put a few moments of thought and care into.

And so, here are some simple gift ideas, on the small-ish side, that can easily be made before Christmas.

Felt superhero masks from Cutesy Crafts (free templates)

Felt animal masks from Petit Poulou (free templates)

Shape Sticks with free printables from Tried and True

“Candy” coin rolls from Martha Stewart

Personalized key chains (for the older kiddos) from Little Lovelies

Monster page corner bookmarks from Tally’s Treasury

Wooden slingshot from Made by Joel


Felt finger puppets pattern from Ginger and George available to purchase here

Free Knitting Patterns in Time for Holiday Gift-Giving

As much as I enjoy sewing, I find knitting to be far more convenient. I can pull out my needles anytime I have a few spare minutes and with knitting I don’t have to worry about taking over my dining room table every time I want to make something. Here are a few knitting projects I’ve pulled together for some Christmas gifting inspiration. Many of these are perfect for beginners and can be completed in an afternoon….and they’re free (except for the bowling pattern which is sitting pretty close to free at $1 for the pattern)!

Happy Knitting!

Toys and Dolls to Knit

Bear ornaments


Hacky sack

Striped stockinette snake
Ice cream cones

Toy boats
Aisling the Elf
Monster softies
Bowling set
Owlie soap sack
Baby gnomes
Frog bath puppet
Dinosaur Softie
Crayon Caddy
Maggie Bean and Friends (22″ doll) from Petite Purls
Monster softies

Wearables to Knit

Little Stay On Slippers
Kindergarten Kit: hat, neck-warmer, mittens
Fox mittens
Fish Hats from Knitty
Chapstick necklace
Yo Gabba Gabba mittens
Snowman Snowball Toddler Scarf

I made some hacky sacks a few days ago and plan on making some baby gnomes for stocking stuffers!  And, if I can swing it, I’d love to make the little bear ornaments and add the kids’ names onto them.

P.S. Some of the patterns require you to open a free account in order to access them…just giving you a head’s up!


Snowman Buttoning Mat

Hi friends! I’ve been so busy working on projects and rather than wait to have something completely finished (because who knows when that will happen!) I decided to post my WIP along with the pattern pieces.

My 6 year old is showing some signs of weakness in her little fingers so I’ve been coming up with some fine-motor fun for her. I made this snowman buttoning mat with big and little buttons to help her practice both sizes. She can have fun dressing up her winter friend by matching the colors of the felt with the colors of the  buttons, or just doing her own thing! There is a little birdy who keeps the snowman company, and a mug of warm cocoa to drink.

{click for printable pdf file}


– cut 2 pieces of 14×16″ cotton fabric for the background

– cut a 13×15″ piece of interfacing or fusible fleece

– use templates to cut felt pieces (I used wool felt for added durability and ironed freezer paper to the back before tracing and cutting)
~there is no pattern piece for the snow, but you can cut a piece of white felt as wide as your cotton backing fabric and about 6 1/2″ tall, then cut a slight curve into it

– once you’ve fused your interfacing/fleece onto the back of your fabric, use a zigzag stitch to secure your snowy background, snowman, and hat into place.

– use embroidery floss to hand-stitch your buttons into place, leaving just the slightest gap so that the buttons can be easily manipulated by little hands…Make sure you use bigger buttons for the bigger pieces and smaller for the small pieces

– the arms and mouth will also need to be stitched on by hand

– when all of your stitching is done, face your cotton pieces right sides together. Pin two pieces of about 6-8″ ribbon together at the top and in between the layers

– using a 1/2″ seam allowance, sew around the mat leaving a gap between your starting and stopping points for turning

– turn the fabric right-side-out, press, and top stitch all around making sure to close that gap

* these are pretty down-and-dirty directions, but I think you’ll get the gist of it…If not, please feel free to ask away in the comments!


How to Make a Felt Bat Bow


you need:

bat bow supplies


: Cut pattern pieces from felt, and cut a 1/4″ by  1 1/4″ strip of felt :
bat bow step 1


: make a bow with the top piece, position the “ears” on the edge :
bat bow step 2


: position wings behind bow and use a needle and thread to tack into place :
bat bow step 3


  : tighten the center of both pieces and wrap thread around a few times to hold :
 bat bow step 4


: wrap strip of felt around center, keeping edges in the back :bat bow step 5


: make sure the strip is wrapped nice and tight :

bat bow step 7

: cut off any excess felt from the strip and stitch down :

bat bow step 8

: use the same thread to wrap around a hair tie :

bat bow step 9

bat bow hair tie

: or hot glue the bow to a head band :
bat bow headband

The bow was  inspired by this pin.  Please have fun making these for yourself or someone you know, and if you have any questions just ask!

15 Simple Kid Knits for New Knitters


One of the best things that fall brings with it is knitting. I tend to sew a lot, but it was so exciting to break open my knitting bag and get my needles going on some new projects!

Are you new to knitting or looking for some quick knits for your kiddos (or upcoming babies)?

Check out these links for knitting patterns that are simple enough for beginners, but equally useful for the seasoned knitter:

knitting for kids

knitted headband pattern with pom pom from Rust and Sunshine:headband rust and sunshine

slippers in any size from Beatrice Cavicchioli slippers by beatrrice cavicchioli


any size beginner hat recipe from The Sheep Shop

beginner hat from sheep shop cambridgeThis hat is knitted flat, so it’s perfect for those who aren’t quite ready for knitting in the round!


3 and a half knitted bows from Cornflower Blue Studio:3.5 bows cornflower blue studio

These are so useful! Boys can wear them as bowties, or pair them with the above headband for girls!

knitted treasure bag from Inner Child Crochet

 I love this little bag for keeping tiny treasures that my kids have collected!

knitted doughnuts from I Like Lemons knitted doughnuts i like lemons

In her post she offers her variation, plus a link to the original pattern. The pattern uses an M1 stitch, which might be new for beginners. For a great demonstration of this stitch, see this video.

Child’s play crown from This Cosy Life:thiscosylifeknittedcrown

I made one of these crowns for each of my girls a couple years ago and they still wear them for dress-up! Also, be sure to check out her pattern shop…it’s full of wonderful things to knit!



ninja toy from Vickie Howell at Craftsy:purple stitch ninja craftsy

*this one is free from Craftsy (part of the Purple Stitch Project), however you will need to sign up for a Craftsy account to access it



knitting for babies

Simple baby bib pattern:  knitted bib lsmorin

(image is from ellemme, pattern found here)


Knitted baby bonnet from Knit and Bake:  baby bonnet knit and bake

easy baby booties knitting pattern


these are wonderfully easy to knit and have so many variations to play with!



preemie baby hat from Ewe Ewe

preemie baby hat pattern ewe ewe

Striped baby hat from A La Sascha:           simple striped baby hat ala sascha English translation and link to PDF found at the bottom of her post


Baby frog legs (legwarmers) pattern from Lauren Dahl: babyfroglegs laurendahl


bias baby blanket from JCasa

bias blanket jcasa

  this blanket is knit in 3 colors and is so beautiful in its simplicity

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