Crafty: Handmade Gratitude

Bring on the cocktail parties, ornament exchanges and holiday dinners: It’s time to host and be hosted. With all this celebrating going on, you might want to check your list twice. Hostess presents can lengthen your to-gift list quickly, which can get pricy. Rather than breaking the budget with bottles of wine, use your crafty side and some supplies you’ve got at home to whip up a batch of personalized presents. Try out this holi-DIY for a hostess gift that says, “I like you enough to not bring you another batch of cookies.” Screen-printed tea towels, aprons, or canvas bags are homemade gifts that will make your hostess—and your pocketbook—merry and bright.





fabric (tea towels, canvas bags, pillow cases, etc)

x-acto knife

freezer paper

iron & ironing board

fabric paint

sponge paint brush


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Get Picky

Draw or print out a copy of an image you’d like to print. You’ll have to cut this out yourself, so choose something bold and relatively simple. Gifting a classy cook? Try your host’s last initial in a hip font for monogrammed aprons or napkins. If you’re whipping up a big batch for all of your holiday hosts, choose an image that works for all faiths and festivities, such as stars or snowflakes.


Cut It Out

Once you’ve found the perfect image, trace it on to the dull side of a piece of freezer paper. Carefully cut it out using an x-acto knife or scissors, being careful to save any inside pieces you might need for the print.


While The Iron’s Hot

Once you’re happy with your cutout, lay the image onto your fabric shiny side down. Iron over your freezer paper with a hot iron, paying close attention to edges so your paint won’t be able to leak underneath. When your stencil is well-stuck, it’s time to get printing! If you’re printing on a t-shirt or pillowcase, make sure to place a piece of cardboard between the fabric to prevent the paint from soaking to the other side. Use a sponge paintbrush and fabric paint to print the image onto your fabric, being extra careful near the freezer paper edges. Peel off your stencil while the paint is still wet and lay flat to dry. Make one for all of your festive functions and get on with the merrymaking!

Megan Ranegar hopes you eat, drink and get crafty this holiday season.

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