Thoughtful handmade gifts made by children are always treasured by those who receive them. Here are several ideas of simple gifts children can make. Perhaps they would make nice Valentines Day gifts for teachers, grandparents, or aunts and uncles.
One of the earliest crafts I learned to make with yarn was covered hangers. Cut two 6-yard lengths of yarn to cover one hanger. The colors may be the same or two contrasting colors may be chosen. Roll each strand into a separate ball to make it easier to manage. Then tape one end of each strand to the end of the hook on a strong wire hanger as illustrated. Begin tying half-hitch knots around the hanger, one to each side as shown in the illustration. Continue until you have covered the entire hanger. Then tie off the remaining yarn and clip leaving about 3 inches of yarn loose on the hanger. Wrap the remaining yarn around two or three fingers and tie to the neck of the hanger with the loose ends of the yarn. Leave the yarn in loops or trim to make a pompom.
Coasters are very easy to make. Cut two squares of needlepoint canvas the same size. Fill in one square with your choice of stitches leaving the outer edge exposed. Here is a link to a YouTube video that teaches how to make the stitches. There are several kinds of stitches to choose from. When the top is filled in, line the baking piece of canvas up evenly with the top and stitch the pieces together. Loose ends are always tied off by running them through the stitches on the back side of the canvas.
Try cutting out different shapes to make unique coasters. Remember to cut two exactly alike for each coaster. It is easier to cut them both before you fill in the stitches if your shape is difficult. Perhaps you might like to make heart-shaped coasters for Valentines Day. Use the picture to guide you as you cut your heart-shaped pieces.
The cross Bible bookmark was simple to cut out and stitch. It could be made larger by cutting the canvas larger. Just keep the same number of spaces for the width of all sections, and make the top three sections the same length. The bottom should be approximately twice as long as the top three sections. I added a tassel to hang over the edge of the Bible.
The picture frame in the picture at the top of this article was made with plastic needlepoint canvas and two colors of 4-ply yarn that can be found in any craft store. Cut two pieces of canvas so that they are the same number of spaces wider and taller than the picture you wish to frame on all four sides. Cut away the center of one of the pieces to fit the picture. Then fill in the frame with needlepoint stitches leaving the edges uncovered. When you finish stitching the frame, stitch around the center of the frame to finish it off. You can do a running stitch or a blanket stitch to finish off the edge. Save the outer edge until last. Cut a piece of canvas to attach to the back to hold the picture frame up. Look at the picture to see how it might be shaped. The sticky note was placed behind it to make it easier to see. Stitch the stand vertically from the bottom with a simple running stitch. Again, view the picture for an example. Trim away a strip one space wide across the top of the picture frame. This will be the opening where the picture can slide into the frame. Stitch around the outer edge of the picture frame beginning across the top edge. When you reach the side of the frame, line the back of the frame up with the front along the sides and bottom. Be sure the stand is on the outside and not between the front and back. Continue stitching around the picture and tie off lose ends by running them through the stitches on the back side of the frame.
There are many ways to create nice gifts, and many are easy enough for children to make. One place to look for ideas is on Pinterest.com. Feel free to follow me on Pinterest as I am continually on the lookout for activities children can do.