To make or not to make…

I’m in a conundrum.

I started dealing with Christmas presents this past weekend – wrapping gifts and planning out what I still need to shop for.  I had this great plan to make about half my gifts this year. It would have been more, but I don’t have nearly as much spare time as I had hoped to have this fall.

I love making things.  There’s something incredibly satisfying about working with my hands and holding something that I had a part in creating, whether it’s a pair of eyeglasses for a patient, a pretty necklace for a friend, or a crocheted afghan for myself.  I think that in this world of rampant consumerism, it’s nice to have handmade items.

My jewelry making tools

But I know that not everyone has the same values as I do. Therein lies the conundrum.  I personally appreciate handmade gifts from my friends.  Since I know how much time and effort goes into making an item, it means a lot to me to receive such a gift.  I suspect that not all my friends and colleagues share that same appreciation.  However, I also suspect that they would never say that to me directly.  So do I go ahead with my plan or not?

Two thoughts have been rolling around in my head since I started questioning my Christmas plan.  The first is why do I spend so much time second guessing myself?  This is not the first time I’ve gone back and forth about something.  Most of the time, I end up talking myself out of whatever I wanted to do.  I worry so much about what other people want or think or need, and I convince myself that my idea is probably terrible.  What if they think my gift is cheap or tacky (even though I only ever give things I would also be happy to receive)?  What if all that work ends up hiding in a box or drawer like the stereotypical ugly scarf from crazy Aunt Mildred who has 10 cats and no ability to pick out complementary colours?

The second thought came to me while I was at the Make It! show last Sunday.  I love craft shows, especially Christmas ones.  They nurture my love of pretty handmade things, and fulfill my goal to support local artisans and businesses whenever I can.  And judging by how incredibly busy the show’s 4 days were, there must be a lot of people who feel the same.  So why is shopping handmade and supporting small business so popular, but we also have the negative stereotype about homemade gifts?  Why is one looked upon as skilled craftsmanship, and the other as a cop out?  Google “homemade gifts”, and you see words like easy, simple, cheap, or this:

Gifts that don't suck?

Gah!  It frustrates me, and feeds into that self-doubt from the first thought.  Am I reading too much into things?  Am I overthinking this whole situation?

I don’t know what I’m going to do.  I have to go away for a work trip this week, so I’ll think about it more on the 3 hour drive.

What do you think?  Do you make things in your spare time?  Would you give them as gifts?  Let me know.  (And for my friends who are reading this, tell me if you would prefer not to receive something homemade.  It’ll make my life and my shopping plans way easier!)

November 28, 2017
© All rights reserved, missmylin 2017

2 Responses to “To make or not to make…”

  1. 1 Nicola
    2017/11/28 at 7:47 am

    Lol I’m making all my gifts this year and had a thought last week while working on them…”what if everyone just thinks these are crap and are just like, gee thanks Nic and then just throw them out.” Creating and making a mass amount of gifts is stressful!

    Btw Anson’s hats still fit and although he was a severe aversion to anything being on his head I finally managed to get him to keep one one a few days ago!

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© Myra Madrilejos, missmylin and "itaga sa bato", 2010 to present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author/owner is strictly prohibited. All photography on this blog is copyright protected. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Myra Madrilejos and itaga sa bato with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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