Handmade Means More to Me-How about You?

Wooden box made by my mother in 1975-it has my name on it

When I was growing up, my mother would always give someone a handmade gift.  For a long time, I thought maybe we didn’t have money.  All my friends bought their things from the store.  But as time went on, I realized how much my mother enjoyed creating things.  She could have easily gone out and purchased a gift, but instead she made beautiful things and gave them away.  Who knows, maybe it was a money thing.  Either way,  she instilled it in me.  She passed away this year, and I am so glad I still have some of the things she made.

The thing she liked to give the most were antique plates with calligraphy on them.  She would find a lovely piece of antique blue and white china (for a baby boy) or pretty pinks and white (for a baby girl).   On that plate would be the baby’s name, date of birth, time of birth, weight, name of parents, etc.  She did this for weddings to.  The wedding plates were always dinner plates and the baby plates always seemed to be a bit smaller.  Over the years, she made me a “hope chest” and filled it with things I would need someday when I got out on my own.  She made me storage boxes and jewelry boxes which she tole painted. Eventually, just about everything in the house was homemade.  I still have a couple of the brown paper gingerbread men she spent all night cutting out and hanging from all the ceilings.  About 75 Gingerbread men!

I say all this, because it taught me to appreciate the thought behind the gift.  To this day, my most precious material possessions are the things she made, and the things my kids make me in school.  Nothing beats it.  Not a new designer handbag, not tickets to a show, not the latest clothes.

This year, everyone on my list is getting a piece of my handmade jewelry for Christmas (the gals, anyway!)

Cherished painted picture frame from my daughter

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3 responses to “Handmade Means More to Me-How about You?

  1. What a beautiful post. First and foremost, I’m sorry for the loss of your mother. It is so wonderful that you have tangible reminders of your mother’s love . I friend of mine was telling a story the other day about how she had wanted a pound puppy stuffed animal like nothing else (back in the 80’s). Her parents could not afford hardly anything at the time-especially not anything frivolous, but they knew how much she wanted a pound puppy. She told everyone, and made sure to let them know with Christmas approaching that is what she wanted. Christmas day she saw a new red tent for her bed, and inside was a pound puppy. Not like the ones at the store. This was not in a package, and it looked different than the ones at the store- it had a black pom pom nose instead of a plastic one, and handstitched eyes, instead of plastic. The “PP” emblem had lovingly been stitched to perfection by her mother. She knew it and loved the pound puppy even more because she knew it had been made with love.

    There is definite value in things made by hand, and not by a machine.

    Hope you have a beautiful week.

    • Thank you so much for your comment. I’m still drying my eyes. That is such a sweet story about the pound puppy. And even more sweet how the little girl loved it and appreciated it. So many kids today don’t appreciate anything that’s not what everyone else has. And you are so right – there is definitely more value in things made by hand.

      I hope you have a beautiful week!!!

  2. Wow, sounds like you have a wonderful heart and really appreciate your mom. I love handmade gifts and I love giving them. Anyone can buy and i-tunes card, but I really think about the person when I am making them something. My nieces used to roll their eyes at my creations when they were in their pre-teens, but now I see them wearing my jewelry all the time. (Can’t take a middle schoolers reaction to heart). Have a wonderful spring and a great Mother’s day.

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