Creative Christmas – Crafts from the Cwtch

Posted by Amy | Posted in Creative Christmas | Posted on 20-11-2013

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It is time to share another interview with one of our very kind bloggers. With all the hard work our group of bloggers have put in designing decorations, they could be likened to Black Sheep Wools very own Christmas elves. Our tree is looking rather spectacular with its selection of handmade decorations. I will share a photo next week!

Crafts from the Cwtch blogger Sarah Knight has designed and made two exclusive knitted decorations for our tree. First up is a cheery little snowman complete with red scarf & hat.

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Second up is a fun, googly eyed Father Christmas. Both can be knitted with any oddments of DK yarn.

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Here is what Sarah had to say about what Christmas means to her………..

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What does Christmas mean to you?

Christmas has changed a lot for me since becoming a parent – it used to be a time of relaxation and being spoiled rotten… but now it’s all about the children. My husband and I hope to make it as magical as possible for them and we have some family traditions that we all really look forward to. Last year we welcomed an Elf into our home for the first time, which made it really special. He arrived on December 1st, and the children loved waking up each morning to discover what mischief he had caused overnight – they found him in some interesting situations and he also left a new book in the fireplace for them each night – a kind of literary advent calendar. When he returned to the North Pole (with Santa, on Christmas Eve) he left little gifts including Christmas Eve PJs, a framed photo of himself and some glittery reindeer food. The children can’t wait for him to return, and he has sent them some emails and photos over the year.

How do you decorate your home?

Aside from abundant fairy lights, we like to keep it fairly understated, but we always have two trees. The main tree in our sitting room is something we all choose together – in fact “Tree Day” has become quite an event! We go to the same place each year and spend a lot of time finding the right tree, one that we all like. Not too tall, not too small, and it must have just the right shape. It has to stay outside to be watered for a few days before coming indoors, which builds up the anticipation as we prepare to decorate it.
Some of our most treasured decorations are things the children have made and they each get to buy a special ornament to put on the new tree – the plan is that when they eventually leave home, they will take all their own ornaments with them for their trees – we have to pack them away carefully in the new year in the hope they will last.
The second tree is a small white glittery affair. The children can decorate this however they wish. They also like making paper chains and putting pretty things on the front windows where they can catch any late afternoon sun.

Have you ever received a handmade gift? If so what was it?

Growing up with a crafty mum and two knitting grandmothers, I always had a lot of handmade gifts but there are a couple of things that stand out in my memory. Firstly my Nanna Shirl used to make jumpers for the family. As she had four children and lots of grandchildren, she used to start in January! She was very petite and probably knitted several times her body-weight in yarn each year just for our Christmas presents – the thought of her working on them ALL YEAR (and trying to keep them a secret) still makes me smile. A couple of years ago I found a plain white hat and scarf she’d sent me not long before she died – nothing special in it’s own right, but I often look at each stitch and think of her arthritic fingers clacking away on her metal needles. She is still very much missed, but her stitches live on!
One late-November, after I’d left home and was working in London, a parcel arrived from my mum. Inside was an advent calendar she had sewn, together with 24 individually wrapped and numbered gifts to go in it. The gifts were all well-planned and incredibly thoughtful (e.g. new nail polish for the day of the office party, headache tablets for the day after). That must have been 18 years ago, but I still have the calendar and I’ll never forget the fun I had opening the gifts so many miles from home, knowing my mum had put so much effort into it.
The children and I always make something for their teachers and we really enjoy doing that together. It would be easy to throw a box of chocolates into the shopping trolley, but I think it’s much nicer to gift them something that time and effort has gone into. There are a few little things in the works this year, but of course I can’t tell you what they are! 🙂

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