Crafts. There are SO many to choose from, it would be virtually IMPOSSIBLE to put together a gift guide to cover them all. So, for the sake of space (and my sanity), we've pared 'crafts' down to the big three: Knitting, crocheting and sewing.
Now, gift cards for yarn shops, craft stores and fabric boutiques make great gifts for knitters, crocheters and seamsters, but for something a bit more personal, check out these ideas we've amassed for the fiber junkies on your Christmas list.
Going in alphabetical order, we'll start with the crocheters. This first one is a personal favorite and indispensable guide for ANY crocheter, experienced or beginner. The Crochet Answer Book ($9) is always beside me when I start a new crochet project.
Staying in the library, here's another book I happen to own and highly recommend: The Crochet Stitch Bible ($20). It'll take that crocheter to the next level. (Beautiful book, spiral-bound.)
Any avid crocheter would LOVE Interweave's new 2011 Crochet Calender, which features one motif (and its pattern) for each month of the year ($8).
Whether your crocheter has joint issues or not, these aluminum hooks with bamboo handles from Susan Bates are the cat's meow ($3 each). The difference between these and the old, all-aluminum kind is striking.
Crocheters--like knitters--like to have a lot of supplies within reach when working on a project. This ArtBin Floor Caddy ($30) keeps tools organized and at your fingertips and it's totally tote-able.
Now for the knitters. The Knitting Answer Book ($10) is another title I own and, like its crochet counterpart, it is INDISPENSABLE.
Debbie Stoller came out with another Stitch 'n Bitch this year, entitled Superstar Knitting ($12). It picks up in 'technique difficulty' where her earlier works left off.
I had a chance to peruse the new Vampire Knits ($13) and it is gorgeous. The patterns have a gothic/romantic quality about them that--like Edward--are irresistible.
Other new knitting titles that came out this year that I'd like to add to my knitting library include Modern Top Down Knitting ($18), Warm Knits, Cool Gifts ($16), Brave New Knits ($16), and More Last-Minute Knitted Gifts ($18).
Vogue's Vogue Knitting Stitch-a-Day Calendar ($13) will certainly enrich a knitter's repertoire.
The Knit Kit ($22) is the Swiss Army Knife for knitters, and I want one BAD.
And on to those that sew. Martha came out with an Encyclopedia of Sewing and Fabric Crafts ($19) this year that'll make any fiber nut squeal with delight.
Also new to bookstores this year is the very handy 1,000 Clever Sewing Shortcuts & Tips ($14).
If your seamstress sews for kids, then Sewing Clothes Kids Love ($16) is a must-buy.
For those who like to get their applique on, Sew Liberated ($16) is so perfect.
Light! Let there be! And for me, it's my OttLite. I have a desk lamp style in my craft room, but their Craft Plus Floor Lamp would be a welcomed addition to any sewing room. The quality of the illumination of OttLites is unparalleled, as they throw a bright, white, natural light that's cool and doesn't glare or distort color. It reduces eye strain too. I highly recommend them. Prices start around $36 and go up to $210, like for this floor lamp. HOWEVER, they're often on sale at Michael's and JoAnn's, and if they aren't, you can use their handy coupons!