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Tips & Techniques

Last-Minute Stitch Gifts

We've talked about quick projects in the past, but let's take a look at more specific quick projects -- those for holiday gifts. For those projects that have been started in the last few weeks before the holidays, we need something amazing, fun and most importantly, quick to stitch and finish. Let's take a look at a few options that will have you threading, stitching and finishing in no time.

  1. Ornaments. I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I don't think it's possible to have too many ornaments. They're quick, portable and provide delightful memories for their recipient every year as they are hung on the tree. Stitch a different ornament for each person on your list or pick one or two designs and customize colors for each person. Finishing is quick and simple when you follow the ornament Finishing Instructions found in the annual Just CrossStitch Ornaments issue. For a few super-quick ornaments from this year's issue, check out the images below. If you don't already have a copy, the 2013 issue is available now; it features 76 ornaments from 76 fabulous designers! Click here to order today and get started!
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  3. Coasters. We've all seen the quick-gift coaster ideas online of shellacking decorative paper to tiles to create a set of coasters. These are cute, but stitched coasters can be just as quick and will make just as much impact. Grab a set of acrylic coasters from a needlework store and add a motif, pattern or even an initial specifically selected for the recipient. How about a fun colored linen and a classic monogram? Or you could even pick two colors and adapt a classic chevron or other geometric pattern to fit the coaster size. Take a look at this simple pattern available on the Just CrossStitch website and customize the colors to the name on your gift list.
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  5. Hangings. If you're looking for something a little larger than an ornament and maybe something that can be displayed year-round, how about taking a look at hangings. These charming pieces can be displayed on a wall like a framed piece, a cupboard door or even a doorknob. If you keep your design simple, the stitching and finishing won't take much longer than an ornament. Below is one example of a quick and easy project that will bring a breath of Parisian sunshine to your life.
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    French Welcome, Just CrossStitch February 2006
  7. Jewelry. What woman doesn't love jewelry as a gift? And what could be better than a hand-stitched jewelry item for a lucky recipient on your list? Below is an example of a delicately stitched pendant that can be finished in one evening. But you can also adapt other designs or motifs by adjusting the size or by stitching over one thread to create your own customized design. Or why not try your hand at designing your own pattern? Print an online page of graph paper and draw a chart edge that is the size of the piece you want to make. Then pick up a pencil and graph your own creation; stitch it up in an evening or two to create your own unique gift. Take this same idea and customize it for a male recipient by creating cuff links or even a key chain.
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    Tile Pendant, Just CrossStitch June 2013
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