In years gone by, I used to work on winter holiday gifts all year long. My goal was to be finished by the end of August, but mid-November was my real deadline. I hate shopping, and if the handmade gifts weren’t going to be ready in time, I needed to know before “Black Friday” so I could beat the holiday shopping crowds! In the last few years, I have started my handmade holiday gifts at the last minute, which inevitably led to stress, late gifts, overpriced shipping costs, and other drama. I’ve been focused on saving money and destashing this year, so I decided to combine all of these motivations into one big challenge: a holiday stashdown.
If you’d like to join in the Holiday Stashdown Challenge with me, I’ll be posting updates and suggestions each Tuesday for the rest of the year (along with a link party, starting next week), and I’m even willing to organize swaps/yarn trades and offer some prizes for good behavior .
The mission: Use existing stash (or other “free” yarn obtained through trades and swaps) to make holiday gifts slowly during the year (instead of through a series of all-nighters in December) for crochet- and/or knit-worthy people. (If your stash isn’t ginormous like mine, feel free to buy yarn as needed – the emphasis of the challenge is on making holiday gifts throughout the year rather than at the last minute!)
The deadline: Well, that will vary, based on the holidays your loved ones celebrate, whether the gifts are being shipped, and your own personal comfort zone.
Here are some winter holiday dates to help with setting your own completion goals:
- Hannukah begins on December 8
- Winter solstice is December 21
- Christmas Day is December 25
- Kwanzaa begins on December 26
- Dia de los Reyes/Epiphany is January 6
Please let me know if I’ve left any winter gift giving holidays off – I’ve only included those that I’ve made gifts for in the past.
My personal goal will be to finish my gifts by Sunday, November 18. That will leave me time to shop before “Black Friday,” as well as time to make birthday gifts for all the Sagittarians, Capricorns, and Aquarians in my life .
How it will work: Every Tuesday, I’ll share a Holiday Stashdown Challenge post, along with a link party you can join. You’re welcome to link up a post about your progress towards your own Holiday Stashdown Challenge goals.
Sometimes, our intended recipients are also readers of our blogs, so it can be tough to share information about our progress. Not to worry! Each week, I’ll share a prompt for the next week’s post, so you’ll have something to write about even if you can’t share exact details about your projects and recipients. The Holiday Stashdown Challenge is ultimately about relieving stress, not creating it, so don’t feel that you must post weekly to participate .
The prompt for Tuesday, May 15: How do you decide who is crochet- or knit-worthy? Do you make gifts for all the important people in your life, or are you selective about who receives your handmade creations? Draft up the list of who you will be making gifts for this year and when you plan to give or ship the gifts. (Even if you can’t share the details of the list, let us know how many people are on it; if the recipients include friends, family, classmates, co-workers; when you need to have the gifts finished, etc.)
Are you up for the Holiday Stashdown Challenge? Let me know in the comments .