Friday, 5 December 2014

Christmas Gift Guide - Ministry of Craft Style

Only 19 more sleeps! If, like me, you're not yet fully organised and still have to complete your Christmas shopping, allow me to offer up some ideas. We've got craft courses galore happening next year and there's something for everyone, plus we know some really REALLY great small, independent businesses who are worthy of your support. Read on!

Gifts for Crafting Wannabes

CONQUER YOUR SEWING MACHINE - Saturday 3 Jan - Our most popular course! Half a day of all the sewing machine basics; from threading up the machine through to experimenting with fancy stitches. THE place to start! 

- Saturday 3 Jan - A brilliant choice for the novice sewist (suitable for complete beginners) who would like to learn how to use a sewing machine and leave with a useful, pretty product at the end. 

KNIT 123: BEGINNERS KNITTING - Tuesday 13 Jan (runs each Tuesday evening for 3 consecutive weeks) - Knitting is cool but oh-so-cosy! Buy the gift of knitting tuition for your loved ones and give them a hobby for life. They may knit you a sweater of thanks in return!

Gifts for Super Sewists

STEP UP YOUR SEWING MACHINE SKILLS - Saturday 17 Jan - Buy this course for THAT person who is already going great guns with their sewing projects but who would love the opportunity to hone their skills and learn fancy schmancy techniques (such as pin tucks, french seams, stitching leather) from an expert tutor. 

OVERLOCKING FOR BEGINNERS - Saturday 10 Jan - For experiences sewists who would like to give their sewing projects (especially clothing) that professional finish. If you buy them an overlocker machine too they will love you to the moon and back!

SEW YOUR OWN TUNIC DRESS OR TOP - Saturday 24 Jan - A dressmaking course for advanced beginners. A very good way to dip a toe into garment making and leave with a wardrobe staple (I'm not kidding, I have made two of these tunics!). Anyone who loves the Great British Sewing Bee will love this course.

Gifts for Teens
If you're looking for a crafting experience to attend together, or if you're happy to chaperone your teen (be they daughter, son, niece, or nephew), then these are great courses for crafty beginners:

PAPER PERFECT: DECOUPAGE JEWELLERY - Saturday 31 Jan - It's glueing and sticking and it's the best fun EVER. Brilliant for kids and adults alike. Make your own sets of decoupaged jewellery to take home.

BEGINNERS SEWING: SIMPLE REVERSIBLE TOTE BAG - Saturday 3 Jan - For the young person who's raring to go with a sewing machine, or who really loves textiles at school, come and sew this simple reversible tote bag. Bring your own fabrics and make a totally original piece or make a matching set together.

Gifts for Guys
Hey! We're all 'the guys', there's no sexism here! But if you want something less sewingy for a boy, or something that will appeal TO ANYONE, then how about these courses? 

SCREEN STARS: INTRO TO SCREEN PRINTING - Saturday 7 Feb - It's messy, it's graphic, it's as colourful and bold as you want it to be. Learning to DIY screen print is mega fun.

INTRO TO LINOCUT PRINTING - Saturday 7 Feb - Buy this course for the creative person in your life. They'll learn to make their own prints using cool and slightly dangerous cutting tools. Skills that can transfer easily to the kitchen table at home.

Gifts for the Craft Averse
If your kith and kin wouldn't be caught dead crafting (the fools!) but still appreciate local products, lovingly made by Manchester's finest, then take a look at the following:

Jelly Button Jewellery - Our tutor Michelle's handmade jewellery will satisfy the sweetest tooth!

Lines Form Spaces - Our knitting tutor Rachael is also an award-winning artist and she makes these hand drawn letter forms to order. Each one a complete original!

Nell Clothing
- gifts for kids and the young at heart, screen printed by hand by our Nell (printmaking tutor)

Vinegar & Brown Paper - not strictly Manchester based but worth a looksee online to marvel at the beautiful etched glass products. Unique and fun!

So Satsuma - jewel coloured, beautifully hand-knitted hats, scarves and cowls in Italian merino wool. 

And that's Christmas all wrapped up for you! Support small businesses this Saturday (especially because it's SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY) and buy super awesome craft-flavoured gifts for your loved ones this Christmas. 

Thanks for reading!

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