Secret Santa events can be stressful. It’s not easy finding a gift that feels good enough and personal and is also under the ten dollar limit. I happened to have picked the most festive holiday fanatic I have ever met. Fully outfitted in a Santa onesie the night we exchanged gifts, my wonderful friend Cara received these three little gourd ornaments.
The idea came to me from my childhood actually; we sometimes did cute crafts in our household around the holidays to give as gifts. They were cheap, simple, and more meaningful than a similar trinket bought at the store. I remember making pine cone peanut butter bird-feeders, beaded Christmas trees, gourd birdhouses, and smaller gourd ornaments like these.
A beautiful local store downtown called Ithacamade was selling the small gourds for necklaces, which you could make there with the string and beads provided. These were grown by a local artist named Graham Ottoson who makes a range of incredible products including nightlights, lamps, and vases. I was instantly inspired by the art around me and decided to take these little gourds home for a craft. The designs were inspired by and adapted from ones I found on Pinterest (like these: Santas, penguin, snowman). I used acrylic paint (cheap, easy, non-toxic) and sealed them with mod podge. Miniature scarfs are a good use for scrap fabric.
Shout out to Cara who is in Los Angeles currently being an amazing teacher! I hope she makes good use of these for years to come.