Just as many other broke-asses out there, I spend a lot of time thinking about how I can save money on presents during the holidays without coming across as the cheap person I am. I usually revert back to the old childhood strategy of making things (“If mom liked a drawing I made when I was 8, why not when I’m 28?!?”), but unfortunately I kind of suck at them. One year’s stenciled tote bag project ended up in blue paint all over my apartment, another year’s truffle batch was ruined when I found that a mouse had gnawed up my expensive chocolate, and I have yet to thread my sewing machine without calling my grandma 3 times. Luckily, the smart, giving folks at the Etsy creative community are here to help with free weekly craft nights every Monday 4-8PM at their Brooklyn location.
With a simple RSVP, folks can learn how to make their own glass ornaments, custom cut-out cards, canned jams and more. They’ll tell you exactly what you need to bring on their site, and even offer a Virtual Lab at 5PM for anyone who chooses to craft in the comfort of their own home (I mean, it is really damn cold outside). Don’t worry: the night’s projects and more are usually recapped on the site’s “How Tuesday” feature for anyone who missed a step, or bring it back when the theme is an open craft night for people working on their own projects.
The Etsy site also has a ton of great homespun gift offerings, so even if you fail at your craft you’re still bound to end up finding something to give that the people in your life actually want. Or, maybe you’ll end up channeling your inner craft warrior enough to actually sell things yourself! Wouldn’t that make your mom (and 8-year old you) proud?