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Some of the best gifts are the ones that are homemade, because it means they’re thought through and made with effort and love. If you have the time, they can be a great stress reliever as well as easier on the wallet. Some of the gifts I’ve made so far this year are the quintessential mix tape (well, it’s a CD but I will continue to call it a “mix tape”) and fabric covered beaded necklaces.

Mix tapes with all the songs you’ve been obsessed with for the past year are fun, especially for friends that don’t live in the same city as you. Let them imagine what you’ve been bopping away to and singing in your shower. CDs are also easy and inexpensive to mail. I always jazz up my mix tapes with a homemade collage from the glitziest cutouts I can find in all the old magazines lying around my apartment. Sometimes they’re themed, other times I just throw a bunch of pretty things together and hope it works. Here are three I already made:homemade CD cover

homemade CD coverhomemade playlist cover

The fabric-covered beaded necklaces I’ve been working on were inspired when I saw a similar style at Tienda M in Marfa. It looked great, but I just couldn’t justify dropping over $100 on a fabric necklace. I thought, “I could do that myself,” so I looked up a bunch of different directions online and complied them in my own Snapguide. Hit up your local craft store and vintage shop for wooden beads and silk scarves or old shirts with fun patterns! Here’s the result:


The pink one is made from a vintage silk scarf. This was a lot harder to cut and sew than cotton fabric, but be patient because I love the result. The patterned necklace is made from Amy Butler fabric scraps I had from an old project.

Check out How to Make a Fabric-Covered Bead Necklace by Em Dash on Snapguide.

Fabric Shopping in Austin:

Vintage Shopping in Austin (most vintage stores will have a cheapo scarf bucket):

Other gift guides: Under $20 /\ Under $50 /\ Under $100 /\ Holiday Wish List

dose of dash signature

p.s. I may or may not have scheduled this for 12/12/12 at 12:12 on purpose…