Eight Unusual Christmas Gifts from Etsy Sellers

Wondering what to get that difficult-to-buy-for Uncle for Christmas this year?  How about awkward Auntie Agnes?  And as for cousin “I have everything I want already” Clara?!?

Let’s face it, some people are much harder to buy for than others.  So here are eight unusual, but cool! present ideas from the amazing sellers on Etsy.  Check out their full shops for even more great pressie ideas. (more…)

Simple Stamped Reindeer Christmas Card Tutorial

I used a 6″ x 4″ white side-folding card blank from my stash.  I used the stacking rectangles die set by Presscut and chose the die that most closely fit the front of my card, and the one smaller than that.

I cut out a panel of patterned paper with the larger die, and applied Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink around the edges.  This paper is from the “12 Days of Christmas” 6″ stack by Dovecraft.

I then used the smaller of the two dies to cut out a panel of white 300 gsm Sheena Douglass Stamping Card.  I ran this piece of card back through the die cutting machine with the Lattice Flourish Edge’ables die from DieSire (Crafter’s Companion) on the bottom edge.


I stamped the “nosey reindeer” stamp from the “Christmas Creations” stamp set by Spellbinders.  I stamped him in  Azure Seas permanent dye ink, from Whispers.  I then went around the edge with some Salty Ocean Distress Ink.


I stamped a sentiment onto some white card.  The “Holiday hugs” stamp is from Crafter’s Companion and was one of the included stamps in the 2014 Christmas issue of their Inspirations magazine.  I stamped it with black Memento Tuxedo Black ink.   Then I cut it out using one of the smaller dies from my stacking rectangles, as before.DieCutSentiment

I then applied Brushed Corduroy distress ink all around the edges to give it a nice vintage feel.

I coloured in the reindeer with a Light Ultramarine Faber Castell Polychromos pencil.  I used a Pthalo Blue pencil to add a bit more emphasis to the deer’s flank markings and nose.  The pencil colouring has not shown up very well in my photos, it looks better in real life (honest!).


I glued the two panels together, then added them to the card blank.  I fixed the sentiment on with some foam tape to give it a bit of dimension.  Then I finished it with two sticky faux pearls from Sticker Mania.


If you want some hints and tips to help with last minute Christmas Card making, check out my blog post from earlier this week.

Hints and Tips for Last Minute Christmas Card Making

Argh! Christmas is so nearly here and you haven’t finished making all those lovely handmade Christmas cards you promised yourself you would do this year!  Don’t panic.  There is still some time, and these handy hints and tips could help to save you time (and money too!).

1 – Make Multiples at Once


Making 6 copies of a card does not take 6 times as long a making one would.. it is much faster than that.  Making small batches of each card design can save a lot of time.  Get all your equipment and materials ready, pop a good movie or nice album on.. and go for it.

It can also help to group tasks, for example do all your stamping at once, then later on do your colouring (I like to colour whilst watching tv).  Again this saves time as you don’t have to keep getting your gear out over and over. (more…)

Friday Freebie 143 – Christmas Kitten

This week there is a bonus Friday Freebie as part of the Christmas Cracker – an adorable Christmas kitten.

Perfect for use on Christmas cards, invites, tags and more.  What will you make with yours?

These are PNG files with transparent backgrounds.

Follow the Tin Teddy blog to make sure you get your Tin Teddy Friday Freebie every alternate week (but there are bonus ones throughout December as part of the Christmas Cracker!).

The Friday Freebies are free for at least one month, after this they are grouped into sets for sale in my Etsy shop. Subscribe to the blog to ensure you get them all!

[box] There will be a new Friday Freebie on the 18th December .[/box]



[button link=”http://tinteddy.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/TTChristmasKitten.zip” type=”icon”] Download here[/button]

To see the full range of Tin Teddy clip art, digital papers and more, visit my Tin Teddy Etsy shop.

[box] Please do not give the images to your friends – give them a link to my blog and they can download a copy for themselves.[/box]











Craft Book Review – Mini Christmas Crochet by Val Pierce


Title – 20 to Make – Mini Christmas Crochet
Author – Val Pierce
Publisher – Search Press
ISBN – 978-1-84448-740-0

As part of the Tin Teddy Christmas Cracker,  I am reviewing the fun crochet book “Mini Christmas Crochet” by Val Pierce as there is still time to make some of these adorable little creations before Christmas.

This a small, 48 page book and part of the popular “20 to Make” series from Search Press.

The book starts with a general introduction then a page of Hints and Tips.  This includes a table showing American and British stitch name differences.  Instructions on how to crochet are not included so some experience will be required. (more…)

Ten Great Christmas Card Tutorials on YouTube

Ten Great Christmas Card Tutorials on YouTube

Looking for some inspiration for your Christmas card making this year?

Check out these ten great Christmas card tutorials from my favourite crafters on YouTube.  Different styles, different techniques but all fun to watch and very inspirational.

Cute Penguin Christmas Card from Vicky Papaioannou

Vicky demonstrates some great techniques to get more from your stamps in this video.  And the result is such a sweet card.

Stamp your Own “Family Photo” Card from Sandy Allnock

These cards are so original and fun.. plus great for adapting to use whatever stamps you have in your stash.  Check out Sandy’s other videos for many more Christmas projects too.

Simon Says Stamp From All of Us from Nicol Spohr Magouirk

Sadly Simon Says Stamp products are really hard to get hold of here, in the UK.  But I love this video as Nichol uses a great technique for the background, and the finished card is so cheerful and inspiring.  Plus Nichol’s videos are always fun to watch.

Brayered Christmas Eve from ileana29

I love the gorgeous 3d effect on the trees.  This card looks so unusual and impressive.  Very inspiring indeed.

Colored Die Cut Inlay Card by Jennifer McGuire

A simple but really great technique in this video from Jennifer McGuire.  All Jennifer’s videos are very professional and full of great hint and tips for card makers.

How to Draw a Snowman for a Christmas Card from Shoo Rayner

I very much enjoyed watching Shoo draw and paint a cheerful snowman. He makes it look so easy!

Clean and Simple Christmas Card by Little Crafty Pill

Some rather good ideas in the tutorial for this very attractive card.  I love that edging technique and must try it with my own edge dies.

A Very Trendy Christmas Card – Two Ways! with Catherine Pooler

Two for the price of one here.  Some simple but very effective techniques are used to make these very elegant cards.

Winter Card from Vicky Papaioannou

Another one from Vicky, this time a shaker card.  This card could be easily adapted to use whatever lovely Christmas stamps you have.  I love the little cluster at the top of the card and the use of faux snow in the shaker.

Shape Stamping Christmas Card by Jennifer McGuire

Another great video by Jennifer McGuire.  Here she demonstrates how to create a unique designs using little stamps.  I found this idea very inspiring indeed.


If you are getting stressed and running out of time to make your handmade cards, check out my blog post – Hints and Tips for Last Minute Christmas Card Making

Friday Freebie 142 – Chocolate Cookies for National Cookie Day

December 4th is National Cookie Day, so here are some yummy chocolate cookies as this week’s Tin Teddy Friday Freebie clip art images.

Do you like a chocolate cookie, a double chocolate cookie or even a triple chocolate cookie?  I confess that I love them all, but hey, the more chocolate the better!

These are PNG files with transparent backgrounds.

Follow the Tin Teddy blog to make sure you get your Tin Teddy Friday Freebie every alternate week (but there are bonus ones throughout Decemeber as part of the Christmas Cracker!).

The Friday Freebies are free for at least one month, after this they are grouped into sets for sale in my Etsy shop. Subscribe to the blog to ensure you get them all!

[box] There will be a new Friday Freebie on the 11th December .[/box]



[button link=”http://tinteddy.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/TTFridayFreebie142.zip” type=”icon”] Download here[/button]

To see the full range of Tin Teddy clip art, digital papers and more, visit my Tin Teddy Etsy shop.

[box] Please do not give the images to your friends – give them a link to my blog and they can download a copy for themselves.[/box]










Ten Great Christmas Gifts for Teens from Etsy Sellers

Christmas Gifts For Teens


Let’s face it, some members of the family can be a bit trickier to buy presents for than others.  And teenagers are often one of the trickiest to buy for.  You don’t want to insult them with something they consider too childish.. but they definitely do want fun stuff.  So to give you a bit of inspiration, here are ten fantastic handmade items from talented sellers on Etsy, especially for those teens in your life.

Christmas Corgi iPhone Case by kiwihen Corgi iPhone Case by kiwihen

A mobile phone is one of the most important possessions of today’s teens.  And having a phone that looks great is a must.  These adorable corgi themed phone cases from kiwihn are real show-stoppers.

They are available for the iPhone 5, 5S, 6, 6 Plus and the Samsung Galaxy S6.  With 6 different colour options on offer (I love the tri color corgi on the green background the most!) they are bound to bring a smile to the recipient’s face.

Kiwihn has many other wonderful designs in her beautiful shop.  Maybe an alpaca phone case is more your teen’s style?  From sushi to flamingos, pugs to pizza and foxes to watermelons, this shop offers a wonderful range of phone cases, all in a kiwihen‘s unique style.

Corgi iPhone Case from kiwihn on Etsy


Personalized Sterling Silver Charm Pendant by DM Charm Co

Personalized Silver Necklace by DMCharmCoThis stunning sterling silver charm pendant has just the right balance of classy and cool.  DM Charm Co can add any word (up to 8 or 9 characters) so it doesn’t have to be a name.  Perhaps a significant date, or a special family word?  The charm comes complete with a sterling silver chain and you can even add a birthstone dangle for just a few dollars more.

DM Charm Co offer a wide range of other personalized silver items too, including guitar picks and key chains.  Maybe something there for the discerning teenage gentleman in your family?

The shop has been on Etsy for three years and has many sales and glowing reviews – buy with confidence from Daphne 🙂

Personalized sterling silver charm pendant from DM Charm Co on Etsy

Custom Leather Guitar Strap by TheLeatherSmithy

Custom Guitar Strap by TheLeatherSmithy

Now here is something very special for a music mad teenager.  Lauren from The Leather Smithy will create a fantastic hand-tooled leather guitar strap for you.  There are numerous options and Lauren invites you to contact her to discuss exactly what you would like.  What a unique present!

The Leather Smithy is a well stocked shop with many different designs of guitar straps, dog collars, bracelets and more on offer.  She even has a custom archery quiver!  Admire the beautiful pictures and just imagine how wonderful these hand-tooled items will look in real life.. I bet they smell great too!

If you are looking for something truly unique for any member of the family this Christmas, then this could be the shop to check out.

Custom Leather Guitar Strap from The Leather Smithy on Etsy

Fairy Tote Bag by ArteRo

Fairy Tote Bag by ArteRo

This beautiful fairy girl will be hand painted on to a sturdy tote bag when you buy from ArteRo this Christmas.  So your teen could soon be walking around sporting her very own piece of original artwork, she is sure to get a lot of attention and be the envy of her friends.

Roberta from ArteRo has a charming shop full of her beautiful artwork.  How about a gorgeous, original book mark for your favourite book worm?  Or a colourful artprint to brighten a room.  Roberta’s art is fresh and exciting, combining olde-world fantasy with modern styles and materials.  Seriously stunning stuff and at such great prices too!

Fairy Tote Bag from ArteRo on Etsy

Personalized Cat Name Stamp by Remarkable Marks

Personalized Cat Stamp by Remarkable Marks

Stationery is very on trend right now and this adorable cat themed personal rubber stamp is bound to be a big hit for a trendy teen present.  Remarkable Marks will personalize with the name of your choice, making this stamp ideal for use in journals, envelopes, card making or just labelling up what is “mine get your paws off”.

The stamp also has a great glittery custom mount making it a gift that will be treasured.

Tamara from Remarkable Marks has many, many more designs in her exciting store.  Lots more fun name stamps, but also some really classy address stamps too, love them.

With 5 years Etsy experience and a friendly proof system (to be sure you get exactly what you want on your stamp!), Remarkable Marks is well worth checking out.  And this is a shop that offers lots of great Christmas shopping possibilities, for a wide range of family members.. or how about just treating yourself?  I bet there is something in your world that would be much better for a personalized kitty stamp on it 😉

Personalized cat stamps from Remarkable Marks on Etsy

Cute Owls Hand Painted Silk Scarf by SilkScarvesPOLGANI

Silk Owl Scarf by SilkScarvesPOLGANI

Just look at this adorable owl scarf! What a stunning present for a fashion conscious teen this Christmas.  Olga from SilkScarvesPOLGANI hand paints her scarfs using skillful techniques to bring you unique products that will appeal to a wide range of ages.  The scarf is 100% Habotai silk and signed by the artist.

SilkScarvesPOLGANI offer many other beautiful scarves in their Etsy store.  As well as other owl themed ones (love the owls!) there are also vibrant floral themes, butterflies, rainbows, adorable cats and many more.  These gorgeous wearable works of art would make great presents for any of the ladies in your life.

And Olga has a friendly returns policy, so you can buy with confidence (she knows you won’t want to return your beautiful scarf, of course!)

Cute Owl Silk Scarf from SilkScarvesPOLGANI on Etsy

Men’s Satchel Bag by Crafty Calista

Men's Satchel Bag by Crafty Calista

Having just the right bag is a big deal for many teen lads. It needs to be big enough to hold the important things and must definitely not look like a girly handbag!  Oh yes, and it has to be cool too.

This handsome messenger bag from Crafty Calista fits the bill perfectly.  Handmade with quality vinyl for lastability and sporting an eye-catching design on the flap, in a hot trending orange and black colour scheme.  The bag is big enough to fit his essentials, including an iPad, and is worn cross-body which means it is easy to carry even when full.  And don’t forget that because this is a handmade product, your lad will have something very special that his friends won’t have!

Calista from Crafty Calista has other equally attractive messenger bags on offer in her Etsy store.  As well as other designs for the chaps, there are also some stunners for the ladies too.  Now is your chance to carry a very special handmade bag and attract many admiring glances as you do so.  And don’t forget that Calista has a super confident 30 day money back guarantee, so you know she stands by the quality of these beautiful pieces.

Men’s Satchel Messenger Bag from Crafty Calista on Etsy

Customized Leather Journal by AnnaKisArt

Personalized Leather Journal by AnnaKisArt

Journals are really big right now so when you present your favourite teenager with this stunning leather clad journal, complete with her initial on the front, she is bound to be thrilled.

This burgundy journal, or notebook from AnnaKisArt is 240 pages long and features bronze hearts and corners.  Choose the initial for the glass domed centre piece and this stunning journal will make an ideal, and very special Christmas gift.

Anna of AnnaKisArt has lots of other equally gorgeous journals and photo albums in her shop, all featuring beautiful leather covers with hand painting or embellishments to make them stand out from the crowd.  She also has some really amazing pieces of artwork, again painted onto leather, both unusual and stunningly beautiful.

Customized Leather Journal from AnnaKisArt on Etsy

Steampunk Watch by dganin

Steampunk Watch by dganin

My son came into the room as I was looking at this watch on Etsy and started going “Wow, wow”, which I took to mean he agrees with me that this is something which I bet any teenage guy would be more than thrilled to receive!

This incredible steampunk style wrist watch from dganin features an unusual two dial clock plus a compass and thermometer.   This is one very, very special watch!

dganin have many other, equally amazing watches in their exciting Etsy store (designs for both men and women).  The hard part would be deciding which watch to buy from your teen, they are all remarkable and bound to be a big hit on Christmas morning.  Don’t forget the older men in your life too, what chap wouldn’t want to sport a watch that his friends will be envious of?

Steampunk watch from dganin on Etsy

Reading Magnet Set by heart and willow

ReadingMagnet Set by heartandwillow

Looking for a little stocking filler for a discerning teenager?  These on trend reading themed magnets from heartandwillow could be just the ticket.

Professionally made one inch magnets, each with an upbeat reading-related quote.  Ideal for use with a magnetic board, on the fridge or stuck on a bedroom radiator (which is where I stuck loads of magnets when I was a teen).  They come in a smart little tin, but you could even split up the set to use as cracker gifts or tiny presents too.  Make your family bookworms smile 🙂

heartandwillow have over 300 magnet sets, pendants, pocket mirrors and bookmarks on offer, so there is bound to be something to suit your teens – as well as many other family members too.  Check out the Winter Penguin magnets, they are my favourite.

Reading Magnet set from heartandwillow on Etsy



Vintage Style Shaker Christmas Tags Tutorial

I wanted to make 6 Christmas gift tags for some special presents this year and decided to do some little shaker tags with a vintage feel.

First I used my Tim Holtz Tiny Tabs and Tags die by Sizzix to cut out the tag bases.  I cut out three each of a green and a red tartan, and 6 of a plain white high density 150 gsm card.  The tartan is from the Twelve Days of Christmas 6″ stack by Dovecraft and is also 150 gsm.


Next I took the smallest sized die from the Sizzix 8 piece Scalloped Circles die set and cut a hole in each of the tartan tags.  I then used the two smallest sized dies to cut out 6 scalloped frames – three each from red and green 135gsm cardstock.  I used scraps of washi tape to hold the dies in position whilst cutting them out with my Big Shot and cut them three at a time.


Then I used finger daubers and Ranger Distress Ink to gently ink around the tartan tags.  I used Barn Door on the green tags and Mowed Lawn on the red tags.


I used the same Distress Ink to ink up the middle third of each of the white tags.  It wasn’t important to get a nice blended effect here, as I was going for an overall shabby style, plus very little of it will be seen in the finished tag.

Then I chose 6 images from the Tin Teddy Vintage Christmas 1″ Circles collage sheet.  I ran the edge of a black Sharpie pen around the edges to remove any white and give a neater edge.  I temporarily laid the tartan tags on top of the white ones (not glued down!) then fixed the circles to the inked white tags with Anita’s Tacky Glue.


I then used the second smallest of the Scalloped Circle dies to cut out 6 pieces of clear acetate.  I used Heat Resistant Acetate from Crafter’s Companion.  Cutting acetate can be a bit tricky as it is rather stretchy so can end up embossed instead of cut through.  I added a couple of pieces of scrap cardboard to my diecutting “sandwich” to help increase the pressure and get a clean cut.

Then I glued the card frames to the acetate.  I used tacky glue and wiped the acetate with a baby wipe immediately after gluing to remove any that had strayed onto the clear surface.


When the frames were dry I added them to the tag fronts, again using tacky glue.


I used Fun Foam to give the tags enough depth to be shaker tags.  Because I suspected it would be very hard indeed to perfectly line up the holes in the foam with the holes in the fronts.. I cheated!

I cut out 6 tags from black fun foam with the Tiny Tags die. I then cut the top and bottom parts of the fun foam tags off, and glued them onto to the back of the tartan tags.  Then I cut two thin strips from the remaining fun foam and glued them either side of the scalloped hole.  The end result is a little “well” where the shaker stuff will sit.  This worked out just fine, and didn’t take long – and was easier than trying to line up perfectly matching holes!


Now the fun part!  First I rubbed the back of the acetate widows with a dryer sheet to remove any static. Then  I sprinkled some white Darice Glitter Beads into each of the fun foam “wells”.  I then added just a few gold Glitter Beads too.  Glitter beads are teeny .5mm hole-less beads.

I carefully glued the white card tags onto the back of the fun foam using tacky glue.  I made sure that the glue went right up to the edge of the “well” area to stop any of the tiny beads escaping.  I left the tags to glue, still face down, on my glass crafting mat and with a book on top to ensure a good bond.


Next I threaded 6 “antique silver” coloured star buttons on to baker’s twine – 3 on red, 3 on green twine.  I tied a knot in the loop then threaded it through the holes on each of the tags.  I popped a blob of tacky glue under the star then pressed them into place on the front of the tags.


Finally I added five small gold faux pearls with Bright Gold 3d Pearl Effects by Dovecraft, to the bottom of each tag, because I like a lot of bling on my Christmas projects!


If you are getting stressed and running out of time to make your handmade cards and tags, check out my blog post – Hints and Tips for Last Minute Christmas Card Making


Christmas Cracker – 1st – 25th December 2015

Tin Teddy Christmas Cracker

From today, 1st December, through to Christmas Eve, 24th December, I will be posting regular Christmas Cracker blog posts and more.

Christmassy projects and tutorials, reviews and articles.  The countdown to Christmas starts here 🙂

As with my previous Halloween Shriek Week promotion, I will add links to all the goodies on this page so they are gathered in one place for you.



1st December – let’s start the Christmas Cracker with an illustrated tutorial to make some handsome gift tags for your Christmas presents.  These have a vintage style by with a modern twist – they are mini shakers.

Vintage Shaker Christmas Tags Tutorial

And if you want quicker tags…..


TTVintageChildrenTagsPic1A new set of printable Christmas gift tags in the Tin Teddy Etsy shop today, featuring beautiful Victorian and Edwardian images of little children.  Vintage is very on trend this Christmas, so here is a cheap and easy way to add that retro charm to your present wrapping.  Just print, punch a hole and add some string, ribbon or twine.  I am adding glitter glue to mine, because I like a bit of bling at Christmas!

Tin Teddy Vintage Children Christmas Tags Printables


Christmas Gifts For Teens2nd December – are you having trouble getting gift for the teens in your life this Christmas?  Here are ten inspiring ideas for amazing handmade gifts from Etsy sellers.

There are loads of wonderful products in these shops, for the whole family.

Ten Great Christmas Gifts for Teens from Etsy sellers



TTFridayFreebie1424 December – today is US National Cookie Day, so the Friday Freebie for today is… well Cookies!  Three yummy looking chocolate cookie clip art images for you to use in your crafting projects.  Free cookies – Yay!

Tin Teddy Cookies Friday Freebie Clip Art




Tin Teddy Cute Angels Clip Art5 December – some adorable little girl angel clip art images, ideal for your Christmassy projects.

They are perfect for 3d decoupage and would look lovely on cards, invites, tags and more.

Plus bonus 13th “cheeky rebel” angel included!

Tin Teddy Cute Angels Clip Art


Ten Great Christmas Card Tutorials on YouTube


Need some inspiration for your Christmas card making?  Check out these great videos from some of my favourite YouTube crafters.  Lots of cool techniques.

Ten Great Christmas Card Tutorials on YouTube



10 December -Craft Book Review – 20 to Make, Mini Christmas Crochet

A review of this great value little crochet book, full of quick and easy Christmas decorations, toys and gifts.  Ideal for anyone creating for a Christmas craft stall or looking for last minute projects

20 to Make – Mini Christmas Crochet by Val Pierce



11 December – free Christmas Kitten clip art image


A bonus free clip art image for you this Friday, a cute little kitten, sporting a pretty red bow.  Someone is going to have the best present this year!

Tin Teddy Friday Freebie 143 – Christmas Kitten




13 December – Hints and Tips for last minute Christmas Card making

Having a panic that Christmas is so nearly here and you haven’t finished making all your cards yet?  Check out this blog post for hints and tips to save you time and get those cards finished.

Hints and Tips for Last Minute Christmas Card Making



15 December – a little tutorial to make a quick and easy stamped Christmas card, using a few easy short-cuts to get a card that looks more complex and time-consuming than it really was.

Simple Stamped Reindeer Christmas Card Tutorial




16 December – Santa’s Elf clip art images

Another Christmassy set to bring some elf magic to those last minute Christmas projects.  12 adorable toon elves.

Tin Teddy Santa’s Elf clip art



17 December – something different for those last minute giftsUnusualXmasGiftsThumb

Here are some exciting, handmade Christmas gift ideas from amazing sellers on Etsy.  Why buy boring run-of-the-mill presents when you can get something cool?

Eight Unusual Christmas Gifts from Etsy Sellers




18 December – another Friday Freebie clip art image for you.  This week it is a beautiful Christmas wreath.  Ideal for last minute cards.

Tin Teddy Friday Freebie 144 – Christmas Wreath




20 December – Christmas Mixed Media Tag Tutorial

An illustrated tutorial on how I made the mixed media tag for December, for the Tim Holtz 12 Tags of 2015 game.

Christmas Mixed Media Tag Tutorial