My favourite presents are always the ones people who know me best put together. These kinds of presents do not normally cost the earth, but they are meaningful. It could be a bar of my favourite chocolate on a particularly grim day, a comfy top, a girly afternoon tea, pretty plates for my photos…
Ever since having children, I have found myself showered with gifts I treasure. My children love drawing, and making presents for me and anybody who will have them!
I have to admit that at times, I find it difficult to get excited when Beanie comes home from pre-school with a toilet paper roll sticking out of an egg box that has been painted and represents, well, nothing other than a painted egg box with a toilet paper roll stuck to it.
I am pretty sure it is all part of the creative process and I fully acknowledge that, but it generally hits the recycling bin before the week is over (am I being heartless or just realistic here?).
A couple of weeks ago, I made something I could reproduce really easily at home with all my family, Hubby and baby included. Managing to include ever member of the family without making it too tedious for anyone is a great criteria when it comes to homemade presents.
The mug with thumbprint drawings of my little family has only been with me for a couple of weeks, but it is pretty special already. You just know when you have something special in your hands, don’t you?
The beauty of it? It took me less 10 minutes or so to make and I find it pretty cute. I made the mug at a fab little workshop organised by Tots100 in London, but if you are happy to spend a bit of money on just a few items, you can make your own mugs at home, too.
Customising your own mug at home could not be easier. On Pinterest, I have seen people advising using sharpie pens to decorate mugs, but apparently they run off really quickly and will not stand the test of time (or washing up!). You are better off investing in porcelain paints. They are relatively inexpensive and can be used again and again.
I have just had a quick look on Amazon, and you can get a pack of 6 Pébéo porcelain paints, a porcelain pen and 4 plain white mugs for £18. I will use old brushes and I also have wipes at home. Once you have the paints, all you need to buy is the mugs and you can get those from the pound shop or buy them in bulk. You will not have to buy the pen or paints again.
Alternatively, if you are in the London area, I would highly recommend re-creation London. http://www.re-creation.london/
What you need:
2 shades of Pébéo Porcelain paints
1 black porcelain pen (Pébéo)
1 paint brush
Start by making your fingerprint marks with porcelain paint, using different fingers and colours to represent different people.
At this stage, if you are not happy with the result, you can wipe the mug, dry it and start again.
Dry the fingerprints using a hair dryer for 5 minutes and add detail to your fingerprint family using the black porcelain pen.
Allow to air dry at room temperature for 24 hours.
Place the mug(s) in a cold oven, then bake for 30 minutes at gas mark 2 (150 degrees Celsius / 300 degrees Fahrenheit).