As quilters yourselves, you already know that it’s a lot of fun to make a sweet little gift for other friends who sew. It’s just that much more rewarding to give a handmade gift to someone who also values handmade items! Now is a great time to get a head start on Christmas gifts for friends who quilt! Over the years, I’ve been gathering and updating a variety of handmade gift ideas ranging from large and elaborate for a special someone, to quick and simple projects that you can mass produce all at once for a guild or group of stitch-loving friends.
This list is geared specifically toward other people who love to sew, but I have another list of Handmade Gift Ideas for anyone here.
Pin Cushion Tutorials
One of my favorite personal gifts to make OR receive is a sweet, custom handmade pin cushion. Here are 14 of my favorite tutorials or patterns for unique pin cushions:
- Simple Sprocket pin cushion by Sedef Imer (quick and cute!)
- Scrappy-Strip pin cushion by Ameroonie Designs
- Long, scrappy sewing room pin cushion by Jeni Baker
- This Sit and Sew modern pin cushion pattern has a hanging pocket for keeping notions and tools handy too!
- Mini 9-patch pin cushions by Amanda Jean (who always makes inspiring pincushions – see a ton more pincushion inspiration here.)
- Patchwork Pocket Pin cushion from the Polkadot Chair
- Retro Mama’s Stuffed Apple
- Mini dresden made by Fabric Mutt (pattern here)
- Applique Wool pincushions are simple and quick to make
- Little House softie from Retro Mama
- Traditional Economy block pincushions here
- adorable Wool Mice
- Sewing-machine art with Minki Kim
- I have dozens more pin cushion ideas on this Pincushion Pinterest Board
Sewing Machine Cover (or Mat) Tutorials:
Sewing Machine covers or sewing mat’s (especially ones with pockets for storage and organization) are a great gift that’s both useful and a fun way to make a sewing room look pretty. Here’s a few different ideas ranging from basic patchwork to much more elaborate (clockwise from top):
- Flowers and Flamingos from Bev at Flamingo Toes
- Undercover Mat by LillyElla Stitchery
- Caravan Sewing machine cover designed by Rainbow Hare
- Basic Patchwork cover
- See Kate Sew has a simple Sewing Machine Mat – with pockets – tutorial that can also be cut using a Cricut Maker.
Thread catchers and organizer tutorials
Thread catchers are always so handy for keeping things neat and tidy around your sewing machine. They’re perfect for catching trimmed threads or leftover fabric scraps. Here are a few tutorials and patterns (starting at the top and going clockwise):
- Pixie Basket by Heidi Staples
- The Sew Sassy Thread Catcher by Curry Bungalow
- Little Hexie Thread Catcher by Cornbread and Beans Quilting
- Pincushion Organizer tutorial by Elizabeth Hartman
- Thread Catcher tutorial by the Sewing Chick (one of my all-time favorites)
Needle books are adorable and so fun to personalize with fussy-cut prints. Here are a few super-sweet tutorials:
- Pocket Mending Book Tutorial from Fabric Mutt
- Fabric Covered Needle Card by Sedef Imer
- Nana Company little books and original Needle Book tutorial
- Stitch On needle book tutorial from Flamingo Toes
- Similar, but slightly different: Stationary Kit tutorial from Fabric Mutt
Other practical Handmade Gifts for friends who Sew
These Spool Key Fobs (or key ring) would be easy to mass-produce for friends who love fabric and sewing.
Or here’s a tutorial to Make Your Own Magnetic Pinbowl using any sweet little bowl you have on hand. A cute vintage tea-cup or Asian rice bowl would work great. I even found some cute mini bowls designed by the Pioneer Woman for a great price in the dishes aisle at Walmart.
One of my favorite ever quilting-related gifts was a set of numbered marking pins. I use mine ALL the time for marking rows and keeping in order rows that need to be sewn together. Mine were made by Nancy and she has a tutorial for making these quilt row markers here. If time is not on your side, you can also buy a set of Marilee’s Numbered Pins.
Another useful gift for a quilting friend are these super handy mini design boards. My friend Emily made me some and I’ve LOVED them – I use them all of the time. They’re perfect of laying out quilt blocks, auditioning fabric, or just keeping your pieces in place until you’re ready to sew.
Another idea is to make (or buy) a full design wall. I LOVE and use my design wall every day. It has grommets and hangs next to my sewing table, but is easy to take down when needed. I can’t find mine anymore, but you can find a similar portable design wall here.
You could also make one yourself! Suzy Quilts has a list of great ideas for making your own Design Wall.’
Handmade Christmas Ornaments
Another fun tradition to make for friends who sew could be a handmade Christmas Ornament.
I’ve put together a whole list of Handmade Christmas Ornament ideas here.
Another idea, if you’re short on time, is to give quilt-loving friends one of these beautiful Handmade Quilt Block Ornaments from Old Mountain Crafts in North Carolina. They sent me some of their laser-cut wood decorations a few years ago and I put them together as gifts for Quilting friends. (And kept a few for my own tree.) The first round I spray painted them white and added favorite red and white fabric prints between the two layers.
This year Old Mountain Crafts sent me their latest selection of ornament designs. This time I’m going to keep the beautiful natural wood color and let the gorgeous cutwork speak for itself. I love that there are options!
You can find other gifts ideas to buy (in all sizes and price ranges) listed in my Gift Guide for Quilters here.
So there’s a whole bunch of gift ideas to make for friends who sew – lots to get your creative juices flowing. Handmade gifts are some of the sweetest I’ve received – and a sentimental reminder of a quilty-friendship too. ❤ Other makers always value the sentiment of a handmade gift. And remember, they don’t need to be perfect.
If you’re looking for more generalized last minute Handmade Gift ideas for friends, check this list for lots projects to make ahead for Christmas for family, teachers, neighbors, etc.