DIY Holidays

Will your holidays be different this year? Are you looking for ways to keep them special and personal without exposing you or your loved ones to higher risk? Are you trying decide how you can touch others’ hearts without getting too close? All of us have some new challenges for celebrating our fall and winter holidays this year. 

Let’s explore some ideas for putting a lot more of yourself in to the gifts and decorations of the holidays you celebrate.

The secret is to look closely at the special, unique things you can do.

Holiday Cards

Over the years has your list of cards to send and receive grown shorter? Perhaps now is the time to dust off the old address book and reconnect with people who have touched you in the past. 

  • Photos, poems and sketches can all add up to one of a kind greeting cards to send to our best friends and far flung family.
  • Nothing quite touches the heart like a hand-drawn Santa or snowman from a kid you love.
  • Books, magazines and Creativebug are full of clever ideas for turning bits of ephemera into works of art to be treasured for years. I recommend the books 100 Fresh and Fun Handmade Cards and Painted Paper for inspiration and instructions.


If you want to branch off from your normal holiday decorating, I found some easy, creative ways to decorate.

  • Create a vintage jewelry “tree”
  • Make found object garlands using natural or discarded materials.
  • It doesn’t take a lot of money, space or time to make your home a cheerful, comforting place. The books below have project ideas that range from super simple to fairly complicated. 

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Homemade Gifts

Personalizing gifts doesn’t have to mean staying up all night baking hundreds of cookies! 

  • Simple self-care, craft or cooking kits can be put together quickly and inexpensively.
  • Don’t knit the sweater, simply add initials or a favorite image to a pre-made garment.
  • Fabric paint a t-shirt or sneakers.
  • Embroider trim on some comfy socks.
  • Creativebug has a fun class on making Hanukkah gift wrap once your gifts are complete.

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Relax & Enjoy the Holidays

Looking forward to the coming celebrations means focusing on the things that make your holidays yours. Savoring the pleasure of putting a little of ourselves into the most important activities and giving ourselves permission to relax and enjoy the process. 

Follow the links throughout this article for examples and information about many ways to make the 2020 holiday season heartfelt, uplifting and unique.

Here are even more books full of creative ideas!

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Jayme Lyons has worked in the library Bookmobile department for 20 years. Her energetic style and deep desire to connect with others helps her bring her subjects to life.