Wednesday, December 07, 2011

easy, inexpensive, homemade gifts for your geeky and nerdy relatives

I will start with the most complicated gift because it entails embroidery.

This is a box that is the gift - not a gift box. I found a coloring page of Harry Potter I liked and traced it onto the fabric. Then I embroidered the outlines and used filling stitches for his hair, tie, and wand.

I pulled the embroidered fabric tight on a bulletin board and pinned it in place. I  used a Sharpie to color in his robe, and color a radiating pattern around him. Then I sprayed it with rubbing alcohol. The process was unnerving and I colored and resprayed it a number of times. I am not sure I will try this particular experiment again.

It was interesting to watch the fabric dry, the embroidery floss seemed to push and pull the inks around, the end effect is effective.

Oh, I forgot to mention I embroidered gold seed bead coming out of the end of his wand. Then I did my normal box magic. :)

I made another Muggle Deluminator.

I used a cheap black plastic switch plate (around two dollars) and silver stickers (a dollar a pack - I needed two). After, I applied the stickers, I sprayed it with a couple of coats of Krylon's Triple Thick Clear Finish to protect the stickers.

I taped the screws to the back and then I stapled label to the top. It reads:

Muggle Room DeluminatorTM
For muggles, life is complicated. The nuances of lighting rooms
for activity and darkening them for sleep can be frustrating.
Alleviate difficulties with a
'Muggle Room DeluminatorTM.'
By simple moving the switch up to LumoS the muggle can light a room.
By moving the switch down to NoX the muggle can darken a room.
No longer, does a muggle need to be embarrassed
when his wizarding friends come to tea!

A Star Wars Mood Notification Chart

This is another pretty easy project. I found a photo of Darth Vader's head I liked and duplicated. For each image, I came up with a adjective for a mood (I tried to be a bit goofy about this one).

After I printed it, I simply stuck it in a frame and glued a Scrabble tray that I painted black to the bottom. I added a dry erase marker and it is good to go.

For a fun touch, I did add the following text to the back of the frame:

The Force Sensitivity ChartTM

Are you frustrated by your non-enlightened cohorts, who are callously unaware to the nuances of The Force?

Do your minions constantly misunderstand you, resulting in their ultimate demise? Are you frustrated by the need to constantly acquire new minions when you've been forced to dispose of idiots? We have the solution for you!

Try the new Force Sensitivity ChartTM! The Force Sensitivity ChartTM will allow your subordinates to learn to recognize the subtleties of The Force. The chart comes with a display of the various fluctuations in the force that underlings must learn to recognize. After a short training period, your minions will soon easily recognize when you are irritated or pleased.

Instructions for using the Force Sensitivity Chart:

1.) Give each minion a copy of the chart.
2.) Keep a copy for yourself during the training period.
3.) When you walk up to a minion's desk, circle the Force mood that they must recognize in you at that moment.
4.) If they respond inappropriately, cut of their breath.
5.) If they respond appropriately, issue your command and watch as they execute it flawlessly.
6.) After several weeks of negative reinforcement, discard your chart. Your minions should refer to their charts when in doubt.

I will be sharing at:


  1. These are so much fun. I especially like the last one, hee hee.

  2. Oh you are so, so, clever. I will have to show Lily the mood chart!

  3. They're all good but the Darth Vader idea is WONDERFUL. My hubs would love that!

  4. You are a genious!! So creative! I love all of these!! *hugs*deb xoxoxxo

  5. Anonymous5:42 AM

    this is a comment on your other blog. Remember when taking the trip to Bible Class on Wednesday nights how we sang songs most of the way there cause Raf liked to sing songs. love nlm

  6. Ha ha ha! I love the Darth Vader mood chart! Thanks so much for linking up to Finished for Friday!