I'm rubbish at thinking of presents for men. And men who don't use electronics are even more of a challenge. What can you make them a cover for?
Inspired by my friend Terri's crayon rolls for kids, this grown-up version gets its modern style from all the grey felt accessories I keep seeing this year, like this glasses case. With a little personalisation, it makes a lovely gift for the writer (or crossword-puzzler) in your life.
Want to make one yourself? Here's how.
Small strip of twill tape (to stamp on)
Rubber stamps and ink
From the grey felt, cut two rectangles 8" by 12", and one rectangle 4" by 12".
Onto a 3 1/2" strip of twill tape, stamp the lucky person's name using permanent ink (I use StazOn). I couldn't bear to pass up the rhyme for my granddad, Kenneth, and I hope that if you've got a Ben, Glen or Sven in your family, you'll make them a pen roll, too.
Sew the twill tape along one short edge of the small felt rectangle, using a zig-zag stitch around the edge.
Pin the small felt rectangle to the bottom side of one of the large felt rectangles, lining up the edges. Make sure your twill tape label is visible. Sew straight lines, using running stitch, across the width of the small felt rectangle, about an inch apart. These will hold the pens in place. Sew a couple of backstitches at the start and end of every row, to prevent the stitches unravelling.
Tip: Between rows, lift up the needle and foot, but don't snip the thread -- just begin the next row. You can go back and do all the snipping later, and save time and thread.
Sew all the way around the outside edge of the roll, making sure to go through all the layers and the elastic band.
P.S. In need of other gifts? Check out CMP's and WV's Holiday Gift Guides, and see if you can spot some familiar (Polaroid-framed) faces...