What do you do with your finished projects? Have you ever thought to....

@Loverbear (4928)
United States
July 12, 2008 4:33pm CST
I make teddy bears and other soft animals. I sell quite a few of them and I give away even more since I was blessed with the ability to make these sweet creations. I am wondering what you do with your finished creations. Do you sell them, give them away to friends....Have you given consideration to donating them for gifts to the less fortunate for Christmas? I guess I got caught up with the Christmas spirit from watching the Christmas in July movie marathons on several of my favorite channels. I stopped to think about the fact that we "hint" at things we want for Christmas, we give wonderful gifts to friends, neighbors and co-workers. We seem to have tunnel vision about who and where our creations go. There are people that are forgotten. There are people in nursing homes that are never visited, they are just deposited there to wait for the end. No one cares enough to stop by and see how they are doing. My Mom and I gave cologne, night gowns and other items to one of our local nursing homes and they were thrilled. They have so many patients that are FORGOTTEN! I am making an additional twenty teddy bears just to go to nursing homes for the people that are forgotten at Christmas time and other times of the year. I challenge other crafters to donate some of their creations to nursing homes, homeless shelters, gift collection agencies and where ever there are people who are forgotten, unable to provide Christmas or just forgotten. We have troops overseas that will be away from home that could really use a boost from someone who cares and wants to give. I know that in this time of bad economy there isn't too much money, but think about your MyLot earnings. We're socking away our money for something we want, how about taking some of that money and helping make someone else happy? It is a wonderful way to make yourself feel good about not only yourself, but to make someone else feel good too!
2 people like this
8 responses
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
14 Jul 08
I think it's a wonderful challenge.....I have adopted each year a troop or a group of troops and sent care packages and have mailed over 450 hand stamped greeting cards to the main commisary in Afghanistan.....I also donate them to nursing homes for bingo prizes...In the past I also made many pairs of mittens for the Salvation army at Christmas.....And it's such a wonderful feeling when you share your crafts or heart with others with so much less. I think the challenge is a wonderful way to make more aware that it is so gratifying to give to others. Good discussion!
1 person likes this
@Loverbear (4928)
• United States
15 Jul 08
Thank you for the compliment! I was hoping to open some eyes and minds out there to the fact that it is rather nice to share. I have gotten answers for the most part from people who, like me, find it so much nicer to give crafted items to those people who don't get much. I have been trying to get that point across to a friend of mine, and it seems to go in one ear and out the other with no stops in between. She just doesn't realize that instead of criticizing those who don't have she could give a little and receive a bunch more in return. I am realizing just how unhappy she really is. I know she is jealous of my having my own home and car. She and her husband rent and since they live in town they take the bus or depend on me. I feel sorry for her and the fact of her unhappiness. I tried to tell her that we make ourselves as happy or unhappy as we choose to be. In my choosing to be a happier person, I find that I give more of myself and my crafted items than if I were to choose to be unhappy and grasping. I have found that when I am planning a bear or other craft, I am so happy and excited. It, for me, is simply a total enjoyment of art...I have done photography work (I have a photo in B/W of a couple of piles of cow poop with the phrase "$hit happens...I took the photo close to where I live in the country) Not everyone sees the humor in the picture...but I love it because I created it. Our crafts are from our hearts, and the best crafts come from a happy heart. It shows so much not only to the person making the craft, but also the recipient too. I wish I could give more, but with college classes and trying to finish remodeling the house that Mom left me when she passed away in 2000, I haven't got the time to do the amount of crafting I would like to do. Where do you get the information on adopting the troops? I might as well add more to my plate. If I can make another person happy-or at least get a little smile out of them my day is made.
1 person likes this
@jillhill (37384)
• United States
15 Jul 08
The first set of 8 I adopted were a communications team serving in Iraq....I got the name of a gal off www.anysoldier.com so when I sent her packages I sent for all of them. She said that most of the time the packages were gone in just minutes! For Christmas I made and stuffed 8 matching stockings so they could all hang them up! They loved them. The second set I got after the first went home was from www.splitcoaststampers.com The gal that ran the commisary in Aftghanistan was from Minnesota where I am from.....she wanted cards for the troops to use so between me having a stamping day with my sisters and my friend we sent over 400 cards to them and I included other treats in their packages. The one I have now is my daughters friends husband....I'll be sending his first package tomorrow. I feel sorry for your friend...when you give you get a hundred times back.....
1 person likes this
@Loverbear (4928)
• United States
16 Jul 08
Thank you for the information. I will definitely go to the first site you posted. I just wish people could pick up on my asking for them to just adopt one person and make one extra item to give as a gift to that person who was forgotten. I just finished giving my two mini Dachshunds a bath and am about to start working on a teddy bear that I am giving as a birthday gift on Saturday. I thought I would do a little posting before I got started. I was thrilled to find your answer to my question. Thanks so much!!!! Toni
• United States
13 Jul 08
You sound like a wonderful, caring person. I'm not as proactive as you are, but I do make sure to give a portion of all of my creations to those more needy. As I posted in another thread, I took a bunch of old comforters that were donated to me and sewed them up into about 200 dog blankets to donate to the local animal shelter. It didn't cost me much, but the time helped a lot of animals stay more comfortable. I also donated a bunch of knitted scarves made out of some very pink yarn to a girl's mentoring program. The group has since asked me to make more, which I happily did, as they're now using them as a membership gift. Plants are my favorite craft, and I donate extra divisions to a local nursing home and have helped them set up a garden where those that are interested can do little gardening projects and have a plant to care of on their own. It means a lot to those who used to be able to garden and have a love of it to have a small, low-maintenance planter in their windowsill or to be able to do a little care outdoors in the community garden. Keep up the good work! It's great to be able to do things for others, and I take more pleasure out of knowing that my creations and crafts are in good homes that might not otherwise have them than I do selling them, most of the time.
@Loverbear (4928)
• United States
13 Jul 08
You sound like such a wonderful person too! I hadn't thought about donating to the local animal shelter and we have a lot! I am going to start doing that too, as they need all the help they can get. I started the bear business with the knowledge and belief that I would do it only if when I got the wild hair that I could remove a price tag from a bear and give it to a person. I had one man in tears because he always wanted a teddy bear and his family was dirt poor and couldn't afford to even buy him a used one. I gave him his very first teddy bear!!! We have been friends ever since. Another bear went to a young man who had had a heart lung transplant. I didn't know it at the time. He kept going by my booth and hugging one particular bear. Towards afternoon I caught him hugging the bear again and I just couldn't stand it. When he put the bear down I grabbed it was he turned to leave, removed the tag and raced from the booth and placed it in his arms. He too cried...he couldn't afford the bear and just "knew" that the bear would be his best friend and would go through the next surgeries with him. I will always have the opinion of if I can't give my bears away when I want to, I won't make them anymore.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Jul 08
I do crochet, and I too, every year donate hats & scarfs (all sizes) and baby blankets, sweaters, and booties and then some afghans to the church. I work on this all year and make one large donation. I just love it! I get to use what ever colors, patterns, and stitches I want and someone else benefits. This year I'm not sure where I'll donate. We're moving to VT and it will be unfamiliar sites to me. So I thought maybe I would check with the police dept. and see if they make up packages for familys and individuals. I try to make it a "local" donation because it helps "my" community and postage has gotten so expensive. Are your bears sewn, knitted, crocheted? You have REALLY made a wonderful post and I hope that many others read it and act on it. Thank you
@Loverbear (4928)
• United States
13 Jul 08
I sew the bears, although I am currently working on a miniature crocheted one. I crocheted a cat that I entered into the fair and am anxiously waiting for the fair to open so I can see how I did. I also made a "lady" bear out of mohair dressed in a dark blue dress with gold threads running through it. I found a rhinestone brooch that the back was missing on that I sewed to the neck of the dress. I also made a mohair dog that was so realistic looking that I was nearly kicked out of the local Wal Mart for bringing a live dog in (I was looking for a collar for him to wear to the fair!). All my donations are local. I feel that I should donate to the community that has supported my business for all these years. A suggestion about the distribution of your items, contact social services and the hospitals. They will have a good idea of those people who would benefit from your wonderful work! Where do you get your yarn? I find so much yarn at the local thrift shops and have a stash that doesn't quit. Unfortunately when Mom passes away the family just bundles up everything and hauls it to the nearest thrift store. I have gotten yarns that sell for as much as $14 a skein. I have a stash of different colors and textures that I will be knitting a vest for myself in a couple of months when the weather here gets cooler. LOL- right now it is hot enough to cook a steak on the hood of my car...and it would come out well done!
1 person likes this
• United States
13 Jul 08
Much of my handmade items are sold in my online shop and at craft shows and craft fairs. I do donate knitted scarves and hat sets to homeless shelters and needy single Moms and their children. I have a few scarves I plan on donating again this year. This year I'll also be donating several skeins of yarn and a knitting loom to a group that is making scarves and hats for the needy.
1 person likes this
@venshida (4837)
• United States
13 Jul 08
I have only sold a few. I give my craft items to family friends, and also charitable organization. I usually crochet baby afghan, and give them to my local hospital. I have also gave hats to the homeless shelter.
@saundyl (9690)
• Canada
16 Jul 08
I make my projects through out the year and sell them at our local Hobby fair in November. I don't make & save enough to do more than one fair a year as I give them as gifts and donations for church sales as well. I like the hobby fair because I get some money back for the projects and it helps me be able to afford to continue to do my hobbies.
@Loverbear (4928)
• United States
16 Jul 08
I do work at getting my money back from my crafts (especially since I work in Mohair and the mohair fabric for my bears costs between $125 and $500 a yard!!) But I also try to give back to the community that supports me. I brought this up because of the fact that Christmas is coming and even if we were to each adopt one older person and give them one small present, wouldn't it make both you and that person feel better? Christmas is a time of love and giving, and it is so sad when the nurse at the nursing home that my Mom and I dropped the stuff at was so thrilled that some of the patients, that were put in the facility and forgotten like a pair of old shoes at the back of a clothes closet, were actually going to get gifts! The main reason that I brought this up was not to make my fellow crafters feel like they needed to adopt a whole community, but if they just made one extra item and set it aside as a gift for a forgotten person, what a difference it would make for both the crafter and the person receiving the gift.
@kittenmc (465)
• United States
16 Jul 08
That is so wonderful of you. I don't have time to sew much latley, but I like giving mine to family or the nursing homes. I had thought of start selling to make extra money, but because I take care of my mother, I don't have time to do the sewing I was doing. Good luck to you! And, Many blessings for blessing others!
• United States
12 Jul 08
I keep what I make, 'cause I make them for me. o_o