Ginger Made: Renfrew for Mom!

Pardon the photos– it’s just so dang dark these days and nearly impossible to take good pics!

Happy holidays, everyone! Hope you’re enjoying celebrations with dear ones and staying warm (if you’re in the northern hemisphere, that is)! Like some of you, I bet, I swore off handmade presents this year. I’ve spent far too many Christmas Eves feverishly knitting at 2:00am, desperately trying to finish a gift before the morning. Not this year! No handmade gifts, and no stress for me! But when I spotted this gorgeous, heathered wool jersey at Mood, what could I do? It’s my mom’s favorite color, and I knew I could make her a top quickly and easily, so I broke my vow.

This is yet another Renfrew top, a versatile pattern that’s a snap to fit and sew. Since I only needed two yards to make a version with long sleeves and a cowl, this sweater turned out to be a serious bargain and, in my opinion, a lovely gift. Wool jersey and sweater knits are perfect for sewing for others– you don’t have to do much fitting, but the wool adds a luxe quality to the finished object that’s really nice (plus it’s WAY faster than knitting a sweater for your mom… and your dad… and your sister… don’t ask me how I know that!)

So what about you? Did you stay up later than Santa making homemade gifts? What are your favorite handmade gift ideas?  Are you addicted to the Renfrew pattern, too?

36 responses

  1. What a gorgeous Renfrew! Your Mom sure is lucky… and you must be glad you didn’t need to work all night too. We did a handmade Christmas this year, only I didn’t me-make, no time or energy, so I just bought handmade gifts instead! Great compromise, although I have promised me-made in the new year!


    • That’s a great compromise! I like to pick out gifts from Etsy or places like that, too. That way everyone gets a handmade, unique item, but I don’t have to work my fingers to the bone. :)


  2. This looks fantastic – your mum is very lucky! I came to my senses this year and there were no handmade gifts for anyone. In fact, as of last month I’m on a handmade gift hiatus, so that I can be selfish:-) I do often still find myself thinking, ‘ooh, I could make that for [insert name here]’ but so far I’m staying strong and resisting!


    • It can be so overwhelming to make gifts for other people! I’m a really bad judge of how long it will take me to make something (I always think it will take me half or 1/3 of the time that it actually does), so I just end up feeling stressed out.


  3. Looks really nice and cosy! I’ve made 2 renfrews so far, and am a little ashamed to say I completely and utterly live in them. There’s two more cut out. As for Christmas presents, I made some for my sisters which turned out a bit more stressful than I thought – I made PJ bottoms, and as I have three sisters, that meant three. One of the fabrics drove me up the wall… not sure I’ll do it again next year, but it went down very well!


    • Renfrews are just so comfy and easy to wear! I wear mine allllllll the time. And yikes– PJ’s take longer than you would think to make them. I’m glad your sisters liked them, though! They’re a great gift.


  4. The Renfrew is a great gift, and can be sewn up quickly with little stress. Your mum looks really pleased with it (and she looks like a teenager as usual!). I keep asking my chap if he wants anything in a knit as this would have a greater chance of being made. Unfortunately he keeps asking for hard things (maybe just to wind me up to see my reaction when he asks if I’ve started work on his [requested item] yet!)


    • My husband is the same way! I offer pretty basic stuff, but he asks for things like a tuxedo (seriously?! a TUXEDO?!). Unfortunately, he’s requested a pair of jeans, so I guess I will have to get on that at some point in the new year. :)


  5. First of all that can’t be your mom – she looks like your sister. Secondly, I quit making gifts several years ago when I realized most of them meant more to me than the recipient although I think about making gifts sometimes. Thirdly, your Renfrew top is very pretty and looks nice on your lucky mom! Good work:)


    • Heeheeheee, everyone thinks she’s my sister (and unfortunately people sometimes think she’s my dad’s daughter… although he’s only two years older than her)! Handmade gifts should probably only go to people that will really appreciate them. Do you daughters ever request dresses? They must, since you’ve put together so many gorgeous ones over the last few years!


    • Isn’t she cute? I hope she enjoys wearing it. But yes, making gifts can make you feel bananas in an incredibly short time! My in-laws laugh at me every year when I visit for Christmas because I’m always frantically trying to finish something for my parents when I’m with them.


  6. Moms are totally worth breaking the “no handmade gifts this year” rule! Just this morning I was thinking about using a grey sweater knit to make a cowl Renfrew and as I was reading blogs in my feed reader, I saw yours and it sealed the deal. Love it, it looks so comfy and chic. Now I’m off to cut mine out!


  7. Your mum looks fantastic in this- what an awesome colour on her! I concur about the handmade gifts- I kick it etsy style so I can still have handmade but I’m not turning into crazy Christmas craft lady…:)


  8. Yay! I made my mom a pair of Renfrews too! And am also connecting on the sad bf who gets no handmade gifts- mine just wants blazers and jeans. Maybe in a few years if my skills quintuple? I’ll watch to see if you make a tux for your man.😉


    • Yours looks great! Your mom looks so cute in them! I’m really going to try to make a pair of jeans by Valentine’s Day (just to give myself a deadline) but I seriously doubt I will get them down. And yeah, I’ll make him “an awesome tuxedo like in ‘Dumb and Dumber'” freakin’ NEVER.


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