Get Inspired! 8 Last-Minute Holiday Heritage Craft Ideas

Looking for last-minute holiday heritage craft inspiration for over the holidays? Here’s a round-up of some of my favorite heritage and holiday crafts made by myself and Gems listeners. These are fantastic conversation starters that will delight your family members and tell the unique stories of your ancestors. The look great on display and can be customized for just about any holiday or occasion. Make a gift for yourself or someone you love!

Heritage Christmas Stocking

1. Watch this 2-part video series on my YouTube channel about how I created a homemade stocking that celebrates all the moms who came before me. It’s a crazy quilt design with embroidery and photos I transferred to fabric.

Here’s a handout with instructions.

Heritage-Themed Jewelry

There are SO many wonderful ways to wear our family history. Click below to see examples and instructions for each of these three ideas:

2. A single clip-on earring becomes a hair tie.
3. A pendant necklace featuring an old postage stamp references my family history.
4. A charm bracelet made with tiny framed photos of loved one.

If you like family history themed jewelry but don’t have the means to craft it, check out our brand new line of hand-made family history inspired jewelry. Order one today for the genealogist in your life (makes a great stocking stuffer!). 

Heritage Christmas Ornaments

5. A picture frame ornament has black and white photos inserted in the openings of small wooden craft frames. The frames are painted frames silver and hung with simple metallic twine.

6. The gorgeous ornament shown here, made by professional genealogist Amy Urman, was featured in Genealogy Gems Premium podcast episode 15 (Premium website membership required to access–but you can look at it here for free!). Amy takes old glass and crystal and scrapbooking paper and solder and creates these one-of-a-kind holiday tributes to her ancestors.

Heritage Calendar

7. Ring in the new year by making a calendar packed with family photos and even birthdays, anniversaries or other family celebrations. This was another great idea sent in by one of our listeners!

Holiday Heritage Wreath

8. You can make a family history-themed wreath with tiny photos of loved ones intertwined in the branches so that the faces of your loved ones can be part of your holiday celebrations. Click on the link above to see inspiring photos and find a link to a 4-part video tutorial.

More Holiday Heritage Craft Ideas from Genealogy Gems

Tis’ the Season: Make a Family Calendar

Whether for personal use or a family holiday gift, it’s a great time of year to make a family calendar. We heard from Genealogy Gems Premium member Carol, who shared her experience making calendars to share with her family. She actually sells hers her to relatives for the cost of printing.

“In 2005, I made my first calendar. The first one was black and white, with one or more old photos on the pages facing each month. I have every family member’s birthday on the calendar. I made a bunch of copies and sold them to family members for $5 each, which is about what it cost me to print them.

“Several years ago I got into digital scrapbooking. I nag family members all year long, but especially in September and October, to send me photos of various occasions – weddings, new babies, graduations, birthdays, family vacations, anything at all with family members in the photos. Last year was probably the first time I actually had TOO MANY photos to use. I think I’m getting better at nagging!

“I now do digital scrapbooking pages to display my collected photos. And I still put every family member’s birthday on the calendar. I’ve been having them printed at my nearby UPS store for several years now. They do such a great job and some of the same people have been doing it for so long that I don’t even need to see a proof before ordering my 35 calendars. I usually have to get a few more printed after Thanksgiving, too. So now my family can get a color spiral-bound calendar for $10 and they go like hotcakes.”

Find more ideas for heritage-themed crafts and displays (which make great gifts) on our Pinterest boards: Family History Crafts, Legacy Displays and Heritage Scrapbooking. Or share yours with us! We love hearing from you.

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