Coming up with unique and sentimental holiday gifts can be a struggle. With Christmas just round the corner, we’ve rounded up some DIY ideas from shops in the East York area to help you get through your gift list this season.
The Clay Room is a pottery themed arts and crafts store located on the Danforth. The studio allows people to easily create unique and personalized ceramic pieces, without the hassle of attending long, structured pottery classes.
“It’s a great way to spend time with friends or family,” says owner Desiree Maklin. “It’s a great place to make a treasured keepsake, to make a gift that’s more personal than just generically buying it from the store.”
Expect about a one-week turnover from creation to completion.
This christmas, give the gift of personalized alcohol, named after your lucky recipients. Fermentations is a winemaking supply store also located along the Danforth. Torontonians are invited to create wine, beer, mead and cider specific to them.
“It’s a nice thing to make and it certainly saves a bit of money,” says Scott Fitches, a distiller at the store. “The quality is a lot higher than people expect. You end up with craft quality beer and award-winning wine for a lot less than you’d pay at LCBO.”
The Purple Purl is a Leslieville Yarn cafe on Queen Street East. Unlike other retail and craft stores, The Purple Purl has a strong social component. Anyone is welcome to learn, participate in and share all things yarn with the community. It is a relaxing way to make accessories for your family and friends at Christmas.
“There’s nothing more special than something that’s handmade and made with love,” says co-owner Milo Schechter. “Something that you can say that you’ve made and created, I think that’s the best kind of gift you can ever give anyone.”
With their pre-Boxing Day, Boxing Day sale on Dec. 20, the Purple Purl is an affordable place to make cosy gifts this season.
Paint Cabin is an art studio and espresso bar on Gerrard Street East. They offer an authentic DIY painting experience that is perfect for an evening alone, a date night, or a group outing. With on-site framing, Paint Cabin is the perfect place to make personalized gifts. Artists are able to finalize their pieces right away and take them home to be wrapped.
“I think much like the society we’re in today, we’re all very much technical and digital heavy,” says owner Gord Wong. “To get a gift that’s been made by your own hands, it’s pretty much priceless.”
No Christmas gift is complete without a card and beautiful packaging. Deserres is an art supply store on the Danforth near Woodbine Avenue that provides everything necessary for the best homemade cards and gift bags. Stop by Deserres this holiday season and pick up something special.