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Step 4: Crafting Items to Stretch the Budget ~ Organizing a Spur of the Moment OCC Packing Party

As many of you know, crafting your own items to fill shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child can really stretch the budget while giving a very personal touch to the gift.  I know many of you craft all year for your own boxes and for packing parties you are involved in. While throwing together a spur of the moment packing party on a budget takes a lot of time, we still found some time to do some easy, quick to make handcrafted items to save on the budget and personalize the boxes.

I began with some scarves cut from fleece blankets I had purchased at after Christmas clearance sales.  I had enough for 36 scarves. While counting up the "warm" clothing we then had, we were still short by nine so we purchased some plain fleece from the local discount craft store and with just a yard and a fourth
we were able to get 10 scarves for about $5.75 total (the last "scarf", or scrap of fabric that is left over really, I will eventually sew some stuffed animals for next year's boxes).  Much cheaper than anything we could have purchased.

And of course on my list were Pillow Case Dresses.  We did some for the 5 to 9 year old and some for the 2 to 4 year olds.  I had all the supplies on hand, so these were free.  I timed myself to see how long these take to make.  It took me about 40 minutes to make one, if I do three at a time assembly line style it takes me about 1 1/2 hours total.  I love making these dresses.

Another item we made were mini fleece lovey blankies for the 2 to 4 year olds.  We made 45 of these at a cost of less than $.50 each (we made them 15" x 15" and were able to get 12 from 1 1/4 yards of fleece).

And last but not least, are my free Baby Fleece Bunnies. I had some of this fleece on hand leftover from a bed jacket my daughter had made for her grandmother whom she cares for.  We needed some more safe stuffed animals for the 2 to 4 year old boxes and I remembered making these from washcloths when my girls were little so decided to design some from fleece.  I'll do a tutorial on these soon if anyone is interested--no sew and super quick!  UPDATE:  Here is the tutorial, No-Sew Fleece Bunny Tutorial--Perfect Size for Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes.

I couldn't get a good picture of these, sorry.

You can find several DIY crafting instructions posts I've done all listed on this Simply Shoe Boxes Crafting Tutorial Index post.

Follow along with our family as I share our journey of The Spur of The Moment OCC Packing Party of 2013.

Disclosure: Links on Simply Shoeboxes may be affiliate partners or referrals.