There's no reason to spend a lot of money on presents during this recession, especially if you're crafty.
Full disclosure: I'm not particularly crafty, not nearly as crafty as my friend Julee. She's really good. But I never let lack of mastery stop me. For example, I'm no Slash, but I still play guitar in front of people, and I enjoy it immensely.
Here are a few gift ideas for the craft- and wallet-challenged.
My husband is a gar expert and a lot better at the visual arts than I am. This year he made a batch of gar-art or gart. He cut up a bunch of wood he had lying around, bought a few tubes of paint and viola. You don't have to paint fish! Paint whatever you love.
One year we went to a party where everyone had to bring an ornament. We made ours out of an old spark plug that we cleaned up and added tinsel to. The part you hang it with is just a twist-tie. It looks great and was cheap too--and anyone could do it.
This one is for the advanced crafters. My brother-in-law is a painter, a real painter of landscapes. Last year he made everyone in the family these tiny paintings of mossy rocks.
This next one has a naughty word so if you're easily offended, stop reading! A few years ago a dear friend of mine made me this needlepoint. I put it out every year, but sometimes I hide it when someone sensitive comes to call.
And don't forget, there's always jams, cookies and breads. This year I made a batch of homemade rocky road chocolates for my father-in-law. No photo though, because we already ate the ones we didn't send.
Don't let capitalism rule your holiday! Go make something.