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A (Mostly) Handmade Gift Guide for Easter and First Holy Communion

Last night, my friend Elisa posted a picture of something amazing she made: a fold-out, fabric icon book in a leather cover.

[img attachment=”94876″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”icon book” /]

I’ve never seen anything like it. (More pictures here.) Very kid-friendly, ideal for Mass, but not cutesy or sentimental, like so many religious goods for kids — and it would make a beautiful devotional display for adults, too.

I wanted to spread the word about her gorgeous icon book — and then it occurred to me that there are lots of other Catholic crafters and artisans out there who have lovely goods for sale. So I put out a quick request, and the result is this little feature.

First, check out Elisa’s shop, Door Number 9, where she sells a wide variety of quirky, geekish handmade items, along with little oratories and contemporary styled religious jewelry, at her Etsy shop, Door Number 9. We have a few of her products and love them. Elisa graciously used my name, SIMCHA, as a coupon code for my readers, for 15% off a $25 purchase or more.  It expires Easter Sunday, March 27.

If you have handmade religious goods for sale, feel free to add a link to your shop in the comments!

PLEASE NOTE: Many, but not all, of these sellers can ship before Easter. PLEASE check the delivery details on the individual pages, especially if you are ordering a custom-made item.

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Annie Tillberg makes the items for sale at Annery’s Handmade: Take a look at this sweet Roses Gift Set, meant for little hands that fidget or older hands that can’t grasp small rosary beads anymore:

[img attachment=”94882″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”rosary roses annery” /]

Also for sale: Communion veils and knit and sewn infinity scarves.

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Bumblebee Bonnets: ADORABLE. Handmade bonnets for babies age newborn to 36 months.

[img attachment=”94883″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”bumblebee bonnets 2″ /]

Bumblebee Bonnets can deliver by Easter. Check out the selection of fabrics available now, and see the most lovely bonnet model in the world.

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You’ve probably seen the cheeky ads for Catholic Beard Balm, featuring a quote from St. Augustine, “Catholic Saint and Beard Enthusiast.” Beard Balm which is made in small batches and comes in a variety of “Catholic aromas” like chrism and incense — and you can buy combination packs like “Crusader” or “Zealot” (tee hee). A portion of proceeds goes to go to support the ministry work of ProjectYM.

[img attachment=”94905″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”little flower lip balm” /]

The Catholic Balm Company also makes Little Flower Lip Balm, in rose, mint, and citrus scents.

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An item I can vouch for myself: a nice little Papal flag decal for your car, locker, etc.

[img attachment=”94906″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”papal flag sticker” /]

These aren’t actually handmade, but what the heck, who wouldn’t want a Papal flag for a buck? (That’s a special price – limit one $1 decal per household). Peter’s Mark also offers Catholic T-shirts and other clothing, infinity scarf veils, handmade rosaries, and more. Every purchase from Peters Mark benefits a Catholic ministry.

 

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Custom Catholic dolls! You can send an image of any saint, and The Little Rose Shop will make a 19″ doll to order.

[img attachment=”94907″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”saint dolls” /]

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 How about some sweet little bunny bags for your little wabbits? Faith and Fabric will embroider your child’s name on these cute, reusable bags:

[img attachment=”94908″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”bunny bags” /]

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I hope you’re already familiar with the hilariously honest Mama Knows, Honeychild. Heather Scheider has recently opened a shop called Honeychild Forest, where you can find a variety of banners, ornaments, and decorations for your home. Here’s an awesome decal for your car:

[img attachment=”94912″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”small mighty decal” /]

Also available: Yes, they are all ours. Heather has more items for sale, beyond what you can find on her shop, on Instagram under the name honeychildforest .

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I was delighted to meet Paula and Charles Rohrbacher in Philadelphia this summer. Charles is an immensely talented iconographer, and Paula makes his works into little shrines.

[img attachment=”94914″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”icon shrine” /]

They don’t currently have a website, but their the New Jerusalem Workshop Facebook page is here, and you can contact them at ikon@alaska.net. They currently have the following icon shrines available:
Mother of God, St Agatha (Patroness of Women With Breast Cancer), The Visitation, The Annunciation, Christ The Teacher, The Holy Family, and Mary Magdalene With The Risen Christ.
They also offer notecards featuring Charles’ splendid icons. 
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I featured a bit of the joyful work of Matthew Alderman just after Christmas. All of Alderman’s work is fresh and striking! I love this image of St. Agnes:

[img attachment=”94917″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”st agnes notecard” /]

 

Alderman’s studio has much more information about his work and how to purchase or commission an original piece. You can also find other prints, notecards, and other items for sale here.

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 Another Catholic artist has a smaller selection at present, because she just had a baby! But do check out the original paintings of Laura Chaptman at her new shop, Sweet Oak Gallery:

[img attachment=”94918″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”sweet oak” /]

I also like the “The Lord walks among the pots and pans” watercolor.

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Anyone who follows my blog knows that I’m hopelessly devoted to the lovingly handmade cold process soap by my dear friend Robin. Robin is on hiatus for the moment, but her store still has plenty of gorgeous, fragrant soaps for sale in many varieties. Here’s my family’s favorite: just plain goatmilk

[img attachment=”94919″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”goatmilk” /]

Wonderful for dry skin, very gentle and dense. Robin also has some sweet flower-shaped soaps for sale, along with a variety of beautiful and aromatic hand-cut bars. 

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Another option for handmade soap: Clean River Products. Christine Lyons says: “Our specialty is Chrism Scented Soap.”

[img attachment=”94920″ align=”aligncenter” size=”full” alt=”chrism soap” /]

“This is a perfect gift for the newly Confirmed, Ordained, or for anyone who would love to be reminded daily of the outpouring of Grace received from the Sacraments. We use only the highest quality essential oils to scent our soaps.”

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AND NOW FOR THE ROSARIES!

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Every well-appointed Catholic home has a large collection of broken rosary bits. If you’re ready for something that will hold together forever, check out my friend Kyra’s awesome new chainmail-and-hematite rosary.

[img attachment=”94891″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”chainmail rosary” /]

While I was writing this post, her rosaries sold out, but she is making more!

These rosaries would make excellent First Holy Communion gifts, and more will be listed soon. In the meantime, check out Kyra’s strikingly beautiful and amazingly strong handmade chainmail jewelry at Iron Lace Design.

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More custom-made, one-of-a-kind rosaries and chaplets from Allison Kinyon of  Rosaries by Allison. There is a huge selection in a wide price range. Here’s one that caught my eye, because I am a sucker for sea glass:

[img attachment=”94893″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”sea glass rosary” /]

Many lovely and unusual rosaries for sale. Several rosaries are ready to ship in time for Easter.

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Another personal favorite: wrap-around rosary bracelets and other goods from Apple and Azalea, handmade and designed by my dear friend Theresa Barger, who lives in Webster, NH. It was hard to choose one to feature, but this swirled red brecciated jasper rosary with jet black glass Our Father beads is especially striking.

[img attachment=”94894″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”jasper rosary bracelet” /]

I have one of Theresa’s rosary bracelets, and it is lovely and sturdy. I wear it as everyday jewelry, and it means I can always find an untangled rosary when I need it!

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Athey Rosaries aims to provide “high quality, beautiful rosaries that will inspire closeness with Jesus through Our Lady.” Here’s a beauty: The San Damiano lapis and sterling silver rosary

[img attachment=”94922″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”san damiano rosary” /]

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Ruth Tucker makes the beautiful rosaries at Loreto Rosaries, including this striking one:

[img attachment=”94924″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”loreto rosaries” /]

Each rosary is strung on 49 strands of stainless steel, nylon-coated flexible wire, which holds up to 24 pounds of tensile strength. Each rosary is double crimped at each connection with brass or Sterling Silver crimps for extra security. I also crimp the bead caps to the Pater beads on all 8mm rosaries.

This homeschooling mom of seven offers a wide variety of rosaries, chaplets, jewelry, and rosary bracelets, many customizable.

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Pam Acker of Chaplets-‘n’-Such says:
I make all kinds of rosaries & chaplets, but my most popular item by far is the Little Crown of the Blessed Virgin Mary — people order them from all over the world!

[img attachment=”94895″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”little crown” /]

 The chaplet is an older devotion promulgated by St. Louis de Montfort as part of his method of Total Consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary.  He encouraged his spiritual children to recite it every day if possible.
Also available: sturdy knotted cord rosaries.
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Here’s a newer shop: Snowshoe Rosaries by Katie Flaherty. All handmade rosaries and one-decade rosary bracelets are ready to ship by Easter in the US. Here’s a lovely, delicate one that would thrill any First Communion girl:

[img attachment=”94896″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”snowshoe rosary” /]

Snowshoe Rosaries is based in snowy Marquette, Michigan, the former home of Venerable Frederic Baraga, Marquette’s first bishop and current candidate for beatification. Baraga would traverse the vast diocese in winter on foot, and the shop name comes from his nickname, “the Snowshoe Priest.”

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Kelli Johnson of Prayer and Sparkle is offering 15% of orders placed before Easter! Use coupon code LENT16 when you order. Here’s a neat-looking Divine Mercy chaplet with a southwestern flair:

[img attachment=”94897″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”mercy chaplet agate” /]

Kelly says: My rosaries are made with a variety of genuine gemstones, from the inexpensive to the rare, and are strung on flexwire.
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Et Corde is offering heirloom-quality rosaries and jewelry in many different styles. Here’s a wire-wrapped St. Patrick chaplet made of bronze and aventurine:

[img attachment=”94898″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”st patrick chaplet” /]
Another beautiful choice: The St. Therese of Liseiux Rose Rosary, handcrafted with pink rhodonite and bronze roses.

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Shannon Wendt of Oganic Mama’s Shop says: “Everything in my shop ordered before Palm Sunday, can be shipped in time and delivered by Easter!”

I like this chunky rosewood rosary bracelet — a great less-frilly choice for a First Communion gift. Shannon also makes soft, food-grade silicone “Chews Life” rosaries in all colors

[img attachment=”94902″ align=”aligncenter” size=”medium” alt=”chews life rosary green” /]

because it may look like a rosary to you, but to your baby, it’s an ideal teether. Cute!

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Thanks to all the artisans who contributed to this post! If you have handmade religious items for sale, please feel free to leave a link in the comments.

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