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Forget Santa's Elves: Do It Yourself!

OK, so you can't knit a Nintendo. But otherwise, handmade gifts are a terrific alternative to store-bought stuff. They're affordable, they're personalized, they'll bring comfort and joy to the recipient -- and they needn't bring discomfort or frustration to you.

We have five items that even a crafts newbie can make, with the aid of easy-to-find products sold in crafts or sewing stores.

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Eleanor Levie