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RunningElfIf, like me, you think every year at about this time, “I really ought to get started on making some Christmas gifts…” Tom Iovino at Tom’s Workbench can help. He’s compiling nice projects that – and this is important – can be built quickly (because I certainly don’t recommend building a spice chest in three weeks; that would be certifiable).

So check out Tom’s site for some simple and elegant projects that you’d be proud to give.

Country-Tool-Toy-Chest_Page_1_Image_0001Also, have a look at our many “I Can Do That” projects, which are available free to members (membership is also free – look for the “Register” link at the top right of the home page). I built a great many of those projects – and even years ago as a beginner, I could produce good work in just a few hours of shop time with those plans. (I recommend the “Country Tool/Toy Chest“; I made bunches of those for friends’ kids, and after hard use, they’re still solid)

ICDT_Fish_Sticks_Page_1_Image_0001Another popular ICDT project – and this one took me maybe two hours to complete – was “Fish Sticks“; I think I’ve received more pictures of reader builds of this fun little piece than any other (and lots of them were in shapes other than fish – consult a beginner’s coloring book for outlines of other possible shapes, or draw your own). I actually use “Fish Sticks” every day (well, every night) – it’s under my laptop at home to help with air flow (it’s an old laptop, prone to overheating)*.

So what I am making this year? No idea. I guess I need to come up with something. Fast. Let’s take a look at Tom’s “Last-minute Elf” pages together…

— Megan Fitzpatrick

p.s. We’ve collected many of the “I Can Do That” projects from the magazine, plus additional simple projects in one book – and today, Dec. 2, it’s on sale for $10 in our store…but I don’t know how long that price is valid.

* I’m not kidding – see? computer

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