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Betsy Vardell

Betsy on Etsy: Gifts for Kids


When I was nine, my beloved aunt Rosemarie gave me a Christmas present. Thrilled by the anticipation of a surprisingly light package, I furiously tore open the box, within which, to my dismay, lay a tiny decorative pillow. 

Like most nine-year-olds, I failed to hide my bitter disappointment. It was, I shreiked, the worst present ever. My mother sent me to my room.

As an aunt to seven kids, I  am determined to never give a child such a lame gift. And so, in the spirit of Christmas (and thanks to input from critic —and mom-of-two —Alexandra Lange), I am delighted to share my Etsy-enabled (but pillow-free!) gift guide for the little ones.


Relive your own childhood — and make some little person's holiday a great one — with this vintage Fisher-Price Sesame Street play set for $99.


For the 21st century child, it's no longer enough to simply cut out a square and a rectangle. The refrigerator box-fort has come of age. ($200)


For the industrious child, Charlotte Packe has created instructive, all-ages sewing kits. And what to do with all the items they'll produce? Why, open an Etsy shop, of course! ($8+)


These geometric paper ornaments from Field Guide Design provide yet another innovative way to convert playtime into useful household items. The kits contain pre-cut and -scored card stock with easy-to-follow instructions. (25$)


Clever and instructional educational posters from Etsy shop NewDocuments. ($85 - $300)


In an age where so many of a child's possessions require an AC outlet, the humble rubber stamp will always remain a childhood favorite. Select from talktothesun's wide variety of hand-carved stamps, or have bespoke stamps made to order. ($10)


Posted in: Craft, Popular Culture

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