How To Make a Gift Card Holder // Simple Sewing Project

gift card holder

When you give a gift card as a gift, why not make a unique, homemade gift card holder to put it in? They only take 10 minutes to make and it’s a project in that you can use up some of your fabric scraps.

gift card holder

These gift card holders are so fun and simple to make and are great for “last minute” gift giving. This is a good beginner sewing project.

They only take a minimal amount of fabric (two 5 x 7-inch pieces) and a few snaps. You can make the gift cards a little more rigid by adding some lightweight interfacing, but this is optional.

fabric gift card holder items




1 – Using the free pattern, cut out 2. (1 lining/1 outer)

You can have them be different prints or the same.

2 – Cut out 1 interfacing (optional).


3 – Apply the interfacing to the WRONG SIDE of just one of the fabric pieces.

(bumpy side of interfacing down).

4 – Place the two pieces RIGHT SIDES TOGETHER.


5 – If you are adding a tag or label, do that now.

Using the pattern, apply the tag where suggested. This is totally optional. It helps to baste the tag in place before sewing the outer seam.

*** If you want to learn how to make your own labels, check out my tutorial HERE.

6 – Using a ¼ inch SEAM ALLOWANCE, start sewing at the point indicated, and continue to sew around and stop LEAVING A 1 ½ – 2 INCH OPENING.

Back stitching at the beginning and end of the seam.

7 – Clip corners and notch the curved edge.


Push out the corners with a “turning stick” or something with a blunt end.

9 – Tuck in the seam allowance from the opening you left.

Press all the edges well.

10 – Fold the bottom edge up 1 3/4 inches, and press.

Fold the top edge down so the height of the envelope is 2 ¼ inches. Press to make a crease.

gift card holder

11- Pin or clip the bottom section of the gift card holder in place and sew along one side, over the top, and down the other side using a top-stitch 1/8 inch from the edge.

Clip threads.

gift card holder turning

Gift Card Holder Snap Application

12- Poke Holes

Using the awl that comes with the kit, poke a hole in the top flap where indicated and mark the hole with a pencil where the second snap needs to be applied.

gift card holder snap 1

13 – Top Snap

Take one of the thumbtack-looking components and stick it through the hole you made at the top of the holder. (push through from outer fabric to inner)

14- Apply a female component.

Hold in place while you squeeze the two pieces together using the snap pliers.

15 – Repeat for the other snap.

Do the same thing with the other snap but poke the thumbtack piece through the hole from the outer fabric to the inner. Use the male snap piece this time.

16 – Tad-ah, that’s it! 


17- Insert your gift card into the gift card holder and you are ready to roll.







Picture of Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

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How To Make an Orange Pomander / Sweet Smelling Christmas Craft

orange pomander

Making an orange pomander before Christmas has become a little tradition in our family. It is such a relaxing, simple little craft that gathers everyone around the table for some quality time together, AND the best part is the AMAZING AROMA it produces.

This is a super simple holiday craft that the whole family can make. What I love about it, is that there is no set pattern or design to go by and they are quick to make. It’s actually quite relaxing and therapeutic.

orange pomander

Place several of these little orange/clove gems into a basket or bowl to make a beautiful holiday centerpiece, or I love the look of a single pomander sitting on a cabinet or shelf. Add a bow and a little note and they make a practical and usable homemade gift. I’ve even seen them added to a Christmas wreaths and hung on a Christmas tree.


What is an orange pomander?

The Orange Pomander is a fragrant spiced fruit that is popularly used as decor, incense, and a gift during the Fall and Winter Holidays

The word “pomander” derives from the French pomme d’ambre, meaning “apple of amber”—a reference to the round shape of the object

“The Pomanders were first recorded in Europe in the Middle Ages and were used as Herbal Amulets that were worn around the neck or placed in the home, with the intention of protecting one from Negative Spirits, Energies, harm, jealousy, envy, and protection from widespread disease.”

items needed orange pomander

How To Make Orange Pomanders

What you need:

  • Oranges that are firm, brightly colored, and free of blemishes. (You can also use limes )
  • A few toothpicks, paper clips, or other sharp poking instruments
  • Whole cloves

Optional Items:

  • rubber bands
  • masking tape/washi tape
  • ribbon
  • spice preservative mixture

Instructions Orange Pomanders

1 – If you want perfect circles on your pomanders, use rubber bands wrapped around the orange as guides.

You can also place tape around the orange and create your designs in the spaces not covered by the tape. Remove tape when done. The spaces left by the tape can work for placing a ribbon.

2- Or you can freehand your designs and just poke holes in the orange in the shapes you prefer.

You can create spirals, circles, stars, and snowflake shapes. Use your imagination!

wonder under janni tipTry to keep the holes 1/8-1/4-inch (the size of a head of cloves) apart. The orange will eventually “mummify” and shrivel and shrink, so you need to leave some room for the contraction to happen. You don’t want the cloves too close together.

Work in sections. When the design in one section is complete, immediately push the cloves into the pre-made holes.

How long does an orange pomander last?

Fresh pomanders will last about a week. Rotate the fruit often to prevent mold and discard them if they become moldy. By refrigerating them at night, you will prolong the life of the fresh fruit. I recommend making a few one week, and then making another one or two the next week, to space it out a bit.

orange pomander spice mix

You can also use a “spice mixture” to preserve the orange pomander for several months or some say even years. Place your finished pomander in a bowl with the ground spices and, using a spoon, start to coat the entire ball.

orange pomander brush

Brush off the excess with a crafting paintbrush. It will smell divine.

Spice mixture for longer-lasting pomanders:

To make the pomander balls last even longer, you can dry them. There are several methods to choose from for drying. The easiest and fastest way is to use a dehydrator.

Dry the pomanders on low to medium heat, about 100° to 115° until the fruit is hard. The dried pomander ball will feel light and sound hollow when you tap on the fruit.

I hope you enjoy making these as much as I do.





Picture of Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More

Natural Sore Throat Remedies / 4 Tried and Tested Solutions That Work

sore throat REMEDIES

Do you have a sore, scratchy throat? Many different things can cause a sore throat. I’ve got four tried and tested sore throat remedies that really work.

Whether straining your voice, a virus or cold, a bacterial infection or dry air… you want the pain to go away.

As some of you know, I’m all about using natural remedies when you can, and when it comes to sore throats I’ve got four tried and tested solutions that really work.

I don’t ever post things that I haven’t tried myself. That is why there are only four solid things that I’m going to post about here.

Yes, there are a lot of other sore throat remedies out there, but these are some that my family and I have used with great results.

One of my herbalist friends and mentors gave me these recipes years ago, and we refer to them frequently. As always, please check with your healthcare provider before using any herbal remedy.

sore throat REMEDIES

Sore Throat Remedies #1

Honey, Cayenne, and Garlic Preparation

Before you jump into the car and go to the clinic, where you’ll most likely be prescribed an antibiotic, start this remedy when you first start having symptoms, and most likely you won’t need the antibiotic.

This is very effective in treating even strep throat within 24-48 hours.


  • 1 TB raw honey
  • ¼ tsp. Cayenne pepper
  • 3 cloves minced garlic (yes, that much garlic)


Put everything into a little bowl and mix well. Take ½ tsp. three times a day.

The honey coats the throat, the cayenne draws blood to the area, and the garlic stimulates the immune system and acts as an antibiotic.

Here are a few links showing the amazing properties of these ingredients. Honey, Garlic, Cayenne Pepper

sore throat orange juice

Sore Throat Remedies #2

Orange Juice and Cayenne Pepper

Pour a little orange juice into a cup and add 2-4 shakes of cayenne pepper. Mix well and drink quickly.

It does burn, but just for a few seconds. This brings more circulation to the area and helps draw away the infection.

sore throat remedy salt

Sore Throat Remedies #3

Salt Water

Mix a teaspoon of salt, preferably sea salt or REAL salt, with eight ounces of quite warm water. Gargle the whole mixture several times a day. This will increase the blood supply to the area by washing away mucus and dilating capillaries, thereby enabling better circulation of infection-fighting antibodies.
sore throat

Sore Throat Remedies #4

Lymph Massage Oil


In a 2 oz. dark-colored glass jar, combine essential oils, and fill with Pure Virgin Olive Oil or fractionated coconut oil. Apply a dropper lid and shake well.

***You may want to store this in the refrigerator to keep the oil from going rancid.

Lymph Massage Instructions

Apply the oil all around the neck, especially below and behind the ears. With a very light motion, drag your hand down the neck towards the sternum area and around the ear.

Go easy because this area may be very tender. You don’t have to apply a lot of pressure.

The essential oils will penetrate the skin and enter the bloodstream to help fight infection.

Alternative Remedies Booklet

These remedies are included in my ALTERNATIV REMEDIES BOOKLET.  You can locate it HERE.

I’m working on an EBOOK version now, so stay tuned. 

I hope these sore throat remedies come in handy some day.

****As always, please check with your healthcare provider before using any herbal remedy.

Picture of Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More