I had purchased this aroma therapy wrap bracelet at the Charleston market back in April from LowCountryEclectic: https://www.etsy.com/shop/LowcountryEclectic and I loved it. I wore it to work all of the time to help reduce my stress and probably looked pretty funny sniffing the bracelet from time to time when I was desperate for some calmness.
I got to thinking that this is something I could make and mail to my friends for Christmas. Many of them work in stressful environments and I thought they could benefit from this bracelet. I ordered all of the supplies; faux leather, clasps, findings, bottles and lavender on Amazon. Then I had the landscape artist at my place of work keep his eyes out for some good wood to recycle. He ended up bringing me some awesome Crape Myrtle branches that dry and look wonderful. My brother-in-law helped me to cut the little pieces of wood (since I like my fingers to much and didn't want any accidents). Then I pulled out the sander and drill to finish the wooden pieces and ready them for actual use. Then end result was pretty awesome. Everyone seems to enjoying them. Avg. supply cost was about $50 but it made at least 10 bracelets before I had to buy more faux leather and then I was able to make another 12 without needing anymore supplies.
Next I focused on creating a couple of napkin/mail holders. I got this idea from my soul sister at Lipstick on a Pig in Newberry, SC: https://www.facebook.com/Lipstick-on-a-Pig-1125591400807962/. My sister and I both purchased these at her place earlier this year for $10! I examined it and realized this would make another great gift at a low cost that I could make for someone. I found an SC license plate at an antique place in June for about 3.50 and earlier this fall I found 2 long pieces of brand new plywood sitting next to the Complex dumpster. I hulled them up to my 4th floor apartment and stored them on my patio. I also asked my friend who lives in NM but is from Michigan and devoted to Michigan to send me her old plates. I used the saw (myself this time) to cut 2 pieces of plywood down to the correct size to be the base. I stained them both and then used the end of an extra piece of plywood to put the license plate over and gently I worked on pounding the license plate down over the plywood to create the bend. I think using a soft mallet would have also worked. Once the license plate was bent on drilled matching holes on the plate and plywood and followed up with using 2 screws to hold the plate and plywood together. Fairly easily and a great look/talking piece.