Gift IOU – free printable download

There’s nothing nicer than a hand-made gift – after all, as a character from the one of my girls’ favourite Christmas story books Angelina Ballerina’s Christmas by Katharine Holabird said, “A home made gift comes straight from the heart”, and I think she’s right.  Something that you have made yourself tells the recipient that you have thought carefully about them, chosen yarn to suit them and given your precious time to make something that you believe they will love.  It’s wonderful to make decisions and lists and cast on, knowing that your hard work will be much appreciated.

A hand-made gift can also be super-stressful.  It doesn’t matter whether it’s for Christmas, a birthday, a baby gift or any other event that you can think of, there are times when you realise that you’re just not going to get finished in time.  I have been that person knitting till way after midnight on Christmas Eve so that I can have something wrapped and ready for the next morning, and it’s not fun.  We’ve still got a few weeks to go, but if your to-do list is longer than the number of hours left in the days before Christmas, that won’t be making you feel that “all is calm”!

A year or so ago, I didn’t quite finish a pair of socks that should have been ready for Christmas morning.  No amount of late-night Christmas Eve knitting was going to solve this, so I decided that I would give one sock and an IOU.  To my surprise and relief my Dad, who should have been wearing new Christmas socks, spent the day laughing every time he looked at his IOU note and suggesting that perhaps he should hop in his one sock until the other one was ready.  In the end, I had to remove the lone sock from his grasp and put it away!

It made me realise that sometimes, it really doesn’t matter if we don’t finish in time.  Our intentions in making something are clear and the gift recipient is often as pleased to know that it is coming as they are to have it in their hands.  Sometimes, we just don’t have enough time for a variety of reasons and frantically knitting when you know you should be doing something else is not the way to a stress-free gift.  Sometimes, it’s OK not to be finished.  If you find yourself in this situation, you might find this useful – feel free to download and print out this IOU to give to your gift recipients and take the pressure off yourself.  After all, it is the season to be jolly!

Click HERE to download your IOU!


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23 Responses

  1. Amy at love made my home says:

    What a fun idea!

  2. Jan Maier says:

    I'll chuckle all day when Ii think of your dad's comments about his one sock/IOU gift. Thanks for this great idea and the download. I'd already decided to move my blanket gift for my daughter in law to a Valentine gift but I know I'll use the IOU in the future. XO

    • Winwick Mum says:

      I'm glad I made you smile! I think we forget sometimes that we all only have 24 hours in a day and sometimes life just gets in the way! If this helps to stop someone spontaneously combusting because they've got too much on, I'll be happy! 🙂 xx

  3. Ann Shepherd says:

    Your lovely story reminded me that some years ago I was trying to get a jumper finished for my husband in time for Christmas. I realised it was never going to happen so I gift wrapped all the pieces I'd done, as well as the part that was still on the needles. The best thing was that I had no reason to feel guilty about knitting on Christmas day. (Not that I have guilty feelings very often about knitting, you understand.)

    • Winwick Mum says:

      And I bet your husband didn't mind at all! We set ourselves such high hurdles sometimes and often there just aren't enough hours in the day 🙂 xx

  4. Bossymamma says:

    Thank you! This is ideal. My son and his partner asked for hand-knitted socks for Christmas but there will be an unavoidable delay so I can use this!

  5. Zoe says:

    That is so funny! "Couldn't be bothered." I love it!

  6. Vicky says:

    I still remember frantically trying to weave in the ends on the Cosy Stripe blanket which was a gift for my partner as they were about to arrive on Christmas Day. That was pretty stressful. I could have done with this printable then 😀

    • Winwick Mum says:

      It really is stressful to be trying to finish something on the last minute, isn't it? I'm sure your partner loved the blanket though! xx

  7. Carole Williamson says:

    I love that idea and it really made me smile. Thank you so much

    Love Carole from Rossendale Lancashire xx

  8. Anonymous says:

    I love your Blog I am having trouble finding the right size needles as some don't ship to AUST but as soon as I find them I will be making my first socks .
    PS I have ordered your sock book from amazon . I love how you explain it all …

    • Winwick Mum says:

      That's wonderful, thank you! I hope you find the needles you want soon – it's worth having a look at some of the UK companies if you haven't already as they will ship worldwide, and of course there's always Amazon and Ebay if you really get stuck! xx

  9. michelle says:

    a few year ago i had intended to knit my husband a pair of hunting socks as part of his christmas gift well i ran out of time, so i wrapped the yarn and gave it to him he was puzzled when he opened the yarn till i told him that was his hunting socks we both got a good laugh out of it

  10. Thank you What a great idea

  11. Corinne says:

    When our younger daughter was around 9 or 10, I knit her a jumper with a big panda on the front. I stayed up until silly o clock on Christmas eve to finish it! She loved it so it was worth it.
    Merry Christmas to everyone!

    • winwickmum says:

      Oh that definitely sounds worth the effort! I always worry that I won’t get any presents if I’m still up when Father Christmas visits, though 🙂 xx

  12. Bonnie W says:

    Love this idea. And then I can get actual measurements of the recipient if I don’t have them. And we can both connect in the new year about yarn choice.
    This would work well for birthday sock knitting 🤔
    Thank you!

    • winwickmum says:

      Yes! I think we get caught up in the idea of having to hand over the finished project, but even when it’s supposed to be a surprise an IOU can make the surprise better as the recipient is involved. I far prefer having something to anticipate than having something sprung on me 🙂 xx

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