Thursday, December 19, 2013

Holiday Fun - Facebook Ornament Exchange!

This year, to get in the holiday spirit, I decided to host an Ornament Exchange on Facebook! The idea was everyone would be assigned one person to make an ornament for, Secret Santa style, so you didn't know who was making you your ornament until you received it. I started a Facebook Event back in November, making it easy to contact everyone involved all at once. As ornaments were received, my friends posted pictures of them and said thanks. 




Top two reasons to host an Ornament Exchange on Facebook? 


1. Get involved with friends and family far away that you may not normally interact with (other than liking their photos and posts). 

2. See you non-crafty friends realize just how crafty they can be! I didn't see any ugly ornaments, no matter how many of my friends complained they didn't have a crafty bone in their body :) 

Tips for hosting a Facebook Ornament Exchange! 


1. Advertise early, let your friends know before Thanksgiving that you're hosting an exchange. Invite everyone, even people you haven't talked to in a while, or are not sure would like to be involved. 

2. Start a Facebook Event. This is an easy way to contact everyone all at once, give updates, send out reminders, and share photos and thanks with later on!

3. Use Elfster.com to set up your Exchange. Post a link to the Exchange on your Facebook event so people can join up. Elfster will match up people, and email them to let them know who they'll be making an ornament for. The website will share shipping info, as well as send email updates to remind folks when the deadline is approaching! As the host you'll be able to manage the exchange and will be able to see who has drawn what name. 

4. Make the deadline earlier than necessary. I made my Exchange deadline December 10th, this was the date ornaments were to be mailed on. Did I really expect everyone to have their ornaments in the mail by that day? No. I had friends with finals, friends who are procrastinators, friends who experienced a death in their family, all kinds of reasons why their ornaments didn't get mailed on time. Making an early deadline encourages everyone to have their ornaments made, but plenty of time to mail them. 

5. Update often. Check in on your event and see how people are doing and ask how their ornaments are coming along. The whole point of the Exchange is to bring people together, so make sure you're interacting with them! 

6. Make a Pinterest board and invite your friends to pin to it. Sharing a board on Pinterest is a great way to share ideas with each other. In November, Pinterest is littered with handmade ornament ideas. Everything from super duper Martha Stewart ornaments to preschool style  (like those adorable clothes pin reindeer). This is especially important for your non crafty friends. Most of these pins feature step by step instructions and who doesn't need that every now and then? 

I'll be posting pictures of ornaments my friends made this week, so check back for some easy handmade ornaments made by real people!

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