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The National Handcraft Society


Welcome The National Handcraft Society

This page is dedicated to all who seek information about The National Hand Craft Society, also known as The Fad Of The Month Club.Here you will find information about the Handcraft Society and the products it had to offer.

If you are an old schooled crafter like me, and wonder what ever happened to this fine organization, fellow handcraft club members, and whether or not any craft kits are still in existence, you will find the answers here.

National Hand Craft Society - Shipping Label

National Hand Craft Society - Shipping Label

History of The National Hand Craft Society

The National Handcraft Society was established in or around 1947. The Handcraft Society was comprised of members who joined to receive the surprise craft kit of the month.

A Note From Club Secretary Nancy Lee

National Hand Craft Society - Dear New Member

National Hand Craft Society - Dear New Member

Each month, members received a letter from club secretary, Nancy Lee who would touch base with members with the latest notes about their Fad Of The Month Craft Kit, along with instructions.

National Handcraft Society Membership Information

It's A Good Idea To Pay Ahead - National Handcraft Society 1970

It's A Good Idea To Pay Ahead - National Handcraft Society 1970

As a member of The "Fad Of The Month Club," you were deemed the privilege of being a member of the National Handcraft Society. The craft kits were as shown in the catalog published by The National Handcraft Institute of Des Moines, Iowa.

Membership was available in two forms: The $7.50 Membership was ($6.00 for 6 Surprise Kits plus $1.50 to cover postage, handling, and insurance) for six surprise kits plus one FREE PRIZE. The second membership available was $12.50 ($10.00 for 10 Surprise Kits plus $2.50 to cover postage, handling, and insurance) for 10 Surprise Kits plus TWO FREE PRIZES.

The surprise kit was like the Forest Gump Box of Chocolates -- You never knew what you were going to get. But when that little box arrived, you knew you were getting a kit that included everything from start to finish to complete it. The package was well prepared, and often came with a full set of instructions, and a full color postcard of how the kit would look complete and on display. Of course, a member's satisfaction was of utmost importance. Members were protected with an UNCONDITIONAL MONEY BACK GUARANTEE.

Regardless of which membership package one chose, the FREE GIFT was the first item one would receive, along with a "Welcome" letter from Nancy Lee. The welcome letter also provided the means for enabling one to earn premium gifts by enrolling friends on the Special Membership Agreements. One could also provide Nancy Lee with names and addresses so friends could receive an invitation anonymously.

The Garden Medley Apron Kit

The Garden Medley Apron Kit

The Garden Medley Apron Kit

Gift Craft Catalog from The National Handcraft Institute

Gift Craft Catalog from The National Handcraft Institute

Gift Craft Catalog from The National Handcraft Institute

Thanksgiving In The Handcraft Institute Catalog

Thanksgiving In The Handcraft Institute Catalog

Thanksgiving In The Handcraft Institute Catalog

Make Your Own Cork Board

Steam Punk Antique Cars Fad Of The Month Craft Kit

Steam Punk Antique Cars Fad Of The Month Craft Kit

Steam Punk Antique Cars Fad Of The Month Craft Kit

Where To Find Fad Of The Month Club Kits

Members of The National Handcraft Society will probably remember the joy in receiving a surprise box once a month in the mail. In the early 1970s, I was a member of The National Handcraft Society, and once a month I received a surprise craft kit. Members who were faithful for a whole year received a National Handcraft Society Pin.

For collectors of the antique National Handcraft Society kits, look for items available for sale on eBay, estate sales, garage sales, newspaper classifieds, Craig's List, and social networks online.

Christmas In The Handcraft Society Catalog

Christmas In The Handcraft Society Catalog

Christmas In The Handcraft Society Catalog

The Posy Place

The Posy Place

The Posy Place

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Fun Handcrafts From The Fad Of The Month

Fun Handcrafts From The Fad Of The Month

Fun Handcrafts From The Fad Of The Month

Members Of The National Handcraft Society Unite

National Hand Craft Society Crumb Chum Craft Kit

National Hand Craft Society Crumb Chum Craft Kit

Crafters who quilt, sew, or appreciate original textile designs will love Spoonflower.

Custom Textiles For Craft Projects and Home Decor

Artists and quilters who appreciate original textile designs from artists direct, will love Spoonflower.  This is the link to my textile shop.

Artists and quilters who appreciate original textile designs from artists direct, will love Spoonflower. This is the link to my textile shop.

The Hancrafter's Note

All the information contained herein is from my own National Handcraft Society kits and personal experience. Based on how difficult it was (and still is) to find relevant information about "The Fad Of The Month Club," this page was constructed for the benefit of all who have inquiry about the hand crafting group that existed for more than twenty five years and disappeared without a trace. The purpose of this page, most importantly, is to assemble information about the National Handcraft Society to be shared with all for historical purposes.

If you were a member of The National Handcraft Society (Fad Of The Month), your knowledge and information are welcome here. I would love to hear about your crafting experience, craft kits, and how the National Handcraft Society was part of your life. Also, if anyone knows whatever happened club secretary, Nancy Lee, it would be great if you could share your information here with fellow former members, as well.

It is amazing how many links to the National Handcraft Society are obsolete, or non existent. This page was designed to provide you and the internet with a real and relevant source of information about this topic. Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to visit this page. May all who visit feel welcome, and may all who seek information about this topic find it helpful.

© 2010 Tonie Cook

Friends Of The National Handcraft Society - We'd Love To Hear From You

Gretchen on April 28, 2020:

I belonged to the club in the 70s and loved it. I recently came across a kit that I never completed--moved it with me 3 times. It's a little box to assemble with a velvet paper top with pansies to paint on it. I assembled the box and stained it and now I'm passing it to my artistic granddaughter to paint the pansies. Wish I could subscribe to these kits now for my grandchildren (and maybe me too.)

Nancy Lee Forrester on March 12, 2020:

No, not the Nancy Lee you are looking for. I found a 1996 McCall's Needleworks and Crafts magazine that has a coupon for the National Handcraft Society. Brought back memories. I belonged to that club many years ago. Loved their kits. I'm sure I still have some of the items I made in storage. But I gave most of them away as gifts, still do that with other crafts I make. Love crafting and needlework. Wish they still had that club.

Lucy on January 01, 2020:

Hi..I was a member in the early 70's and I am looking for the snow shovel with the little mouse on it. Anyone have one?

Leslie on March 23, 2019:

T Urbanski, you mention having 63 kits. Can you tell me which ones? If there are a lot of them that I don't have, I'd be willing to buy them. (But I have a *lot* of them).

Darlene - I would love to hear more about what working at National Handcraft was like!

Vonciel - How wonderful that you still have some of the kits you made! Which ones? Do you have a favorite?

Anybody who's interested - I've been listing some kits on eBay. I have over 100 of them, so keep checking, or let me know if there's a particular one you want and I'll list it right away.

Vonciel Thomas on February 13, 2019:

I was a member of this club since 1964 about. I even had my mother join later. I still have products i made. I now live in Alabama.

Patti Johnston on January 19, 2019:

I would love to have a kit for the ornate peacock wall hanging. It was mainly gold in color. If anyone out there has one and wants to sell it, please let me know. My email addy is

Darlene on September 08, 2018:

I worked at National Handcraft during college. My mom worked for them most of my life until they moved operations to Indiana. She started working for them by typing envelopes at home. It was a great place to work. More companies should be like them.

T Urbanski on June 23, 2018:

I have 63 kits. I’d like to sell them all at once if possible. Are there any collectors interested in a larg3 quantity? I’m asking $145 for all 62 kits.

J Milstead from B.C., Canada on June 05, 2018:

Hello Sharon Downing,

The value is whatever people will pay for them. I once bought a box of 35 kits for $39, just over $1 per kit, but some sell for $5 or $6 each or even more than that. If you go to EBay or and type in "National Handcraft" in quotation marks, you will find examples of kits and/or postcards for sale and you can see how various people price them. Usually the boxes have been opened so they can name and send pictures of which kit(s) they are selling. People might be looking for a certain kit and would want to know which kit(s) they are buying. Usually the kits came with a postcard and you can scan the postcard and post the picture of the craft kit from the postcard picture.

I hope that helps, Good luck with selling them.

J Milstead

Sharon Downing of St. Joseph Michigan on June 04, 2018:

I have 5 kits total to sell. 3 of the boxes are unopened and will offer your sewers a new experience in SURPRISE. The other 2 boxes are complete 1) measure maid with wood, measuring cups and directions and 2) Garden medley apron kit. What do you think the kits are worth. I am assuming the unopened kits to be value. Please advise. thanks so much. sharon downing

Lisa Schwalenberg on May 13, 2018:

I have about 50 vintage kits from 1960smost in original package anyone interested I would sell for $400 make offer

Janet Fuess on January 22, 2018:

When I was in my early teens my mother and I belonged to this club ( Fad of the Month) it was so much fun. Wish there was something like it now. I remember making a paper mache Santa. It lasted for a few years.

Leslie on January 05, 2018:

Terri, some time ago I put some pictures on Photobucket and then put the link in a message here and it worked. You could try that.

Is it the little round Santa whose body was made by papier-mache-ing a balloon?

Terri Calliope on December 25, 2017:

I still have a Santa ornament my mom made from the FOM club sometime in the 1960s. How can I share a photo

Leslie on September 20, 2017:

Wendy, just in case you want to send me a list of the kits, you can go to and click on one of the Tell Aunt Book links to e-mail me (I'm kind of wary of posting my actual e-mail and I don't quite understand how this site works to get my address to you any other way!)

Leslie on September 19, 2017:

Wendy, I would love to know what kits you have. You can list them on eBay. They go for varying amounts. Some of them are quite common, some less so. If you have some of the earlier ones and can fill in gaps in my knowledge I will be thrilled.

Wendy on September 07, 2017:

Oh my goodness! I was going through boxes of my 96 year old Grandma, may God Rest Her Soul! I found numerous kits from Fad of the Month Club! Most all of them are still complete with ALL materials! What do I do with them, still in original boxes and wonder what they are worth. A lot of them are pretty and "cool"! Sure takes me back!!!

Debbie Milligan on April 09, 2017:

Cleaning out my garage, I found the entire unassembled 1975 set of craft of the month kits. My mom ordered them for me but being a typical teen, I never got around to making them. If anyone would like these, please let me know.

I don't want money for them but would like to be reimbursed for shipping.

Angela on February 28, 2017:

Can't believe that 40 years ago I had my children make the Vintage Christmas ornaments, and that I still put them up on my Christmas tree. Last year my daughter finally took the one she made and has it in her curio cabinet. I also have the Scarecrow broom. Those were beautiful memories I shared with my girls and their friends.

Cindy on November 29, 2016:

I belonged to Fad of the Month Club in the late 50;s early 60' ..soon to be ...mother in law and I each got the surprises each month for $1. We loved doing the crafts..sometimes as gifts and sometimes we kept them. It was so exciting each month to see what we would get and there was always everything we needed to make the objects. WISH WISH WISH they would be available again.

anonymous on August 02, 2016:

I was so excited to read that others had such a fond memory of the monthly kits. I couldn't wait for each month. I believe the price I paid was $1 per month. My mother signed me up as a child.

J Milstead from B.C., Canada on May 28, 2016:

All the kits are vintage and so paints, glues, liquids are dried up. Probably someone removed the dried up varnish. I bought some vintage kits and then I bought a few acrylic paints, some white glue, hot glue, a small can of varnish, and a small can of wood stain. So far these have been enough to do the kits. on May 01, 2016:

I have acquired a Fad of the Month called "GLIS-GLASS Rose Array" I have an instruction sheet, but no varnishes. Is it possible to still get them? The person who gave me this box of flowers did not know anything more about this. I am just pulling at straws here. Let me know on my E-mail please & I will send you my address.

Robin McGowan on December 30, 2015:

I looked forward to getting these every month. I wish they would come back because i would definately rejoin!

Crafty Sheila on October 10, 2014:

I received these in the mail when I was about 12 yrs old and looked forward to every one. It was always such a neat surprise to see what I would be making. I'm 65 now and wish we still had that neat monthly complete craft kit to look forward to.

Tonie Cook (author) from USA on September 23, 2014:

Thank you for sharing your link and your web page. The National HandCraft Society means a lot to me in that I was a member in the early 1970s, and still have my original kits and the boxes they came with. I am in the process of expanding on this page, as well, and if by chance your link does not show up here, I will make a point of including it on this page for all to see. Cataloging the kits from the Fad Club's beginning to the end is quite a challenge. Thank you for making an effort to do so, and thank you again for sharing your link here.

Leslie on September 11, 2014:

But, just in case you're interested, Charlino:

has links to other pages. It's still a work in progress, though.

Leslie on September 11, 2014:

I've started a webpage showing the various kits, but the little message under this text box says I'm not allowed to "promote other sites." Pity, because I have pictures of a whole bunch of the kits posted.

Kjuneau on November 15, 2013:

I loved these! Someone (I think it was my mother) gave me a membership as a child. ( I am my mid 50's) The surprise of a package every month and I was so proud of my creations that I still have a few in my treasure box. I made the car art kit in the for my Dad. Wish this was still around, I would give these to all my younger relatives.

Kirsti A. Dyer from Northern California on October 19, 2013:

I'd never heard about the National Handcraft Society. Thanks for letting me know about it.

anonymous on October 03, 2013:

Thought I had already posted here but don't see it. Hope we don't end up with multiple posts.

My grandmother, now deceased, was a member of the Fad of the Month Club. How fun it was to see her open those little boxes of supplies and instructions--such excitement and anticipation for a child! I hadn't thought of it in years until recently while working on a pottery project with one of my sisters. After painting the frog she was working on, they asked if she wanted to put glass into the concaves. As we shook out those little glass shards, I had a strange sense of deja vu. My sister suggested that it might be memories of crafting with our grandmother. This brought to mind the "Fad of the Month Club." Just wondering if anyone out there knows of a project kit that might have included glass. Thanks.

anonymous on October 03, 2013:

My grandmother, now deceased, was a member of the Fad of the Month Club. How fun it was to see her open those little boxes of supplies and instructions--such excitement and anticipation for a child! I hadn't thought of it in years until recently while working on a pottery project with one of my sisters. After painting the frog she was working on, they asked if she wanted to put glass into the concaves. As we shook out those little glass shards, I had a strange sense of deja vu. My sister suggested that it might be memories of crafting with our grandmother. This brought to mind the "Fad of the Month Club." Just wondering if anyone out there knows of a project kit that might have included glass. Thanks.

anonymous on July 21, 2013:

@anonymous: I just listed a Foam Fun with the Gay Blade kit (the one for cutting styrofoam) on eBay, if you're desperate to have one again. :)

anonymous on July 14, 2013:

I found one at a thrift shop for $.10. It's the Turtle Trivet 1973. Back in the early 80s, my friend's mom let us pick a project from a stash she had and I made the 1964 Copper Trivet for my grandma. She still has it!

anonymous on July 13, 2013:

@anonymous: Neat! Which one did you find?

anonymous on July 13, 2013:

I just found a kit at a yard sale! This website is great! Very glad to have found some information.

anonymous on May 31, 2013:

@anonymous: Foam Fun with the Gay Blade - November, 1965.

And Coppertrim Trivet - July 1964.

Some others from around that time:


1964 February GILDED CAGE


1964 April WOOD BLOOMS Arrangement 1





1964 September AUTUMN SET (honeycomb candle craft)



1964 December TOLE ART "CRUMB CHUMS"

1964 December FALL FLIGHT (perhaps an earlier kit bonus gift?)



1965 February HI HATS

1965 March TREAT TOTE (Blue)





1965 July "MISS HAMCRAFT" (pink)

1965 August GEM-TOP CHARM CHEST (Shades of Autumn)

1965 September "PEBBLE POINT" PICTURE (Roses)

1965? October? HERE'S CHEERS CARDS



1966 January PHONO PLANTER

1966 February BONNIE BONNETS


1966 April? AR-TIQUES (gesso bookends)


1966 June SAVORY SET

1966 July KEEP-KASE

1966 August FLEMISH FROSTING Flowerscape #1


1966 October EMBER-GLO hurricane lamp

1966 November JOLLY V.I.P.

1966 December PEEK-A-BLOOM SCARF

anonymous on May 31, 2013:

I belonged to Fad of the Month in the sixties (my mother got me the membership) and the whole family got interested in all the cute things -- you could even give some of them as gifts depending on the subject matter. I remember a styrofoam project which came with a battery operated wire cutter that heated up to melt the styrofoam so you could cut it! We used that cutter on multiple other projects that we were involved in around the house! A trivet with copper tooled embellishment was really great and useful! So many holiday decorations that we kept for years. Sewing was my least favorite, but on those my grandmother would chip in and help. Memories, memories!

anonymous on May 07, 2013:

I first became a member of NHS/FMC when I was only 12 years old! (I did not read the fine print that indicated that I should have been an adult.) Anyway, the would have been from 1967-around 1971, then again in the late 70's - early 80's. I have about 30 of my old postcards. I loved it so much! I am now a serious "crafter," and it all began with NHS.

anonymous on May 01, 2013:

I belonged to The National Handcraft Society in the 1960s. I so enjoyed the kits that I received. I could not wait to get the next one in the mail. It was so enjoyable to get the box with everything in it to make the craft. My favorite fad was the Steam Punk Antique Cars. I got so many compliments on that fad. I was thinking about the Society and wandered if I could find it on the internet. It appears that it is no longer in existence. Hopefully, I will find more information the more I look. If I fine any information that will be helpful to this page I will be back. I am so happy to have found this site. Thank you. Brought back memories.

anonymous on May 01, 2013:

@anonymous: I've been keeping an eye out but haven't seen the listing. Have I missed it?

kathysart on May 01, 2013:

OMG.. I have sooo much to learn.. thanks for the info.

anonymous on April 20, 2013:

I am going to sell 20 boxes from fad of the month club on ebay under norquistsales2011. The 2 with dates are from 1969 and 1970. 1 item was a free gift as I assume from reading above information. It is an Itailan made coin purse.

anonymous on March 14, 2013:

Oh, and I forgot to ask: Do you think it would make more sense for me to list the kits individually, or grouped together? I listed one set of three trivets, and a couple of kits as a set because I knew one person wanted to buy them all; but most I've done individually. If you were buying them, how would you want them listed?

anonymous on March 14, 2013:

I'm listing a bunch of old Fad of the Month kits on eBay - I've done maybe 25 so far, and have maybe 75 to 100 to go. If there's a particular kit you're trying to find, post it here and if I have it I'll bump it up to the top of the "list first!" line. These are duplicates and triplicates from my own collection.

Meanwhile, I'm making Bunny 'n' Beau, two little fluffy bunnies with flowers on them. The balloon around which their bodies are supposed to be built is long gone, so I substituted one that seemed like approximately the right shape, and it has worked out all right so far.

anonymous on February 20, 2013:

back in the early 60's when I was a young homemaker i belonged to this club for a couple of years.I really loved making the different crafts.The wishing well planter, The wheelbarrow planter, rolly polly santa, aprons, all sorts of things. It was great.

anonymous on January 25, 2013:

I was a member of the Fad of the Month Club years ago. How I enjoyed it!!!! I learned from it how to stain wood with the little packs of stain and/or varnish. How excited I was when the box came in the mail. I still have one item I still use to this day and it's a wood letter holder that goes on the wall and has a plastic scrolling front to it. I have glued the plastic several times over the years as I still cherish this little bit of the past. It helped me later in life to get into doll house miniatures, start a club and do doll houses to give to charity. I loved the Fad of the Month Club!!! p.s. I just recently found a post card of a foam Easter egg with an oval opening where plastic flowers peek out....called Eggs-Quisite Egg.

anonymous on January 16, 2013:

I just took down my Christmas tree which had several ornaments made with Fad of the Month kits. My mom and I made these many, many years ago. Also, a Christmas door hanging that I still use (although it has had some "redressing" over the years) and a sleigh and reindeer, and a Santa playing the piano on a musical stand, and..... Still have lots of other decorations from the club. Remember when they went to an "enhanced" membership when you could get the month's craft and its accompanying items all at once. Heaven!

anonymous on December 20, 2012:

I have a bunch of these and am going to list them on etsy soon! (my shop is moxiethrift) THANK YOU for the info on them!!

anonymous on December 10, 2012:

@anonymous: thank you for responding so quickly. the angel airies has a booklet says copyright 1975 so i amagine they are all around the same date. i have a matchbox planter1975,party pup 1976, merry meleodeon 1975, and crystal glo grapes 1976 i am looking to sell them as a lot could you tell me what they would be worth? none of the boxes have labels all have been opened but all the pieces are there.

AuntBook on December 09, 2012:

@anonymous: The desk is from the end of 1973 and is called Memo-ry Minder. Not sure which angel and Santa Claus kits you mean; if you can describe them a little more, I can ID them for you. And the others, too.

I wish the National Handcraft Society were still in business, but it ceased operations in the early 1980s.

anonymous on December 09, 2012:

i recently was given a few boxes of crafts from your company. how can i find out when they were put out?They are wooden pieces that you have to put together. one is a desk that holds paper and pencil the other is a christmas angel and a santa claus. also have three more but haven't opened the boxes.

anonymous on October 14, 2012:

Hopping backwards in time we come to the year 1958.

January's kit was the SHADOW SHEER SCARF. White lace over a shimmery turquoise fabric, held together with beads and sequins, made a lovely neck scarf. It was also available in a soft red color.

February's SCULPT-O-GLAS SEA CUPS were round, clear plastic containers with lids. Decorations were glued on and then lacquered into place.

The TREE OF ELEGANCE arrived in March. An egg-shaped piece of styrofoam made the shape of the tree, held up on a stick and base. I haven't made this yet and can't remember for sure of what the "leaves" and "flowers" on the tree are made - foam rubber, I think - but I do know that the idea is to put jelly beans on toothpicks and stick them into the tree. I know this because the kit I found includes 54-year-old jelly beans.

In April, the SILHOUETTE PURSE arrived. The outside is a white vinyl molded with large "buttons." The lining is white fabric with black silhoutted profiles. The clutch purse is stitched and accented with black lanyard. A matching headscarf was available.

The COFFEE MILL PLANTER that was May's kit served as a new member gift for years. Made of redwood, with a black plastic flower pot set into it, itlooks like an old-fashioned home coffee grinder, with a false drawer at the bottom and a "crank" on top.

The BUN BUNK was June's kit. Very handy for a cookout, it was a long, rectangular wooden frame on legs, with a fabric basket slung on it by rings, just the size to hold hamburger buns. The fabric was printed with a cute kitchen utensil print. There was a matching KITCHEN SHOWER APRON. The Bun Bunk proved popular enough that they made it again in the 1960s with a red bandana-print fabric.

In July you could make the HOMESPUN SPLENDOR placemats or runner (you could cut the fabric into four mats, or leave it as one long runner). The fabric is a sort of waffle-weave, creamy color with gold threads woven into it; the corners were decorated with flat white mother-of-pearl buttons, gold beads, and a gold thread scroll. The matching COMPANION NAPKINS came in cherry red or cocoa brown.

August's TOLE ART HI-HOLDER was matte black metal. It hung against the wall or sat on its base, which was a "pocket" that would hold matches, or mail, or just about anything. The rather ornately shaped back and the pocket were decorated by painting them; there were several patterns from which to choose.

In September, the MINK CORALBERRY CORSAGE resembled the "Fleur de Mink" from five years previous. Coral-colored fabric and scraps of mink made a floral corsage.

The EMPRESS PEN POCKET that was October's kit was a white-and-gold textured vinyl, sewn together with gold-colored lanyard lace to make a little notebook that held a small pad and pen and calendar, and was clasped with a beaded flower. It was also available in silver, as were the matching billfold and key case.

The GOLDEN STARBURST CANDLEHOLDERS were November's kit. Gold-colored Mylar was cut and folded and taped to make candleholders that looked a lot like those ready-made bows that you put on packages. The matching GOLDEN STARBURST CENTERPIECE was a larger version of the same thing.

December's STARDUST FAIRY was an amazingly detailed fairy, molded from pale pink plastic. A skirt of tulle accented with silver was made for it, and it was decorated with glitter and crystal beads, with a touch of red for the lips and black for the eyes.

anonymous on October 14, 2012:

@anonymous: Jill, are there any in particular for which you're searching?

I don't have an updated list of my extras, but I listed a whole bunch of them earlier on this lens (I also post as AuntBook). If you would like to look through the lists and see if there are any you want I can look and see whether I still have them.

anonymous on October 14, 2012:

I belonged to the National Handcraft society in the 70's and was very disappointed when the club ended.

Leslie, if you still have some extra kits that you would like to sell, please let me know.

anonymous on October 13, 2012:

Well, since nobody objected: Let's take a look at 1970.

The year started with January's BELLOWS PLANTER. It was designed to look like an old-fashioned fireplace bellows, in Colonial style. Two pieces of redwood, with black leatherette between them; a molded eagle, and lots of brass nails. It hung on the wall and could hold fake flowers or greenery.

February's kit was the ELEGANT EGG. Designed to remind one of those sugar eggs with scenes in them, this one was about seven inches long and made of styrofoam. The hole was in the top and one looked down on a scene of a bunny and flowers. The styrofoam had raised flowers on it, and they were painted in pastel colors. One could also buy the matching kit, which would be painted in Wedgwood blue and white.

March brought LOOM BLOOMS, a framed picture of flowers made of loops of yarn, with green velour paper leaves. The matching kit was FRINGE BOUQUET, made the same way except that the loops of yarn were cut to make a fringe.

In April, the kit was the BLUE HUE HANDBAG. Foam rubber backed a blue floral print, to make a lightweight but rather bulky purse with handles. The handbag and the matching BLUE HUE BONNET were also available in golden color.

May's STITCH STAND was a handy wooden sewing accessory, with pegs to hold thread, hooks to hold other sewing implements, and at the top a styrofoam ball covered in coral tricot cloth, to use as a pincushion.

In June, club members received the kit to make PASTEL-O-GRAMS, note cards of pale green on which different flowers made of felt were glued.

July's kit was the POSY PLACE BOX. A box just a bit bigger than a postcard, made of redwood, had an inset lenticular 3D picture of flowers. (Lenticular pictures are those ridged plastic ones that looked three-dimensional without needing a viewer). One could also order the matching POSY PLACE BOOKENDS.

August's SUN-SPUN SCARF, sadly, has not aged well. A chiffon scarf would be made with wide hems at the ends, and inside the hems foam rubber shapes would be added. The foam rubber, however, has usually disintegrated so that it is unuseable, and sometimes has left stains on the fabric. The kit is in warms yellow and orange; the matching kit, SKY-LITE SCARF, in shades of blue.

VERA VOO-DOO arrived in September, but was intended as a Halloween decoration. She was a little broom topped with a witch's head, wearing an orange burlap costume. She was called a "Brush-Off Girl," and a matching one was available for Thanksgiving: Polly Pilgrim. Also available was a metal dustpan on which to paint a coordinating design.

October's kit looked forward to Christmas. The GOLDEN SLEIGH was made of cardboard covered with textured gold-colored foil. A matching pair of HOLIDEERS to pull the sleigh and the SLEIGH ARRAY of greenery to fill it were available for members to order.

November also featured a Christmas kit: the SWEET STOWAWAY. A white plastic, pie-shaped box was decorated in red and green ribbons on the sides. On top, a fluffy cloud of white batting and a half a cherry served as the setting for a little mouse with a bow on his tail. The matching SNACK SNATCHER was of styrofoam to hold toothpicks of appetizers.

December brought the WISHING WELL PLANTER. I just finished making it. Using cardboard from the box and redwood uprights and dowels, the frame of a well was made. Then the member had to cook a mixture of wheat powder and water, and add powdered redwood to it. The resulting dough was kneaded, rolled out between waxed paper, cut into pieces, pressed into place on the well or its roof or the bucket, "distressed" with lines to make it look like wood, and then baked. When cool, it was touched with a color glaze in the lines and then painted with a redwood sanding sealer. If this sounds simple and easy, I'm not describing it right. The matching QUACK PACK 'N' POSIES was a block of styrofoam and some orange flowers and greenery to put inside the planter, and a mama duck and four ducklings to pose around it.

anonymous on October 13, 2012:

@anonymous: Oops - the Wee Three Centerpiece had a brown (looks like) woven nest; it was the excelsior inside that was pink.

anonymous on October 06, 2012:

1962 was the 15th anniversary of the Fad of the Month Club (originally known as the Month's Fad Club) and was 50 years ago, so I thought I'd tell you about the kits that came out that year. (I'll do more years if anybody is interested).

January's kit was the GIRL FRIDAY CAL-INDEX, in Italian blue (though it could also be ordered in black). It is a blue box with a divided inside and a sloping lid. There is a paper calender nestled on the top, and inside are pages for addresses. The instructions came with several different patterns from which to choose and with which to decorate the top and sides of the box using gold embossing liquid.

February brought the FARM CHARM APRON, which could be either the Country Squire pattern (a rooster) or the Crowabout pattern (a scarecrow).

March's kit was accompanied by something new: a color post card showing the completed craft. This feature would continue until the mid-1970s, stop for a bit, begin again, and then disappear before the club's end. WEE THREE CENTERPIECE was the kit; three little birds in a woven pink nest.

April's fad was the SHOWER OF FLOWERS HANDBAG, a cleverly-designed purse which was made of a drawstring fabric bag inside frame of black plastic ovals and cording. It was a copy of a kit from 1960 (SUN BASKET PURSE) in a different color scheme and fabric pattern.

In May, you could make the LUSTRE LEAF. A foil mold was shaped like a leaf. In it you would put small green and blue pieces of stone and clear plastic pellets. Baking it melted the plastic to make a solid piece, which before it cooled was curved to make a serving bowl or dish.

June brought the PANSY CANDLE SKIRT. Fabric pansies were attached to a wire mesh frame and then "Porcelizing" liquid (essentially liquid acrylic) coated and hardened them. The whole thing was attached to a holder for a candle.

July's kit was the HOME 'N' ROAM CHARM CASE. Line drawings of Parisian landmarks were printed on pink vinyl. A red crayon was used to add accents to the pictures, and the whole was sewn to make a long, narrow strip with pockets for makeup and toiletries. The whole thing could be rolled up and tucked into a suitcase.

Continuing the Parisian theme, August brought the FRENCH FLOWER CART PLANTER, a wooden cart with big wire wheels.

September 15, 1962 was the fifteenth anniversary. Members received an anniversary gift along with their September kit: "BLENDESCENT" EARRINGS. Iridescent plastic disks were to be glued to screw-type earrings. The kit itself was the FLEUR-ALLURE HIDEAWAY. A pale-pink flower pot was the bottom; the top was a styrofoam half-ball that was covered with a floral cloth. It just fit into the top of the pot to make a lid (and pincushion).

The October kit was the SUGAR PLUM EXPRESS, a train engine made of cardboard covered with gold and black and red. A little gnome or elf drove the engine. Other cars for the train were also available.

November's TIFFANY TREE was a modernistic Christmas tree made of cardboard hoops (think: insides of rolls of cellophane tape in different sizes) which were green foil on the outside and silver foil on the inside. Glitter was glued to the edges, some of the hoops were cut, and they were glued into a tree shape and then accented with small pine cones (also decorated with glitter).

Finally , the December kit was FOOT FANCIES (in Sparkle Red): fleece slippers with white vinyl poinsettias and gold beads on the tops.

anonymous on September 21, 2012:

Linda, I have a ton and a half of extra kits. If you send me a list of what you want I can tell you which ones I have. Alternately, I could post a list of what I have and you could tell me which you want, and I can list them on eBay or Etsy so you could buy them.

anonymous on September 21, 2012:

Goodness! I'm looking for these craft kits and was hoping that in my retirement I could rejoin NHS. I can remember so many of these kits. Every month I couldn't wait to see what was coming. I remember the bird cage and one that was plastic flowers that when painted looked like glass. If anyone knows of any other such place to get these types of kits. Let me know.

anonymous on August 30, 2012:

I had so much fun when I belonged to nat. Handcraft soc. looked forward to each new craft. So sorry it doesn't exist anymore.

anonymous on May 14, 2012:

My daughter, Liane, and I so looked forward to receiving our kit each month. It allowed us to spend time together doing something fun. One of my favorites was a sail ship made with gold foil. It was exciting and fun for us to spend time together working on the projects and holds many cherished memories for us.

anonymous on May 12, 2012:

i was hopeing to find you still in business so i could again join. i was a member back in the 60's and loved it..virginia wilkinson

anonymous on April 28, 2012:

Eileen - what's Feminine Flattery? I don't know that kit! I've seen pictures of the Spanish Leaf chest, but have only been able to find the Royal Rose one that matches it. What fun that you still have the instructions!

anonymous on April 28, 2012:

Wow talk about old memories! I was just cleaning out a box in my basement and found the instructions for some of the kits I had done back in 1975 75 snd 76.There is s Country pump planter followed by a Spanish leaf chest. Then there is a Photo go round. I have Dahlia delight and part of Feminine flattery. Handy hoppy was a frog that held coasters and my final instruction set is for an Old Glory Box. I remembrr them all fondly.

anonymous on April 25, 2012:

When I was a kid, my mother was a member of The National Handcraft Society. I LOVED when that box showed up and she'd let me open it at the kitchen table (so I wouldn't lose any of the parts and pieces) to see what the craft was for the month. The pictures of the old cars on the red felt background hung in my brother's room for years and seeing the pictures here brought back a lot of memories. I found this website because I was looking for something similar now...I'd love to find a monthly craft club that gives you all the parts and pieces you need to get from start to finish. Thanks for the memories!

anonymous on April 13, 2012:

@anonymous: I would think that the NHS storerooms would have been a crafter's heaven, with all those bits and pieces and things. Just looking at the kits, it seems they must have saved the unused stuff, because you can see the same parts reappearing in later kits.

I don't suppose you know anybody who worked there (or had relatives who worked there) in the very early years? I'm having trouble finding information on the kits (never mind the kits themselves) from the first, oh, five years or so.

anonymous on April 13, 2012:

@anonymous: Hey, thanks for the kits!

Tonie Cook (author) from USA on April 07, 2012:

@anonymous: You are a treasure to the craft world for being here! Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your experience with The National Handcraft Society, and for being here..

anonymous on March 20, 2012:

@myraggededge: Interesting u say that because I'm a crafter as well

I would probably use the instructions and make my own craft.

But when your so young it was much fun.

I used to do this with my girlfriend

My father joined us in the 70s and we would never get our kits toggether

But we had so much fun.

anonymous on March 20, 2012:

Wow the must have been so much fun just to see the way everything

Was put together in that day.convyer belts reminds me of Lucy and Ethel and

The chocolates,it must of been interesting now to go back and remember but then it was a job.

anonymous on March 19, 2012:

Hello...I worked at National Handcraft Society in Des Moines when I was going to college. It was located at 6th and Cherry St down by the viaduct by the river. I think this was about 1976 because Jimmy Carter was elected president that fall. There were about 12 or 15 ladies seated at a slow moving conveyor belt table top and they each supplies a part of the kit. I supplied them with boxes of materials so they could all remained seated. It was quite fun and I remember some them very well after all these years. It was fun to rune across this site.

AuntBook on March 08, 2012:

Hmm - they seem to have changed their format a bit!

Someone on eBay is offering a group of 7 kits, including two of the cupcake ornaments kits, if anybody wants to bid on them. I already have them, so I won't be bidding, but I know several people are looking for them.


julieannbrady on March 06, 2012:

Such an interesting society ... I don't believe I had heard of them or the Fad of the Month. Very informative! I'm wondering about all those obsolete or non-existent links? Do they need someone to take over their web presence and fix all that?

anonymous on February 29, 2012:

@anonymous: Oh, what fun! Can you list the names of the kits? If any are ones I don't have, I'd certainly be interested in them.

anonymous on February 28, 2012:

I found a half dozen boxes of crafts from the "Fad of the Month Club" about a month ago above the rafters in my utility room. I was going to throw them away, then, thought there might be some people interested in collecting them. None have been assembled, and all have the directions enclosed. Perhaps, you can direct me people interested in them.

myraggededge on January 26, 2012:

We didn't have anything like this in the UK, apart from 'Book of the Month'. It sounds like a good idea for people who don't mind what the project is. However, I'd find it difficult to make something that was someone else's idea. Great lens - I'm sure it's brought back a lot of memories.

Blessed :-)

anonymous on January 20, 2012:

I was a member of the handcraft club in the 7o's. I enjoyed receiving all the neat things. I gave a lot away for gifts and some I kept and I found one of the patterns in among my papers. it was the holder for measuring cups and you got the measering cups with it. I didn't know that this was still around. Thanks

anonymous on January 20, 2012:

Wishing Well Planter - wishing well and bucket, made by forming wood paste over cardboard

Magic Violin Planter - violin-shaped planter that hangs on wall

Crystal Garden Candleholders - curled triangular candle holders made of clear plastic with small flowers melted inside

Pierre Panhandler - oven mitt made to look like a French chef

Hmmm - didn't divide those up well!

I'm pretty sure I have some others, and some of them I have more than one extra, so let me know what you need and I'll see what I can do.

anonymous on January 20, 2012:

Okey dokey, another batch of kits that are extra. Again, contact me and I'll put whatever you want up for sale on eBay or Etsy (on the theory that for all you know I'm a slick con man trying to lure your money from you, and you'll be protected on those sites!)

Cherry Berry Bin - four coasters with pictures of fruits on them, kept in a little wooden berry crate

"Totem" Bag - olive geen "quilted" vinyl bag with scalloped edges and drawstring

Checker Chick Cozy - red and white checked hen that will hold eggs, or rolls or whatever

Yarn-Craft Coasters - four round coasters decorated with yarn pressed into wax, with a holder for the coasters

Decorator Scales - Molded plastic scales with one pan on each side (decorative, doesn't really work)

Ember-Glo Lamp - Plastic pellets to melt into a round tube to set around a candle

Measure Maid - holder with 3 measuring cups and 3 measuring spoons, in early-'70's melon, harvest gold, and avocado

Fruitique - plaque made of loops of rattan, with raffia-covered "fruit"

Tole Art Crumb Chums - little dustpan and brush

Daisy Drizzler - clear plastic rain hat with blue net and red-centered daisies inside

Rus-Tic Tock planter - clock-shaped wall planter, with dangling chains and "weights"

Splash Bag - vinyl bag covered with floral-print polyester eyelet fabric

Flora-Dorables - plaque with woven wood basket and painted styrofoam flowers

Vine Diamonds - Necklace and earrings made by melting pellets of plastic and sticking on little plastic grapes and leaves in clear plastic

Victorian Showcase - plaque with two gold-plaster-framed pictures

Loom Blooms - picture with flowers made of loops of harn

Big Slipper - giant Santa slipper (there's one in my Christmas pictures)

Foam Fun with the Gay Blade - battery-powered wire cutter to cut styrofoam into Christmas shapes to be decorated

The Velvet Touch - velvet-covered scallop-shell-shaped bowl

Biddy Baskets - little hen-shaped egg holders (set of 4). Same pattern as the earlier one from the 1960s, but made with a different fabric

Cock-a-Doodle Dandy - styrofoam rooster-shaped planter covered with patchwork-patterned paper

Dutch Treat Planter - styrofoam Dutch shoe with Delft-blue tulip pattern decoupaged

Cloud 9 and Seventh Heaven - little angel in fluffy clouds (there's a set of those in my Christmas pictures)

Muffin Maid - muffin or bread holder made with a rooster-print vinyl

Bellows Planter - bellows-shaped planter with golden eagle on it

The Jewel Garden - poppies and wheat of color-varnished plastic stuck in a styrofoam base

Velvetique - picture of pansies painted on velvet

Country Store Décor - styrofoam old-fashioned coffee grinder and flowers

Party Pup - dachshund-shaped snack holder

Pansy Candle Skirt - candle base with pansies and leaves

Garden Party Apron - pastel floral apron

Lattice-Look Handbag - Green striped with beige net over it

Pansy Solitaire - orchid-colored flocked pansy-shaped apron with ruffle

Wonder-Weave Handbag - taupe burlap purse with black and white embroidered pattern

Memory Laners - wood plaque with old-fashioned bicyclist

Opulent Owl - turquoise styrofoam owl bank

Nature Noteables - painted note cards of nature scenes with velveteen accents

Decorator Trivet - wooden trivet with cork cutout pattern

Spring Ringer - old-fashioned wooden tub with wringer; holds flowers

Petal-Point Roses - two pictures of roses made by gluing colored pebbles to cloth

Keep Kase - accordion file folder covered with fabric in an early-American print

Golden Olds- old-fashioned car made of hardware bits and pieces and gold paint (not a plaque, but a 3D car)

More to come...

Tonie Cook (author) from USA on January 19, 2012:

@anonymous: Hello, Leslie - Your list is welcome here.

anonymous on January 19, 2012:

I have three huge boxes of extra kits that I'm trying to work up the initiative to sell on eBay or Etsy or wherever. I'm going to type a list here of a bunch of them, if that's okay with Charlino-the-lens-owner (otherwise, please delete this). It isn't all of them, but it's a start. If you're interested in any of them, you can contact me at auntiebook @ yahoo . com (minus the spaces, of course), and I'll put them up on whichever website you prefer.

In no particular order:

Handy Hoppy (frog holding 4 coasters)

Cinderella bouquet (cellophane wrapped over beans and made into flowers and a bouquet)

Grow 'n' Show Time (plaque that says "grow" and holds clear tubes for making plants root)

Happy Highlights (looks like a candleholder with a red pyramid-shaped top, though made of plastic so can't be used with real candles)

The Stylemaker (necklace of black disks edged with silver)

Find-It File (little file card holder with embroidered Alpine boy and girl)

Purr-fect Pen Pals - white styrofoam cat with dots, little mouse on spring with paperclip for holding notes)

Gem-Top Charm Chest - box with green, brown and gold pellets melted on top

Braid Bouquet - flowers made of yarn braid

Coffee Pot Planter

Ar-Tiques - bookends with raised decoration on them

Vanity Fair - plastic fainity box with pincushion on top, blue velour

Old Glory Box - box built to hold 2 decks of cards, with Revolutionary War-era flag on it

Vinetime Handbag - purse decorated with vine, "peas," and ladybugs

Decolabra - candle holder in Danish Modern style

Cannon Calendar - old-fashioned cannon on stand that holds a small calendar

Alum-Allure Planter - embossed aluminum, painted black in parts, enclosed in a planter shell with pillars

Scrap-Happy Whoo-ter - Owl picture made of hardware bits and pieces

Tree-O Trims - three plastic sleds, decorated, Christmas ornaments (you can see a picture of them among the ones I posted)

Lustre Leaf - serving dish in leaf shape made of melting plastic pellets with colored pebbles

Meadow Magic - two octagonal plaques with 3-D butterfly and flower cutouts

Duck Flight - redwood plaque with plaster mold of duck on it

Picture Tube - picture frame in the shape of a television

Angel-Aires - Angel Christmas tree ornaments

Filigree Fantasy - Christmas tree made of shaped pasta on boucle net, painted gold. One of these is in the pictures I linked

Empress Pen Pocket - little pocket memo pad with calendar and pen, gold embossed plastic

Prairie Spooner - Molded plastic springerle half-roller, holds 3 measuring spoons

Owl Trivet - a trivet. That looks like an owl. Imagine that!

Feathered Fancies - bird sitting on driftwood, both molded plastic painted

Braid n' Brocade Purse - silver and black brocade evening purse

Sparkletrique - shimmery golden scarf with sparkly gold flower

Cinderella Purse - pastel brocade evening bag

Holiday Hi-Pocket - pocket decorated in green net. It's in one of the pictures

Picture Window - Bake Day - 3D paper cutouts of oldfashioned stove, girl in bonnet

Sunburst Candleholders - made of foil cut and curled to look like flowers

Lotus Blossom - corsage made of white velvety fabric with big fake pearl center

Not sure how much I'm allowed in one post, so I'll stop here and add more later.

anonymous on January 19, 2012:

Hello everyone. My name is Carolyn and I simply loved the National Handcraft Society! I have wonderful memories. I don't have any of the kits nor finished projects, I gave them all to family and friends. I reluctantly gave my Mom the school desk after I finished it (it was one of my favorites) because she wanted it. If anyone has any extra kits for sale I'm interested! Please contact me, my email address is I really enjoyed reading all of your posts. I miss getting each kit. Peace to all.

anonymous on January 17, 2012:

@Charlino99: What if we asked Martha Stewart to take over the club? I think I'm actually a member, but I've forgotten my log in ID. Thank you.m

anonymous on January 17, 2012:

@anonymous: Thank you so much for going to the trouble. They look beautiful! sniff : )

anonymous on January 16, 2012:

@anonymous: Grrrrr! I forgot how much trouble adding a link was. Let's try it like this:

anonymous on January 16, 2012:

I promised to post pictures of the Fad of the Month Christmas kits I had set up in the glass display case in my living room. It took me a while (my camera went strange, and I had to borrow one), but here is a link to a Photobucket album.

A few of the things in the background sitting on top of the case aren't kits, and as you can tell there's some overlap in the pictures. There are more Christmas kits, but these are the only ones I've made so far.

I found the directions for the cupcake ornaments, and as soon as I get my scanner software reloaded (fatal crash of hard drive a few months ago and I haven't installed the software again yet) I'll see about getting those copied.

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. I've finished several more kits. One I started ages ago is a 1978 calendar, which started with January 1 on a Sunday and I got all excited by the coincidence until I realized that, unlike this year, 1978 wasn't a leap year :(

Let's see, what else; Nancy-Go-Round belt, Accents A La Mode, Tuck-Away Table Mats, Angel Feather Corsage.

anonymous on January 04, 2012:

Help! My mom in the 60's made beautiful pictures using glass beads, tiles, jewels, they were kits and I remember a pagoda, peacock, and cherry blossoms. Does anyone remember these?

anonymous on December 16, 2011:

@anonymous: Fireside Friends (which should be a rug and a kitten or puppy) was the companion kit for the Sew 'n' Stow Rocker, which was a pincushion and thread holder shaped like a rocking chair. It came out around September, 1973. The desk is the Memo-ry Minder, and came out around December, 1973. If it came with notepaper printed with an apple, and I think a pen, that was the matching kit which was called the Teacher's Pet Set.

anonymous on December 16, 2011:

my aunt passedaway and i found 2 kits, one fireside friends and a school desk kit. i have no idea of the dates,the boxes as well as the paper work. thanks for any info. M baker

Tonie Cook (author) from USA on December 13, 2011:

@anonymous: Hello Leslie - It would be wonderful to see the pics. You are welcome to join the group on Facebook and upload your kit photos there. You are also welcome to write an article about each kit here, on Squidoo, too. I plan on doing a web page about each kit I have - and I have several from the early 1970s in their original boxes.

anonymous on December 13, 2011:

@anonymous: I'll scan them (probably this weekend) and post them on Photobucket or somewhere and post the link here.

Meanwhile, if there are any that anybody remembers or needs to identify, I have or have information about most of the kits from the early 1950s to almost the end (things got a little fuzzy at the end, and the really early kits are hard to find).

Tonie Cook (author) from USA on December 13, 2011:

@anonymous: Included in the information above are links to the current auctions of National Handcraft Society Craft Kits. (There is also another section of auctions that ended. Those were included for historians and collectors trying to identify their assembled or boxed craft kit. Hope this helps.

anonymous on December 13, 2011:

@AuntBook: I would appreciate the directions thank you, just let me know how you would like to get them to me. Do you know if the kits are available for purchase anywhere? Thank you for your help.!!

AuntBook on December 12, 2011:

@anonymous: Those were from October, 1973 and were called the Santa Cake Tree-O. I can photocopy the directions for you if you want them, though I don't have an extra kit anymore (someone else who was desperate for the same kit got that).

I have an antique glass store display case in my living room, and I just loaded it up with all of the Fad of the Month Christmas crafts that I've made, including the Santa Cake Tree-O. Very vintage looking! I'll try to take a picture and post it when I have some time.

anonymous on December 12, 2011:

Does anyone remember a craft in the early 70's that had three styrofoam cupcake shapes and you made a santa, a toy soldier and a clown out of them? They looked like cupcakes with sprinkles but were the three cupcake guys. They had styrofoam heads and shoes. I always put them in my tree but over the years the have started falling apart. I would like to find the kits or the supplies to put new ones together.

anonymous on November 13, 2011:

I was in high school when I signed up. I was so excited when the kits would come. I especially remember the fall scarf, with felt autumn leaves attached to a lightweight scarf. So pretty. Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

anonymous on October 16, 2011:

@anonymous: Wow! Thank you so much AuntBook! Maybe the date on the Customs labels is just from when the labels were printed. Thanks again for all the great information!

anonymous on October 15, 2011:

@anonymous: Yours are from later on:

Phone Mate, 1976 December

Rocking Chair Planter, I'm not sure whether this was a monthly kit - I think it was an extra

Provincial Pair Olga, 1978? March?

EggsQuisite Egg, 1978 January?

Wee World Napkin Server, 1977 January

Crewel Creations, 1977 April?

Foto File, 1977 May

Cock-a-Doodle Dandy, 1977? November?

Bunny Bower, 1977 February?

Double Decker Card Caddy, 1977 March?

Muffin Maid, 1977 June?

Purr-fect pen Pals, 1976 August?

Posy Planner Banner, 1977 December?

anonymous on October 15, 2011:

I don't see very many kits that are the same as mine. I wonder if we got different ones sent to Canada?

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