Though the best gifts are ones you make yourself, popsicle-stick running shoes rarely survive their first couple marathons. Give a thoughtful gift forged from expert hands with today's Groupon: for $20, you get a custom photo charm from Sodderbug (a $44.99 value).
Sodderbug's metal molder, Janelle, fashions shining necklace-and-key-chain keepsakes that grasp customers' personal photos in an artistic metal frame. Patrons can carry cherished images of family pets, newborns, and high-school math teachers in a lightweight, double-sided charm made especially to fit both snapshots' shapes. In lieu of photos, Janelle can make charms with such things as children's artwork, sports-team logos, and phrases. Durable glass protects the images, and the charm comes equipped with a metal chain, for those who wish to wear it as a necklace. Patrons can keep their original photos safe inside their albums or force fields by emailing or texting Janelle scanned copies.
Sodderbug owner and metalsmith Janelle Robinson stumbled across her signature art of soldering as a result of her passion for running. An avid marathoner who has completed four to date, Robinson was experiencing her usual jitters before the Chicago marathon. When the friend she was staying with showed her how to solder, she felt a calm replace the unease, and spent the weekend crafting in her friend's studio instead of zipping anxiously among the city's attractions. Robinson's signature photo charms keep images of loved ones close to the heart, narrowing the space between parents and children or children and stacks of pizza boxes. Creating art gives her a chance to recharge and reflect on the fleeting youth of her two children and the press of the clock as she races toward marathon finish lines.