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Christmas, other holidays and birthdays have gotten so hyped and over marketed in stores lately. I think the same gifts and merchandise available in stores just keep getting recycled and regurgitated to you, year after year, but upgraded or slightly different in some way. I rather come up with a couple of unique and creative gift ideas that I can make myself.
I am sick of getting the same gifts basically every year or giving out (generally) the same gifts. Seriously, I am running out of ideas for even giving out gift cards. There is something that makes me very uncomfortable about gifting the same thing twice, or even something similar.
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8 DIY Creative Gift Ideas
All these holiday deals for low quality items that we end up forgetting about, throw away in storage or throw away a few months later also makes me feel really uncomfortable buying.
Unless it’s books. Books always make the perfect gift!
Then it dawned on me. People LOVE original gifts that are made just for them. Think about it. Isn’t that why sites like Etsy are so popular? We are all obviously sick of getting the same stuff from department stores or the same stupid Christmas socks, lip balm stocking stuffers and random soaps that we never end up using.
I am NOT about all that clutter. For me, the less clutter the better. And I think my family and friends would say the same. I rather get them something they will use!
That is why I wanted to come up with these creative gift ideas that we can all make ourselves and give something truly special to a family member, a loved one or friend this holiday season.
Savings tip #1: While you are shopping for any of the contents that you will need to create these gifts, be sure to download Ibotta where you can get 5% cash back on Amazon (and varying other amounts of cash back at tons of other stores through the app). Plus – you will get a $10 bonus just for signing up!
1. Spa in a Jar
You can make tons of lotions, scrubs and balms with every day, all natural, household products like baking soda and olive oil. These are very inexpensive to buy, if you don’t already have them lying around in your pantry. After mixing up any of the spa items you want to include in your spa jar, seal it up with some colorful ribbon. This makes for a perfect gift idea for a sister, aunt or mother.
Here is a great recipe I have used before for a simple sugar face scrub that you can include in your spa jar.
- 1 tsp organic cane or granulated sugar
- 1 tsp of water
- 1 tsp drops organic lavender essential oil
- 1 mason jar
If you don’t feel like making all of your spa in a jar products yourself, check out this post from The Gunny Sack for what to buy for your spa jar. Either way the cost stays low for quite the cute gift idea.
Photo credit: The Gunny Sack
2. Arm Knit Blanket
This has got to be one of my favorite gift ideas I have come across. Instead of buying some generic throw from your local Target or Walmart, make one yourself. This arm knit blanket is seriously SO easy to make and give a nice clean, rustic feel to any living room or bed room.
These arm knit blankets make me get that ‘I am cozy, next to a fire, in a cabin in the woods with my home made blanket’ kind of feel.
All you need is a couple packs of the Premier Yarn Couture Jazz Yarn (depending on how big of a blanket you want to make) and 45 minutes to spare!
Photo credit: Simply Maggie
3. Homemade Cranberry Infused Syrup
This easy to make cranberry infused syrup is so delicious. Whoever receives this from you for their gift will be hooked. I especially love putting some of this syrup in my morning tea or vanilla latte for an extra burst of flavor.
What you’ll need to make cranberry infused syrup:
- Thawed cranberries
- Glass bottle with stopper
- ribbon, labels and colored markers or pens for finishing touches
To create the syrup you will boil 1 part sugar and 2 parts water in a pot until the sugar is completely dissolved and gone. Then you will drop a handful of your thawed cranberries into the glass bottle and use a funnel to pour in the syrup. Leave the glass bottle open to sit for about 20 minutes or until the steam stops so you don’t cloud the bottle with steam.
Now just put your finishing touches on your homemade syrup by sprucing up the outside of the bottle. Add a ribbon, maybe a label with some decorative calligraphy or maybe some twine. Whatever you want to do, do it and get creative with it!
Photo credit: DIY Network
4. DIY Terrarium Kit
You could either create a terrarium or put together a terrarium kit in a mason jar for the perfect creative and unique gift giving idea.
What you will need for your terrarium kit:
- 1 mason jar
- 1 bag of small stones
- 1 bag of activated charcoal
- a few inches of potting soil
- A couple of small plants such as moss, aloe or other succulents
- Any other small decorations to include in the terrarium kit such as these cute fairy garden decorations
- A couple of small zip lock bags or small containers (or you can just layer the contents in the jar to save on waste)
- Label (or use this printable label from witandwhistle.com) and twine
Layer the bottom of your mason jar with the small stones you’ve collected or purchased. Then either put together the terrarium to give to someone or fill each of the small zip lock bags or small containers with each of the items you’ve purchased or gathered for the terrarium (or leave them looses besides the soil). Then place everything into the mason jar, seal with twine and add some decorative touches with either making your own instruction card or using the printable card included above.
This makes for the perfect gift idea for nature lovers!
Photo credit: witandwhistle
Savings tip #2: If you haven’t shopped online using Ebates yet, I HIGHLY recommend it. You can get up to 40% cash back at over 2,500 stores including Amazon, Michael’s, Kohl’s, Walmart, Groupon and literally anywhere you can think of. You also get a $10 bonus for signing up!
5. Brownies in a Jar
Who doesn’t love brownies? I know I do!
Instead of baking brownies for someone, give them the gift of brownies in a jar. The best thing about brownies in a jar is if they don’t end up actually using the mix to bake brownies, they can use that same mix to make hot chocolate or a mug cake! Either layer the ingredients and place the vanilla extract in a tiny bottle attached to the jar or bag them up in mini bags and throw everything in the jar. It’s up to you!
The below supplies I have listed are a spin on what I actually include in my own brownies. Which is why you will see things like almond flour mentioned instead of regular flour.
What you will need for brownies in a jar:
- Almond flour
- Organic cacao powder
- Baking powder
- Dark chocolate chips
- White chocolate chips
- Organic brown sugar
- Organic salt
- Organic vanilla extract
- Twine and labels
Photo credit: Call Me Cupcake
6. DIY iPhone Wallet
Sure, you could buy some cute iPhone wallet case off of Amazon for a gift. However, wouldn’t it be more fun to make it yourself?
The DIY iPhone wallet may seem a bit complicated at first but if you have some sewing experience, it is quite simple. Just be sure to be accurate with your measurements and this gift creation will be a breeze.
- 1/4 yard of the fabric and pattern of your choice
- scraps of fabric for the flap (different pattern or color works best for the flap for contrast)
- magnetic purse snap
- inexpensive plastic case that fits your iPhone
- coordinating embroidery floss & needle
- E6000 craft glue
You will need to start out by measuring your fabric to your phone and cutting out the various pieces. Then attach your magnetic snaps to the inside and outside portions of your fabric, attach the plastic case inside, cut out the various wallet pockets and cut out the hole for the camera.
Visit my3monsters for the full tutorial.
Photo credit: my3monsters
7. Mini Bar in a Jar
Alright, so this one isn’t something you can necessarily make (unless you can make some killer apple pie moonshine) but you can however put it together yourself. The mini bar in a jar is by far on of the most popular creative gift ideas, and for obvious reasons.
For the mini bar in a jar you will need 1 wide mouth mason jar, like the one shown in the picture. Then all you have to do is fill it with a variety of airplane shot bottles . Seal it with a ribbon and any other personal touches you would like and wah-la!
Photo credit:The Shabby Creek Cottage
8. Coffee Lovers Survival Kit
What makes a better gift that coffee? Nothing. It is definitely more useful than most other gifts since no one lets coffee goes to waste.
With the coffee lovers survival kit, you can really get your creative juices flowing. You can either include only coffee beans but several different varieties or mix it up with coffee grounds, espresso grounds, different flavors of cream and sugar and even throw in some biscotti or shortbread cookies.
What you will need for the coffee lover’s survival kit:
Photo credit: The DIY Mommy
Savings tip #3: Are you needing a budget this holiday season? Sign up below for my free budget planner and make sure you don’t fall into holiday debt during all the Christmas excitement.
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More creative gift ideas:
There is this awesome site called Threadless where you can browse thousands of artist’s creations on clothing, accessories, home decor, etc (they have literally everything from tank tops to travel mugs to shower curtains and even stickers) or you can create your own design and place them on any of their available items for purchase. I love this site because the amount of stuff I have found on this site have been pretty reasonably priced and so creative! If you can’t find something from another artist, create something yourself!
What other creative gift ideas are you thinking of making yourself? Have you made gifts in the past? Share in the comments below!
Related posts: How to Save $1,000 for Christmas