December can be a stressful month for lots of reasons, but a big one is all of the added expenses: holiday get togethers, Christmas parties, staff parties, “Secret Santas”, co-workers to buy for, friends to buy for, family members to buy for, extended family to buy for… If you are someone who likes to give out presents (or even if you just feel pressured to get everyone something because you know at least some of them are going to get something for you) just remember gifts don’t have to be expensive, you don’t even have to buy them! I challenge you to make someone a homemade present this December.
When you think of a ‘homemade’ gift what comes to mind? Finger-painting and macaroni crafts? When was the last time you gave someone a genuine hand-crafted present. Homemade gifts shouldn’t be something we grow out of just because we have jobs. I for one, LOVE to receive homemade creations. It really means the world when someone takes the time and puts the energy and love into making something especially for you.
Before you go and start making excuses like, “but I’m not creative enough” there are lots of homemade gifts that are simple, practical, and amazing for all different people on your ‘to-buy-for’ list. Here are some ideas- and just so you know, I would be ECSTATIC to receive anything off this list. Hint hint, nudge nudge 😉
1. Homemade Holiday Baking
A basket or tin of sweet treats will make all the dessert lovers on your list squeal with glee.
But there are loads of other options to choose from, the internet is at your disposal with recipes galore! You could even charm the Vegan GlutenFree folks on your list using some of the amazing recipes off this awesome gluten-free recipe blog.
2. Knitted -Anything
If you can knit, the possibilities are endless. Hats, scarves, mittens, sweaters, socks, leg-warmers. Seriously, knitted stuff is awesome, but since not all of us can knit here’s another option
3. A Drawing or Painting
Original Art = the best.
Write a poem for someone, send it in the mail. Frame it.
Not only are scrapbooks super fun to make, they are incredible to look through. You could make one for a family member, friend, or partner. Print off photos from Facebook, or find old photographs from that dusty box you’ve had stashed away. Write in quotes and memories, add drawings, stickers, old ticket stubs, anything, just personalize it, make it special, and they will LOVE it.
I’ve made lots of homemade calendars, and they make the best presents! They’re so practical. The person you give it to can use it for the whole year, and they are super easy to make. You can design the calendar on Microsoft Word on your computer, add photos, quotes, poetry, anything and print the whole thing out. Or you can use post it notes like the picture above, or just print out the 2015 Calendar pages and make the pretty photo page scrapbook style with some scissors and gluestick. Does your friend really love pugs? Do they love kittens? bridges or architecture? Do they love sexy firefighters holding babies- sure you can buy some of these calendars in the store but you can’t buy one with a combination of all different things that this person loves, but you could make one 😀
7. Word of the Day Calendar
For all your literary word-guzzling folks. I had this idea because I’ve always wanted one of these, but they are actually really hard to find, but VOILA, easy to make. Sure it will take some time and energy on your part, but you’ll also learn stuff in the process- just use the web, or a dictionary. You could do 365 silly words, or words that aren’t used as much anymore, or just totally random. If you speak another language you could do a translation one, to help that person on your list get started on their endeavour of learning another language.
You could make a homemade joke-of-the day calendar, or quote of the day, haiku or dirty limerick of the day (that would AWESOME btw).
8. Homemade Body Products
You could make homemade soap, shampoo, lotion, lipchap, etc.
Check out those homemade rainbow candles, perfect for those PROUD queers on your list 😀 And have you ever made a beeswax candle? They smell amazing when you burn them…
10. Homemade Apples to Apples or Cards Against Humanity Cards
I was at a birthday party recently and some clever individuals brought personalized Cards Against Humanity cards which made for a great present, and a hilarious game. Make a holiday version that you can pull out and play and get everybody laughing!
11. Homemade Tarot Cards
Know someone who reads tarot? Perfect. All you need to know is all the cards and suits that need to be there. Put some love and magic into it. Draw or paint the cards, print out images, write inspirational words or quotes.
Beaded, braided, hemp, metal, feather, shells; you could make necklaces, earrings, bracelets, anklets, keychains, and more!
13. Carved Creations
Can you carve or widdle? You could make wooden art, or coasters, or a homemade back-scratcher!
14. Homemade Pet Toys or Treats
For all those pet lovers on your list. Make a mouse or feather wand, a doggy cupcake (seriously there’s recipes online) a scratching post, or stuffed toy. Cute!
My brother gave me homemade jam for Christmas once, and I thought what a perfect present. Thoughtful, sweet, and delicious!
Do you have other homemade gift suggestions? Please share 🙂
Happy Holidays Everybody!
Heidi J. Loos