Sunday, December 23, 2012

Low Cost Do-It-Yourself Gifts

I don't know about you but Christmas time always brings with it a sort of stress.  It's overwhelming to look a list of loved ones (that seems to never end!) and not only hope that they truly enjoy whatever it is that I want get them, but more importantly, that I can afford it.  This year was especially tough with the new baby, but I didn't want to completely give up all hope of meaningful gift giving. 

So I decided to just do-it-myself!

I'm especially crafty so, I began with some pins that I had been collecting of do-it-yourself tutorials on my Pintrest boards. If you are feeling crafty, check these out. Some you may need to know how to wield a sewing machine (or feel comfortable hand sewing), but not all. Try out some of these quick projects that will mean a whole lot more - for a whole lot less money - than a gift card.  Now I have lots of things to make within my budget. Now all I need is time!

Personalized Cards

Get creative and take the time to put some love into cards. This works great for those people on your list who you want to gift but can't otherwise afford to get them one.  These are always appreciated more than a store bought card (sorry Hallmark, it's nothing personal).

Make a collage card from magazine and photo clippings. If your not afraid to get out the clippers and papers, spread yourself out and make cards that your loved ones will never want to throw away.  I have been making these for years, and they are a hit.  Just browse some magazines (I recommend National Geographic, Better Home and Gardens, etc), and clip whatever suits your fancy, trim and glue them down on a blank card, cut out magazine individual letters and spell out or hand write your message, and ta-da. Beautiful and meaningful.

Make your own collage card as a great way to share all those new pictures you've been hoarding! 

Memorable handmade envelopes to spice up an otherwise ordinary wrapping job. Also, you can put a sweet message inside aside from "to" and "from".

Useful and Decorative Gifts for the Everyday

Perfect for the coffee or tea drinker you know. I think it's fun to think up messages, nicknames or phrases that make them smile every time they use it.

Simple project with a beautiful outcome: balloon candle lumiers. 

Unique template for teacup bookmark with the teabag hanging out of the book.

Source: via Debora on Pinterest

Turn a Men's Necktie into a 2-Pocket Wristlet. Thrift store ties and cute for going out or as gifts to friends

The "Zip-itself Coin Purse" is an easy and fun gift for just about anyone on your list.

20 Sewing projects to browse, all great gift ideas. :D

For Parents and Little Ones - Baby/Toddler Tutorials

Especially great for new or to-be parents!

The one and only "Bapron" (baby apron). I made one not long ago for my 5 month old and this withstood the test of some major spit up. Very impressive. I personally endorse this tutorial ;)

Make any T-shirt into a onesie! What about that shirt that you love so much that doesn't quite fit anymore?

Absolutely adorable felt baby slippers that look like fortune cookies. Perfect if gifted inside a chinese take out container. I can't wait to make these.

Source: via Debora on Pinterest

More great stuffed animals from socks.  So quick and so lovable. 

"Baby on the way" batch of sewing tutorials for baby.  I especially like the lil stuffed toys. Easy to personalize and great for all ages!

Make sure to take a look at my Pintrest boards for your further browsing pleasure.
Here are some more sources for DIY project ideas and tutorials that I often visit:

The New Home Ec

Craftiness is Not Optional

Made By Marzipan

Prudent Baby


Of course you can gift these kinds of things anytime - whether it is for a baby shower, birthday, etc. - and they always mean a lot. I feel like I'm giving a bit of my heart whenever I do something like this, and I think that's how gift giving should be, rather than store surfing and guessing games.

So go get your craft on, good luck and happy holidays!

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