We live in the DIY era (if you disregard colonial times…), embrace it! People like making things (it’s especially handy in this rough economy). You just feel so good when you can DIY. How can you not? It’s creative, financially responsible and often environmentally friendly with upcycling. It can bring people together too. Craft parties are all the rage these days, at least in my little mom circle.
I love DIY stuff, especially when it’s simple and pretty neat. I love to receive gifts people made too! To me, it means so much more when someone put effort into something instead of simply clicking ‘add to cart’ or picking up a gift card. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never returned a gift card, but when someone put something together for me and added their own creative flare, it feels like it truly came from the heart. So I’ve compiled a list of some cool DIY gifts you can make for friends and family for the holidays. The key to DIY gifts is to think to yourself, would I like this if someone gave it to me? If you’re not big on it, chances are you’re friend isn’t either. Also, utilize your resources. Have tons of recycling every week? Look into the millions of neat things you can do with glass jars. Have kids? Grandparents love to receive things the little ones helped to make.
1) Handprint Ornament: Here’s a great way to exploit your child’s adorableness and gift it to friends and family, maybe more family for this particular present. Who doesn’t love kid hand prints? This would probably work best for a little tyke. But it’s so simple! You probably have all the ingredients and tools already: flour, salt, water, oven! You might have to go out and buy the polyacrylic spray to turn it from cookie to ornament, but otherwise this is a fun, family project. Add your creative elements with words, designs and paint.
2) Chalkboard Plate: I made these last year. It’s very simple. The trickiest part was putting the tape along the round edge. A square plate would be ideal. I also gave out a little picture frame stand to set the plates on. This can make a great message board on the counter or if the plate is somewhat ornate you might want to hang it on the wall.
3) Infused Olive Oil: These look so tasty and are pretty easy to put together. You can pick up adorable little bottles at your local craft store and they’re fairly inexpensive. Just put your infusing ingredients in and pour in the oil (olive, sunflower, etc). Some ideas: Rosemary, Garlic, Chili Pepper, Lemon, Basil, Oregano or some cool combination works too! Use a corked bottle since a metal top can rust.
4) Water Color Portraits: This seems tough, but if you have patience and a steady hand it’s really not too bad. Make sure you read over every step of the tutorial before you get started. These pictures will look chic and fun in any room! Doesn’t have to be your kid, could be a pet, yourself, an object, etc., probably nothing with too much of a background though.
http://scrapmatters.com/news_sm/heatherw/sept11/sept11_p3.htm <— you have to scroll for a sec to find this tutorial
5)Tinny Tiny Travel Games: Perfect stocking stuffer for the kiddos! Looks like a piece of cake to put together. Magnetic pieces make this ideal for travel. Parents and kids alike will enjoy this small token of your affection.
6) Book Marks: What a neat way to get a little more mileage out of that dusty old book that’s falling apart and taking up space! This is the perfect DIY gift for the bibliophile in your family! And it’s practically child’s play to put it together! Maybe add some beads to the ribbon or use a permanent marker to embellish the design on the spine?
Welp, hope you enjoyed my little list. Now go get craftin’!