Parents Say: Easy homemade presents

Parents Say: Easy homemade presents

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Shopping for holiday gifts can be time-consuming, pricey, and stressful. If you enjoy baking, sewing, crafting, or just being creative, why not put those skills to use making holiday gifts for your friends and family?

Here are some ideas from our site members to get your creative juices flowing.

Gift jars and baskets

"I give gifts in a jar to almost everyone on my list. I fill Mason jars with a mix for cookies, cake, brownies, bean soup, or hot cocoa. Tie the top with a ribbon, add a card with instructions, and you're all set. Plus, you can put them together all at once, in an afternoon."

"Last year I made a Dinner and a Movie Basket for my husband's cousin and a Family Night Basket for my brother. I bought cheap baskets from a dollar store and put spaghetti sauce, pasta, parmesan cheese, a movie, popcorn, and candy [in the one] for dinner and movie. I put a homemade pizza kit, games, puzzles, popcorn, candy, and a movie [in the one] for family night. They were a hit, and everyone liked them. I may do those again with a new theme."
A our site member

"I've found a good way to handle last-minute gifts. Fill baskets with little gifty things, like soap, bubble bath, and candy. Don't bother wrapping them – maybe add a ribbon. When you need a present in a jiffy, just grab and give."

"Re-gift! Last year I brought home the gourmet basket I got at work and gave it to the mailman."

Stitch and sew your gifts

"I always do homemade gifts for all the children in the family. My nieces and nephew and daughter are getting all sorts of neat stuff this year: Frilly apron for 4-year-old niece, superhero cape for 4-year-old nephew, leg warmers and new blanket for 6-month-old niece. No one else in my family does homemade. They all work and don't have the time. They do value the work I put into the gifts and have made it a point to tell me that they think the gifts are fun and personal. I come up with a few ideas in October and ask the moms what they think their child would like better. They are usually so excited about it."
A our site member

"I'm planning to make a kitchen-themed gift basket to include: quilted pot holder, kitchen towels with with accent fabric sewn on to match the pot holder, cookie cutter Christmas ornament, homemade spice mix. For young kids in the family, I'll be hand sewing some pretend food with felt."
A our site member

"I love making fleece blankets for my extended family, my kids' teachers, and my friends at work. Most fabric stores carry bolts of fleece in a range of patterns, including patterns just for kids. Just cut the size you want and hem around the edges. If you hate sewing, there are some easy no-sew versions as well."

Frame photos and art

"Keep an eye out for good deals on picture calendars! We did that last year for grandparents and the gifts were so popular! Plus, they are used and enjoyed all year long."
A our site member

"Last year we had some old family photos retouched and framed and gave them to my parents. They said it was the best present they got."

"We took a really good picture of our 6-month-old and had it printed on mugs and T-shirts for our relatives. It was really easy, and everyone appreciated it."

"I buy a variety of cheap but nice-looking frames from discount department stores and frame my kids' best art pieces to give to relatives. The plain, clear plastic frames work best."

Tasty gifts from the kitchen

"I usually make my famous homemade pumpkin bread and wrap it up really pretty. And then for the families with kids, I also make homemade peppermint hot cocoa mix and get the kids little cute mugs."
A our site member

"I make homemade gifts almost every year for my friends and family. I've made homemade toffee, peppermint patties, pretzel sticks dipped in chocolate with various toppings, truffles, and hot chocolate mix. I think people really appreciate the effort. And if presented and wrapped really pretty, these types of gifts can feel really special!"
A our site member

" My sisters and I have a tradition of getting together and doing a ton of holiday baking all in one day. Then we divide up the goodies and give those as gifts to neighbors, co-workers, etc. We all love to bake, so we've spent the past several years trying to master different family favorites our great grandmothers used to make. It's been a lot of fun, and it's amazing to see how happy older people in our family get when we give them goodies that remind them of their childhood Christmases."
A our site member

"I love the cookie swap that my sister hosts every year. Everyone brings four dozen of their favorite homemade cookies to trade. We go home with a nice assortment to bring to holiday parties, wrap up and give as gifts to acquaintances, or eat at home."

"I think I'm going to do hot chocolate mugs with chocolate spoons! You dip a plastic spoon in milk chocolate, let it set, then dip it halfway in white chocolate. You can sprinkle some peppermint candy pieces on it before it dries, then wrap it in a cute cellophane bag. Stick a little pouch of hot chocolate mix in a dollar store mug and you're done!"
A our site member

More creative gift ideas

"I'm crocheting cute monkey hats for the new babies in our family. I'm making homemade bath salts and lip balm for the women in my family. And I'm also mixing up some nontoxic, homemade cleaners for the new moms in the family. I figure they might enjoy not having to worry about their babies getting into all those chemicals. And for the men we'll be doing homemade treats."
A our site member

"My 2-year-old made bookmarks for the entire family. I took 8.5 x 11 colored cardstock and let her draw all over it. Then I cut it into 1.5-inch strips, laminated them, punched a hole near the top, and tied pretty ribbon through it. Presto! Five pieces of cardstock produced 35 bookmarks for family and friends!"

"My kids and I make fragrant clove oranges every year. Buy whole cloves and tight-skinned, not-too-ripe oranges, then stick the cloves through the orange's skin. You can cover the entire orange or make patterns. We tie them with gold or silver ribbon and put them in silver bowls around the house. I've also given them away – they smell outrageously good and very Christmasy."

"Last year I gave my extended family 'succulent samplers.' I bought an assortment of pots, impossible-to-kill succulent plants, and decorative stones at my local nursery and then spent a fun afternoon potting up each creation with my kids' help. These inexpensive arrangements were a big hit and are still going strong nearly a year later."

Watch the video: 32 MAGIC CRAFTS THAT MAKE YOU SAY WOW (June 2022).