You've made your list and checked it twice – all of your holiday shopping is done! Or, so you thought. Then it hits you. You've forgotten someone and you need to get them a gift RIGHT NOW, but you're also on a limited budget and short on time. Before you get too stressed out, take a deep breath and get creative with these simple and inexpensive ideas.
Cookies in a Jar
Break out that scrapbook paper and your recipe book to find a recipe for an amazing cookie, brownie or cake that you just love, then use an old mason jar to make “cookies in a jar.” If you don't have a mason jar, visit the Dollar Store and pick one up for just $1. Fill the jar with all of the dry ingredients from the recipe, then hand write the entire recipe on scrapbook paper, with instructions, and trim it into a fun shape. Punch a hole in one corner, run a ribbon through the hole and tie it around the lid of the jar. You just made cookies in a jar in no time at all, and for as little as $1 (if you had the ingredients on hand). If you have a recipient that needs gluten free treats, check out this great way to make a Gluten Free Cookies in a Jar.
That old scarf is just taking up space, or maybe you have more than one that you don't want anymore. Turn it into a cute bolster pillow for that last minute gift by cutting it in half, sewing it along all edges except one, stuffing it with pillow stuffing (or old fabric), and sewing it closed. Then, twist the ends and tie them into little pom-poms to decorate it. If you wish to personalize it, adorn the front with felt lettering of the gift-recipient's initials. This whole project should take about an hour to finish.
Do you like getting gifts that pamper you? Chances are the person you need to make a gift for does, as well. Here's a pampering gift you can make in 30 seconds or less, if you have the ingredients. If you don't, it's ok! They are extremely easy to find, and cheap, too!
- 2 cups Epsom salts or organic cane sugar (it's up to you for a large or fine grain)
- 1 cup carrier oil (sunflower or light olive oil)
- 8 drops essential oil (any scent you like, read about the essential oils I recommend)
- 1 drop natural food coloring (any color you like)
- 1 medium sized mason jar with a lid
- Sticky label (that you hand write on and decorate yourself)
- Stir together the Epsom salts or sugar and carrier oil in a bowl, mixing well.
- Add the essential oil, one drop at a time, and stirring each time.
- Add the food coloring, and stir until the color is even throughout.
- Spoon into jar and attach label.
- To really make this gift stand out, try buying a candle in the same scent as your essential oil and package them together as a mini-spa day.
- Total cost: less than $15.
There's nothing better than a box full of personalized ornaments. Does your gift recipient enjoy collecting something specific? Make them ornaments depicting their hobby or interest, or simply do a set of ornaments that showcase their initials. You can find plain ornaments and materials for as little as $5 to make these happen. Place them in a decorative box for full effect. For ideas, check out this post on making Recycled Cardboard Ornaments and Cinnamon Ornaments.
Oh So Sweet Candlesticks
Want to really wow with a unique idea? Buy inexpensive candlesticks with flat tops (perfect for pillar candles) from any retailer. Spray paint them in a bright color and tie the stem with a ribbon that compliments it (orange paint, for example, would look fantastic with a black and white polka dotted ribbon) and glue the ribbon in place. Buy an inexpensive candy jar from the Dollar Store and fill it with the recipient's favorite candy. Glue it to the candlestick with heavy duty glue and you have a candlestick candy jar! You can do sets of three of these for a great impact and it costs less than $15 for everything.