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5 Do-It-Yourself Holiday Gifts

Dec. 23, 2014
Holiday Tips & News, Shopping
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With only 2 days before Christmas, time is running out for holiday shoppers. If you’re the type to procrastinate about making your purchases, or you’ve recently added a couple new names to your list, you might want to consider going the do-it-yourself route to save time and money. Remember – online shopping isn’t going to get the job done at this point.

With a quick trip to your local Walgreens or Safeway, you can pick up some of the items you’ll need to make these thoughtful, simple gifts at home. For other items, you might already have everything you need.

Here are five great ideas for presents you can make at home.

Bleached-Sprayed Tops

You wanted to buy your best friend that awesome, handmade shirt you saw on Etsy, but now it’s far too late to submit your order and get it delivered on time without paying a fortune in shipping costs. But that doesn’t mean you have to scrap the idea for next Christmas. Instead, with the help of a few items you may already have lying around, you can make your own personalized top. Choose an image you know your friend would love, or go for a cute slogan. If you’re not the artistic type, you can find ready-made stencils online – just download, print and copy. (Instructions)

What you need: a plain colored T-shirt or sweatshirt, a spray bottle, bleach, water, stencil materials

Family Recipe Book

A great idea for sons, daughters and grandkids heading off to college or into the world, the family recipe book is an easy, personalized way to collect the dishes your family loves along with the details on how to make them. If there’s no time for collaboration, or the rest of your family is hopeless at cooking, compile your own favorite recipes in a small notebook. But if you can, make it a family project, passing the notebook around for each family member to handwrite the instruction to making his or her specialty dish – or collect the recipes by email, neatly pasting each printed recipe into the notebook. To add a personalized touch, add a photo of each family member alongside the recipe.

What you need: a blank notebook, lots of ideas

Winter Body Scrub

The beauty stores may have already closed their doors for Christmas, but it’s not too late to give your friends and family a handy body scrub for Christmas. Mix their favorite ingredients into a delicious-smelling exfoliant, and place it in an elegant jar. Body scrubs are a great way to keep skin soft and supple in winter. (Instructions)

What you need: jar, base ingredient (sugar, salt, ground coffee or oatmeal), carrier oil (sunflower oil, almond oil, etc.), fragrance (essential oils, cinnamon, etc.), mixing bowls

Homemade Salsa

If you’ve got a flair for cooking, homemade food can be an excellent holiday present. Practical and comestible, it makes a great addition to any household pantry. If you’ve got limited time and resources, skip the three-course meal and opt for homemade salsa. You’ll need a jar, the basic ingredients and access to a kitchen. Great for dips, salsa will also add a dash of flavor to any bland meal. (Instructions)

What you need: jar, ingredients, label

Ready-to-Bake Mixes

There’s an easy way to give the present of homemade cookies without actually having to bake. Elegant, practical and delicious, ready-to-bake mixes come in a jar, each layer visible through the glass, and allow recipients to bake the goodies themselves whenever they’re in the mood for desserts. Not only is this gift an easy present to put together, it also lets you personalize the gift based on the recipient’s taste in cookies, cakes or even pancakes. (Instructions)

What you need: baking ingredients, Mason jar, tag, pen

Written by Melinda Szell



Image via iStock.