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Start any holiday (Halloween through Christmas) crafting now, especially if you do craft shows or just for gifts. This way you won't be stuck at the last minute trying to finish gifts. At the very least, make a list of crafts and items needed. Some can be probably found at yard sales or clearance sections.
By Carol from Massachusetts
For giving cake, cookies or candy at Christmas, to new neighbors or a sick friend, I look a garage sales, Goodwill or sales at retail stores for containers. Today at the General Dollar Store, they had their summer dinnerware on sale for half price. I got eight nice sized, bright colored dinner plates for a total of $2.50. They will make great plates for the rum cakes I give away at Christmas and look so much better than just a paper plate.
By Jane from Piqua, OH
I have a very elderly aunt, who is diabetic, and a very strict vegetarian. She also refuses to eat onions or garlic. Christmas was a real stumper for me until I came up with the idea to can some things for her when I did my own canning.
Running short on time and money this weekend, I came up with a craft that I can make and give to many of the women in my life. It comes out beautifully and it is easy to do. Total cost for 32 gifts is $37, including wrapping. (I will probably give 2 to each person, so in my case, it is 16 gifts, but still, that's pretty good!)
So, for under $33, enough to make 32 ornaments.
These are easy, but require some time. The finished product is elegant and expensive looking.
To wrap mine, I bought white tissue paper for 97 cents at Wal Mart and gold curling ribbon for 97 cents. I will wrap them in the paper, tie with a ribbon, and place in Kraft style bags with Christmas motifs bought for cents each at Wal Mart. I will give each person two.
Once they are in the bags, I will punch the tops with a hole punch and thread some curling ribbon through. I will finish with gold-edge gift tags attached to the front (40 for 1.97 at Wal Mart) Total for wrapping: about $4
So, there it is. I hope this helps someone. These are an elegant, thoughtful gift.
Kateb from CT
This year my sister and I gathered old photos, family tree info and family stories and combined them into a book. That we had printed by online publisher LuLu. The book ran about $10 a book and is now an heirloom in our family.
One year I typed all the recipes I had used since my children were little, one recipe per page. I decorated each page to match the theme of the recipe with graphics and borders....
A nice Christmas gift is to make a pot of gold usually found at the end of rainbows! This is a good present for people who are difficult to buy for.
I have found that homemade gifts for Christmas or birthdays tend to not only be cheaper, but they are appreciated more because the recipient knows you took special time and effort to do something just for them. By Robin
These sweet gifts are made by placing a cake or cookie mix package into a linen towel bag. You can add tools and decorations, such as sprinkles, to round out the gift.
This gift idea consists of a blank book covered in seasonal paper. It is perfect for using as a journal to record holiday memories, recipes, and more. This is a guide about making a Christmas book.
A wonderful way to keep in touch at the holidays is by sending personal audio greetings to family and friends. This is a guide about sending audio Christmas greetings.
Dress up a bottle of bubble bath or spray bath foam like Santa. This makes a cute gift for the kids on your list. This is a guide about making a Santa soap.
One inexpensive way to create special gifts for friends, family, and co-workers for Christmas is to utilize your computer. There are lots of ideas to pursue, such as bookmarks, stationary, coloring books, and more. This is a guide about making Christmas gifts with your computer.
This is a guide about giving a meal as a Christmas gift. A homemade meal made with love can be a meaningful holiday gift to many different people.
Some of the best Christmas gifts come from the kitchen. Baked goods, canned foods and snacks all make great homemade gifts. Find ideas for Christmas Gifts from Your Kitchen in this guide.
Baked goods make great gifts for Christmas, birthdays and other special events. Edible gifts are not only delicious and come from the heart but can also be inexpensive.
DIY gifts are the best gifts when you are trying to be frugal. Check out these great frugal homemade gift ideas.
Anyone receiving this gift of cookie cutters and cute poem is going to love it. This is a guide about making a cookie cutter poem and gift.
This is a guide about making a thread spool Christmas tree. Give the sewing crafter in your life a cute spool Christmas tree gift, to hang in their craft area.
This is a guide about homemade Christmas presents for adults. Christmas is a wonderful time to give homemade gifts to children and adults alike.
For small gifts, hot chocolate mixes, coffee creamers, etc., take inexpensive felt sheets 8x11 and cut in half longways. You have two pieces 4x11. Sew or glue sides together (I sewed them), resulting in a bag that is 4x5 1/2.
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I am looking for homemade either food or gift ideas for our church board, pastor, and staff. I have 13 gifts to make and wanted to make some nice things that are reasonable.
Thank you so much.
Linda from PA
If you go to this website, you will find a HUGE choice of ideas: members.tripod.com/
I have a great idea...I sell Home Interiors & Gifts, with features from Better Homes and Gardens.
We have the BEST candles on the market and very affordable. Everybody likes candles and they are a hot item right now. If you are interested e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you.
I fill Mason jars with all the dry ingredients to make either cookies or soup. Put the recipe on a pretty card and tied it with a ribbon to the jar. it's cheap and people love it-they either have dinner or dessert at hand. Hope this helps.
Here's a small gift basket idea I used as teacher's gifts that were a big hit: I baked a dozen mini muffins and included 3 packages of hot cocoa (a box of 10 costs $1). The teacher's loved it because it was something they could enjoy and not another knick knack to dust. If you want a bigger gift, add a second flavor of muffins and add herbal tea, too.
What about things like homeade hot cocoa mix or bath salts, placed in decorative jars. You can find recipes almost anywhere. The ingredients are not very expensive, and easy to find.
If you're able to visit thrift shops or yard sales, this is something you can be working on all year, not just as it gets close to Christmas: Pick up beautiful old china dinner plates--you see a lot of nice single ones left over from sets that have long since bit the dust. Then when it gets closer to the Holidays, if you're a pretty good cookie maker--or if not like me, watch your local grocery store bakery for good deals on fancy cookies--fill each plate with a nice arrangement of fancy cookies, cover the whole thing with that clear wrapping paper (pull the paper up over the top of the plate and tie some pretty grosgrain ribbon around the excess wrapping paper sticking up over the plate). A friend of mine has given me a couple of these and I just loved it! Not only did I enjoy the yummy cookies, but now I have some really pretty plates that are fun to use for snack trays for fancy parties or even just to look at in my china hutch. (People are always asking me where I got such pretty plates!)
I just found this site today and I'm hoping someone can help me. We are having really bad money problems this year and I don't know what to do for Christmas gifts for my children. I don't want them to wake up to nothing Christmas morning. I have a 9 year old boy, a 13 year old girl, a 18 year old boy, and a 19 year old boy. I want to make them something that they will enjoy and appreciate and something that will make them forget that we are having a hard time. Please help. Any ideas will be much appreciated. Thank you.
I want to make some homemade Christmas gifts. I don't know what to do and I don't want to spend money. I do not know how to knit or sew. What can I make? Thank you.
I've just moved to my first home and money is a little tight. Could anyone give me tips how to make my Christmas gifts this year. I don't have a lot of money to spend, but I would like my presents to look nice.
My (fairly large!) family are very generous at Christmas and I want to give something that looks good, but costs the minimum. I am interested in quick, simple and easy ideas. Please help!
ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.
Who is making their presents this Christmas? What ideas have you gathered so far?
I make an assortment of cookies and candies. I use simple, but delicious recipes. I go to the dollar store and buy gift bags to put them in. I wrap them with ribbon and a homemade tag. (10/17/2010)
I am making a lot of my Christmas gifts this year. 1 thing I am doing is I am buying a nice glass vase type thing and I am putting pebbles/rocks that look really neat in it and then I am putting a candle in it. I have a friend that does this all the time and it looks really great if you choose good colors. Have fun! (10/19/2010)
I am 'going green' for the most part, making pj's for the children and purse inserts for women friends from leftover material, and up cycling items I've found at yard sales and thrift shops all year. I also use many of the ideas from the Dollar Store website. (10/20/2010)
Personalized, for the person you want to give a gift to, note cards or stationary and/or homemade Christmas decorations that they can use year after year. (10/20/2010)
He'll like something unique like homemade gifts in a jar. You can custom style the jars and its contents. Adding a personal note (in the jar) will be a nice touch.