5 Homemade Christmas gift ideas

November 26, 2021 • Lewis Goldsbury

Christmas can be the most wonderful time of the year. There’s nothing better than seeing our children’s faces when the countdown begins. Full of anticipation for the BIG day and what Santa might bring.

Yet for parents, the pressure can sometimes be too much to handle. You want to give your children the best Christmas yet! So trying to fulfil this can weigh on your mind and take away the joy.

It’s been a tough couple of years for many families, and you may be feeling the financial pinch. But remember, the magic of Christmas doesn’t actually cost a thing! It’s not the presents under the tree or the mountains of food in the cupboards that your children will remember. It’s the feeling of a happy household and spending quality time with your loved ones.

To honour that, we’re sharing 5 thrifty, homemade Christmas gift ideas for you to try, allowing you to create some great memories with the kids and to save some precious pennies in the process!

Reindeer treat bags

Got any loved ones with a sweet tooth? These reindeer treat bags are a fun twist on the conventional advent calendar or box. They’re a great stocking-filler for younger children whilst making the perfect gift for teachers and friends too! What’s more, you can craft this homemade Christmas gift with items you already have around the house.

To make four reindeer treat bags, all you need is:

  • 4 sharing bags of rounded chocolates such as Malteasers and Chocolate Buttons
  • 8 red sweets (any kind!)
  • 4 clear piping bags
  • 8 googly eyes
  • 4 brown pipe cleaners
  • Glue stick

To create your reindeer treat bags, follow these simple instructions:

  1. Combine your choice of chocolates together in a large bowl
  2. Push a couple of red sweets towards the bottom of your piping bags – these will be your reindeer’s nose!
  3. Spoon the chocolate into each bag until they are half full
  4. To close the bags, tie a pipe cleaner around each bag, then curl the ends with a pencil to make antlers
  5. For the finishing touch, glue two googly eyes to the front of each bag

Remember to store them in a cool, dry place too. It’s the thought that counts but they will look much more impressive if they haven’t melted!

Snow globes in a jar

Warning: don’t throw away your used jam jars or honey pots. Put them to good use instead! With this homemade Christmas gift you can transform a household basic, into Christmas magic.

To create one jar, you will need:

  • Clear jar
  • Bottlebrush tree
  • Hot glue gun/glue dots
  • Faux snow

To create your snow globe, follow these simple instructions:

  1. Unscrew your jars and clean them out
  2. Take your bottlebrush tree (available from craft stores) and glue the base to the inside of the lid. A hot glue gun or glue dots will do the trick
  3. Pop a handful of faux snow in the jar (also available from craft stores). Remember not to get too carried away – you only need enough snow to cover the bottom of the lid, not the whole jar
  4. Screw on the lid and shake it like a polaroid picture!

Who knew that making a snow globe could be so easy? Snow globe jars add a little Christmas joy to every home! And there’s no creative limit on what you can do. You can use different size jars. Add some paint. Or even use a figurine or pocket-sized toy instead of a tree!

Festive tea light holders

DIY snow globes are not the only thing you can use your old jars for. You can also make festive tea light holders out of them.

To create one festive tea light holder, you will need:

  • Clear jar
  • One tea light candle
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Sticky tape
  • Wrapping paper, or if you are feeling creative, draw some fun Christmas scenes of your own

To create your festive tea light holders, follow these simple instructions:

  1. Place the jar on its side and then wrap the paper around the jar to cover it
  2. Use a pencil to mark where the edges meet
  3. Cut down the side where you have marked
  4. Choose a shape to cut out of the paper. This will make for a little window that allows you to see the tea light glowing inside the jar
  5. Fold the paper in half and cut out a shape of your choice. It could be a heart, a Christmas tree, a star or a snowman – the choice is up to you. Check out this video tutorial for some handy tips
  6. After you’re finished cutting, tape the paper to the jar and place your tea light candle in the jar
  7. Wrap some string, twine or fake foliage around the mouth of the jar to add a final special touch

To make it extra special, you could opt for a scented tea light. Or a battery-operated tea light – so the magic lasts longer!

Salt dough gift tags

Don’t just DIY your Christmas gifts – DIY your wrapping too! Personalised salt dough gift tags make an awesome homemade Christmas gift and look super impressive attached to your presents.

To make around 12 gift tags, you’ll need:

  • 128g flour
  • 64g salt
  • 50ml warm water
  • Any colour of acrylic paint
  • Cookie cutters
  • Rolling pin
  • One straw
  • Ribbon or twine

To create your salt dough gift tags, follow these simple instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 100C for fan assisted ovens or 110C for electric ovens
  2. Mix together your flour and salt
  3. Add the warm water and then mix until well combined. You can always add a little more water if necessary
  4. Add two large drops of your acrylic paint into the bowl. Knead until the paint covers the dough
  5. Place the dough onto a work surface and use a rolling pin to roll it out until 1-2cm thick
  6. Grab your cookie cutters and begin to make your gift tag shapes. Continue to cut and roll until all the dough is gone
  7. You can then use a blunt knife to create elaborate patterns and/or imprint the lucky recipient’s name. Challenge the family to come up with new ways to personalise each gift tag
  8. Use your straw to create a hole at the top of each gift tag ready for your ribbon or twine
  9. Spread the tags out onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper and place the gift tags in the oven for about an hour. Check the oven every so often to make sure the temperature isn’t too high and then remove once the dough is dry. (You can also leave them out to air-dry overnight)
  10. To finish off, thread your ribbon or twine through the holes so you can attach the tags to your presents.

Fabric covered tree ornaments

Why not give those you love a DIY Christmas tree ornament? Or make a ton for yourself! All you need is:

  • Fabric scraps
  • PVA glue
  • Scissors
  • Paper mâché ornaments (available in craft stores)
  • Twine

To create your fabric covered tree ornament, follow these simple instructions:

  1. Cut out your fabric and glue it onto the ornament in your desired style
  2. Measure your twine depending on how low you want your ornament to hang
  3. Attach it to the back of the ornament in a loop with some PVA glue

These homemade Christmas gift ornaments will go down a treat with grandparents. Especially if the kids have helped out. Plus, how cute would it be to use scraps from an old baby blanket or family crest?

Christmas is all about bringing families together – finding laughter and joy in all that we have. No matter what that looks like. Making gifts for loved ones with the kids will create more festive memories together. And those are the gifts that stand the test of time.

Worried about ticking everything off of your children’s wish lists? Or having the in-laws over for dinner? We’re here to make Christmas a little easier. That’s why we offer flexible repayment plans that take some pressure off you. So you can focus on making Christmas special for the family.

Check out our Christmas offers today.

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This entry was posted in Budgeting Tips and How To's
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