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Monday, 12 October 2015

#SMPXmasCountdown: Day 21 - Frugal Christmas Gifts

Christmas is expensive for everyone. For me its hard work saving up throughout the year and i manage to pull the day off only by buying throughout the year. This year ive had to stop buying gifts for adults and children over the age of 16 (excluding my own) because it is getting to expensive. I felt guilty though, everyone young and old deserves a gift. In order to get around this i started to make my own and each year i set aside a budget of £25 to make gifts for 12 people.

Each year i make the same things and just add little extra's to it so that they have something a little different.

Here is a selection of gifts ill be making or have started making this year for the 10 adults and 2 teachers i am making gifts for.

Chalkboard Coasters - Living Well Spending Less

My Nan and the my mum LOVE things like this. Ill make 4 for each to keep costs down. Some places will send a free sample tiles if you want to be really frugal. Otherwise check out facebook selling pages, gum tree or ebay for tiles people have spare from finishing their bathrooms or kitchens.
You can make your own chalkboard paint, if you dont have any in the house or want to buy any. To make it is alot simpler than you think.

Simply mix acrylic paint to some unsanded grout and mix! Buy sample pots of house paint to make them different colours if you wish and to keep the costs down. As i already had the unsanded grout here, i just brought a couple of black sample pots. 

Word Clouds 

I love these. I received one last year from toxicfox.co.uk. I then went on to buy 2 more as they look so fantastic on the wall and make really thoughtful and personal gifts. Unfortunately, while worth the money, £30 is way over my budget for this year, so i am attempting to try make my own. I plan to make one for each household. So 8 in all. 

Having had a play around, these are a couple of sites that i have found the easiest to use and that have a nice range of styles, Tagxedo and Tagul. If you search word clouds on google, you can find plenty more sites to try.

You can make a picture frame out of cardboard, rolled up magazine pages, wood. Have a google and see what you can find. As we have recently moved house i have some cardboard boxes which i plan on using to make a thick 3d frame, which i plan to glue fabric (made from tshirts) onto. You could ask your local newsagents for a box if you do not want to pay out for one. As i do not own a printer and these will be A4 sized. Our local library will print them out for 20p each sheet. 

Personalized candles - Kylie's Corner 

Ill be making 6 of these - 2 each for 3 adults, one each from the girls to their grandparents.

I brought 6 pillar candles in a job lot on eBay for £3.50 which i collected as was nearby. You could look around for deals though or buy them in 99p shop for £1 each.

I found a video online for those who like video tutorials.


Cinnamon Bath Salts - Coupon Closet 

I wanted something which gave off a Christmas smell to add to their hampers as well as adding a pamper item due to the majority of the gifts being for women. Bath salts are incredibly easy to make and very very cheap. You can make any scent you want with just a few drops of your favorite essential oils. Have a google for recipes or look on pinterest. There is some great ways to display them and make them look more expensive than they actually are. 

I plan to make 4 jars of these. I have been saving up Douwe Egburts coffee jars throughout the year so i can use some of them specifically for this. 

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Quick bread in a jar - Sunset 

I made this last year for a house warming gift. It is amazing! and really easy to make. I have all the ingredients indoors already but as i plan to make 8 of these, ill need to buy a full set of ingredients. Ill be using the rest of the Douwe Egburts jars ive collected to put the mix in. 

Snowman poop - Enchanted Ladybug Creations 

No Christmas is complete without a gag gift. The only cost here is the Tic Tacs which i can pick up multi packs of in 99p shop. I have some of last years Christmas cards in the decorations box so i plan to cut them up and use them rather than buy new card. Ill use the left over ribbon from making the chalkboard coasters, to finish them off. Ill be making 10 of these. 

If you want to mix thing up abit, use the tic tac containers and add chocolate raisins to make reindeer poop. 

Plum Wine - And Here We Are 

Last year i wrote a post about Homemade alcohol (You can read it here) This Plum win was one of the items in the post which i made last year and proved to be really popular. I was going to try something different this year but we have found some Plum trees nearby which are letting off a ridiculous amount of fruit, and have been given permission to take what we would like to use. 

Ill been saving white wine bottles throughout the year to gift this in at Christmas. Ill use some of the ribbon i used in the Chalkboard Coasters and The snowman poop to dress it and will probably buy some burlap and lace to dress the middle of the bottle. Ill make a tag out of the Christmas cards i saved from last year. Ill be making 8 of these. 

Moon slippers - Knitting Patterns Galore

Earlier in the year i was given a black bag full of wool, some never opened bundles and some hall fused balls. Seen as i essentially got this for free i decided to add a knitted item to the hampers i am making. I decided moon slippers would be an easy quick item. I've been knitting these since being given the wool but will have 10 pairs by Christmas. 

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