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20 Ideas for Easy Diy Gifts for All Occasions

Here's a "head's up" on what to buy and which products to skip when shopping at the Dollar Store. Not everything is priced at one dollar.

Kindness Rocks: Simple to Create

Folks love decorated rocks and these are so easy and fun to paint.

Folks love decorated rocks and these are so easy and fun to paint.

Make Your Own Gifts Using Jars or Zip-Lock Bags

Forget waiting in long lines or looking for a place to park this holiday season. Make your own Christmas gifts. Most of these ideas can be made for the price of a cup of coffee.

From the time I was a little girl, my mother taught me how to make fun, inexpensive gifts. Here are a few ideas to help you get gift-organized for Christmas.

  1. Take baby food jars and apply cute stickers to the front. Three of these make a great gifts for storing cotton balls, bath salts and Q-Tips.

2. Paint "Honey Pot" on the front of a jar and fill it with organic honey. Tie a cute ribbon around the lid and make a festive bow.

3. Give your favorite recipe written on a cute card and include two or three of the ingredients. Example: Chocolate chip oatmeal cookie recipe - include one package of chocolate chips, one package of nut and several cups of oatmeal in a zip-lock bag. You can either fill a large jar with the ingredients of simply decorate the zip-lock bag, tying a ribbon to it.

4. Using a zip-lock bag or a jar, fill with several kinds of dry beans and include your favorite bean soup recipe written on a card.

5. Small mason jars filled with home-made soy candles are a big hit all year long.

6. Dried flowers placed on plain brown paper bags and framed are accepted by one-and-all.

Think outside-the-box and create a variety of DIY gifts during Christmas as well as other holidays and birthdays during the year. Make them well in advance and save yourself stress and expense. And while you're at it check out on-line tutorials for designing your own cards and gift tags.

Make Gifts Using Jars

String a gift tag using raffia ribbon, wrap around top of jar and tie.  Adding a fun decoration, like a bee, adds a bit of charm and fun. I like to tie on a small wooden honey scoop.

String a gift tag using raffia ribbon, wrap around top of jar and tie. Adding a fun decoration, like a bee, adds a bit of charm and fun. I like to tie on a small wooden honey scoop.

Easy DIY Gift

Succulents make a good gift. Pick up pots for a dollar at the dollar store and give them a quick coat of paint. Total cost is  $2 - $4/

Succulents make a good gift. Pick up pots for a dollar at the dollar store and give them a quick coat of paint. Total cost is $2 - $4/

Inexpensive DIY Gifts

An extra idea.  Include tiny baggies filled with spices for making bean soup.  Decorate jar with festive ribbon and a small ornament.

An extra idea. Include tiny baggies filled with spices for making bean soup. Decorate jar with festive ribbon and a small ornament.

I purchased a set of beautiful butterfly coasters at the dollar store.  Wrap them in colored cellophane and add a bow.

I purchased a set of beautiful butterfly coasters at the dollar store. Wrap them in colored cellophane and add a bow.

Inexpensive And Unusual Christmas Gifts To Make

The combination of inexpensive and unusual gifts attracts folks at Christmastime. As you check out the suggestions below, be thinking about other items you can make that will put a smile on your budget's face.

7. Make Christmas ornaments out of different kinds of noodles, using Elmer's glue. This makes a cute gift and the entire family can get involved. What a fun project.

8. Here's a gift I made last year that was well received. Cover shoe boxes with wrapping paper, wallpaper, contact paper or even burlap or other scrapes of fabric. Use this as a gift box.

Next, fill with stationary items-glue stick, small scissors, paper clips, marking pens, memo pad, and thank-you notes. I use Easter Basket or Birthday filling which saves time wrapping each gift. Andy teacher, grandparent,mom or dad would love such a gift.

9. Here's another idea I used one Christmas to give to my brother. Cover a box with regular road maps (old ones work fine.) Fill the box with updated road maps, a fist-aid kit, a favorite music CD, jumper cables, flares or any kind of item associated with travel and/or the car.

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Make Great Gifts With Baskets

I really enjoy making gifts with baskets. They can be filled with virtually anything. When you're through filling a basket, wrap the complete basket with cellophane or cling. Add a pretty bow and gift tag and this fun-making gift basket is ready to go.

Here are some suggestions for filling the basket. You're only as limited as your imagination.

10. Bath - soaps, shower cap, bubble bath, bath salts, bath oil and a loofla or washcloth.

11. Reading - a book for each family member and bookmarks. If for one person, add a book-light. Book marks are easy to make on your computer. Just design, print, cut and there you have it.

12. Kitchen - wooden spoons, measuring cups, can opener,oven mitt, sponges.

13. Toys - games, books, teddy bear, dolls, truck, puzzles and action figures.

14. Gardening - seeds, garden tools, gloves, pruners/clippers, hand shovel, bug spray.

15. Sewing - measuring tape, scissors, pins, buttons. elastic lace, ribbon and tape.

16. Laundry - bleach, laundry soap, fabric softener, spot remover and small spot brush.

17. For men - car wax, chamois, Armor-all, trash bags, litter bag for car. Or a razor, shaving creme, after-shave and include extra blades.

Suggested Fillers For Gift Boxes

There are several choices to use for the filler:

Packing peanuts

Small pebbles

Easter basket filling in different colors.


Shredded paper (I save brown paper bags, cut them to feed through the shredder.)

Cotton balls.

Gold boxes and ribbon from Dollar Store.  Fill with home-made chocolates or cookies.  I include a "use by date" on the tag or "open now" to keep fresh.

Gold boxes and ribbon from Dollar Store. Fill with home-made chocolates or cookies. I include a "use by date" on the tag or "open now" to keep fresh.

Food Items Make Wonderful Gifts

Use resources that are in your area and available to you. Here are some ideas:

18. Popcorn - Plain or seasoned everyone liked popcorn. Drizzle caramel syrup over popcorn for a delicious treat.

19. Breads - banana, ,succhini or cinnamon-raisen are all winners.

20. Nuts - almonds, walnuts, cashews, pistachios and peanuts make a healthy treat.

Additional Food Items For Gift Giving

Pure natural maple syrup

Fruits - In season

Baskets of natural foods such as granola mix raisins, three-to-seven-grain ceral mix

Bread starters

Decorate your gift basket freely or with a theme to go with the person, such as music, sports, cooking and such.

Decorate your gift basket freely or with a theme to go with the person, such as music, sports, cooking and such.

Ideas For Stuffing Christmas Stockings

Filling Christmas Stockings offers plenty of ideas as shown on the bonus list..

Filling Christmas Stockings offers plenty of ideas as shown on the bonus list..

Bonus: A List of Suggested Stocking Stuffers For Kids And Teens

  • Small teddy bears
  • Paint sets and brushes
  • Colored pens or pencils
  • Art paper for projects
  • Puzzles, books, small Bible
  • Subscription to a magazine
  • Socks
  • Belt
  • Headbands or other hair items
  • Music CD
  • Theater tickets
  • Nuts and fruits
  • Toothbrush
  • Curling Iron
  • Hand lotion
  • Shampoo
  • Gift certificate
  • Small kitchen items for the young chef
  • Hobby items
  • Flashlight
  • Measuring tape
  • Kitchen towel
  • Golf balls

Cute Ideas for Gifts


Many of these gifts can be prepared far ahead of time so that you will be able to relax and enjoy the holidays. Organization of gifts is one of the keys to a stress-free Christmas.

Plan and prepare ahead for a pleasant, organized holiday or birthday. And because Christmas is a loving and giving time, take time to love. Share the true meaning of the holidays with friends, family and loved ones.

Remember to send a card or pay a visit to a shut-in. Sing a song at a convalescent home. Enjoy living the true meaning of Christmas.

Where It Began ~

© 2013 Audrey Hunt


Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 25, 2019:

Dear Patricia

I've started a new hobby which I'll add to this list. Rock painting! It's fun, great therapy, and I call them "Kindness Rocks." I place them in the forest and around our mountain village. Gee, they may make great gifts too!

Thanks for my Angels.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on November 25, 2019:

Thanks for sharing. I will pass these along to friends Angels are headed your way this evening. ps

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on January 02, 2017:

Top 10 Gifts

Thank you for being here. I'm glad you like the card idea. It's helped me in many occasions. Have a terrific day and I look forward to "seeing" you again.

Happy New Year!

Top Gifts on January 02, 2017:

Love the "cards idea". What a great personal gift for a birthday for someone. I'm sure they would keep that for years! Thanks girls!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 02, 2014:


Thank you for being here. I'm happy you liked these suggestions for gifts.


I love your "A gift is never considered cheap when thought is placed into it." Bravo! Very true. Thanks Linda.



Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on December 02, 2014:

I've done the bath gifts many times. Books and bookmarks too! Another superb list of gift ideas! A gift is never considered cheap when thought is placed into it! :)

rahul from India on November 30, 2014:

these are really wonderful gift option for Christmas

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on May 11, 2014:

precy anza - Using baskets affords us endless, creative ways for making gifts all year long as well as Christmas. Keep in touch and let me know how you are using your baskets. By starting early, we can take advantage of various sales on items for filling the baskets.

Thanks so much!

precy anza from USA on March 30, 2014:

I will remember these for this year's Christmas. I made 2 gift baskets for kids last Christmas and it was fun to make. So this year I'm planning on making more gift baskets, such fun to make. And maybe I'll grow herbs too on baskets as gifts :)

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on March 14, 2014:

Deborah - I'll bet these jars of your homemade soup were a big hit, especially with a pretty card filled with a recipe. This is one of my favorite ideas. Thanks for sharing this. I love it!

Deborah Neyens from Iowa on March 13, 2014:

Great ideas. I gave homemade soup mixes in jars this past Christmas with the recipes attached to the jar on a pretty card. They were a big hit!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on February 15, 2014:

FaithDream - So happy to hear that you found some creative ways here to make gifts. This is my goal. Blessings to you ~ Audrey

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on February 15, 2014:

NellRose - Yes, if we all went back to making our own gifts what a difference that would make in so many ways. I'm thinking of doing this all year long:)

starstream - Your homemade granola sounds so good. Thanks so much for tweeting this.

FaithDream from (Midwest) USA on December 22, 2013:

These are some great gift ideas. I'm always looking for some creative ideas and you had plenty. Thanks for sharing. Merry Christmas!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 16, 2013:

listsnthings - Yes, many of the crafts I've mentioned I too have seen in expensive boutiques through the years. I'm so glad to see you here and wishing you Happy Holidays!

Hi Victoria - I save all the buttons that are attached to clothing that I turn into dust rags and use them for decorating DIY gifts throughout the year. And I store all jelly/jam jars, mayo jars and such to use for ideas to make gifts with. Making these unique gifts are such fun! Happy Holidays, Victoria to you and yours ~ Audrey

Dreamer at heart from Northern California on December 16, 2013:

You have inspired me to make some special granola using a jar of my pepper jam for flavor. It may be a tasty little gift idea for Christmas! Tweeting your article now. thanks again.

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 15, 2013:

Thelma Alberts - Thanks a million for reading my hub. So happy to hear you've picked up some ideas for making Christmas gifts this year. Happy holidays, Thelma to you and yours ~ Audrey

Prasetio30 - Thank you my friend for taking the time to read my hub. I'm very happy to hear you liked it so much. Blessings and joy to you ~ Audrey

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 12, 2013:

Hi Sherry - So nice to see you here. Thanks for liking my hub and Happy Holidays to you and yours.

Starstream - I'm very glad to hear that you are adding my hub to your saving money hub. So good of you to do this. Thanks so much!

Nell Rose from England on December 12, 2013:

I love all these ideas, it's a pity that we don't all go back to these simple but really useful Christmas ideas, you have given me really good ideas now, so thanks!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 11, 2013:

Vellur - Making gift baskets are my favorite DIY.

I kind of cheat and collect items that go on sale during the year and include them in the baskets.

They are always a big hit :)

Jackie Lynnley - I put things away all year for making my gifts. I always pick up wrapping items after Christmas when they are marked way down. Thanks Jackie and Happy Holidays.

torrilynn - So glad that you found this useful information. Good to see you here. ~ Audrey

Victoria Lynn from Arkansas, USA on December 11, 2013:

I love DIY gifts. I don't have much money to spend this year and am scrambling at the last minute. I need to start earlier next year to put together some special gifts and have them ready. And they don't have to be expensive!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 09, 2013:

drbj ~ I would have taken that violent orange sweater. I'd give it to my sister who has not given me one thing I ever liked for Christmas in 55 years! One year she sent me a little dog sweater and I didn't even own a dog:) Thank God we don't exchange gifts anymore.

Your comments, as always, are worth bookmarking! Thanks, lovely lady ~

Anna Christie from London, United Kingdom on December 05, 2013:

What great ideas for Christmas presents. Those are the kinds of things that people would buy at Arts and Crafts markets and in shops as unique handmade Christmas gifts. If you can make them yourself then you add that personal touch to your presents.

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 05, 2013:

Genna East - Happy holidays my friend. Very nice to hear that you enjoy making your own gifts.

Appreciate your comments. Take good care now~ Audrey

Anita Anne Asra - I really like hearing that my hub is useful for you. Thanks for the vote up and Merry Christmas!

anidae - I agree. Making your own gifts is a win-win for both parties. Thank you so much. Have a great Christmas!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 05, 2013:

teaches12345 - Hello, my friend. I hope this finds you well and happy. I, too like the gift baskets. So quick to make up and fun as well. Very pleased that you've found this hub useful. Take good care of yourself and get plenty of rest through the busy days ahead. ~ Audrey

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 05, 2013:

mcbirdbks ~ I like your description "colliding into Christmas." I've cut way back on my Christmas list this year - next year I may be cutting my list period:)

Hugs and Happy Holidays Mike!

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on December 04, 2013:

Wonderful ideas, Audrey. You have done a great job here by sharing this hub with us. Beautiful pictures selection as well. Voted up :-)


Thelma Alberts from Germany on December 04, 2013:

What great ideas you have! I enjoyed reading it and this gives me ideas what to make for gifts to some of my relatives. Thank you.

Dreamer at heart from Northern California on December 03, 2013:

I enjoy thoughtful gifts which are not costly to buy! Please add my approval to your great hub. In fact I am going to add it to my saving money hub.

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 02, 2013:

AliciaC ~ Very nice to see you and hope the Holidays are just wonderful for you and yours. Thanks for being here ~ Audrey

MJennifer - Hi there. Your comments have made me feel so glad to have written this hub. Using the road maps that I've saved over the years to cover a box or two has brought me many compliments. Now, everyone on my list wants their gift wrapped with road maps :)

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on December 02, 2013:

Hi Cindy - So great to see you here. I hope you're doing better. I want to learn to crochet. So many beautiful things can be made. Take care my friend, Audrey

Sherry Hewins from Sierra Foothills, CA on December 01, 2013:

Wonderful ideas. I love home made gifts.

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 30, 2013:

suziecat7 ~ Oh, thank you so much. I'm so happy to hear this. My best to you ~ Audrey

tillsontitan ~ Well, here we are my friend. Another year of festivities and hubbing. My, how time does fly. Sounds like you are a busy bee with getting gifts together for your 'brood.' Such a joyous feeling.

I like the covered shoe boxes too. I save all the boxes during the year to use for gifts. Today I covered one box and lid using scraps of lace, cut in wide strips and glued them in rows. Turned out quite good and didn't cost me a cent. Thanks my friend for being here and for all your support year after year. God willing, we will do it again next year. ~ good thoughts going your way. Audrey

torrilynn on November 28, 2013:

thanks for this useful information.voted up.

Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on November 28, 2013:

Making gifts really make it more like Christmas to me. I love giving and receiving them; they are go warm and loving I think. Also when it is so hard to pick the right gift this solves that problem too. I use to get those little craft things in the mail to help you make interesting things and I gave those as gifts too. ^

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 27, 2013:

JakeFrost ~ Hi there. What's the weather like in London? Thanks for liking these tips. They sure help me stretch my budget:)

Diana Lee - You are absolutely right. The thought that someone puts into a gift should always be appreciated, my mom taught us this when we were very little. Thanks.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on November 27, 2013:

Great gift ideas. Gifts need not be expensive, it is the thought that counts. I love the idea of gift baskets, you can include many things in it.

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 27, 2013:

PWalker281 ~ Aloha my friend. Thank you so much for sharing my hub on your facebook. I'd love to see it. How can I find a link? Hope your Thanksgiving if delicious and filling :) - Audrey

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 27, 2013:

bravewarrior - I love your idea for the banana bread in a glass baking dish and giving this to a neighbor. And I adore banana bread. Home made cookies in a tin is a wonderful idea. In both cases, after the goodies are gone, they have a lovely gift - the container! Thank you for sharing this. You are so very creative as well as one of my favorite writers here at HP. Hugs~Audrey

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 26, 2013:

FlourishAnyway - It makes me very happy to hear that your liked the "road map" idea and art supplies. Appreciate you as well as your comments. Take care ~ Audrey

Dee aka Nonna ~ How are you my friend? So good to see you. You and I both agree that home made gifts are the best. Thanks so much for voting up, awesome and useful.

billybuc ~ Somehow I had the feeling that you would share my thoughts on saving money during Christmas and putting the love into home made gifts. Too bad everyone doesn't share this idea.

During the years that my son, Randy, was a struggling musician he made all his gifts by hand. They remain with me today where beautiful memories linger. I wouldn't trade them for a million dollars and I truly mean it.

Thank you dearest Bill. You are a gift yourself. Going to bat for all we hubbers, teaching us to write better than we ever could without you, and supporting the underdog, the struggling and the hopeful.

To get a "thumbs up" from our Bill is as close to an oscar as we will ever get.

Sending you tons of hub-love ~ Audrey

drbj and sherry from south Florida on November 26, 2013:

Your gift basket suggestions for gifts are perfect, Audrey. Nothing spells lovin' like something from the oven. Wait a minute, I think that slogan may already be taken. But it is true that DIY gifts indicate to the recipient that the donor has taken special pains to give the most appropriate present.

Some of the greatest gifts I have ever received have been beautifully handmade and much appreciated. Except for one - that violent orange sweater with sleeves to fit an orangutan. Even Goodwill turned up their collective noses at that one.

Anita Adams from Tennessee on November 26, 2013:

Great ideas for any occasion. I love gifts from the heart! The best part is that the thoughtful gift produces a warm, fuzzy feeling for the person making the gift as well as for the recipient.

Opulentus Akhila Suri from Hyderabad on November 26, 2013:

Thank you so much for this vocalcoach! Voted up. I'll definitely try some of them and get back to you.

Genna East from Massachusetts, USA on November 26, 2013:

I sooo love creating our own Christmas gifts, so I was especially happy to see this hub. Wonderful ideas! Thank you. :-)

Dianna Mendez on November 25, 2013:

The most simple home-made gifts are special and I have lots of them to remind me of how thoughtful the giver was when gifting. Your lists are incredible and will be of great use during this holiday season. Thanks for the suggestions. I will be making some of those basket ideas for friends.

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 25, 2013:

Faith Reaper - Sometimes I think it would be a good idea to return to times when almost all gifts were home made. People were grateful for so little then. We are a little spoiled these days.

Thanks to you my beautiful friend for your sweet comments. How great it would be to meet you one day. ~ Hugs ~ Audrey

mckbirdbks from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on November 25, 2013:

Happy holidays Audrey. I really like the spirit of this article. So many people should come and read this. It will save them pain and money as we collide into the Christmas season.

Marcy J. Miller from Arizona on November 25, 2013:

This was jam-packed with amazing tips, Audrey. I yearn for those days when thoughtful home-made gifts were the norm rather than an anomaly. I love giving them and I love receiving them.

I never thought of using those old road maps to wrap gifts -- you've just inspired me in new directions!

Happy holidays -- MJ

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on November 25, 2013:

There are loads of great ideas in this hub, Audrey! Thank you very much for the list. Making gifts with the items that you mention would be great fun!

Cindy Murdoch (homesteadbound) on November 25, 2013:

Lots of great ideas! I am crocheting a gift right now.

Mary Craig from New York on November 25, 2013:

Great gift ideas Audrey. I have to admit I've been putting together gifts for my High School Senior grandsons and College Granddaughters that include notebooks, highlighters and the like. I like the decorated shoebox to give them in.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Voted up, useful, and interesting.

suziecat7 from Asheville, NC on November 24, 2013:

Loved this Hub - so much stuff here - thanks!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 24, 2013:

ChitrangadaSharan -

It makes me happy to hear that you found these tips useful. It is the giving from the heart as love and energy is shared through the making of gifts.

Thank you, my sister and beautiful blessings to you. ~ Audrey

Diana L Pierce from Potter County, Pa. on November 24, 2013:

You have some good ideas here. It's the thought that counts.

Jake Frost from London, United Kingdom on November 24, 2013:

Moneys a bit tight this year and more fun when your being creative, definitely going to give some of these a go!

Audrey Hunt (author) from Pahrump NV on November 24, 2013:

Jodah - (Love your name),

I actually got chills as I read your comments. And thanks for being the first one here :) My best to you.

PWalker281 on November 24, 2013:

Wonderful ideas, Audrey! So great I shared them on my Facebook crochet page :-).

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on November 24, 2013:

Audrey, these are all great ideas. I don't often exchange gifts with neighbors, but when I do, I fill a Christmas tin with a variety of homemade cookies, or I'll bake a banana bread and offer it in a glass loaf pan. Either way, they have a gift they can use when the goodies are all gone.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on November 24, 2013:

Audrey, now you are speaking my language. Christmas ceased to be about money for me many years ago. I love DIY presents...they say so much to me about love and caring.

And you, my dear, are the epitome of love and caring.

blessings coming your way, and of course.....



Dee aka Nonna on November 24, 2013:

I love the idea of gift you make, find, or put together with items the receiver will enjoy. Doesn't cost must but very thoughtful. Some of the best gifts I have received have been those types of gifts. Enjoyed this hub. Voted up, awesome, and useful.

FlourishAnyway from USA on November 24, 2013:

I especially like your road map/car care idea and any kind of gift basket with arts supplies.

Faith Reaper from southern USA on November 24, 2013:

Wow, Audrey! These are such great ideas and who could not use help in selecting wonderful homemade gifts and save on the budget as well! Personally, I love receiving these types of gifts. They are so personal and just adorable ideas. Love the video ideas too.

I love your map location of where it began. You're the best!

Up and more and sharing.

Blessings to you and yours, Faith Reaper

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on November 24, 2013:

Great gifting ideas for Christmas and I loved it!

Christmas gifts sounds more or less like Diwali gifts in India. And what better way to gift something which can be customized and self made!

Very useful and interesting hub. Voted up!

John Hansen from Australia (Gondwana Land) on November 24, 2013:

Very helpful information with lots of good ideas for Christmas presents. Well written and designed hub as well. Thanks.

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