Affordable and Thoughtful Gift Ideas - As the holiday season approaches, our focus naturally shifts towards sharing heartfelt gifts with our loved ones. Considering the persistent cost-of-living challenges, we've curated a selection of simple yet delightful affordable and thoughtful gift ideas for young children. Explore a handful of our favourite gift ideas from the wealth of inspiration available online.
We all know the traditional Christmas wreath made of pine leaves, holly, and ivy, but how about extending your creativity this year and making your wreaths and decorations from less traditional materials? Here are some ideas for you:
- Cookie cutters
- Paper flowers
- Plaited ribbons
- Decorated paper plates
- Pieces of scrap material
- Twigs, sticks and other objects from nature
- Painted kitchen roll inserts
When looking for gift ideas hanging decorations are fun and they also make great presents, especially if they are personalised and handmade. You can make the bases out of many different items such as:
- Garden sticks and twigs – you can make them into geometric shapes such as triangles, Christmas trees and stars, or embrace their natural shapes and make them more organic and rustic
- Coat hangers – paint them or wrap them in wool, ribbon or coloured paper, and hang them at different levels to create more interest
- Old cutlery and cooking implements – again, you can leave them natural or paint them in different colours and patterns
- Print some reindeer and sleigh shapes, stick them to card and cut them out to make your very own Santa sleigh
When it comes to the items to hang on the mobile, personalise them and write people’s names, use photographs, or create some avatars on a computer and print them out. You can make a mobile from virtually anything, so think about who you are making it for and try to use items that have a special meaning to them, for example, golf tees, differently shaped cooking cutters or old CDs.
Everyone likes to smell nice, and homemade cosmetics and home scents make great affordable and thoughtful gift. You can use essential oils and create your own reed diffusers or allow them to soak into some material strips or thick card to make a scented hanging decoration.
Candle kits are available to make some colourful candles and you can use old teacups and jars to create some useful homemade presents. Remember to add a warning to never leave a candle unattended.
Make your own potpourri by collecting some twigs, leaves and pinecones. Dry them by putting them in a warm place for a few days then dip them in essential oils. Decorate containers such as jam jars or takeaway trays to put your potpourri in. You can buy Christmas stickers to give them a professional and festive look.
Edible Treat Gift Ideas
Whether you could be a contestant on Bake Off or are an absolute beginner, there is always a recipe you can use to create an easy-to-make, tasty treat. Your little ones will also love helping in the kitchen so make sure you involve them in any baking you do.
Simple things to start with include:
- Chocolate chip cookies
- Cinnamon swirls
- Toffee apples
- Peppermint squares
- Fairy cakes – you can decorate them with festive characters or make them into Christmas trees, reindeer or Santas
If you are more experienced, you can tackle more difficult items such as a Christmas log roll, layer cakes or even make a whole edible street scene complete with battery-operated fairy lights or tea lights.
Other fun, on-trend things to create this year are soup or cake mixes in a jar in colourful layers. The trick here is to gently place each layer separately in the jar to create an attractive pattern. If you can’t get everything into the jar (eggs can be very tricky), write out the instructions telling the recipient that they need to add eggs.
You can always group homemade gifts into a small basket or decorated box to create an attractive hamper.
Decorate a Christmas Stocking or Tote Bag
We all love to hang a Christmas stocking up on Christmas Eve so it will be a lovely treat to receive a homemade stocking or personalised tote bag which could be empty to receive gifts or filled already with some of the other presents we’ve listed.
Making a Christmas stocking or tote bag is an easy project and requires only basic sewing skills. For younger children, you can use larger needles and wool with felt so that they can sew the seams together themselves. If you use coloured wool in a contrasting colour to the felt, the stitches become decorative too. You can stick or sew items onto the stocking/bag such as pom-poms, or other scraps of material to create a picture, or sew/stick a square on to create a pocket and put a picture of the recipient into the pocket. You can also use fabric paints to decorate the item and really get into the spirit of giving. There are also iron-on fabrics which you can use but obviously, get an adult to do the ironing part. Think about decorating cushions, aprons, and tea towels too.
Homemade Toiletrie Gift Ideas
Making your own cosmetics and toiletries is not only fun but it can be one of them affordable and thoughtful gift ideas as well. There are a lot of sites on the internet which show you how to make a variety of items which are sure to be a hit. Things that are easy to make include:
- Face masks
- Facial scrubs
- Bath salts
- Bath bombs
- Spot/blemish creams
You can save small jars to use as containers. Remember that most homemade cosmetics will include natural ingredients but will need to be used quickly as they will not have preservatives in them like commercial alternatives.
Whatever gift ideas you choose to make this year, we love hearing about your successes, so let us know by sending your stories.
Did you find this blog on gift ideas useful? Take a look at some of our other holiday blogs here: