If there’s one good thing to come from the chaos of 2020, it’s that we’re valuing our loved ones more than ever this year. After all, they say that absence makes the heart grow fonder, and we’ve probably all been separated from friends and family at one point or another this year. Renewed appreciation for the people we love calls for some extra special gifts this holiday season, but budgets are pretty tight all around. Luckily, we have the perfect solution: homemade gifts.
People are appreciating the thought and sentiment behind homemade gifts now more than ever. Even better, giving homemade gifts is often way less expensive than buying gifts, and it gives you some little activities to satisfy that DIY craving many of us have. Here are all our recommended homemade gift ideas that you’ll love to give and your favorite people will love to get!
Cooking with herbal oils is one of the easiest ways to jazz up your meals. Best of all, herbal oils are insanely easy (and cheap!) to make, while still being super fancy gift options. Here’s what you’ll need to make these yummy gifts:
Boil your bottles in water for 10 minutes to sterilize, and let them cool completely. Warm the olive oil in a saucepan and add your choice of herbs (make sure you’ve cleaned them if they’re fresh!). Let the mixture cool completely and strain the herbs from the olive oil using a fine-mesh strainer, coffee filter, or something similar. Pour oil into bottles, wrap with your favorite ribbon and gift tags, and give away!
Homemade Bar Soap
This is an ultra-luxurious gift that can be made a couple of different ways, depending on how much time you have on hand. If you want to make soap totally from scratch, you’ll need oil, lye, water, and any other additions you’d like (essential oils, exfoliators, etc.). You can find an amazing tutorial of the whole from-scratch soap making process here.
The easiest soap-making method is the melt and pour method. With this method, you buy a pre-made soap base that you melt down, add your favorite colors/scents/other additions to, pour into a mold, and let cool. Here’s everything you should have on hand to make these gifts:
Melt-and-Pour Soap Base (choose from several options like shea butter, goat’s milk, aloe vera, or cocoa butter)
Essential Oils for fragrance
Silicone Molds (they can be rectangular or in fun shapes!)
Colorants (make sure they’re skin-safe and soap-approved)
Optional additives (coffee grounds, dried flowers, orange peel, dried herbs, etc.)
All you really do to make melt-and-pour soap is to carefully melt your chosen base in a saucepan, remove it from the heat, add everything else in (scents, color, additives, etc.), pour it into the soap molds and let it cool. Package it up in your favorite sustainable packaging, tie it with a bow and it’s ready to go!
Essential Oil Rollers
This is one of my personal favorite gifts to give because it’s super simple yet so luxurious, and easily customizable to meet any number of needs. There are several recipes for essential oil blends to help anything from tension headaches to insomnia to stress! Here’s what I make sure to have on hand how I make them:
For all the blends I make, I use about 10 drops total of essential oils. That means if I’m using a blend of oils I’ll vary the amount of each depending on what I want to stick out more, but the total is always 10 drops. Put the oil into the roller bottle along with any gemstones you want to add, and fill the rest with fractionated coconut oil. Pop the roller ball back in, shake it up, and test it to make sure it smells good! Then stick a label on it with either the person’s name or the name of the blend, package it up and give it away!
I’ve always wondered why candles at the store are so darn expensive when you could so easily make them at home! Candle making, similar to soap making, can be easy or difficult. The easy (and my preferred) way to do it uses a meltable wax base similar to melt-and-pour soap. Here’s everything you’ll need to make these super easy candles:
Secure the wick to the bottom of the jar with a spot of glue or something similar. Melt the wax carefully over the stove and add whatever essential oils you’d like. Hold the wick straight up from the jar so it stays upright as you pour the hot wax in (carefully!), and place a couple popsicle sticks, skewers, or similar objects on either side of the wick to hold it in place while the wax hardens. Let the wax cool and solidify, and trim the wick down to size.
These mugs are crazy elegant and nobody will believe you made them all by yourself! Full credit for this idea and these instructions goes to the House of Hipsters blog — check out their website for in-depth instructions and more awesome ideas. Here’s what you’ll need to make these beautiful DIY gifts:
Fill your container with warm water (not too full — you need to leave room to dip the mug!). Grab the nail polish you want to use. Make sure it’s NOT quick-dry, and we recommend brighter/darker colors so they show up well on the mug. Pour a few drops of nail polish into the water and swirl with your skewer/toothpick. Dip the mug into the water and pull out to pick up the polish. You can make the design come up as high on the mug as you’d like! Let it dry on a paper towel or parchment paper and package up these cute little giftables.
Did you know that you can make flavored vodka that’s way better than the cheap stuff from the liquor store? It’s crazy easy and the possibilities are honestly endless. All you need is plain vodka, your candy of choice, and fancy lil bottles to gift them in. Here’s our full guide to get you started:
Sterilize the glass bottles, pour the vodka in, and add your favorite hard candy. Let it sit for several hours or up to several days. The candy will dissolve and there will be a lot of sugar at the bottom. Filter it through coffee filters into another sterilized glass bottle and you’ll have pretty, candy-flavored vodka to gift!
Did any of these homemade gift options make your to-do list? What are some of your other homemade favs? Share with us in the comments!
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