If you’re on a tight budget but you still want to give all your friends and family members gifts they’ll appreciate, it may be best to go down the DIY route. Not only will this save you money, but you’ll also make gifts that recipients are sure to treasure more than anything you could buy in the store.
1. Decorated Coffee Mug
It’s much easier to make a DIY coffee mug than you may think: you just need a plain mug, some sharpies, and perhaps some glitter glue. Decorate your mugs in any way you please — draw a picture or write a message that will have meaning to the recipient — and then bake the mug in the oven for 30 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius.
2. Succulent Garden
Plant a succulent or two in a bowl and cover the top with sand. Draw patterns in the sand with a stick to complete the garden (you can always add some extra objects or pebbles if you wish). Although succulents are a low maintenance plant, you can always use artificial ones — this may be a good idea if the recipient is known for having a poor track record with plants.
3. Bath Bombs
The basic ingredients to make bath bombs are cream of tartar, citric acid, baking soda, cornstarch, and your choice of essential oils for colour and scent. There are various recipes you can follow from simple to quite complex. Make several bath bombs at the same time to check a number of people off your list at once.
4. Jewelry Organizer
There are multiple ways to create a jewelry organizer using items you can find in any thrift store. For instance, you can use an old picture frame with hooks or pieces of fabric, hang chunky bracelets around a glass bottle, or create a jewelry tree from a wide range of objects.
This is a great gift for anyone who owns even a small amount of jewelry — especially if that jewelry tends to end up in a tangled heap in a box or on a dresser.
5. Rice Heat Packs
An ingenious way to stay warm in the winter is with rice heat packs. Simply sew two squares of fabric together leaving one side open and then divide the bag you’ve created into six equal segments. Fill each segment with rice and sew up the bag. Heat the pack in the microwave for just one to two minutes and it will stay warm for around 20 minutes. This is much safer than an electrical heating pad that you must make sure you turn off before you fall asleep.
6. Small Gifts in a Mason Jar
Gifting someone stationery, cookie cutters, cosmetics, or another set of small items may be uninteresting. However, you can transform these simple gifts with the right presentation. Mason jars are excellent for this purpose. Choose some attractive ones at the dollar store, tie a ribbon around them, and you’ll have the perfect packaging for any small gift.
7. Reindeer Bottles
Instead of simply giving friends a six pack of their favorite soda or beer, turn the bottles into reindeers. All you need is pipe cleaner for the antlers, googly eyes, pom-poms for the nose, glue, and the beverages of your choice.
Another way to save money is to move into off-campus housing. An alternative to Durham College residence is Foundry 1805. We have better amenities at more affordable rates than you’ll find elsewhere. Apply now while places are still available and you’ll be able to move in immediately.