Save with homemade gift ideas

We know you love recognising the people who play an important role in your and your children’s lives, but it can be hard to know what to get and not break the budget! We went in search of DIY gifts and found some amazing ideas you and your children will enjoy making – and giving to the special people who shared and shaped their lives this year.

1. Put it in a jar

Gifts in a jar come in many different shapes, sizes and forms and can be easy and quick to make. You can repurpose jam jars, olive jars or even the big chutney jar and create a memorable gift. A sparkling clean jar is the start – and then it’s up to you to decorate and fill!

How about cookies in a jar?

Either bake the cookies or layer the dry ingredients (flour and baking powder, sugar and chocolate chips – we like chocolate!), fasten the jar and put a ribbon around the lid. Tie a recipe card to the ribbon and you have cookies ready to be baked with the addition of the wet ingredients.

YouTube tutorial: Chocolate chip cookie recipe

And what about a simple hand scrub? Mix some cinnamon with sugar and a bit of oil (olive or canola will do) and you’ve got a hand scrub and beautiful, soft, fragrant hands!

Or make this lemon hand scrub. Couple together with a small tube of hand lotion – or put some lotion in a small jar – and you’ve got a great gift!

YouTube tutorial: Homemade lemon hand scrub

The braai-lover in your life might appreciate some braai rub. Layer the different spices such as salt, pepper, coriander, chilli powder, garlic powder, perhaps some thyme or oregano, and you’ve got a great gift!

If cookies, a hand scrub or braai spice aren’t ideal – here are 53 ideas for gifts in a jar for more inspiration!

2. Make a special card

Make a special card. Because we spend so much time texting and online, getting a card has become a gift all on its own. Handmade cards show you care and can become gifts in themselves.

Here are two great ideas to inspire you:

YouTube tutorial: DIY homemade card making

3. Explosion box

We’re talking about a quiet explosion – but a memorable one! Explosion boxes are a little different from ordinary boxes because instead of opening the box and looking inside for the gift – the entire box opens up revealing specially selected cards and gifts. You can make your explosion box with multiple layers and boxes inside – or just a simple version that opens out to show the gifts inside. They’re also a great option for gifts from more than one person because each person can take a box inside for their special gift and message!

Here’s a demo to get you started! Remember you can put photos, messages, small home décor items in the boxes, and anything else suitable that takes your fancy, and you know will be appreciated! But chocolate is good too!

YouTube tutorial: How to make chocolate explosion boxes

4. Hot chocolate spoons

Need a gift for the coffee or hot chocolate lover? Hot chocolate spoons are easy and fun to make!

wooden stick with chocolate

Find some spoons – wooden ones work really well and don’t cost a lot – and dip them into melted chocolate and cool. You can decorate and add other flavours such as cinnamon or leave as is for the chocolate purist! They look pretty and add that decadent chocolate flavour to a hot beverage.

Take it one step further and make these hot chocolate sticks! A really thoughtful and unique gift to give.

YouTube tutorial: Hot chocolate on a stick 4 ways

5. Reed diffuser

Who doesn’t love a smellie? Great smelling items, even a simple soap, make great gifts – suitable for most – so why not make your own diffuser? It’s a gift that keeps on giving! All you need are some essential oils, wooden sticks and a jar and you’re ready to go!

YouTube tutorial: DIY homemade reed diffuser

6. Pencil holder

This one might seem suitable for kids – but all of us have a pen and pencil lying around that is prone to getting itself lost! With this beautiful wood pencil holder they’ll be easy to store and find! All you need is a drill and a piece of wood. Drill holes in the wood, and you have a permanent home for your pens, pencils and crayons!

pencil holder

Enjoy gifting

DIY gifts save money and give you more time to be creative with your family. Your teacher, aunt or uncle or grandparents will appreciate the care, time and love you put into your present and remember this – as well as enjoy their beautiful gift!

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