Handmade Gift Ideas

You’ve made a big list and checked it twice.  Placed extra stars next to those who have been extra doughty and nice!  Especially during the season of Christmas, we want to give specific family and friends a gift made from our hands and heart.  It doesn’t matter if you classify yourself as non-crafty; everyone must start from the first step—reading directions and watching DIY videos. Pick one or two suggestions from the list and delve in!   

Homemade Candles 

Everyone loves the pillar candle! Fortunately, with this particular do-it-yourself project, few items are needed.  Do you have an old long-handled pan to melt soy wax and a larger pan to create a double boiler? Do you have a few round plastic containers that once held deli foods? Yes, perfect!  The only items you’ll need to purchase are soy wax, wicks, wick stickers, coloring, and an essential oil.  A candle-making kit is another way to buy everything you need at once.  The process is easy, dries quickly, and provides a desirable gift for everyone on your list! 

Homemade Soap 

Before getting started, please know it takes four weeks for soap bars to cure, a term implying “to harden”; so, while reasonably priced kits are available online, team up with a friend and invest in ingredients and soap molds. Soapmaking is a therapeutic activity well worth the time and effort.  

Tip:  Google “lye calculator” to ensure your recipe will offer a balance of cleansing, creamy lather, bubbles, and longevity.  Soap makers can determine in advance if the recipe is of quality, or slightly tweak the percentages to improve the values!    

Homemade Foot Balm 

What could be more relaxing than a medicinal gift to ease those sore, tired feet?  The best part—you probably already have coconut oil and olive oil in your cabinet! If not, purchase large containers at your favorite warehouse subscription store! Most recipes call for shea butter, beeswax, and mere drops of an essential oil.  Lavender would be best, but you can also use peppermint or eucalyptus.  

Tip: Use a scale to measure precise ingredients.  Additional drops of essential oil may overpower a recipe and result in starting over! Follow the recipe!   

Tip:  Place four- or six-ounce Mason jars on a cookie sheet before pouring to the halfway mark.  Refrigerate until the wax hardens; then, pour just below the lip. 

Tip:  Research recipes for homemade sugar scrubs, bath bombs, and lip balms; you’ll be surprised at how easy they are to make! 

Needle and Thread, Monogram

From a young nephew or niece to a beloved grandparent, everyone loves to see their name embroidered on a piece of fabric, whether it’s an apron, sweatshirt, uniquely sized pillowcase, or handkerchief.  The recipient will, of course, beam with appreciation and pride! 

Christmas Tea Tree 

A unique suggestion for your favorite tea-lover!  Begin with a Styrofoam cone. Next, insert the base into a small, round box.  Add rice for added weight.   Then, start from the bottom, begin pinning tea bags side-by-side, layer-by-layer, until you reach the top.  A handmade star would add a sweet embellishment to the gift! 

Make Mulling Spices for Cider 

Anyone would love this homemade gift.  The key is finding a unique container with an airtight lid.  Fortunately, all you need are cinnamon sticks, zested lemon, whole cloves, ground allspice, and nutmeg.  One present the entire family could enjoy all season long! 

The Gift of Sweets 

For those special sweet-tooth family members and friends, why not surprise them with a tin of chocolate or yogurt-covered pretzels or strawberries?  A variety, perhaps, of dried fruit or a great-aunt’s best peppermint cake recipe! Chose your size and container well; instead of baking a full-size, consider investing time in making several mini-cakes.  Craft stores always have numerous containers, whether Christmas-themed plastic bags or small and large tins!  Don’t forget to attach a gift card!    

Succulents in a Painted Pot 

For the gardeners in your life, you can order any set number of healthy succulent cuttings delivered by mail.  Fortunately, cuttings just require drying before planting and only a few weeks to develop a root structure! In the meantime, you can paint small terracotta pots while waiting for your special delivery to arrive! 

Handmade gifts can require months, weeks, or mere hours of your time! It can be a present of soothing and healing, indulging, fun, or something personalized! No matter what you choose, the recipient will certainly love your thoughtfulness!


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