Christmas is right around the corner, which means it’s time to sharpen your shopping skills. However, if you’d like to skip the busy malls and the rushed shopping sprees, try making your own gifts. It’s more meaningful as you put your time and effort into it and you can save money. So this year, skip the queues and instead make beautiful and delightful gifts that people would enjoy.
Before you get started, spend some time to think about the person or people who’ll be on the receiving end. Giving a gift and the giftee some thought is the first step to giving a perfect present. To help you create the perfect gift, we’ve come up with a couple of gifting ideas people will love to receive.
Bake brownies, fudge or cookies. Put them in decorated boxes, tins or paper bag and give them to your loved ones. Just remember, these goods can attract ants or go off if left too long. The beauty, however, is they are delicious and you can make an abundance of different cookies (decadent brownies or red velvet choc chip cookies) and everyone will like it.
Does your giftee enjoy spending time in the kitchen – not only to eat? Then give them homemade flavoured salt or oils. You’ll need beautiful bottles, good quality salt or olive oil and flavourings. Choose, say, lemon. If you are infusing it in oil, cut up slices and add it to the bottle, then let it sit for a couple of days so that the oil can absorb the flavour. If you are making salt, add the zest and a couple of drops of lemon juice to the sea salt (remember to break it apart), and dry it out in a preheated oven (90°C) for about 20 min. Once it’s cooled off, break it all up and place it in a container. The internet is full of ideas; you just need to look.
Buy a six-pack of your giftee’s favourite beers and dress them up as reindeer. Think googly eyes, a red nose and antlers. It really is that simple. We promise they’ll be a hit! If you want to take things a step further, buy a bag of pretzel sticks as reindeer feed.
There is an abundance of ideas out there, and the great thing about these is they’ll bring joy to your giftee – hours of fun watching birds in their garden (unless they don’t like birds). You can buy a teacup and saucer from a thrift shop, and glue the two together. To make things a little easier, turn the cup on its side and tie a string or chain to the handle so it can be tied to a branch. Add bird seeds and you’re done.
Either buy a white mug and a glass pen to decorate them (remember you might have to bake the mugs after decorating them) or buy beautiful mugs. Now, fill them with sweets or chocolate treats, wrap them and gift them.
If your giftee is an avid reader? Give them bookends to keep their book collection looking sharp. Depending on how intricate you want to be, it can be very easy or difficult to create. You can plant succulents in pots with lots of rocks or glue a plastic creature (dog, dinosaur or insect) to a brick and paint it. There are loads of ideas out there, just get your creative juices flowing.
The next time you go to a flea market, keep an eye out for beautiful spoons. Turn them into perfect gifts by dipping the spoons in melted chocolate (any flavour) and sprinkle nuts, coconut or crushed peppermints over the chocolate. Once they are set, wrap them in cellophane and gift people with homemade hot chocolate spoons.
Find out what is your giftee’s favourite drink – hot chocolate, cocktail, mixer, etc. Find all the ingredients for one drink. Bring it all together with a mug, jug or design and there you go. For a hot chocolate, fill a jar with a sachet of hot chocolate, add cookies and marshmallows, then write a note about how they should enjoy it. It’s fool-proof and loved by all.
If you are in need of an easy answer and not a DIYer, then give chocolates. They are exquisite and beautifully packed – all you need to say to someone “thank you for everything you’ve done.” Best of all, if you subscribe to My Chocolate Box, you’ll receive a box filled with chocolatey goodness every month.