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Homemade Christmas Gift Ideas: For Kids, Mom, Dad, Friends, and More!

December 2nd, 2014 - 11:03 AM

Make Your Own Special Handmade Christmas Gifts

With gift-giving season quickly approaching, you’re probably wondering what to get all those special people on your list. Instead of buying them something generic,  try something handmade! Even if you’re not crafty, these Christmas presents are so simple that practically anyone can make them, even if you’re more ‘John Stewart’ than ‘Martha Stewart’. Scroll through these unique ideas – they’re sure to put a smile on your loved one’s face. The directions are easy, and the supplies are inexpensive. Let’s get crafting!

Homemade Christmas Gifts for Kids

Games make the perfect homemade Christmas gifts for kids.

Most kids love games, so why not make them a special one? Here are some game ideas for kids of every age.

  1. Little ones will love a peek-a-boo puzzle. Cut and glue photos into a store-bought puzzle to create a personalized puzzle featuring your baby’s favorite people. Use the puzzle piece as a template to cut the photographs the perfect size. Include photos of family, pets, favorite cartoon characters, or teachers – the possibilities are endless. If you need step-by-step directions, check out Nurture Store.
  2. For older kids, try customizing a board game. To make it personal, print out words and glue them to the game cards (like adding your home address to Park Place on Monopoly), add special photos to the game board, or use tools like washi tape to decorate game pieces in their favorite colors. . You could even do this to vintage games you find at a thrift store. Craft Stylish has more great ideas!
  3. Another fun, active game is a play mat. This one from Teach Beside Me is actually double sided and includes both hopscotch and tic-tac-toe. The best part? While the directions include sewing, you could easily make this a no-sew project by using craft glue.
  4. Do you find yourself constantly wrangling your iPhone away from Angry Birds-playing kid? Then make them their own live version! Save old cans and paint them with the simple features of the popular game villains: the Bad Piggies. To smash the cans, add a small ball painted like their favorite bird – they’ll have fun stacking and knocking them down over, and over, and over. This game would be super-fun for an Angry Birds-themed party, too. Get step by step instructions at Homemade Beauties by Heidi.

Four great presents for any LEGO lover.

Even if you’re constantly stepping on these foot-daggers (also known as LEGOS®), your little ones will love a LEGO-themed homemade gift.

  1. Make your kids their very own DIY LEGO tray for a fun way to keep the building blocks where they belong. The tutorial from Frugal Adventures shows you how to make a portable tray for less than $30, including links to purchase all the parts online.
  2. For LEGO lovers on the go, this portable LEGO kit from Mama Papa Bubba is the perfect DIY idea. Using a metal lunchbox as the carrying case, then cut a building plate to size and you’ve got a super fun travel box.
  3. When clean-up time rolls around, this DIY LEGO storage container is sure to make your kid smile. Oversized snack containers, some paint, and a smiley face (ObSuessed uses vinyl cut outs, but you could use paint) will make a fun and practical present.
  4. This last gift combines LEGO and Star Wars lovers. Instructables shows you how to create a clock using LEGO figures. While these instructions may be a little more labor intensive, the end result is totally worth it. Even grown up Star Wars fans would love getting this under the Christmas tree!

Homemade Christmas Gifts for Mom

Mom will love these DIY gifts.

For the fashionista mom in your life, you can easily give her some very trendy homemade items.

  1. Help her get organized with a homemade scarf holder. Using nothing more than a hanger, some shower curtain rings, and fabric scraps, create this scarf holder by following the step-by-step directions from Studs and Pearls. I love the thought of using mom’s favorite colors or even some cute polka dot fabric.
  2. Another great idea for mom is this awesome dip-dyed shirt from Martha Stewart. The “ombre” look is really in style right now, and with some liquid dye and a white shirt, you’ll be able to make this one in a snap. Really simple directions can be found here.
  3. Using a solid-colored T-shirt, make a fun and fashionable infinity scarf. This no-sew scarf makes a great present because you’re able to make it personal using mom’s favorite colors. Vlogger Mr. Kate has a great video tutorial to show you how to make your own.
  4. You may have seen fancy tumblers like these at other stores, but it’s simple to create them yourself using glasses from the dollar store. Radical Possibility shows you how to paint your own using simple paint from the craft store. If design painting makes you nervous, don’t worry--no artistic ability required (it’s only dots on the glasses)!

Make mom a gift with these awesome ideas.

  1. If Mom loves to bake, give her some “helping hands” in the kitchen. Gather up the kids and some paint to make special oven mitts. The directions from Green Kid Crafts are super easy (so yes, Dad, you CAN do this one!). Switch this idea up with paw prints for the fur-mom in your life (be sure to use water color or non-toxic acrylic paint on your pup).
  2. If Mom loves to “pin” recipes on Pinterest, she can cook her favorites straight from her iPad on the kitchen counter with a wooden tablet holder. This fun piece is easy to create with the help of the directions from Mamie Jane’s using a couple wooden blocks and an inexpensive cutting board.
  3. For something beautiful and functional, make these fabric-covered wooden spoons from Alice and Lois. This project uses Mod Podge and fabric scraps to dress up the standard wooden spoon. Buy the wooden spoons in bulk online if you’re making a lot of them, or buy them at the local dollar store for a bargain.
  4. Give your mom relaxation with these homemade bath bombs from One Good Thing by Jillee. They are surprisingly easy to make using ingredients found at the grocery store, personalizing them with whatever scents you want!

Homemade Christmas Gifts for Dad

Make Dad’s day with these homemade gift designs.

  1. Does your dad love to grill? If so, he would likely love a tasty spice rub made by you. For this one, it’s all about the packaging, so find a great jar or tin for the spice mix. If you need some inspiration recipes, check out Kojo Designs (she also has some downloadable labels for your jars). Another easy packaging idea is to use a parmesan cheese shaker (with the label removed, of course) so Dad can shake out the seasoning.
  2. If Dad’s taste is more sweet than savory, make him an ice cream kit. (My dad eats a bowl of ice cream every night after dinner, and I think I’ll make him a kit like this one from Bloom Designs, which includes free printable labels.) This would also be a great package to give the neighbors! Go as sweet as you want with this one—include sprinkles, candies,  or even a brightly-colored bowl. Homemade cinnamon almonds (or another candied treat) would be a nice touch as well.
  3. For tech-loving guys, create a remote caddy to keep all of their gadgets in order. I Heart Organizing has a great tutorial to follow – and while it does use a sewing machine, all of the stitches are straight and easy, so you’ll be able to follow along no matter your sewing ability.
  4. Another fun thing that you or the kids can do for dad is to make custom coffee mugs. This is super easy! You’ll need a white mug (check out the dollar stores) and some Sharpies. Write a poem, song lyrics, or draw a picture for a keepsake he’ll use daily to enjoy his morning joe. For step-by-step instructions and inspiration, read the post over at Bubble Gum Post.

DIY Christmas Gifts for Friends

Create fun and inexpensive presents for your friends with these easy tutorials.

  1. Homemade bath salts are great for giving affordable (and adorable) gifts in bulk—think coworkers or organization groups. You’ll be buying an entire bag of Epsom Salt, so go ahead and make one big batch and divide them up. Like the spice rub, the packaging is important! For a rustic look, use mason jars and twine. Or hit up the dollar store for unique glass bottles. For labels, use chalkboard paint on the glass and write on the bottles with chalk for a  trendy look. Homemade bath salt directions can be found at Everything Etsy.
  2. No matter what your friends are into,  fun alphabet tile coasters are great for anyone. I love the themes in these: coffee, reading, wine, and margaritas! Other fun themes might be music “sing, play, soul, beat”, “love, hugs, kiss, cute” for the newlyweds, or maybe “wish, hope, pray, live” for another idea. Regardless of what you spell out, these coasters are sure to be a hit! Check out the step-by-step directions from The Ribbon Retreat to easily make your own
  3. These coffee cozies from are a fun way for friends to dress up their cup! This project is no-sew – you just need a printer, felt, and adhesive. While they use printable canvas and a special machine, you could easily substitute store-bought patterened canvas.
  4. For fashion-forward friends, give them a trendy bracelet! The supplies can be purchased at any craft store (chain, lanyard, jewelry pliers, a clasp, and jump rings) then follow along with Studs and Pearls to make your very own! Customize the colors to fit your friend’s personality.

Homemade Christmas Gifts for Anyone

No matter who you need a gift for, these DIY ideas are sure to please.

Forget standard generic presents: these DIY gifts are personalized and easy to make for anyone on your list.

  1. Who doesn’t love curling up with a blanket in the winter?  All you’ll need for this no-sew blanket is fabric and scissors. Fabric stores offer fleece in tons of designs, including sports teams, animals, solid colors, prints, and more. Be sure you make the blanket the right size for the recipient (adults will need a bigger blanket than, say, a two-year-old). Just follow these simple instructions from About.com.
  2. These would work for just about anyone—clothespin magnets. Clothespins are crazy affordable; often a bag of 100 will be less than $20. Add some scrapbook paper and some magnetic tape, and voila – presents for a group of people. The Krazy Coupon Lady has simple instructions to follow to make these for everyone on your Christmas list. To package these,  take a pretty Christmas card and clip the clothespins on the edge of the card. Another notion is to add these to a money card in a small bag for a little surprise.
  3. This earbud container would be perfect for anyone, old or young, While this works as a great stocking stuffer, adding a music gift card would really complete the offering!. It’s simple to transform a gum container with a rubber band and paperclip following the instructions from Instructables. You could also paint the container instead of leaving it with the candy logo.
  4. Teachers, coworkers, or even your mailman will adore these glass magnets! Sabby in Suburbia shows you how to make the magnets and how to gift  them in these adorable packages.

Make a list for the craft stores and get going on these ideas for handmade, affordable gifts for all your family and friends. If you have any suggestions on how to further personalize homemade gifts, leave us a comment. We love to hear your thoughts!

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