You'll find something to make for everyone on your list with these quick handmade gift ideas in five areas: food, crafts (knit, crochet, sew), home, family, and bath & beauty. All the ideas are actually useable gifts people will actually like to get and things that are inexpensive and fairly easy to make at all skill levels.
Handmade gifts are near and dear to my heart - if you taken a glance around the website, you'll see I've spent time over the years both making and gathering DIY gift ideas for both you and me to give to the people on our lists.
Here are a few of the gathered lists I've complied for you in the past:
- Easy & Doable Handmade Gifts Everyone Will Love (Only my projects - most that I've given to family and friends who really appreciated them.)
- 22 DIY Gift Basket Ideas for Everyone
- 23+ Creative Handmade Gifts for Birthdays, Mother's Day, and More
- 40+ Handmade Gift Ideas for Men & Women
- 25+ Handmade Gift Ideas for Kids and Teens
Why take the time to make gifts?
Handmade gifts can be things that are tailored to the recipients, show there was a lot of thought involved, and can become a cherished heirloom, depending on the project. For years my family exchanged handmade gifts and we enjoyed things like homemade lemon curd right away, and still enjoy to this day gifts like a handmade cutting board and wooden marble game.
If you'd like to see some of the gifts my family gave us, be sure to check out the 17 Gifts in 6 Minutes video on YouTube - it's full of inspiration! You can also hear Brian and I talking about the wonderful gifts we've given and received in AOC's Podcast Episode 9 here.
Can you save money by making gifts?
Handmade gifts can be so much more than the sum of their parts - there's heart, soul, and love included. But also - and here's a big one for us - you can save big bucks if you choose the right projects. One year I knitted hats for all the nieces and nephews using only the leftover yarn in my stash - yep, I spent $0. That was a great year for the Christmas budget!
Why another handmade gifts list?
I wanted to add to the list above with one that focuses on the gift ideas that fall under the "quick" label, because we all need things we can do for multiple people (for Christmas) or make last minute for hostess gifts, weddings, or teachers. I've again included some of my own DIY projects that work as gifts, as well as quality gifts I've found in different areas and that require all kinds of skill.
Obviously, if you don't know how to knit, crochet, or sew, those projects won't be quick for you - but there are lots of other options that don't require those skills. But if you do have that ability, you'll love these easy gift-giving options (if nothing else as a way to use up yarn and fabric stashes!).
So browse the 36 ideas in the list below and find a project or two (or three!) that you can make in the next months for the holidays - and also bookmark for ideas throughout the year for birthdays, Mother's Day, weddings, and more.
Quick Handmade Gift Ideas
I've separated these ideas into five categories to help you skim through them to find what you're interested in. However, some do overlap - there are sewing gifts that are also home gifts, and so on - so do be sure to look at all of them to find something you can make for your people.
Quick Handmade Food Gifts:
Food gifts are one of the easiest and least expensive handmade things you can give, which is why I love them. I also love them because they are fun to get - a new recipe or kitchen item that's ready for you to use whenever.
Here are a few that made the list (if you're looking for more, check out 22 DIY Gift Basket Ideas for Everyone as well as Gifts in a Jar: 35+ Mason Jar Gifts for Everyone):
1. AOC's Pancake Mixes: Gluten Free Buckwheat, Oat & Cinnamon Pancake Mix Gift in a Jar + Printable Tags, and Gift in a Jar: Cinnamon Oat Pancake-Waffle Mix. These are so good I make up mixes for our family to use all the time and my sister does, too.
2. Rosemary Focaccia Bread: Handmade Gift In A Jar (+ Printable Tags). Such a lovely savory jar gift that's pretty unique in a sea of cookie jar gifts during the holidays.
3. Red Beans And Rice Gift In A Jar (+ Free Printable Tags). Another interesting savory option - I love making a basket of this and the focaccia bread and giving it to a family in need with an illness, new baby, or whatever.
4. Linen Bread Bags @Attainable Sustainable. You can make these from thrifted linen napkins and tablecloths in just 15 minutes! Even better is the fact that these keep bread at room temperature much better than plastic or a bread box.
5. Homemade Pot Roast Seasoning Gift @Skip To My Lou. Not your ordinary spice rub or BBQ rub, this would make a different hostess or teacher gift. Add your favorite recipe for pot roast, too.
6. Simple Fruit Flavored Vinegars @Hello Creative Family. Oh, these had me at simple. But also, can you imagine the delicious salad dressings and marinades you could create from these?
Quick Knit, Crochet & Sewing Gifts:
If you're a knitter, crocheter, or sewer, here are some quick and easy projects that would make perfect gifts for pretty much everyone on your list - men, teens, parents, you name it!
1. Easy Knitted Cable Headbands. I used these as an easy way to learn cable knitting - bonus that it produced gifts the women in my family loved!
2. The Best Flaxseed Pillows. If I were to guess at the most popular gift I've given through the years, it would be these warming pillows. People would wear them out and ask for another! So easy and really welcomed.
3. Knitted Scallop Edged Boot Toppers. Cuffs, sock tops, whatever you call them, they are so quick to make using whatever yarn you have and so fun to give and wear.
4. Canvas Log Carrier. If you can sew a couple of straight lines, you can make a super useful gift for any family that uses wood to heat. Unique and thoughtful.
5. Easy, Low-Sew Men's DIY Flannel Scarf. I call this "low sew" because I found the scarves lasted longer and looked nicer with a bit of sewn edge and not just pulled edges. This is an inexpensive gift that all the teens and kids in my family loved the year I gifted them.
6. Easy Sewn Infinity Scarf @Sustain My Craft Habit. A simple and quick beginner sewing project that results in a really useful gift. Using favorite colors is a way to really tailor this to the person on your list.
7. Easy Faux-Bow Crochet Headband @Mama In A Stitch. Another headband option for crocheters - this is so cute and isn't actually a bow, so it's easier and more subtle for those of us past the bow-wearing days, lol. This pattern is lovely and would work for everyone.
8. Fun Crochet Keychain Ideas @Just Bright Ideas. The fortune cookies pictured in the collage above are adorable (I can think of a TON on my list who would love these) and it's just one of many cute, crocheted options. Who knew there were so many keychain ideas like this?
9. Fleece Ear Warmer Headband @Craft Gossip. Of course I couldn't leave the sewers out of the headband team! This wide headband pattern covers your ears to keep them warm and toasty. Made in colors appropriate, these would work for both girls and guys.
10. Linen And Flannel Ruffle Throw Blanket @Farmhouse on Boone. Such a lovely lighter-weight throw blanket option that looks as good when it's not being used as it does when it is. Using different colors - and even leaving the ruffle off - would make this work for all kinds of decor.
Quick & Easy Handmade Gifts for the Home:
Gifts for the home are perfect for holiday gifts for a family, as well as parents, aunts and uncles, and of course, weddings. I also like how easy it is to repurpose items into newly useable things. Whether you buy new or used products for these projects, they will be appreciated.
1. DIY Vintage Glass Candles. This project was inspired by similar candles in a Pottery Barn catalog and I love how they turned out! You can use new wax purchased at a craft store or reuse wax like I did, but searching for the perfect glasses is the most fun part.
2. Burlap Jewelry Organizer. This was a variation on the Monogram Burlap Message Board I created as a Ballard Catalog knock off. As a jewelry organizer, it solves a big problem for many women. I gifted one to all my sisters and mom and they still use it today (as do I - I love it!).
3. Thrifted Chalkboard Napkin Rings. Our family started using cloth napkins years ago, keeping them separate with individual napkin rings so we could use them for a few days before sending them to the wash. It's a lovely gift presented with all different napkin rings you've collected or using DIY chalk rings like the photo above.
4. Clip Photo Boards From Thrift Store Frames. Another fabric stash buster, but one that doesn't require sewing! I think these turned out so cute and my nieces loved them for holding photos in their rooms. Pick fun fabrics to coordinate with babies, toddlers, or teens.
5. DIY Soy Candles @Happiness is Homemade. Homemade soy candles with a citrus scent that you can make in 10 minutes. Includes a printable label.
6. 10 Minute Reversible Place Mats @Hellow Creative Family. A set of these for for a family is nice, but how about a couple of special mats for kids that were just their own?
7. Easy DIY Photo Canvas @Lovely Etc. Think you have to spend the bucks to have photo canvases printed? Think again - these canvases look like the real thing for a lot less. Grandparents, teens, kids, guys - pick the right photo and these would work for lots of people!
8. DIY Papered Wooden Stool @ Mod Podge Rocks. Grab one of those raw wood stools from the craft store (or find one used) and cover it with pretty paper and Mod Podge.
9. Wood DIY Postcard/Photo Holder @House of Hawthornes. Super simple wood slab postcard-photo display idea that would work for so many on your list.
10. Homemade Reusable Lavender Dryer Bags @Garden Therapy. These useful bags would be lovely presented as a set of 6 bags in a vintage jar wrapped with ribbon.
Quick Handmade Gifts for Men, Teens & Kids:
This is always a category I'm looking for, as it's a bit harder to find handmade gifts people actually want. While there are great options in the other sections (hello, knit hats), here are a few more that may work for those hard-to-make-for people:
1. DIY Wooden Box Gift Idea Filled with Hot Sauces (Or Whatever). We had brother-in-laws who loved hot sauces, so we created a "hot sauce bar" with a bunch of fun varieties. This work equally well with other spices, drinks, candy, or anything else you can think of.
2. DIY Monogrammed Leather Key Rings @The Every Girl. These are said to cost just $6.00, but sure look a lot more expensive than that. I know a ton of people who would appreciate these, don't you?
3. Wire Heart Bangle @Happy Hour Projects. For those of you who are jewelry makers, this 10 minute bracelet is a great gift idea. And it looks like a terrific project for anyone wanting to learn wire wrapping.
4. Mod Podge Photo Puzzle @ Mod Podge Rocks. How fun to get a custom puzzle made from a family photo! Great for kids and grandparents alike.
Quick DIY Bath & Beauty Gift Ideas:
Last, but not least, is the section for homemade bath and body products. It is so special to get these given to you, knowing they were made with natural ingredients. When I was a teacher I appreciated a family that would gift me a bar of their homemade soap and lip balm every year (I missed that family when they moved up, for sure!).
Now you can be that family for another teacher (or friend, sister, daughter) with one of these, or more gathered into a "spa" basket:
1. DIY Liquid Foaming Soap & Container Ideas. Giving this natural foaming hand soap in a unique dispenser is both unique and super useful.
2. Easy Homemade Hand Cream for Gardeners. This is easy to make and is thick and emollient, perfect for gardeners or other people who use their hands a lot for work.
3. Homemade Lotion Bars @Garden Therapy. You can use different molds for different looks. Package them up in linen bags tied with jute twine and a label card.
4. Homemade Whipped Body Butter @Hearth and Vine. This looks heavenly, perfect for someone with dry skin who would appreciate homemade lotion.
5. DIY Herbal Lip Balm @Lovely Greens. Make your own healing lip balm with this flexible recipe using oils and skin-beneficial herbs. Be sure to make enough to keep some for yourself!
6. Lavender Goat's Milk Soap @2 Bees In A Pod. Keeping with the "quick" theme, this is an easy to make melt-and-pour soap made special with a beautiful mold.
I hope you've found some quick handmade gift ideas for the people you love - I know they will enjoy getting these meaningful gifts that you made.
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