Blogmas Day Eighteen – Ideas for last-minute DIY Christmas gifts

OH EM GEEE!!! We are just one week away from Christmas!!!

How has the time flown by so fast?? I’ve barely made a dent in all the festive things I wanted to do, and I am more excited than a child in Santa’s workshop on a Christmas cookie sugar high. 

One of the problems though is that I’m a bit behind on my Christmas gifts … okay more than a bit behind and I’ve been wracking my brain and scouring Pinterest for cool ideas of gifts that I can make when I suddenly thought that this would be a really fun post to do. 

I doubt (well at least I hope) that I’m not the only one who has left Christmas gifts to the last minute. (Despite all my advice to plan ahead and get this stuff done early – but I actually have a viable excuse because I was travelling home and couldn’t exactly lug loads of gifts on the flight with me). I’ve always thought that DIY gifts are always just a little more special than store-bought gifts because they require a little extra thought and energy to put them together, plus they are inadvertently more personal. However, the only problem with some DIY gifts is you sometimes need a degree in engineering, carpentry or chemistry to make them and with Christmas day looming, not a huge budget to work with and neither the time nor skills for something like a hand-crafted dollhouse, so easy, budget-friendly DIY gift ideas are key. 

So, if you’re stuck for ideas for some people this year and are trying to think of something fun and personal that you can make/assemble for a friend without breaking the bank or risking cutting a finger off, here are some fun ideas for last-minute DIY Christmas gifts! 

Homemade bath and spa products 

Despite what you may think, there are actually plenty of bath and spa products that you can make quite easily at home that aren’t harmful to your skin, they don’t cost loads of money and don’t require too much intensive brewing to make. You could make lotion bars, sugar scrubs of all sorts of flavours (gingerbread, peppermint, cookie dough), bath salts, body butter, tub teas, lip balm and the list goes on and on. All you need to do is decide what sort of product your friend/family member would like the most (you could always do a few different options and make gift sets for people – see the fourth option on the list), pick a flavour and google a recipe. There are so many really easy recipes to follow (I’d highly recommend browsing Pinterest), so all you really need to do is pick which one you feel like making! Plus, you can always make some extra for yourself. 

Photo by Burst on

Mason jar baking kits 

Baking kits are always a win – especially for people who may not have time to make something entirely from scratch, or who you know just love baking. What’s great about these is that they are so easy to assemble and you’ll likely have almost all of the ingredients in your kitchen already! All you need to do is pick a recipe that doesn’t require too many perishable/wet ingredients (some easy and popular ones are cookie mixes, brownie mixes or hot chocolate kits), measure them into the jar and attach a little recipe card. Not only is it super easy and cheap, but it’s also something that people would really enjoy as a gift because not only is it something fun they can do/use at home, but they’ll get a delicious treat out of it too, which is always a bonus in my book! 

Photo from

Upcycled t-shirt gifts 

What happens if you have a t-shirt that you never wear? Or one that doesn’t fit? Or what if you have a friend who you know would love a new tote bag or apron but buying a brand new one from a store may not be a good option for you right now? Well, upcycling t-shirts (either your own or ones from a thrift shop) is a great way to make gifts. You can create a washable, no-sew tote bag with a cute t-shirt and all you need is ten minutes, a shirt of choice and some sharp scissors. Another option is to use a shirt to create a stylish apron (this one you will probably need to sew though) for a friend who loves cooking/baking. I’ve made the tote bag before, and it turned out so well so I would definitely recommend this idea. It will definitely be an irreplaceable and unique gift that they’ll love (unless they happen to find the exact same shirt and remake it, but what are the odds of that? 

Gift hampers/mason jars

Another fantastic idea if you’re stuck or pressed for time is a little gift hamper or mason jar. It doesn’t have to be filled with expensive things either. These work best when you opt to make a few at a time so you can get your supplies in ‘bulk’. The kind of hampers I like to make best are home spa kits or sweet hampers just because I don’t think anyone would ever be unhappy with a basket or mason jar filled with spa products that they can use or sweets and desserts that they can enjoy. For an easy spa in a jar, you can pop in some nail varnish, nail polish remover and an emery board, a facemask, some hand lotion, a sugar or foot scrub, and maybe a few bath bombs? Whatever you fancy, I am sure that whoever receives your spa in a jar will undoubtedly appreciate it. Sweet hampers are great for anyone with a sweet tooth – and you can add anything you like from festive specials to homemade treats or even just a selection of their favourite sweets. Whichever you pick, remember everyone always loves hampers so you really can’t go wrong no matter what theme you pick or what you choose to fill it with. 

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Personalised mug 

I am such a huge fan of personalised mugs – I make them almost every year. Not just because they are super cheap and easy last-minute gifts, but because they can be so fun to make, they can be so special for the person you’re giving them to, and you can be as creative/artistic (or not) as you’d like. Literally, all you need is a mug, a sharpie (in whichever colours you like) and an oven and you’re all set. The great thing about these gifts is you can truly make them spunky and personal, and considering almost everyone I know drinks some hot beverage at least once in their day, you’ll know for sure that they will definitely get some use out of your gift. If you’d like a tutorial on making personalised mugs, you can click here for one I did for Father’s day. 

Photo by fotografierende on

Succulent planter 

It doesn’t matter who you are, whether you have green fingers or stick to fake plants because you killed your cactus, but succulents and succulent planters are always great gift ideas. Even for people who aren’t ‘plant people’, a succulent planter is always great because succulents are so cute, really easy to maintain and just add a lovely brightness to any room. You can pop down to your local nursery and get a succulent or two already in a pot, or you can construct a succulent planter yourself, either by upcycling or getting pots/containers new. Being a university student, I know just how popular succulents are (I see them on so many windowsills), and they are great because even non-planty people can look after them. Seriously – as long as you water them whenever you remember, they should be good to go. So, if in doubt about what to get someone, I don’t think you can go wrong with a succulent in a succulent planter. 

Photo by Scott Webb on

And there you have it! I know that doing gifts last-minute can be the very definition of Christmas stress (by the way, if you want some tips for handling Christmas-time stress click here to check out my post about it) and the idea of making them yourself I know can get the palms sweating and nerves pumping like nothing else. But I hope that this post has shown you that if you are stuck for gifts with not too much time to go hunting in the stores, that there are plenty of amazing things that you can make yourself, that aren’t too expensive or require too much effort. Just remember though that at the end of the day, it’s the thought that counts so even if your DIY gift isn’t perfect, the fact that you made it yourself will count for so much!! Trust me. 

So which of these ideas tickled your fancy? Would any of you like to receive one of these gifts for Christmas? Do you have any favourite DIY last-minute gift ideas you’d like to share? Let’s chat in the comments section. 

Good luck gathering your Christmas presents everyone – I truly hope this post has helped any of you who may be stuck or struggling. 

Lots of Love

Blondey on a Mission xxx 

Author: blondeyonamission

Hey everyone! I'm a lifestyle and travel blogger from South Africa and about to relocate to the UK for university. My blog is all about stories, tips and advice with topics ranging from university, organisation, friends, books, travel and more. Please check it out and I hope you enjoy xxx

10 thoughts

  1. Most gifts I have given people for xmas is usually not handmade. From that list “either personalized mug” or the “baking kit- for me, I would want to make hot chocolate”

    There is only one gift I made for Christmas- a knitted a scarf for my dad a couple years ago. I really want to go back to knitting

    Liked by 2 people

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