Whether you’re trying to avoid holiday shopping crowds or you simply want to spend more time creating unique presents this season, DIY Christmas gifts are heartfelt, fun to make, and personal. When you make a gift for someone, you don’t just invest in materials — you invest time in the person.
Check out the DIY Christmas gift ideas below to make this holiday season special.
Important Details to Consider When Making Christmas Gifts
Before you go racing for the hot glue gun and glitter, let’s consider a few key points.
Christmas Gift Type
Most gifts aren’t one-size-fits-all. Even if you plan to make a large batch of homemade pepper jelly to preserve and give as a gift, it won’t be perfect for everyone. Children probably won’t know what to do with it, college students living in dorms mostly eat at dining halls, and some picky eaters simply don’t like peppers.
Part of the inspiration for creating a DIY Christmas gift is making it personalized and tailored to the recipient. While you may have to deviate from the gift you’re making for everyone, the recipient will feel all the more special that you considered their quirks and preferences.
Types of Materials Used
Some DIY projects are made with simple household materials, while others require specialized products that require a trip to the hardware store. If you have to buy materials, make sure that you choose high-quality products.
You want your DIY Christmas gift to turn out as nicely as possible, and you want it to be durable. Spring for that top-notch paint or perfect brush to ensure your holiday craft times don’t produce a batch of DIY fails.
And if you don’t have a supply on-hand and don’t feel like taking a trip to the store, try to think of a creative alternative. No paint? Maybe nail polish would work. Don’t be afraid to get creative.
Some of these gifts require a significant time investment. Plan your time wisely, and make sure that you choose DIY projects that fit your schedule. If the Christmas countdown is starting to wind down, choose a DIY Christmas gift that will make an impact and doesn’t take much time.
If you get frustrated with a project, take a break from it. Even the craftiest among us burn out, especially during the holidays. Taking some time away from the project to get some fresh air, relax on the couch, or run an errand, can keep you from giving up and chucking your project in the trash in the heat of the moment.
Free Christmas Gifts Ideas to Consider
With some supplies you already have on hand, you can create a DIY Christmas gift that the recipient won’t soon forget. Let’s explore 13 DIY Christmas gifts that will inspire awe and cheer.
Mason Jar Cookie Kit
This adorable mason jar cookie kit is a simple, impactful, and delicious gift for the holiday season. You can customize the cookie kit with added ingredients, like candy, nuts, or dried fruit.
Simply fill the jar with the ingredients, decorate a recipe card, and tie with a bow. This DIY gift requires ingredients you may already have in your kitchen cabinet at home, but you can also jazz up this gift by adding a cookie cutter or a gift card to a local baking supply shop.
Bottle Cap Mosaic
Bottle caps are so versatile, and so is mosaic art. You can make a mosaic on a piece of wood, a canvas, or even a piece of furniture. Remember that your mosaic doesn’t have to be massive, and it doesn’t have to be perfect. Just sketch a design and start gluing.
Silverware Kitchen Sign
If you’re tired of storing old mismatched silverware sets, you can finally put it to good use with a DIY silverware sign. Collect a variety of silverware — patinated or tarnished pieces can add a rustic look — and bend them as needed to create a word, picture, or abstract design.
Like the bottle cap mosaic, you can use a variety of mediums for your sign: A scrap of wood, a sturdy canvas, or a cutting board can provide an excellent backdrop.
Mint Sugar Bath Scrub
Homemade bath scrubs make perfect self-care gifts. With just a few ingredients you may already have at home (salt, sugar, coconut oil, and a few drops of essential oil) you can create a personalized, functional gift. You can even design your own printable label for the jar or decorate it yourself with paint.
If you need a gift for a group of people, gather up several bath scrubs and create a lovely DIY Christmas gift basket.
DIY Soy Candles
As with soap making, candlemaking can produce some genuinely delightful scents in your home. Customizing candles to your friends’ favorite scents provides an opportunity to really get creative.
Another outlet for creativity is choosing the jar for a candle. While a traditional clay jar or thick glass cup works, vintage teacups, empty beer cans, and candy tins can make for a fun, quirky candle. Use your imagination to create a one-of-a-kind gift.
Essential Oil Holiday Room Spray
Room sprays are practical gifts that keep on giving all year long. Whether you choose a simple misting spray or add an alcohol base for disinfectant purposes, homemade room sprays are simple, quick, and fun to make.
Try a few different scent blends to create a signature scent, or customize the mixes to match the personalities of your recipients. Either way, friends and family will love this thoughtful, practical gift.
If you have kiddos in the house, painted dishes are a perfect project for youngsters. Painted plates make excellent keepsakes, and you can customize them with your name, a quote, or an abstract design.
Your painted dishes can be as colorful or as minimalist as you like, and the opportunities for creativity are endless. For an bigger canvas, consider painting a large serving dish or the outside of a big salad bowl. You may even end up keeping a few painted dishes for yourself.
Coffee Cup Cozy
Coffee cup cozies are a perfect DIY Christmas gift for your teacher who promotes eco-friendliness. Instead of using disposable, single-use coffee collars at their favorite cafe, they can use a reusable one made especially for them.
You can crochet or knit these cute cozies, and use a tapestry needle to embroider the recipient’s name, a beaded pattern, or an abstract design for an added layer of personalization. They’re quick and easy to make, and you can test them out on Christmas morning with a nice cup of hot chocolate.
Mod Podge Wall Photo Collage
We all have that box of old family photos gathering dust in the attic. Why not put them to use in a photo collage? For an ultra-personalized DIY Christmas gift, find a few great pictures of the recipient, and cut-and-paste them yearbook-style, in a medium of your choice.
Then, add other elements to the collage to amp up the artistry. Mod Podge some pressed flowers, coins, buttons, ticket stubs, or any flat item onto the canvas to elevate your handmade piece.
By creating a collage with meaningful pictures, you can make the perfect DIY Christmas gift for any special person in your life.
Paint-Dipped Kitchen Utensils
With an inexpensive set of wooden cooking utensils and a cup of paint, you can create a hand-painted kitchen tool that the recipient will use regularly. After dipping the utensils in paint and drying them completely, make sure to cover the painted portions in a sealant, like polyurethane.
If you’re a little hesitant to use paint in kitchen utensils (for fear of contamination), opt for natural pigments instead. Use the juice from blueberries for a deep purple, liquefied beets for a bright magenta, or black tea for a warm brown.
Wine Cork Trivet
If you’re an amateur sommelier, you probably have at least a few wine corks lying around. A wine cork trivet is a perfect DIY Christmas gift for a friend who loves wine, or the one who can whip up a tasty meal in the kitchen.
With a few wine corks and some hot glue, you can make a unique design that will serve the recipient — and protect their countertops — for years to come. Cork is an excellent insulator, and wine corks are an easy-to-work-with crafting material.
Gather up a breathable fabric of your choice (you can even upcycle a pair of old jeans or a T-shirt), a few sprigs of lavender, some rice, and a sewing needle. With a little bit of sweat equity, you can create a delightfully scented enhancement that anyone with a sock drawer will appreciate.
If you’re feeling extra crafty, you can also embroider the fabric before stuffing it with lavender.
Scrabble Letter Coasters
If you’re looking for a DIY Christmas gift for a best friend who just moved into their first home, these Scrabble letter coasters will be a huge hit. After all, everyone needs a good set of coasters. How else are you supposed to prevent rings from soaking into your furniture?
With a short supply list and lots of room for creativity, these coasters are not only an excellent gift, they’re also a challenge to make. You may not know as many 4-letter words as you thought.
Great Gifts Come From the Heart
This holiday season, sprinkle in an extra dash of cheer by making a DIY Christmas gift for coworkers, friends, and family. Not only does crafting allow you to make some truly unique gifts, it also helps you slow down, distract yourself from the holiday hustle and bustle, and enjoy time harnessing your creativity.
Instead of fighting the holiday shopping crowds, stay home, make a piping hot batch of hot chocolate, and whip up some unforgettable, heartfelt gifts.