Save money with these easy handmade gift ideas

With many South Africans feeling the pinch this year, we know that your gift-giving budget might be a little tighter than usual. Don’t worry, we’ve scoured the Internet to come up with a range of easy handmade gifts that will help you save money.

Homemade slime kit: If you have a young child in your life you undoubtedly know that everyone wants to know how to make slime. Create a slime-making kit for older children (ages 8 and up) – we’ve been told with authority by the little people in our lives that the best slime mixtures contain contact lens solutions. You will find a handy recipe here. Simply collect all the ingredients, print out the instructions and this gift is sorted.

Make your own Memory game, with your memories: Children love playing Memory and when they’re playing a game with photos of the people they love, they’ll want to play it even more! Choose a selection of photos, print doubles of each photo, cut them all the same size and then laminate each photo. The fun really starts when you start challenging one another to remember where that photo was taken.

Looking for the perfect gift for a grandparent or parent?

  • Consider learning about your family history. Interview the people in your life to create a family tree picture or booklet.
  • Create a photo bookmark of a grandchild or child. Choose a cute photo, cut out the child in the photo and laminate the photo. Make a small hole at the top, to add a ribbon to help mark the page in the book. Clickhere for detailed instructions.
  • Let your child design his/her own picture frame by simply making a cardboard frame. Cut it out and include a picture of the grandchild or child.

Get creative with mugs

  • If you’re feeling arty, you can customise mugs using paint or Sharpie markers. Think about drawing a cute picture or writing out an inspiring quote, lyrics from a favourite song, or simply write your favourite memory about the person receiving the gift.
  • Fill a mug with sweets, biscuits, or even the ingredients for the perfect cup of hot chocolate (don’t forget the marshmallows!) or coffee. Wrap it beautifully with cellophane and a ribbon.

Nature will thank you for these gifts, too

  • Make your own bird feeder by recycling empty cold drink bottles and an old plate. Watch the tutorial here.
  • Help keep bees hydrated during our hot summer months. Fill a shallow bowl with marbles or glass beads, add water. When bees visit the bowl to take a sip of water, they can land safely on the marbles. (P.S. – You’ll have to add the water AFTER you’ve given the gift!). This makes an attractive garden ornament, too.
  • Find an old tea mug or another pretty container, add a few pebbles or rocks at the bottom, fill with potting soil and add a succulent of your choice. A tray of succulents are usually not too expensive but if you have succulents growing in your garden, rather pick one of these and plant it in your container.

Say ‘I love you’ with these easy DIY gifts

  • A simple idea is to create a Coupon Booklet. Create individual cards with each card being a ‘special offer’ or ‘coupon’ for your loved one. Staple them together or put them in a decorated container. Some ideas for coupons: This is good for (1) home cooked meal, (2) washing the dishes, (3) foot massage, (4) breakfast in bed. The list is endless!
  • Make a mix tape, just like we did in the olden days! Except now, save your selection of songs on a USB flash drive. Save songs that remind you of your significant other, your relationship, shared special memories, etc.

Old jars can be perfect vessels for creative homemade gifts!

Buy mason jars or save empty coffee containers and fill these up with gifts.

  • In a world of processed, mass-manufactured foods, homemade goodies never go to waste. Bake your own foods – you can choose to bake delicious cookies or if you’re making gifts for someone who is more health-conscious, check out this selection of healthy recipes.
  • Create a themed-gift jar. For example, consider a New Year’s Day Survival Kit (A rehydrate sachet, a Panado or two, an eye-gel pad, a bottle of cream soda, etc.), a Road Trip Survival Kit: Padkos, a list of Podcasts, a torch, a list of in-car games to play, etc.)

The gift that keeps on giving

In this age of consumerisms, it’s easy to get caught up in the gift-giving madness. While big, extravagant gifts have their place, smaller more thoughtful gifts can also send a clear message of love and appreciation. Consider opening an African Bank Tax-Free Investment for your loved one. With a minimum investment of R50, the money you invest in our Tax Free Investment account will earn 8.67% on the anniversary month. The recipient of your “gift” could make their own monthly deposits and perhaps you can also contribute on that person’s birthday month. The amount saved will not be taxed on any growth earned up to R33 000 per year. Click here to find out more.

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