When it comes to the holidays, depending on how much you’ve got to spend, you may have to limit your decorating budget, or your gift budget, or the whole holiday budget. Fortunately, when it comes to gifts, you’ve got a lot of leeway when it comes to upcycling. Finding some old, useful stuff that is also clean is a good start to all kinds of different, and often useful, gifts for everyone on your list. Here are some super-fun ideas for upcycled gifts.
The holidays are all about ruminating on what the people we love really mean to us, and thinking about how we can be better friends and family to them. With a simple mason jar – decorated with a basic ribbon, or really however you want it – you can write down memories of them that mean something to you, and fill the jar up. They can come back to read them whenever they’re feeling down. If you cohabitate, you can also keep adding to the memories whenever the moment strikes you.
A really fun way to reuse some old crayons that don’t have any life in them anymore is to melt them down into inexpensive jars with wicks and make bright, fun looking candles. This fun project shows you how to turn them into a rainbow pattern, though you have all sorts of options and colors at your disposal. It’s a simple process and it doesn’t take long, and the payoff is great. Even if someone is used to getting Christmas candles, they probably haven’t gotten a crayon one before.
Pet Treats Jars
Along the same lines as the memory jar, this quick and easy tutorial talks you through how to use some old jars and some animal figurines to make jars to keep pet treats in. It’s a fun way to identify the right treats and also add a little color to wherever you keep your pet treats.
Sock Teddy Bear
Depending on when you were born, you might be too young to remember the sock monkey being a fun Christmas gift to get. This is one of the classic methods of turning something old into something new. This great set of instructions tells you how to do the same thing today, only to make it into a cute teddy bear. With all of the patterns and color options you can find socks in today, you’ll have no problem making a fun little teddy bear out of some old clean socks.
There’s a great tutorial for DIY Christmas coasters that take some mason jar lids, some old Christmas cards and some other inexpensive items to make great coasters with rims, to help prevent your drinks from sliding off even more. This is a great way to get some use out of those old Christmas cards you’ve been holding onto but aren’t quite sure why. This is especially fun if you use family portrait cards, so you can see how a family grows over the years.