15 Alternative Gift Ideas for the Not-So-Crafty

  Here’s a list for the rest of us . The clumsy, the craft-averse, the just plain TIRED. If you’d love to give super meaningful gifts but...

Here’s a list for the rest of us. The clumsy, the craft-averse, the just plain TIRED.
If you’d love to give super meaningful gifts but your crafting ability lies somewhere between lighting a candle and successfully cutting coupons – use this list of DIY Christmas gifts.
No mod podge required, I promise.
Ain’t no shame

  1. Bake something yummy. Homemade cookies, bread, salsa, pasta sauce – whatever your specialty is, it will taste better than store-bought versions that sit on the shelf for days or weeks. Check out my Dessert First board on Pinterest here for ideas. Too much? Keep it simple and buy a brownie mix.
  2. Cover the membership fee for your loved one at a local performing arts theater. Most theaters will give their members perks like free tickets or priority seating.
  3. Pick out a few of your favorite photos of your friend or family member, get them printed, and throw them together in a photo album. (One you get at a store, not some vintage children’s book you’ve upcycled into a disgustingly cute photo album. This one is pretty and looks kinda fancy without being expensive.)
  4. Sponsor an animal at your local zoo or animal sanctuary. This makes a great gift for kids because as a follow-up gift, you can visit the zoo and pretend to find the animal you sponsored. Some zoos will even send you a certificate about the animal you adopted.
  5. Offer to teach a skill you have, like a foreign language, playing an instrument, or handling temper tantrums like a ninja badass.
  6. For families with children, a gift membership to a children’s museum is a gift that keeps on giving throughout the year.
  7. Print copies of your family’s favorite recipes and arrange them in a binder.
  8. Think of a cause that’s important to your loved one, then make a donation in their name to a charity that works on that issue. Many nonprofit organizations will even send a holiday card or another gift with a special message to the gift recipient for you. Or check out these free cards that say a donation has been made in your name, but not in a lame way. They’re guaranteed to put a smile on your loved one’s face.
  9. Make a coupon or certificate for a gift of your time – a night of babysitting or weekend of petsitting, a car wash, a month of cleaning the cat’s litterbox (okay, maybe just one week of that). These coupons are pretty cute, and these are blank so you can write in your own gift.
  10. Pick a favorite book off your shelf to give – you can check it out from the library if you want to read it again.
  11. Take a friend off junk mail lists at 41pounds.org.
  12. List your 100 best memories of your loved one: “That one time, at band camp…” Download my free printable here for sharing your favorite memories.
  13. Give a gift certificate for something they need anyway, like a haircut.
  14. Make a playlist of your favorite songs and save them to a USB flash drive. Check out my tutorial on how to share a playlist for step-by-step instructions. (If you go this route for a romantic partner, check out 65 of the Best Unknown Love Songs.)
  15. Get a basket, write on a notecard “These are a few of my favorite things,” and go to town filling the basket to share your faves. Your favorite wine, your favorite book or magazine, that peach jam at the farmers’ market that you can’t get enough of, your favorite hand lotion, your favorite fancy candy bar, the shampoo that leaves you feeling like a model.

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