I’m so excited there’s such an interest in gift basket inspiration, affordable ideas, and easy how-to. ‘Cause I love giving gifts, too!! [If you missed the original post on gift baskets, go check it out!]
So I thought y’all might be interested in some other gift baskety ideas! Here are a few from my personal archives that might offer you some more fodder for your gift-giving endeavors! Wheeee!
I’ve broken these down into who we gave them to just for a guide, but of course several of the ideas cross over to other people!
* TEACHERS *
These were end-of-the-year teacher gifts from our class. A mom in the class had access to a monogram machine at work, so she monogrammed the inexpensive towels for free. The flip-flops are cheap old navy ones with simple handmade bows added on. The candies are pink and green. There is also sun block (teachers get so much candy, so it’s nice to add something practical you know they can use too! Of course, the green on the bottle fit our color scheme! There were also a couple of diet cokes tucked in the basket. Huzzah!
We had a student teacher that year, too, and she got a slightly smaller version; this was a great gift for under $10! $2.50 flip-flops, $5 towel, $1 dollar store basket, $1.50 a couple of diet cokes (taken from a 6-pack), and ribbon and tissue paper I had. Be resourceful and creative to stay on budget while still giving a wonderful gift!
There were random little teacher happies, not for any special occasion. Thyme planted in inexpensive clay posts with hand-cut flowers on pencil “stems.”
Okay, this is a dreadful photo, but it’s another simple, inexpensive little happy: dry erase markers (of which teachers seem always in need!) tucked into a clear plastic treat bag. “Teachers leave a mark on kids’ lives (that’s not easily erased).” I think even an everyday school supply like this can be elevated to an encouragement when you take a moment to write a personal note!
And you KNOW I love a theme, and what is more fall than an owl in these colors?! I found the owl image online and modified it to suit my style, then printed it onto simple cardstock with my message. You can use treat bags or ziplocks to hold your yummies, and I filled each bag with chex mix, cheese-its, candy corn, and M&M’s… And yes, I did go through a gallon bag of M&M’s sorting out and setting aside all the blue & green ones.
And yes, I do still terribly miss the tan M&M’s and feel a little cringe every time I eat a blue one… But I digress.
Gah, sweet little rows of owl-cuteness ready to pass out! What a hoot!
And we wanted to do a little end-of-year happy for several others at our preschool & elementary school, so I got 5-packs of cups ($1-2/pack), and wrote a teacher’s name on each, then added candy and a piece of tissue paper. Our art teacher said it was her new iced tea cup, and that made me so happy! Often kids’ main teachers get a thank you, but it’s easy to overlook P.E., music, media, art, etc. teachers in the end-of-year budget and rush
another random little happy we made was for teachers, office & support staff at our elementary. I found a cheap pack of small colored party bags (at Michael’s), and printed large Avery labels to seal them.
This beach/summer themed basket went to an adorable assistant teacher at our preschool. Her favorite color is YELLOW, can you tell? 😉 It included sunblock, a beach towel, candy, orange soda, pink water bottle, yellow flip-flops, yellow package of wet-wipe singles, and a couple of small giftcards. I tried to keep the colors bright, cheerful, and sunny!
* BABY SHOWERS *
The metal tub could be used for all sorts of things after the gift was opened, and the gift included a cute fairy sign with her name on it (painted by me), which I scanned into my computer to print matching stationery & a bagtag. Fun! And if you are willing to spend the time DIYing something like this, the final cost is VERY budget friendly!
Here’s a similar gift for another little girl–hand-painted metal bucket & personalized sign, the image from which was scanned to then print a custom bagtag, stationery, and a notepad. Nice!
And, hey, did you know that you can print your own notepads? Just print out your sheets, take them to an office supply store, and have the stack padded… You can buy the stuff to do this yourself, but when places like Office Max, Office Depot, etc. will do it for less than $1, I’m all over that!
* FAMILY & FRIENDS *
Instead of tucking a giftcard into an envelope, I used a scrapbooking edge punch to embellish the opening of a simple little green treat bag, doodled a cupcake on it, and punched holes to thread a ribbon through.
This gardening theme gift basket included a few small [green] plants, [pink] seeds, [green] gardening gloves, a [green] watering can, and some colorful notecards. I drew a flower bouquet for the notecards, and then enlarged the image and cut out several individual flowers which I attached to kebab sticks to add height and a message to the gift. Keeping to a mostly pink & green color scheme keeps the look unified! I wish now I’d found (or painted) a big pink or green polka dot pot to put it in, but alas! 🙂
This gift was made for a friend who LOVES cupcakes. She actually has a cottage cupcake business on the side, and she makes INSANELY & mind-numbingly good mint chocolate cupcakes with creme filling… oh my, but I digress! I found a cupcake book to hopefully spark more of her tasty creations, cupcake candles, cupcake notecards, and a cute apron for when she’s baking! The “basket” is a stainless steel mixing bowl, a great gift “basket” for your culinary gifts! I scored when I found the tissue paper that actually looked similar to the apron, so the theme colors quickly became black, white, and pale pink. Delicious!
And if you have out-of-town friends or family coming to visit, you can usually gain access to their room before they arrive. Resist the urge to short-sheet their beds (naughty!), and leave a lovely gift for their arrival!
I personalized these three shirts using paper stencils and acrylic paint with my sweet nieces’ nicknames. fast, easy, and cheap! I added a plastic beach/shopping bag filled with mostly snacks (think of things they might want to have on-hand to simplify life–small healthy snacks, apple suace pouches, bottled waters, etc.), but added an inflated flamingo (from the luau aisle at the dollar store) for a little smile. The girls love flamingos. 🙂
For the girls, I raided the dollar store girly & luau aisles, added a little personalization to the $1 buckets & cups. They also had little tiaras, stickers, flamingo lantern flashlights, headbands, flip-flops, and a couple of little toys. What a treat and a welcome! And hopefully they kept the girls busy while mom got the luggage settled!
So there you have it, more gift-tastic ideas from my personal archives! Hope you can glean some helpful ideas for your gift-giving!
So, what are your favorite, affordable tidbits to add to a gift?!
And you might like these other adventures in gift-giving…