For many, gifts are an important part of holiday celebrations. Stocking stuffers, in particular, can be so much fun to give and receive. These gifts can be quite meaningful, even if they are not large or expensive. You can stuff them in a stocking or even fill a gift basket with them. If you find yourself running short on stocking stuffer ideas, consider taking a DIY approach. Here are a few DIY stocking stuffer ideas to spark your creativity.
There's something refreshing about using a brand-new pencil. If that pencil has been hand-painted by someone you love, it will feel even more special. To make your own painted pencils, start with a standard orange pencil from an office supply store. Use a small paintbrush and acrylic paint to paint the pencil a solid color. Let it dry. Then, dip a toothpick in a different color of paint, and use that toothpick to make dots, streaks, or stripes on the painted pencil. Be creative, using as many or as few colors as you'd like. You can even paint the recipient's name or the phrase "happy holidays" on the pencil.
- Scented Bath Salts
Bath products are a common stocking stuffer, and it's pretty easy to make your own scented bath salts. Start with some unscented Epsom salts from a pharmacy. Pour about 2 cups of the salts into a large bowl. Add 20 - 30 drops of your favorite essential oil. Lavender and vanilla are both good choices. Balsam fir essential oil will give your bath salts a holiday-inspired scent. Or, you could use a blend of cinnamon and clove essential oils. Stir the salt and oils well in order to distribute the scent. Then, scoop the salt into a canning jar or other container. Tie a ribbon or bow around the jar for a seasonal touch.
- Homemade Playdough
Homemade playdough is the perfect stocking stuffer for kids. To make a batch, you'll need these ingredients:
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 cup salt
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- Food coloring
Place all of the ingredients in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Before you turn on the heat, mix the ingredients together thoroughly. Then, turn your burner on low, and heat the mixture as you stir continually. The mixture will slowly thicken and begin to look more like dough. Once the mixture comes together in a cohesive, smooth dough, turn off the heat. Turn the dough out onto a cutting board, and knead it for about 2 minutes. Then, divide the dough into four parts. Add a different color of food dye to each piece of dough. Knead the dough to distribute the color. Place your finished dough in small jars or sealed plastic containers. It will stay fresh for months as long as you keep a lid on it.
- Homemade Candles
Candles are a lovely stocking stuffer. They give off a glowing, soothing warmth that is perfect for winter. You can make your own candles with just wicks, jars, paraffin wax, and essential oils. Begin by placing a block of paraffin wax in a small saucepan. (You can buy this wax at most craft stores. Buy the color that appeals to you most.) Let the paraffin melt slowly over low heat. Meanwhile, cut a piece of wick that is just slightly taller than your jar is deep. Once the paraffin is completely melted, remove it from the heat and add 5 - 10 drops of your desired essential oil. Cinnamon works wonderfully here; add a drop or two of vanilla to round off the flavor. Stir well, then pour the paraffin into your jar. You may have to move the wick around a little to re-center it after the jar is full. Let the paraffin cool, which should take a few hours, and you'll have a nicely scented candle.
- Chocolate-Covered Spoons
Chocolate-covered spoons are wonderful for stirring hot chocolate or even coffee. To make your own, purchase some inexpensive spoons at a discount store. You'll also need some melting wafers and perhaps also some crushed candy canes or sprinkles. Pour one cup of chocolate melting wafers into a coffee mug. Microwave it on low for one minute. Stir well. If the chocolate is not completely melted, pop it back into the microwave for another 10 seconds. Stir again. Keep heating and stirring in 10-second increments. When the chocolate is fully melted, dip spoons into it, one at a time. Then, dip the spoon in the crushed candy cane or sprinkles, if desired. Place each coating spoon on a wax paper-lined baking sheet. Allow the chocolate-covered spoons to cool and harden. Then, wrap each one in some plastic wrap, and secure it with a ribbon.
Making DIY stocking stuffers is a great way to show your love this holiday season. If you do use any of the ideas above, let us know what you think! And don't hesitate to contact us if you're still looking for a new home. Our real estate agents will be happy to help.