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Frugal Gift Ideas: More Meaningful Than Purchased

Hi Friends! Give a warm welcome back to Kacey Bradley who blogs at The Drifter Collective and who is going to share some Frugal Gift Ideas. Kacey is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully empower herself through exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, SUCCESS, Ruffled, and more! 

When it comes to gift giving, many people stress out, thinking they need to spend money they may not have to please their loved one. Nothing could be further from the truth. The best gifts come from the heart, and many cost mere pennies to create.

Whether you’re attending a baby or bridal shower, have a special birthday coming up or are looking to commemorate an anniversary, the frugal gift ideas below are sure to please. They will be cherished far more than trinkets soon to be placed in a box and forgotten. Even better — all these gifts can be crafted for less than $50. What’s not to love?

Some of these links may be affiliate links and I may earn a small commission off of the sale of these products to help defray the costs of operating this site, but the price you are charged is not affected. You can see my full disclosure policy here.

Frugal Gift Guide

1. A Simple DIY Tool and a Coupon for Helping Hands

I have two broken doors in my townhouse at the moment. They’re interior doors, and I can afford the materials — but I simply don’t have enough hands or know-how to hang them myself. The best gift anyone could give me right now would be a coupon to help out with the project.

Is your expectant friend decorating the nursery? Gift her a paintbrush and pan, along with a homemade coupon to help do the dirty work. Are friends buying a new home and putting in a deck? Gift a hammer, a box of nails and a gift certificate for a day of free labor — beer optional.

2. A Cross Stitch Hanging With a Personal MessageCinderalla cross stitch

Etsy has TONS of cross-stitch patterns you can download

Even if you’re not artistically inclined, anyone can learn how to cross stitch. You can pick up most of the materials on the cheap at your local dollar store.

Think of a favorite inspirational quote your friend loves, or a funny saying the two of you made up. Cross stitch it along with a pretty pattern, frame it and present it as the perfect personalized gift.

3. A Framed Painting or Drawing

If you are handy with a paintbrush, whip it out and make a one-of-a-kind painting the recipient will be proud to hang in her home. If you prefer pen and ink, design a modern piece, a la M.C. Escher. Frame it and you’re ready to go.  

4. A Homemade Afghan or Blanket

A handmade blanket or afghan makes for the perfect gift. It’s beautiful and also incredibly durable, and it will keep that special someone warm winter after winter. Every time they use it, they’ll think of you with gratitude.

5. A Day of Personal Pampering Makes a Great Gift!

If you’re broke, consider the frugal gift idea of a homemade Pampering for a Day certificate so for eight hours on the weekend of their choice, you indulge their every need. Whether they want a massage and a pedicure or simply to lie on the couch while someone else mops the kitchen floor, they will appreciate your thoughtfulness and enjoy a day of lazy luxury.

6. Kitchen Utensils With a Homemade Hanging Rack

Dollar stores sell a plethora of kitchen utensils for — you guessed it! — just a buck. However, a box full of kitchen utensils, while utilitarian, is pretty boring. To make it special, head to your local craft store for a wooden rack you can paint yourself. Stencil on a cute saying and you have the perfect personalized gift.

7. A Piece of Refinished Furniture

Is your special celebrant still living in a pad resembling a college dorm? Help them furnish their digs by doing some yard sale shopping on a Saturday to find a dining room or coffee table for pennies. Invest in some sandpaper and stain, and use good, old-fashioned elbow grease to restore the piece to like-new.

8. A Scrapbook of Your Friendship

Is your iPhone full of pics of you and your bestie out on your adventures? Pick the best photos and create a scrapbook of memories your best friend will cherish forever. Add in anecdotes about the special memories you share.

9. A Personally Designed Gift Basket

Wicker basket with spa treatments on table

Anyone with a bankroll can buy an expensive store-bought gift basket, but designing one yourself shows a ton of care and love. If you have a beer lover on your party list, make them a gift basket of a six-pack of craft brews, some beer nuts, their favorite cheese, and some beef sticks if they eat meat.

Do you have a birthday girl in your squad who seriously needs to relax? Create a gift basket containing her favorite herbal teas, some homemade lavender, and chamomile bubble bath, a hand knit washcloth or dishcloth,  a pretty dollar store box containing rose petals from your garden and some inexpensive tea light candles. Your friend can relax in a candlelit tub while sipping tea after a hot night out painting the town red.

The Best Gifts Come From the Heart

You don’t have to have a wad of cash to make a celebration extra special. Use these quirky, homemade and frugal gift ideas to create a meaningful present the lucky recipient will cherish for years to come.

pin for frugal gift ideas from the heart

Want to refer back to this frugal gift guide in the future? Bookmark this page or pin the following image.

Thanks again for spending a few minutes of your busy day with me today. Please know that I welcome each and every comment that comes my way. If you want to make sure you don’t miss future content, pop your email in the beige box up on the right or click here.  I usually send out 1 email a week, so I won’t inundate your inbox…believe me, I’m sensitive to an overflowing email inbox!

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Until next time…


Thanks for making my day by SHARING!!

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