Simple DIY gifts for $5 or less

For only two toonies, a loonie, and a little bit of elbow grease, you can make these amazing homemade gifts by lifestyle expert Pay Chen, including sugar scrubs, jewelery trays, and more!


For only two toonies, a loonie, and a little bit of elbow grease, you can make these amazing homemade gifts by lifestyle expert Pay Chen, including sugar scrubs, jewelery trays, and more!

Sharpie mugs

(original DIY here)

Materials:

  • Mugs
  • Oil-based Sharpie paint pens
  • Scrapbook stickers
  • Oven

Method:

To do a monogram design you will need scrapbook stickers. Pick the monogram/design you want and stick it on your mug. You will want to make sure it’s in the right place/angle etc.

Next you will want to make dots ALL around the scrapbook sticker. Follow the directions on the markers to get the paint going. Do some practice dots on some cardboard before hand. Once ready, start filling in the area around the sticker with dots. Really fill in the area. Add a second colour if you like. If you mess up, wipe away with some rubbing alcohol on a q-tip.

Once you have the design you want and it’s dry, carefully peel off the scrapbook sticker to reveal your design. Do touch-ups if you need to.

Making sure your area is well ventilated, turn on your oven to 350F, set your mugs inside and let them bake for 30 minutes. Once 30 minutes is up, turn off the oven and let the mugs cool down inside. I left it in the oven for a few hours.

Playdough

(original DIY here)

Materials:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 2 tbsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tbsp silver glitter
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1.5 cups boiling water

Method:

In a bowl, mix the flour, salt, cream of tartar, glitter and oil.

Add the boiling water (be very careful: this is best done by an adult).

Stir until mixture becomes a sticky dough.

When it’s cool enough to handle, take it out of the bowl and knead for a few minutes until it is a good consistency.

It it’s too sticky, sprinkle a little bit of flour on the counter and knead it in

Gingerbread Sugar Scrub

(original DIY here)

Materials:

  • 1/4 cup sweet almond oil
  • 1/2 cup shea butter soap base
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

Method:

Melt shea butter soap base over a double boiler. Add almond oil and stir until completely melted.

In a medium bowl combine brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and ground cloves. Play around with the spices to your liking. That’s the great thing about customizing scrubs, you can add or remove any scents you don’t have a preference for.

Once soap is melted remove from stove and stir in vanilla extract. Allow to cool for one minute.

Combine soap with sugar mixture. Use you hands to press mixture into mold. You’ll need to work quickly to avoid having the sugar harden. Once your mold is filled you can place it in the freezer for 15 minutes or allow to harden overnight. This recipe makes 15 gingerbread sugar scrub cubes.

Teacup candles

(original DIY here)

Materials:

  • Vintage tea cups
  • Candle wax flakes
  • Candle wicks
  • Wooden skewers, chopsticks, or pencils
  • Glass container (pyrex or an old sauce jar)
  • Tape
  • Scissors

Method:

You’ll want to start off by cleaning your teacups. Just your regular dish soap is great and make sure you dry them thoroughly when you’re done. You don’t want any water in your teacups when you pour in your wax. Wax and water do not mix.

Measure out the amount of candle wax flakes you’ll need. For each teacup you’ll need twice the amount of wax flakes to fill it.

Set up the candle wicks in your teacups, you’ll want them to lay flat against the bottom. Then use your chopsticks/skewers/pencils to hold them up and tape the ends of the chopsticks so they stay put.

Cake tray/jewellery tray

(original DIY here)

Materials:

  • 3 decorative plates in varying sizes
  • Two clear candle sticks
  • Super glue

Method:

Using a generous layer of super glue, coat the bottom of your candlestick and then secure it to the center of the largest plate. Let it dry completely.

Add another layer of super glue to the top of the first candlestick, and secure it to the bottom of the medium sized plate. Let dry.

Repeat with smallest plate and enjoy!

Courtesy Pay Chen
@paychen

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