Unique Christmas gifts you can make at home

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As Christmas draws ever closer the shops are becoming inundated with panic buyers – I speak from bitter experience – desperate to snap up the perfect present for their beloveds or the dreaded Secret Santa.  But it doesn’t have to be this traumatic.  I’ve scoured the internet for the best last minute DIY Christmas gifts so pour yourself a large glass of your preferred poison and follow the links below for some festive inspiration!

* For girls and boys who like to pamper themselves

If you enjoyed my sugar scrub post last Christmas check out this video from Miss Kris whose easy to follow tutorials use store cupboard staples to create perfect pamper gifts for the beauty lover in your life.  You can tailor the scents to suit the recipient for a truly personal gift:

Similarly if you fancy yourself as a bit of a mad scientist check out these luxurious bath bombs over at Ali Does It Herself.  I love reading Ali’s blog, especially when she doesn’t sugar coat things that go wrong in the DIY department.  A seasoned do-er up-per she will keep you right and warn of pitfalls to look out for thanks to her having tried and tested everything herself in advance.

* For the last minute Christmas party invite

So you’ve bumped into a friend in the queue for turkeys and they’ve invited you over for mince pies and mulled wine.  Disaster strikes – the soiree is but a few hours away and you want to bring  a gift befitting of your lovely host.  What about homemade shot glasses you can make in an afternoon?  I spied this in this week’s Stylist magazine and requires one ingredient – round, boiled candies.  Stylist spotted it over on The Watering Mouth whose original recipe I’m posting here.  While a little fiddly to shape around the shot glass (see video!) this gift will elevate you to showstopping party guest in 0 to 60 seconds flat.  And hey, what’s better than a shot glass you can eat?  Waste not want not I say.

* For dear friends who have children but also like booze

It’s back over to Ali for her homemade coffee liqueur recipe.  All that looking after wee ones is tiring (I bet) so give the gift that keeps on giving and can be made as little as one week ahead of time.  (NB: Obviously I’m not advocating parents should perform their childcare duties while under the influence.  However, most parents I know are a little pooped by the time party season rolls around so why not help them stay awake with a little caffeine kick.  They’ve earned it!)

* For friends pining the autumnal warmth of the Pumpkin Spiced Latte

I’ve yet to try this one but it’s on my list for this weekend – spiced latte hand soaps from the folks over at A Beautiful Mess.  These look incredibly easy to make – I’ll keep you posted as to whether this is actually the case or not – and with a good dose of my favourite spice, cinnamon they’re almost good enough to eat.  Almost.  Please don’t try to eat them.

* A little something for everyone

Sticking with A Beautiful Mess – one of my all time favourite blogs – check out this list of 50 DIY gift ideas to try out.  They range from the super swift 30 minute Sharpie personalised mugs to the trickier, more time consuming but oh-so-impressive leather clutch bag.

Hopefully this little list will inspire you as it has me to give crafting and DIY a try this Christmas. May it save you from the stress of barging your way through crowds on the high street and buy you more time at home with your loved ones at this special time of year.  I’d love to hear how you get on!  And if you have any wonderful gift ideas please comment and share them below! xx


Happy Friday!

Whoo hoo! We made it to the weekend! My addiction to the online world has increased somewhat lately and would you believe I’ve actually come across some pretty cool job adverts on Twitter! But before I came across these ads I came across a few links that made me smile and inspired me to try a few new things. I thought I’d share them with you, hope you enjoy them!

1) I’ve long suspected that Belfasties are among the happiest people in the UK, if not the world, in spite of our tendency to go a bit nuts at certain times of the year. This week my suspicions were confirmed in print and on screen when Afro-Mic Productions took to the streets in the howling wind and rain to capture some smiles on camera. Here is the result. Try not to tap your feet, go on… I DARE YOU! 😉

2) Everyone likes to be a bit naughty on the weekends. (Drag your minds back out of the gutter for a moment if you will!) My particular vice is chocolate and despite what better people than me profess I am pretty certain I could never tire from eating it. However, the button on my jeans would likely take someone’s eye out if I ate it nearly as much as I’d like to so it is for health and safety reasons I present Deliciously Ella’s raw brownies. Yum.

3) I can never be bothered to do much with my mop but thanks to budget constraints I’m not going to be able to afford the luxury of getting my roots touched up as often as I’d like – the horror – unless my job situation improves dramatically and someone decides to pay me a lot of money. Enter the casual side braid. Of course I can’t manage make my hair look exactly like the image but the result’s not half bad and if it means I get another few weeks out of my colour that’s a winner in my books. There’s even a DIY link to making your own lipstick at the bottom of the tutorial.

4) Perfecting the art of haggling is a necessity when on a budget and Miss Thrifty‘s tips are swiftly becoming my mantra – much to the delight of my mother.

5) Since I discovered A Beautiful Mess – of best ever breakfast fame – a wee while ago I’ve been studying their posts with great interest and they haven’t disappointed. If you’re a fan of Instagram check out their app for windows and iPhone which will make your pics appear très tech-savvy – even if you are not. And seeing as it’s the weekend check out this easy recipe for Whisky Sours. Cheers!xx

Hooray for Saturday morning lie ins! Photo credit: www.abeautifulmess.com

Hooray for Saturday morning lie ins!
Photo credit: http://www.abeautifulmess.com