10 Easy Last-Minute DIY Gifts Even Non-DIYers Can Pull Off

published Dec 14, 2021
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As an avid DIYer myself, I might be a little biased, but I firmly believe DIY gifts are one of the greatest displays of love. They’re the perfect combination of two major love languages, both gift-giving and acts of service.

But I recognize that DIYs — especially DIY gifts — can feel really intimidating to a lot of people. There’s not only the aspect of the actual, you know, doing, but it can feel like the pressure is high when you’re wrapping something up to hand to a friend or family member.

That said, DIY gifts don’t need to be complicated to make a big impact. In fact, there are plenty of ideas for handmade gifts that are simple and quick enough to do that even the DIY-averse can pull them off. These 10 are the perfect start if you’re looking for an easy gift that you can put together at the last minute. Each of these ideas comes together in under four simple steps, using easily accessible supplies. And they’re so charming you might even want to make one or two to save for yourself.

1. Fancy Flavored Simple Syrups

For the person who loves to keep a stocked bar but already has too many specialty glasses, try your hand at cocktail syrups. Simple syrups are about as easy to make as the name implies: They only require two steps and as few as three ingredients. Eden of Sugar and Charm shares some of her favorite infusions on her blog so you can make big batches to share or create a flight of different flavors.

2. Custom Leather Coasters

DIY leather coasters are easy to make but look like a million bucks. Caitlin and Manda of The Merrythought stamped theirs with thematic greetings, but you really make a set look ritzy by customizing it with the recipient’s initials. If you want to skip the stamps, you can also decorate coasters with leather paint.

3. One-of-a-Kind Notebooks

Use paint and a stencil to quickly and easily personalize a plain notebook to match your giftee’s interests. Brittni of Paper & Stitch went with a stenciled snake for a fun school notebook. Other ideas: a personal monogram, astrology sign, or nickname.

4. A Super Easy Beard Oil

Beard oils are a classic on “gift guide for men” lists. They tend to be on the pricier side though, especially if you’re not sure if they’ll like the scent. Save money and create a custom blend with a DIY beard oil — here’s how.

5. A Quirky-Yet-Minimalist T-Shirt

Iron-on letters have come a long way. Now you can find them in almost any font style so you can make a whole closet of inside joke tees. Draw inspiration from their favorite movies, TikToks, or books. Get the instructions at Almost Makes Perfect.

6. Expensive-Looking Ornaments

Like leather, brass is another DIY material that looks luxurious but takes no time at all to transform. Vary up the shapes and sizes of pre-made brass blanks like Caitlin of The Merrythought did to gift a unique ornament set. This is a great add-on gift, too, if you’re looking to make a bottle of wine or a candle look extra ritzy.

7. A Curated Gift Box

A few small gifts look instantly elevated when they’re packaged together in a pretty box. This one, for tea lovers, is a great example: A DIY custom tea blend looks extra fancy when paired with a few reusable tea bags and a wooden scoop.

8. A Sentimental Scrapbook

Pull together your favorite memories from the last year into a photo book, like this one from Almost Makes Perfect. You can either find a scrapbook at a craft store and print your photos, or there are tons of photo book companies that make putting together a memory book as easy as uploading from your phone.

9. Funky Twisted Candlesticks

Funky-shaped candles have been an “it” decor item for the past year. A few creative bloggers — including Lotte Wullems — have found a way to easily take standard taper candles and transform them with twists, bends, swirls. These would be beautiful gifted on their own or with a thrifted candlestick.

10. Luxurious Homemade Bath Salts

Help them melt away the end-of-year stress with essential oil bath salts. Kim and Kayla of A Life Adjacent share their lavender, eucalyptus rose, and citrus, safflower, and calendula blends for the perfect soak. Bath salts also make great batch gifts since you can easily scale up or down the ingredients.