Holiday 2012 Alternative Gift Guide: Make it Meaningful

Holiday gifts don't have to cost a bundle! Show your loved ones how much you care with these fresh, alternative gift ideas!
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Holiday 2012 Alternative Gift Guide: Make it Meaningful

Holiday gifts don’t have to cost a bundle! Show your loved ones how much you care with these fresh, alternative gift ideas!

-Angelica Catalano, YouBeauty.com

brown paper gifts

Is wine your default holiday gift? Do you wish you could come up with thoughtful gifts, but the thought of a DIY project—carding wool, dying it and spinning it into a shawl for your best friend—makes you panic? Whatever your gift-giving style, you can achieve a thoughtful balance. Rather than toiling over a handmade gift for hours or just grabbing a decorative candle on your way out the door, check out these fresh ideas.

1. Paint pottery

pottery

Take a trip to the pottery place and you’ll find ceramics your friend will actually use (not that cat figurine—though, she may be into that, too). Is your friend a coffee nut? Paint a mug and throw a coffee gift card in there. If she has a green thumb, try a flower pot with seeds and soil inside. For a delicate touch on a housewarming gift, fill a hand-painted vase with fresh flowers. Whatever you choose, use your friend’s favorite colors and patterns. Bonus: Painting is a stress-reliever. Color yourself happy!

Read Treat Yourself! 10 Things Your Should Do For Yourself This Holiday Season

2. DIY sea salt spray

sea salt

Getting beachy waves in the dead of winter is not always practical. So it’ll be a sweet (er, salty) surprise to give your friend that tousled look with a spritz of something natural. With just four ingredients in this thrifty sea salt recipe, you can bottle up the beach for Baywatch-worthy hair without spending a ton of cash. Just add a cute tag and you’re good to go— she won’t “sea” this one coming! (Wait—don’t ruin the presentation with that corny joke.).

3. Make a cookbook

cookbook

Instead of buying a cookbook, make one full of your winning recipes. For a fancy finish, have the pages laminated and bound at your local copy shop, complete with photographs of the final product. If you’re more crafty than techy, handwrite the recipes and draw for a homespun look. The best part? You can cater to her favorite eats. If your friend has a sweet tooth, make it full of mouthwatering desserts. Super low-maintenance pal? Try no-brainer 10-minute recipes.


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