Themed Holiday Gift Baskets
Today on my weekly news segment, I shared some inexpensive ways to make holiday gift baskets. Making gift baskets is one of my favorite things to do, not only around the holidays, but during the entire year.
Making holiday gift baskets can be great fun and are a lot of fun for the recipient too! Although I say holiday gift baskets, really anything laying around the house that can tie in with your theme can be used. Mixing bowls, for example, making great "baskets" for a baking theme, popcorn tubs can make great "baskets" for a movie-theme. And, of course, baskets also can be used as the base for putting all of your items in. I love to find those at thrift & tag sales because they are so affordable.
Now that you have your basket, you can add a filler to fill the basket up. I usually wad tissue paper or newspaper on the bottom to give the basket some fullness and then work on adding a more elegant touch to that. These touches can be fabric (purchased at the thrift store or from your own stash), colored tissue paper, shredded junk mail (in reds or greens), or anything else that you can find.
Last, you can fill the basket with all of your items to go along with your theme. This is the most fun part and don't be afraid to mix and match items from thrift sales with new & affordable items. You can also add your own special homemade touches to the basket, along with purchased items.
When I first began doing gift baskets, I liked to Google the search term, "gift baskets" just to see what types of baskets people were selling. You can get all sorts of great ideas to use, without paying the premium prices that most of these sites have to charge.
Here are some theme ideas that I have done:
Coffee-Lovers Basket- I filled these with a travel mug, bags of homemade flavored coffees, and homemade chocolate spoons. Other additions you could make would be flavored coffee syrups, a mix of Starbucks-style music, or a book of coffee recipes. This same idea could be applied to a cocoa drinker or a tea drinker, just include accessories that go along with that theme.
Italian Gift Basket- I filled these baskets with a checked gingham dish towel in red & white, a box of pasta, a jar of my homemade spaghetti sauce, homemade bread, and I picked up a cookbook on Italian cooking from our wholesale club.
Spa Baskets- These are a popular gift because who wouldn't want some time to luxuriate in a spa day? I fill these with homemade bath salts, a pretty candle, a bit of reading material, and pedicure items (purchased from the dollar store). You can get as fancy as you want on these types of baskets, but a few homemade elements are great for keeping your costs low.
Breakfast in Bed Basket- I fill this with some of my homemade pancake or waffle mix, a container of syrup (bought or homemade), and some of this yummy pumpkin butter. Tuck in a fancy newspaper and add some of the elements from the coffee-lovers basket to make this a basket to really be remembered.
Movie-Lovers Basket- Use a paper or plastic popcorn tub as your base for this gift. Put newspaper in the bottom and then fill it with popcorn kernels. Rest on top a few movies (Half.com is a great place to look for cheap movies or check the Blockbuster Outlet), some movie-theater style candy (purchased from the dollar store) and some bags of popcorn.
You can then leave the basket open or you can add a professional touch with a little shrink wrap and a fancy bow. I buy the shrink wrap sets at the dollar store and use my blow dryer to seal it tight. Take your scissors and curl the ribbon ends and you have a professional basket for half the price or less!
Sound Off: What is the best gift basket you have made or received?