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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Gifts on a small budget: throwaway containers become gift containers

Thinking ahead to Christmas . . .

These containers still have life in them before being tossed into recycling. The coffee cans will be overwrapped in Christmas paper and filled with flavored popcorn for hubby -- 1 cheese and 1 nutty-caramel popcorn.

And the sparkling cider bottles will be filled with dry, fizzy bath salts -- 1 each, for my two daughters' Christmas stockings. I'll tie on a measuring scoop, and make my own label, and voila -- large, stocking-filling gifts for very little cost. (Dry, fizzy bath salts are just a mixture of epsom salts, baking soda, citric acid, color and essential oils/fragrance. They're even easier than making bath bombs, as you don't have to worry about them not solidifying.)


Liz @ Economies of Kale said...

I've been saving my jars all year for Christmas presents, and some nice bottles as well to make your flavoured vinegar :)

Housewife59 said...

I like the idea of the bottles for fizzy bath salts. We are also now remembering to keep old chocolate boxes and other gift boxes and wrapping from any gifts we receive at Christmas etc. I am planning to glue on recycled fabric and ribbon, or crochet around jars to disguise their previous contents and make them extra pretty.

Kris said...

Aren't you always the clever one? :) I've been trying to finish up Christmas gifts for my husband's family as we will celebrate Christmas with them the day after Thanksgiving. For the first daughter I knitted a doll's sweater and "jeans", which went smoothly ... for the second daughter in the family I am having a heck of a time with the doll sweater! I didn't like how the first sweater I knitted for her came out (the pattern was a little TOO homemade-ey looking plus I made an obvious error) and I'm trying to finish up the second one but I have some twisted stitches which I was unable to figure out how to fix ... SO I think I'll either embroider over them or add buttons for "decoration" and call it good! Then I need to knit a skirt ... I want their gifts done (or mostly done) before we start our kitchen renovations so I have that monkey off my back!!!

Lili said...

Hi Liz,
My son has a group of friends who come over once a week. I go through the recycling the day after, and find nice bottles and containers, and set them aside. These cider bottles came from one of their recent game nights. I'm still looking for a couple of nice bottles for vinegar. Good luck with yours!

Lili said...

Hi Lesley,
I received a nice, small box of chocolates just the other day. The chocolates were good, but it was the box that really caught my eye. I've tucked it away for now, as I think it would make a very nice, small jewelry box for earrings, for someone I know. Your "disguise" for jars sounds very pretty!

Lili said...

Wow, Kris! That's very impressive! Yes, just embroider over the parts you don't like -- all part of your brilliant design, right?!

I wanted to thank you for reminding me about Penney's great clearances. I was looking for a dress shirt for my son, on a very tight budget, and found exactly what he'll like, at an excellent price. I figure I saved $20 over what I would have spent, even with a sale at a store that I usually shop for men in my family. The holidays are coming together on this tight budget, afterall!

Jayne said...

The presentation makes such a difference, especially when not much money is being expended for the gift. Your ideas are great and so appropriate for the items going in them. And I very much appreciated that both ideas use up stocking real estate -- I'll definitely be putting your ideas to use this year!

Kris said...

Yes, my knitting design was planned that way ... uh huh ...

I went Penney's yesterday to return an item and lo and behold, they still had their 97 cent sale going on! I was able to purchase shorts for my son and t-shirts for my daughter in larger sizes--it's nice to know the next 2-3 summer wardrobes are mostly taken care of for them for minimal cost. Glad you were able to take advantage of the sales, too!

Anonymous said...

What great ideas. I love the bottles which will look special holding your bath fizzies.

Lili said...

Hi Jayne,
Thanks! I agree, presentation is a large part of making a homemade gift special.

Lili said...

Hi Lois,
I thought the sparkling cider bottles would make really fun containers for fizzy bath salts, too!

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