During the holiday season, you may not have the kind of money you want to spend on gifts. Regardless of whether this year might be a tight Christmas, there are a few creative ways you can give back to your loved ones.


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Interests or hobbies

This first gift idea is best when planned in advance. For instance, let’s say you have a friend who loves fragrances. Think back to all the beauty shops you visited throughout the year (such as Sephora or a makeup counter) that offered free samples. Packaging those samples in lovely wrapping paper or box polishes it up for a frugal, but thoughtful gift.

Use a skill/service

Do you know how to knit? Or are you a snow shoveling titan? Whatever it is that you do well, you can give your loved ones the present of free services provided by you. If you’re good with kids, perhaps you could offer up your babysitting services, or if you bake, bring cookies they love, by the tray! To save your loved ones hassle, you can provide your lawn-mowing or snow-shoveling services on a day when they just feel like relaxing.


There are so many great coupon booklets that you can personalize and give to the ones you love, such as Datevitation. However, you can always draw up a few coupons yourself, which doesn’t require an artistic skill at all! Simply cut your coupons neatly and hand-decorate them as vouchers they to be redeemed for different things such as their choice of a rented movie to watch or breakfast in bed.

Gifts in a jar/edibles

“Gifts in a jar” is the title of one particularly adorable Pinterest gift idea, and we love it! The holidays are a time in which everyone gets together to bond and reminisce over a table full of food. By bringing a festively dressed up jar of goodies, you can add a pop of fun to the dinner table. This present is really dependent on the packaging, so make sure your gift looks as decadent as possible.

DIY gifts

The season is ripe for DIY projects and when done right, these homemade creations can look quirky, unique, and somehow, expensive. Take a look at this holiday DIY ornament party drink, these beautifully decorated pinecones, DIY ornaments, and a subway-style sign to brighten up the room of one of your New York-obsessed loved ones. Though many visualize the holidays as a time to shop, for those on a tight budget, there are gifts that can make a big impact, free of charge.

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