Last Minute Christmas Gifts

December 20, 2016



 So, 5 days until Christmas, but what's that I hear? The cries of a stressed human who has that one relative they don't know who to buy for? Or maybe a broke teen who has to buy 10 gifts but is on a strict budget? Don't fret! I've complied (oo fancy) a last minute gift guide for you all, aimed at multiple price ranges :)


Quote Posters


I made this poster for a cat-lover friend this Christmas after she said the above during dinner. Whether it be a one off phrase or a phrase they say all the time, a quirky quote poster is a great last minute gift for someone you don't know what to buy for - and especially fab for us poster loving uni students. I designed it on picmonkey.com and had it professionally printed by instantprint.com costing me £10.94 (including postage and VAT). This was probably not the cheapest way of doing it but I paid for next day postage so it got to me in time for Christmas... You can save more money if you have an A3 printer to hand- there may be one at your school/uni you could borrow or at your local library) - or print it on A4 and buy a cheap charity shop photo frame to spice it up a bit and make up for it not being generic poster size :)

Top tips for quote posters

1) Use multiple fonts - each line of mine is a different font.
2) Highlight the key words in the text by making them bigger, bolder and in different colours.
3) Include a simple picture to do with the main topic without a background so it blends into the background colour.
4) Don't use a long quote, paraphrase if you have to!
5) Point out to them that they said it by putting their name and the year at the bottom of the page (I've cut my friend's name off this for privacy, but it is there in the original).

If you don't like this style, you can parody other styles of poster such as the 'Keep Calm' ones or turn a funny picture of your friend into the style of a meme. The possibilities are endless. For instance my friend has had a thing about badgers wearing party hats for years, so this year I printed out a poster of a badger that I'd added a party hat to and captioned it!


Food Hampers



Who doesn't love food? This year for my grandparents I am putting together a hamper for homemade food to suit their taste. As they don't like many sweet things, I have only given them a few things (at one stage I planned on buying fancy cheese and making biscuits). To present them I bought professional looking food bags from amazon and labels from a local kitchen store to make it look extra special 😊 I couldn't find a hamper to present them in, so wrapped an old shoe box in brown paper and ripped up strips of white and red tissue paper to fill the inside of the box.

Heres the recipes I will be using if you are interested:

Dark Cherry and Hazelnut Biscotti

(Use proper butter, not marg! They took forever to dry out, but were the biggest success of the operation. Defo making them again at some point :) )


Tuiles



Pistachio and Cranberry mini Meringues

Any plain meringue recipe with chopped pistachios and dried cranberries added to the mixture (only one of the types in each meringue, not mixed together) They didn't provide much flavour, so unless you are sprinkling them on top for decoration, there isn't much point adding them to be honest. Ah well, you live ad you learn :)



Books



Books are great for the book lovers in your life. Whether its a book you love and want to introduce them too, or a book based on things they love that you think they'll love, you can be rest assured that if they love reading they will use this at some point - just make sure they haven't read it already...

I bought A History of the World in 100 Objects by Neil MacGregor for my Dad. This was originally a radio series he listened too, so fingers crossed he'll enjoy the book just as much 😊

My personal book recommendations are the Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Dubargo and (the similar) Black Magician Trilogy by Trudi Canavan.


Bath Bombs



They've been around for years, yet never fail to please and impress. This Lush bubble bar (superior to the bath bomb if you ask me, cause bubbles!) in Sunnyside, looks luxurious (just watch the video on their website) and I mean, who doesn't want to bathe in gold?! Costing just £4.95, they're a steal (+ they're vegan and Lush don't test on animals 😊). If you don't want to buy these but want to buy nice bubble baths etc, you can normally buy gift sets (like these cute crackers) and (if you're really on a budget) split them up between multiple friends :) I also happen to know that the body shop are doing little £5 gift boxes, which are super cute :) 


Makeup



For all the beauty lovers in your life, you can't go wrong with cosmetics 😊. This lipstick has been a staple on my face for the past week since I bought it last Wednesday hehe. It's by Maybelline and is their ColorSensational matte lipstick in 975 Divine Wine, costing just £6.99. Yes, it's not the best lipstick formulation wise, but if you want to introduce your friend to a gorgeous deep red lipstick, fabulous for the Christmas season, then you can't go wrong with this (unless, of course, you can find a lipstick that's a similar colour with a better formula - please let me know if you do!). If you want to buy lipsticks for multiple friends and are on a tight budget, MUA's liquid lacquers are only £3! (I would say buy the gift set, but 5 for £15 means you aren't saving money by buying this way, only wasting more packaging...). Other cute makeup gift sets include Makeup Revolution Handbag Hacks (currently reduced to £3 from £6 - BARGAIN!!) and the tower of glitter nail polishes from Debenhams (£8 for 4 = £2 each!) If you have a little more to spend, this set from Benefit is £19.50, with each item costing just under £5 if split between 4 friends :) 

 

Perfume 



Perfume is a little harder to get right, as it is so individual. Mini perfume sets, like this one from New Look (£12.99), means the recipient will hopefully like at least one of them. These are also, once again, great stocking fillers to split up and give out individually to people- especially if you're strapped for cash!

Jewellery


On the slightly higher end of the budget (for the one I bought anyways) jewellery is always a good option if you're struggling to buy for someone (provided they wear it). I find basic staple pieces are a safer option as they are easier to style and go with more. Then again, buy what ever you know the recipient would love - if they like more bold pieces then get them that instead :)

The photographed item is by Pilgrim (bought for £25 from Debenhams- I went halves with another friend). 

Cheaper alternatives include:



Chocolate

When in doubt, the way to their heart is through their stomach. Quirky chocolates, such as this Playstation controller are super fun, and these tiny crackers by Hotel Chocolat (which I was a happy recipient of this year) make for great add on gifts or stocking fillers

Phone Cases


Most people have phones these days, so why not update their case? You can make a slip case in 2 hours (such as the one I made today which you can see above and cost me around £12 for materials. But to save even more money, you could make one out of clothes you no longer wear) and I will be putting up a tutorial ASAP 😊

Other styles include ones for Sherlock fans (that I want hehe) and this confetti one.

Gift vouchers 


And if you're truly stuck, vouchers are the way to go. Whether it's money towards something they've wanted for ages, books, somewhere to visit together (like this Cat Café my friend and I have had our eyes on for aaages) or promise vouchers (such as the one above I just designed on Picmonkey that you are welcome to use). I'm also going to suggest subscription boxes such as Birchbox if you can afford it and charity sponsorships such as Guide Dogs which I used to receive 😊.

Any reccommendations of your own? Add them in the comments below!

Merry Christmas :)

June xx

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