I love givingÂ gifts… LOVE. When my sister-in-law got married last summer, I brainstormed for a really long time to come up with THE perfect gift for her and her husband.
Adam and I decided to go with a Date Night theme: we provided them with a pre-planned date for each month of the year. I’ve seen this idea on “romantic ideas” blogs before, but I’ve never seen a presentation that I fell in love with… so I came up with my own. :)
First, I used these envelope templatesÂ and liner templates from PaperSource to make 12 different adorable envelopes using craft/scrapbook papers I already had in my closet. Then, Adam and I came up with a list of fun things for Amanda and Brad to do together throughout the year (and I ran all around town picking up giftcards and scheduling things). Since Amanda is pregnant (due in August!), we had to be conscious of including alcohol themes. Now, we gave Amanda & Brad this gift in January, so they still have a half a year’s worth of envelopes to open – therefore, I can’t share ALL of the ideas we came up with just yet. Here are a few of the dates they’ve already opened:
- Aces Hockey Tickets
- Neon Mini Golf
- Frozen Yogurt GiftCard (to Yogurt Lounge)
- Modern Dwellers Chocolate Lounge GiftCard
- Fishing trip (with famous river guides Adam & Jenny Fast)
- Dinner & Movie @ Bear’s Tooth (a local theater/pizzeria/pub)
After writing out a little decription of each date on a piece of construction paper, I placed everything in the envelopes and packaged it up all nice and pretty. We gave it to the Halls with the instruction that they were to ONLY open ONE envelope per month… I’m seriously impressed that they (Amanda in particular) seem to have complied so far. :)
I really wish I could share the rest of the months right now, but for Amanda and Brad… just know there are some REALLY good ones coming up.
This was definitely one of my favorite gifts I’ve ever given… it was so much fun brainstorming, creating, and presenting. I definitely recommend!
I gave away a LOT of photo gifts for Christmas last year, all of them homemade. One of the neatest projects I did was photo coasters, made very inexpensively with simple tiles from Lowe’s. Here’s a quick overview:
Photo Coasters: What You’ll Need:
- ceramic tiles (4.25 x 4.25) (found mine at Lowe’s for about $0.15 each)
- photos (sized to 3.75 x 3.75)
- Mod Podge
- sponge brush
- hot glue gun
- felt squares (3.75 x 3.75)
- clear acrylic sealer
Okay, these were very simple to make and they came out absolutely beautiful. First, brush a thin coat of Mod Podge onto the top of a tile. Place a photo in the center, smooth out,Â let dry about 10-15 minutes.Â Then cover the entire photo and tile again with a coat of Mod Podge. Let that coat dry, and repeat 2 more times.
If you’re planning on actually using these as coasters (and you should!), the next step is to take the tiles outside and spray with the acrylic sealer. Let the first coat dry about 10 minutes before adding a second coat. When all is dry, bring the tiles back inside.
Next, adhereÂ the felt to the bottoms of each tile with the hot glue – I just went around the perimeter with a thin line of glue, and an “x” in the center to prevent lifting. Once this all dries… you’re done!
I gave the coasters as gifts in sets of 4, and they’re still holding up! I see them at Ellie’s grandparents’ houses each time we visit. :)
I post on facebook a lot about crafts and gifts and projects… and I’ve recently had SO many requests to share some of my DIY fun. Luckily I’ve taken a lot of photos, so I’ll start posting a few tips and tricks for those of you looking for great gift ideas! First up… my most raved-about Christmas gift: Photo Marble Magnets.
I came up with the idea for these by just looking at a couple of magnets I picked up at the airport a few years ago. These little marble magnets were so cute, and I found myself thinking that they would be even cuter if they had pictures of my daughter in them… light bulb! After a quick trip to JoAnn’s, I was ready to go.
Photo Marble Magnets: Things You’ll Need:
- flat-backed marbles (found in the floral section at JoAnn’s
- strong magnets (found at JoAnn’s, but cheaper at Fred Meyer!)
- photo paper
- hot gluegun
Mkay, this was one of the easiest projects I did all year. First, print photographs on your photo paper… I sized mine to 1″x1″ and then printed like, 50 on one full page. Cut them into little squares. Then one by one, you’ll need to place a marble over a photo and cut off the edges (so the photo is now rounded and the size of the marble. You could probably trace with a pencil, but I just eyeballed it and mine came out fine (you can trim them more later if you need).
Brush a light layer of modpodge onto the back of the marble, and then attach the photo. I placed a piece of cardboard on my dining room table for all of the marbles to dry on. Let them all dry for at least an hour. Then using your hot glue gun, attach the magnets to the backs of the marbles.
And you’re done. IT’S REALLY THAT SIMPLE.
As for presentation, I found some gift card tins at Fred Meyer around Christmas time… I placed a piece of felt and 6 marbles in each one. They were SUPER cute and everyone loved them! I also found that if you can’t find gift card tins anywhere, Altoid tins also work well. :)