Thoughtful Gift Ideas – Simple Gifts Provide Rich Value

From January through December there are so many occasions for gift-giving. Some are universal, like Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. Others are individual and more personal like housewarming or graduation. With all of these occasions throughout the year, we often find ourselves stumped for what to get that someone special on their special day.

According to the American Research Group, over the last 2 years, shoppers around the country have spent an average of $652.00 on gifts during the Christmas season, which is the number one gift giving holiday of the year. Add to that the next most popular holidays, Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day with an average spend at 126.00 and 152.00, respectively, according to the National Retail Federation. When you factor in all of the other universal and individual gift-giving occasions throughout the year, that amounts to a good percentage of the annual household income spent on gifts.

If you find yourself in need of a lower cost gift idea for any occasion throughout the year, consider the following ideas which are both unique and memorable and won’t break the bank.

Handmade memory book – Depending on your level of craftiness, this could be an artistic scrapbook or a simple photo album containing special photos around a theme that celebrates a relationship, an occasion or period of time. Photos from a milestone birthday or anniversary, photos from a special trip, or a collection of childhood photos are all great examples. Use a photo album that has space for handwritten captions, and write your own story around the pictures. Be creative, funny and inspirational. The best gift will make them both laugh and cry.

Framed photo collection – This is another idea for photos. Choose a handful of memorable photos, print and frame them in various sizes. The idea is to make this a collection that they can hang together on a wall or set together on a table. The frames should be consistent enough so they match well together but should be various shapes, sizes, and colors for an interesting display. You might choose all the same color but different shapes, textures or sizes. Or you might choose different colors and sizes with the same texture and style. Generally, anywhere from 3-6 different photos will make a complete and interesting display.

Collection of small themed gift items – Think about the recipient’s personality or interests and put together a small collection of items around that theme. A book, picture frame and notepad all reflecting a tennis theme is an example. A floral candle, garden themed tea cup and garden inspired journal would make a great gift for a garden lover. Whatever the theme, choose items that fit your recipient’s personality or lifestyle. Package the collection in a nice gift bag, box or basket, wrap and tie with pretty gift tag and bow for a memorable presentation.

Book of handmade gift certificates – Put together a collection of gift certificates that offer help or dedicated time spent with your recipient. If they have children, create a certificate that offers a night out while you babysit. Promise to plan a day or evening outing together. Offer to help with work around the house or outdoor work such as planting a garden. Be creative and think of ideas that are fitting of your relationship with the recipient as well as their lifestyle and interests. Whether you give one certificate or several is up to you, but this simple gift will have long lasting value.

When you’re short on budget, take time to create these unique and personal gift ideas. They will provide rich value and long lasting joy at a simpler cost.

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