Frugal Last Minute Gift Ideas

2012-11-08T20:30:06+00:00 Holidays, Shopping|

Don’t panic. There are still a few days ’till Christmas. Lots of time. Since a few frantic readers have emailed looking for more holiday help, I’m doing this final festive post. Most of these gift ideas can be had at your local store or made by hand at home. Some items can also be purchased online in time for Christmas shipping. So don’t fret. Life is too short.

I’ve also linked to some popular holiday posts, including wrapping gifts without paper and free printable gift tags. Free is frugal. If all else fails, give your loved ones a big holiday hug.

10 Frugal and Homemade Gift Ideas

There are lots of frugal and affordable gift ideas to choose from in this article. Everything from books, to mittens, to tea pots, and fab finds for the eco-minded. Many of these items can be found close to your home.


Beginner Digital Cameras

Cameras are very useful and generous gifts. The prices of digital cameras have fallen in the last few years. A quality digital camera can now be had for under $100. So take aim and shoot for a digital deal.


8 Homemade Gifts in a Jar

Steal some of the ideas from this insanely popular post. Do download and print the free gift tags too.


6 Free Printable Holiday Gift Tags

Free, printable, and ohh so cute. Download the whole set to use on your gifts.


11 Ways to Wrap Gifts without Wrapping Paper

Get creative and save some bucks by wrapping your gifts without wrapping paper. Be sure to read the readers’ comments. The readers are smarter than me (which is a good thing).


Got any last minute gift ideas to add? Have any frugal festive finds you wanna share?


  1. Jeremy Williams December 21, 2008 at 6:22 pm

    Just go to and you will never go back. I can now always give last-minute. For those who haven’t tried it you will love it. Anything that makes slacking easier is good by me.

  2. Beth December 21, 2008 at 6:51 pm

    My family is trying to start the tradition of all gifts having to be homemade. It really brings out the creativity in family and friends, I find.
    This year I’ve given homemade jams and jellies, homemade poppycock, knitted socks and diaper covers, and given away handmade chocolates made by a friend who is a pastry chef. Frugal and really a lot more from the heart than something from the mall.

  3. Fabulously Broke December 22, 2008 at 6:31 am

    I only like food or cash itself.

    I sound really harsh like a Grinchette right now, but I don’t like “stuff”. I had so many homemade things given to me like iPod cosies, joke magnets, or all that stuff, and quite frankly I am only interested in what I truly want to keep so I don’t want people to spend money on something that they weren’t sure I’d like.

    Or else it ends up in the donation bin or the garbage and just causes more unnecessary waste because they bought something that I can’t return, that I didn’t like or want in the first place.

    It’s for the good of the environment!

  4. her every cent counts December 22, 2008 at 10:05 am

    ps, I love, love, love how your commenters each get a cute graphic if they don’t have their own image. So cool!

  5. Sagan December 22, 2008 at 10:22 am

    Thanks for all the links- am trying very hard not to panic:)

  6. Kerry December 22, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    @Jeremy Williams There’s nothing wrong with slacking! LOL 😀

    @Beth I need to convince my family to adopt some homemade traditions. Or I need to make friends with a pastry chef.

    @Fabulously Broke Ohh I don’t think you a Grinch. I’ve always been a dash of Grinch with a touch of Scrooge myself. But yeah, unneeded stuff is crap.

    @her every cent counts The images are called “Gravatars.” You can customize your comments on this blog, and many others supporting this feature, by using a, a globally recognized avatar.

    Gravatars are free to upload and use across all the blogs, forums, and sites you comment on.

    @Sagan Do some more push ups…and then relax. 😀 OK, time to work my own arms.

  7. Michelle December 23, 2008 at 8:15 am

    Hi! I love this post. My family started doing homemade gifts too. This was our first year trying this (we already had our official christmas… impatience is a genetic trait perhaps) and I was impressed with the caliber of creativity in my family! I hope this is something we continue – it was great!

  8. Jude December 25, 2008 at 2:33 am

    Your gifts in a jar idea saved my butt this year. Thanks!

  9. Erika November 29, 2010 at 12:20 pm

    Sometimes you can find old sheet music at a thrift store or a garage sale. This makes fantastic gift wrap, especially when paired with a colorful ribbon!

  10. Kerry November 29, 2010 at 12:23 pm

    @Erika I LOVE your sheet music idea.

  11. Jamie Jefferson November 3, 2012 at 6:55 am

    The sheet music idea is fantastic, and I love to bring gifts in a jar to holiday parties as a small hostess gift. Thanks for all of these great ideas. I am not very crafty myself, but I do like to shop handmade items at esty for the holidays. You can get so many nice and affordable items.

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