DIY Gifts? DIY Gifts.

DIY GiftsCollege students do not typically have the luxury of driving to the mall to pick up gifts for their loved ones. While they may not have their car on campus, they may not have the funds either. Gifts are expensive, and your total can quickly accumulate, especially when there are numerous people on your shopping list.

A new trend is DIY gifts. They are convenient, creative and they establish a personal connection to the gift that cannot be mimicked through a store-bought gift. Rebecca Berzins, a freshman marine biology student, stated, “Making your own gifts requires more thought and effort than just buying something.” A quality gift does not have to be expensive nor elaborate, as long as the person you are giving it to will like it.

DIY gifts can be made right from the comfort of your own dorm, because many of them require just a few items that you most likely have laying around anyway.

However, some of them might require cheaper items that help to complemte the gift such as a mason jar, ribbon, or a basket to put everything in. These items can be purchased at any dollar store.

Let’s be honest – we all have some shaving cream lying around in our shower caddies. Shaving cream is the primary ingredient for slime, a rapidly growing trend amongst younger children.

This is the perfect gift for younger siblings or cousins. The other ingredients consist of water, borax and glue, depending on what type of slime you want to make.

Children get ecstatic over slime (college students do too, it’s fine), and it can be made in a variety of different colors. It’s easy to make, not expensive and can be packaged presentably in a container with some ribbon.

Calling all Bath & Body Works lovers: if you happened to miss the buy 3 get 3 free Black Friday sale, consider making the loved ones in your life a homemade body scrub.

These are extremely versatile because they can either be sea salt or sugar scrubs, and they can be gifts for men or women.

Common ingredients found in body scrubs are honey, coffee, olive oil, oatmeal, brown sugar, essential/moisturizing oils and spices. Most of these items are likely to be in your dorm room; if not, they are super easy and cheap to access in your local supermarket.

Homemade body scrubs will banish dry winter skin and create a smooth and radiant complexion. They can also be given in mason jars or containers with a bow or ribbon. A body scrub can also be made in bulk and then separated to be given to different people, which is helpful.

“Handmade gifts can be both affordable and thoughtful, not to mention, they are usually appreciated much more than common commercial items,” said Mary Harris, a specialist professor of communication and Director of Plants for Peace.

In light of the holidays, baking is a popular and enjoyable activity for a lot of people. Cookies are a universal form of happiness and the best gifts are the ones that can be eaten. The best cookies are the ones that are homemade, so conversely, homemade cookies are the right gift for anyone.

Even if baking is not your strong point, the Pillsbury stick and bake cookies are a fan favorite. Priced at under $3 for 24 cookies, they come with different designs like snowmen, reindeers and even elves. These can also be baked in bulk and placed in cute containers for a perfectly presented gift.

“Some of my favorite gifts were the homemade ones that were worked on with such time and care,” said Brianna Young, a freshman education student.

Basics such as phone cases, purses and mugs can be purchased from Target or the dollar store.

Once purchased, these gifts are completely customizable and can be colored or decorated with markers, paint or jewels. These are staple items that should not be hard to find in stores for the right price. Your loved ones will appreciate gifts a lot more knowing that they are homemade.

With the holiday season sneaking up on us, there is not much time left to prepare the perfect gifts with the added pressure from finals week! But hopefully these tips have helped you spread some Christmas cheer without breaking the bank.

PHOTO TAKEN by Jenna Puglisi