Affordable Crafts & Presents!

I have been crafting up a storm lately and I’m excited to finally share the details! If you’re on a budget but want some thoughtful and/or creative gifts, here are a few ideas I’ve tried recently!
Personalized Serving Dish
My best friend, Amanda, is getting married this September and had a bridal party a few weeks ago. She already owns a home with her fiance so their registry was nothing fancy and I knew I needed to get her something a little more meaningful that a vacuum. Fortunately, thanks to Pinterest, I found a really cool idea for a serving platter.

A porcelain plate and sharpie from Target. I think the total was $7. Amanda and I have always used the song “My Wish” by Rascal Flatts to represent our friendship so I knew I wanted to include that as she transitions into the role of being a wife. Since I have small hand writing and the plate was large, I decided to add some spice with their last name and wedding date. Then I baked in at 350 degrees for 20 min.

Unfortunately, the first time I designed it and baked it, the ink faded. I went over the ink a second time and re-baked it with my fingers crossed. Thankfully it came out much bolder and it looked like a great serving dish.

And no, you absolutely do not need excellent handwriting or any design skills. I free-handed all of it and I really think your personal touch is all that counts, a talented design is just a perk!

It won’t rotate but you get the idea.

We both teared up a tiny bit when she opened it and it was a big hit amongst the gifts. That’s when you know it was good!

Father’s Day video
On of my favorite mommy bloggers, I Love You More Than Carrots, wrote a post back in May with a giveaway for creating a free animated movie. I was excited to use it but I wasn’t sure what the right opportunity would be so I kept it in the back of my mind. When I got engaged, I knew I wanted to make my dad a video for Father’s Day that would ask him to walk me down the isle.

Make your own slideshow at Animoto.

It was easy, free, and fun to make! Of course he said yes, he would happily walk me down the isle šŸ™‚

Regular videos won’t be free but the code from ILYMTC still works so I suggest you hop on over to her blog and give it a try! (*No, no one asked me to promote her blog, she certainly doesn’t need it lol).

60 Memories for 60 Years

My dad turned the big 6-0 in early June. I knew it required a big present but I knew I couldn’t spend big money. I got an amazing idea off of Pinterest to collect 60 memories from family and friends. Starting in April, I started collecting e-mail addresses of anyone that knows my dad and I sent out an e-mail reading:

Hello everyone!
If you’re receiving this email, you probably know that my dad is turning 60 in June (much as he would hate us to be reminding everyone, I’m sure.) To celebrate his birthday, I’d like to put together a little surprise to let him know that his nearest and dearest are thinking of him. I’m going to try and create “60 Years of Memories” by filling 60 envelopes with a memory his friends and family have of him.
And this is where you come in!
If you have a spare moment in the next month, I would be so grateful if you’d jot down a favorite memory you have of him and put it in the mail (e-mail works too!). It doesn’t have to be anything fancy — you can just write it down on a piece of paper and sign your name. You can mention anything you like — although the more nostalgic the better! Please absolutely feel free to send more than one memory (in fact, we welcome it — I’ve got 60 envelopes to fill!), but make sure you write them on different pieces of paper (and sign your name to each) so I can split them up.
Thank you so, so, so much for participating — I know everyone is busy with their own lives, and I appreciate you taking a few minutes to do this; it will be so worth it when he reads all the memories people have of him! (Please don’t forget to keep it a surprise until then, though!)
Thank you so much again.

Quickly, stories came pouring in from all decades of my dad’s life. It was such a treat to learn all about his past, especially parts I didn’t know and especially to see how others see him.

In the last week of May, I ordered envelopes and started stuffing!

The weekend of his birthday it was time to reveal months of effort. He loved it!

I read him the first and last ones, both memories from me.

It took a few hours to read them all. It was SO fun hearing him read the stories, all of which were followed up with added details from my dad!

All of these presents were definitely as fun to make and give as I’m sure it was to receive. I can’t wait to continue gifting, especially when it’s so affordable! What is your favorite inexpensive gift??

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5 Responses to Affordable Crafts & Presents!

  1. Sar says:

    OHMYGOSH, I love the 60 Years of Memories thing! My dad just turned 61 this year so I'm two birthdays too late, but my mom's 60th birthday is impending so I should totally think about this! Glorious idea, Katie!Love your blog! Thanks for linking up! Hope you join us in the 15 Day Challenge!

  2. HowdyFromNYC says:

    You are SUCH a great gift giver!! How thoughtful of you. šŸ™‚ I hope all is well, I miss you!

  3. Kelly says:

    SOOOO SWEET! So very neat šŸ˜€ LOVE the plate idea– I need to pin it so that I always have the idea ready to go. For my uncle's last milestone birthday, his daughters set up a private event on Facebook. Everyone posted Happy Birthday videos on there and then on his birthday, it went public. He can go on there whenever he wants and see the videos now! It was the NEATEST thing.

  4. Abbey says:

    Awesome gift for the bride and for your dad! You're such a rockstar!

  5. Tamara says:

    The 60 years of memories, O to the M to the G! Girl that is amazing and such a wonderful idea!Also, the bridal gift – so unique and touching. Love your blog!

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