By the way, shop at my store for the holidays!!!
- For starters, plan ahead. I make a list every year of who I am gifting to (surprisingly, its not always the same) and then I jot down some ideas of gifts that might be appropriate for them. I have two lists on the fridge right now, just to remind me how far behind I am.
- In order to save sanity, I dont usually ask people what they want unless Im stuck for an idea of what to get them. Meeting requests is a sure-fire way to deviate from a budget!
- With that in mind, I keep a careful ear to the ground for any hints my loved ones may drop as to their hearts desires. Its not always necessary to hit a bulls eye but its nice to at least shoot at the right target!
- Making a budget should be a requirement for frugal gifting, but its the one thing I almost never do. Unfortunately, both my husband and I are extremely generous (to a fault) and going rouge with holiday spending is potentially disastrous! I would highly recommend setting a monetary limit on each person and trying to accomplish your giftgiving goals within that limit.
- Homemade gifts arent necessarily cheaper gifts. Yarn costs money, as does fabric, notions, paper, picture frames, etc. Crafty gifts are a nice touch - but dont expect to automatically save money that way. Try to utilize your stash before heading to the store.
- Thrift stores are a frugal gifters paradise! Giving second hand goods as gifts?! Not exactly. A good hour in a thrift store will often turn up some amazing treasures that can be incorporated into gifts you are already planning on giving. You can make a beautiful cover for a second hand book or repaint a picture frame for a family photo. Some discount store goods are spectacular enough to stand on their own, but most will need your loving touch before hitting the wrapping paper.
- Hit the sales. This seems so obvious I hardly think I should write it, but combing through sales racks can turn up some pretty amazing deals!
- When in doubt, turn to Ebay. If your family is anything like mine (with a strong affinity for the strange and rare) then Ebay is just the place to find it. Last year I received a compact that was cross stitched by the needlepoint queen of the Czech Republic, who consequently shared our last name! Best gift ever.
- Etsy is just as good, but probably wont turn up the kind of deals Ebay does.