By Aimee Lyons
Gifts from the heart are always the best kind, and nothing shows how much you care more than a gift you’ve made with your own two hands. If you want to show your bestie just how much you appreciate her, consider giving her a DIY gift. If you’re not sure where to get started, check out these ideas for gifts your bestie will love.
1. Photo Collage Monogram
Even if you’re not that crafty and don’t know who Joanna Gaines is, you can handle making this DIY gift for your bestie. A photo collage monogram just requires a wooden letter from a craft store, some craft paint and a paintbrush or sponge, copies of your favorite photos of you and your bestie, scissors, and Mod Podge. Paint the wooden letter your bestie’s favorite color if you’re using color photos, or paint it black if you’re using black and white photos. Then, choose and copy your photos, keeping in mind that you’ll have to trim and shape them to fit on the wooden letter.
Once you know where the photos will be placed, apply the Mod Podge to the wooden letter (enough decoupage for one photo at a time). Apply the photo to the decoupaged letter and smooth it out. Use a straightedge to ensure all of the air bubbles are worked out before moving on to your next photo. Repeat this process, making sure that you overlap your photos. Wait about 30 minutes after placing all of your photos before brushing the Mod Podge over them.
Leslie Stewart at House on the Way shares specific instructions with great hints for making this DIY gift for your bestie. For example, she recommends that you paint the wooden letter’s edges and back for a finished look. She also suggests copying your photos with a laser printer or going to a copy shop because photos printed with home computers sometimes turn green after you apply the decoupage.
2. Chic Luggage Tag
If your bestie travels frequently, consider making a chic personalized luggage tag for her. Choose a fabric that features your bestie’s favorite colors, alma mater’s colors, or a pattern you know she will love. You can add as many accents to the luggage tag as you want, especially if your bestie likes to stand out from the crowd. You’ll just need fabric, a small, thick piece of cardboard, ribbon, shrink plastic, decoupage, a needle and thread, and your accents. You’ll also need to preheat your oven to about 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
To make your bestie her DIY fabric luggage tag, check out the detailed tutorial. It will require a bit of patience and a little sewing but when you finish, you will have a gift that your bestie will love. (Bonus: She won’t care if your seams are a little crooked!)
3. Vintage Book Organizer
If you have a friend who loves to read, travel, and be organized with just the right luggage and accessories, a vintage book organizer is a perfect DIY gift. This gift combines a Grid-It organizer with a vintage book and shows your bestie that you have put a lot of love into making a personalized gift that captures her favorite things. You’ll need a sewing machine, hardcover book, elastic ribbon, and a few other craft items. The good news is that this gift doesn’t require advanced sewing skills.
The detailed instructions for this DIY gift walk you through the process with large photos, so you can get a detailed look at how to do it properly.
4. Dipped Shot Glasses
Birthdays are a great time to celebrate, so what could be better than a gift that includes a classier version of shot glasses? Dipped shot glasses offer a bit of elegance and include a simple technique that your friend can use for vases or other glasses if she falls in love with your gift. You’ll just need to find some shot glasses, painter’s tape, glass paint, a foam brush, parchment paper, and a sheet tray to make this DIY Bday gift for your bestie.
To make the dipped shot glasses, remove any stickers and wipe them clean. Then, mark off the bottom third or half of each glass with the painter’s tape, taking care to create a smooth edge. Cover the sheet pan with the parchment paper and put a blob of paint onto the paper. Apply the paint with the foam brush by brushing from the bottom of the tape to the bottom of the glass. Be sure to avoid painting the bottom of the glass. Allow to dry for 30 minutes and then repeat the process until you’ve applied three coats of paint. Remove the tape after one hour, working slowly so the paint remains on the glasses instead of on the tape. Place the glasses on the parchment-covered sheet pan and place in a cold oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, with the glasses warming up as the oven warms up, and then bake for 30 minutes to set the paint. Once the glasses are cool, they are ready to wrap for your bestie. Remind her to hand wash the glasses to preserve the paint. Creating DIY gifts for your bestie is a fun way to show her how much you care on her special day. Whether you create something for her home or something for her travels, you are sure to personalize her gift in the perfect way.
Aimee Lyons is a twenty-something free spirit who loves crafting, painting, building, and anything else that lets her exercise her creative muscles. A born do-it-yourself kind of girl, she started DIYDarlin.com to inspire others to embrace their inner creators and tackle projects with confidence. When she isn’t crafting, you might find her vintage shopping or taking her Corgi Champ out exploring in her hometown of Austin, Texas.