If it’s a loved one’s birthday – whether that is your partner, child or best friend – but you don’t have a lot of money to spend, there are still plenty of ways to make it special. Why not think about making the present and card yourself? In fact, spending less money forces you to be more creative and really put more of your time and effort into it so the end result is often something more personal to them. All it takes is a little of your time. After all, we all know that a gift or a treat means more when someone has put a lot of thought into it, regardless of how much they’ve spent.
One of the simplest things you can try is to make the birthday card yourself. It’s generally fairly obvious when somebody has gone out and bought a card at the last minute. To buy even a half-decent card these days can be very expensive if you don’t have much money. And the cheap ones are often covered with pink teddies with insincere poems on the inside. It can be far better, then, to buy some card making supplies in bulk and simply make your own cards whenever it’s a loved one’s birthday. The good thing about this is that you can personalise them so the recipient knows you have really thought about what they like and have bothered to put the effort in.
And you don’t have to be an incredibly artistic person to actually make the present yourself as well. You could, for example, go down the food or drink route. What about making some home-made fudge and presenting it in a nicely decorated box or basket? Or baking a cake and decorating it with the name of the person whose birthday it is? If it’s winter you could give them a nice bottle of home-made mulled wine or if it’s summer there is the option of sloe gin or raspberry vodka. You can make all of this at home in bulk and give it as gifts if and when you want to. Just make it a rule to keep any nice glass bottles, pretty baskets or attractive gift boxes rather than throwing them away and you will then always have supplies at the ready.
There is also the option of making a useful gift. Why not try recycling unwanted sweaters and buttons into cushions (you can get really creative here and fashion them into any shape you want). Another popular option is to get a large, glass picture holder (they’re not expensive) and either make a collage if you’re of an artistic frame of mind or fill it with photographs that have significance for you and your loved one. You can also get a plain box with a hinge and decorate it with sea shells or anything else you want to (you can even combine this idea with something like the home-made fudge above and put it inside.
Of course, your gift doesn’t necessarily have to be an object at all. What about taking them for a walk somewhere really special? Or decorating your house with home-made banners and inviting all your friends around for a party? Another very low-cost option is to have movie theatre experience at home: just dim the lights and watch movies with popcorn. Even better if you know someone who can lend you a projector for the evening!
If you’ve decided to go down the route of making a card or gift then you will need to find somewhere to buy the basic craft and card making supplies. One of the easiest things to do is to go online as you may be able to get a better deal. Online shops don’t have the same overheads as high street stores so they are able to offer supplies at cheaper rates – particularly if you want to buy things in bulk. In fact, it’s a good idea to do this as it means you always have a ready stock of card- and present-making supplies if an unexpected birthday comes along (or if you’ve accidentally forgotten one – something we’re all guilty of from time to time).