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There is nothing better to receive as a gift than something that has been personalised just for you. We’ve come up with a great collection of ideas you can use to make your own personalised gifts by upcycling your old stuff.
Scrap Fabric Keychains & Wristlets
Use up those pretty bits of scrap fabric you have saved in your craft cupboard and upcycle them into some cute personalised keychains or key fob wristlets. The wristlets are great for attaching to bags too! Instructables have a wristlet keychain tutorial here. You can modify it to include your recipient’s name or initials by using appliqué or embroidery on your scraps before sewing it together.
You can find more links to scrap fabric key chain tutorials and other great scrap fabric ideas in our article 17 Brilliant Ideas for Upcycling Your Scrap Fabric.
Personalised Name Crayons
This is a great one to do with kids (for their friends or cousins for example). Take that bucket of broken crayons that are too short to draw with, put them in a silicone letter mould and bake them into personalised funky tie dye coloured crayons. Check out our Step by Step Tutorial here. A fabulously simple upcycled gift idea!
Make your own Colouring Book
Have you ever heard of a junk journal? It’s basically a notebook made up of old bits of paper that would otherwise get thrown away. Well you can make a kids character colouring book in the same way. We used old junk mail envelopes, a cardboard chocolate bar wrapper and some cut outs from an old kids magazine to make a junk journal style colouring book as a Christmas gift! You can find the Junk Journal Colouring Book tutorial here.
Appliquéd Monogram Letters
We think this is a brilliant idea! Use your scrap fabric to upcycle something plain that you don’t wear, don’t use or have grown out of and make it into a gorgeous personalised gift for someone else! Obviously only gift clothes or items in good condition but this would work great for when you have kids clothes to gift to family or friends that your own children have outgrown but not used up. It won’t look like Timmy’s old hoodie if it has a big beautiful S on it and is so obviously Sarah’s now!
We love the K t-shirt pictured above from Little Bit Funky. We just love her fabric choice! You can find her fabric letter appliqué tutorial here.
Skip to My Lou have a great appliqué letter tutorial for personalising a tote bag. The tutorial also includes free printable letter templates that you could use for all sorts of scrap fabric projects.
The last simple tutorial we found for this personalised applique letter idea was from Sugaridoo . All these tutorials use similar techniques and should make it easy for your to create gorgeous personalised presents from unwanted clothes and bags.
Wooden Family Sign
Another great idea for a personalised gift is a sign made from some upcycled wood. You could use pallet wood, an old chopping board or even an offcut from a kitchen worktop. Whatever you can get your hands on that no one is using! There are lots of ways for adding the lettering, from using an expensive Silhouette or Circuit machine to vinyl letters, a stencil or even free painting if you have the knack. We found a great step by step tutorial for the sing in the third photo above from Thinking Closet. They used vinyl lettering for theirs.
Personalised Mosaic Gifts from Broken Plates
Want to give them something that is truly a work of art you created? What about using some old broken plates to make an initial for a child’s bedroom or a house number sign for a friend who’s just moved into a new place?
Jara Christensen has a great video tutorial (see below) for making a mosaic from broken plates. Her project was a massive (and probably really heavy!) art piece but you could scale it all down to make a house number sign, initial or something else personal to you and the person you are making it for.
Engraved Vintage Cutlery Jewellery
Making engraved upcycled cutlery jewellery isn’t the simplest DIY personalised gift, but when done well it can be a truly gorgeous gift that doesn’t feel in any way ‘crafty’. This would be an especially personal gift if the jewellery being upcycled was a family heirloom – you know the kind that sits in a drawer and only gets used once a year at Christmas. We think it would be a lovely idea to use sentimental cutlery to give everyone in the family something to remember Grandma and Grandpa with and you can engrave it to add an even more personal touch.
We found a tutorial on ehow that runs through the steps of cutting and bending cutlery to make different types of jewellery from keychains to bracelets and necklaces. In order to do the engraving you’ll need a metal engraving tool. They are relatively inexpensive when you think about the beautiful results you can achieve.
DIY Personalised Mug
We found some great ideas about how to make your own monogram mug. Most of the tutorials we found talk about buying a new mug from the dollar store or somewhere similar. We think you could use the same techniques on any clean mug in good condition you have in your home that doesn’t already have writing or a slogan on it. Try it with a plain blue mug, or even one with stripes!
We found these two tutorials for you: With Relish have one about how to transfer onto ceramic (the second photo above with the full names) and Glued to My Craft have one about how to create the sparkly dots initial style design like the first photo above.
A lovely set of 4 coasters tied up with a piece of ribbon or twine makes a lovely present. You can personalise them to include a motif that you know the recipient will love. We’ve found a couple tutorials you can try. One uses a stamp on ceramic tiles, another uses mod podge and old sheet music, and another uses sticky back decorative paper. That last tutorial talks about buying the coaster bases new but we reckon you could look in your cupboards and upcycle an old set of coasters you already own but don’t use very often and give them a new lease of life in somebody else’s home!
You are Here - Map Keyring
If there ever was a ‘classic’ DIY personalised gift it has to be a map keychain. Clare at Pillarbox Blue has loads of great tutorials – one of which is for these personalised map key chains. She’s used some printed maps and old tablecloth weights to create her personalised keyrings. Her tutorial says you can use tablecloth weights or pebbles to make these cute keyrings. You can use a map of where your recipient’s house is or maybe a sentimental holiday destination?
Don’t have tablecloth weights or not sure about drilling a hole in a stone? What about using some thick packaging cardboard? Cut out the shape you want, a house, a heart, or an initial and mod podge on your map. If your not sure how to use mod podge check out here and here. It’s the same technique wherever you use it.
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