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Advice / Succeeding at Work / Break Room

5 DIY Gifts Your Co-workers Will Actually Want to Receive


Between Secret Santas, office parties, and just being an all-around good person, there are plenty of opportunities to give gifts in the office.

So, ’tis the season to ask yourself: “What’s appropriate?” Or, to put it less diplomatically: “How little money can I spend to show that I care?”

The good news is very little! Especially if you’re crafty. Rather than having a panic attack while shopping, you can create some DIY gifts for your co-workers instead.

Here are five easy (and cheap!) ideas to get you started.

1. A Custom Mug

office holiday party outfits

Courtesy of Nur Noch

Help a fellow co-worker add a little pizazz to her workspace by giving her a hand-painted mug. All you need is a cheap white mug, porcelain paint, and a touch of artistic talent. To make it even more personal, throw in the person’s favorite tea bags, coffee, or marshmallows for hot chocolate.

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2. Polaroid Photo Coasters

office holiday party outfits

Courtesy of Dreams Factory

If you’re looking for a gift to give an Instagram-obsessed co-worker, look no further that this surprisingly easy idea. Here’s what you need: unfinished wooden coasters, Mod Podge, paint, and your sharpest social media stalking skills.

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3. Flannel Hand Warmers

office holiday party outfits

Courtesy of Sadie Seasongoods

Everyone loves being cozy in the winter, so anything you can do to help your recipient get there is very much appreciated. Even if you’re not a sewing pro, you can create these hand warmers with a flannel shirt and a bag of rice. Yep, that’s all!

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4. A Hand-Painted Cutting Board

office holiday party outfits

Courtesy of Katrina Chambers

Just because you’re buying this for someone you work with doesn’t mean it has to be something for the office—especially if that person has other passions, such as cooking! All you’re going to buy for this project is a wooden cutting board (or other wooden kitchen supplies), chalk paint, and aluminium foil.

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5. Hot Chocolate Ornaments

office holiday party outfits

Courtesy of Blue I Style

If you trust your baking skills, feel free to whip up a batch of your award-winning Christmas cookies. If not, don’t worry—there are plenty of non-homemade treat options that anyone would be thrilled to receive.

For example: these super-cute hot chocolate ornaments. All you should have on hand are plastic ornaments, hot chocolate powder, and fun mix-ins like chocolate chips, marshmallows, or peppermints.

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Now that you’ve gotten that gifting stress out of the way, you can relax—and move on to figuring out the perfect gifts for your family and friends. Good luck, and happy holidays!