A Broke College Student’s Gift Guide to the Holidays


As college students Christmas can be a stressful time of the year because we become even more aware of how empty our bank accounts are when you have to buy your loved ones presents, that usually cost over the $5 preferred budget. However, there are easy ways to avoid spending all that money by making gifts that are just as special as the ones with a price tag.

Here are five ‘Do It Yourself’ gift ideas to take the pressure of you, and your wallet, this holiday season:

  1. Mugs: This is a perfect idea for tea, coffee, and hot chocolate lovers. Stores like Walmart and the Dollar General sell cheap, plain mugs, as well as metallic and colored sharpies, which are the only materials needed for this simple project. You can either draw a picture or write a message on the mug, which they’ll be lucky enough to see every time they take a sip of their favorite hot drink. When you’re done Picasso-ing the mug, place it in the oven for 30 minutes at 350°F. Once the mug is cooled, wrap it up and wait to see how treasured it will be.
  2. Blankets: This quick and inexpensive craft is the perfect personal present for any of your friends or family. Just take a trip to your nearest craft store and find any three yard, fleece fabric with a nice pattern. Then line up the fabric with your desired sides laying out, making sure they’re the same size and that you cut five inches out of all four corners. You’ll repeat this step by cutting a fringe around all of the edges, which should be five inches in from the border. Finally, tie the fringe together in knots all the way around the blanket and you have yourself a homemade blanket.
  3. Scarves: Nothing says cozy like a soft scarf that someone spent hours making with you in mind. If you don’t know how to knit already, it’s beyond easy to learn. All you need are two size eight to ten needles and some yarn around 200 yards. Once you have these materials, just take a seat and knit a scarf as little or as big as you wish. Anyone will appreciate a warm scarf, especially this time of year.
  4. Picture Frames: There’s nothing better than a gift that allows you, your family, and friends to look back on the times you’ve shared together. Picture frames can be found at almost any store, but if you’re trying to stay within a specific budget, Walmart and the dollar store will be two of the best stores to visit. Pick out a frame with no design so you can draw your own or write a favorite quote around the frame with a sharpie. Then print out your favorite picture with that person and soak in the smile that spreads across their face when they see your special, personal touch.
  5. A Jar of Memories: Another way to remind your loved ones of your favorite memories with them is to create a jar of memories. All you need is a mason jar, colorful pieces of paper and a pen. On little pieces of paper, write down your favorite memories with that person. That’ll bring them so much happiness on Christmas morning. It’s a great gift for the people you’ve known for a long time and have so many memories with.