It’s the thought that counts. While people normally say it to console themselves about a less than impressive gift, if you really look at what it says, you’ll realise it’s true.
As human beings, we look for signs of reciprocation. Gifts are an integral part of how we show love and affection, so it’s important to put some thought and effort into them and make sure the people we care about know how much they mean to us. One way to do that is to create a DIY gift you know they’ll love and, most importantly, appreciate.
1. A collage of photos
Collages take some time and some thought, but they’re always appreciated. Gather up the best photos of yourself and your loved one, choose whether you want to make a scrapbook, cover a canvas, or just sabotage their computer desktop, and voila! A heartfelt gift of some of your best photographed memories is made. Try adding in some sentimental messages to the mix to give it an extra special touch.
2. Craft a scavenger hunt
This demonstrates how much you know about your loved one and is a chance to show you cherish events in your shared history. It could be around the house or around the city you live in – as extravagant or as simple as you like. Try and incorporate some sentimental items or places in the hunt – if it’s for your significant other, where was your first kiss or your first date? If it’s for your sibling, lead them to your favourite childhood haunt.
3. Make their favourite meal
It’s simple, really. People need to eat, and they generally prefer to eat their favourite food. Now, if someone they love is cooking it, and that person has noticed what their favourite food is – even better! The best part of this DIY gift is that you don’t even need to be a good cook: you just need to put the effort in and show your loved one that you’re willing to try. (However, it’s probably advisable that if you aren’t a good cook you buy some decent dessert as a backup.)
4. Create an artwork
Remember those crafty things you made in primary school for Mother's Day and Father's Day? Well, your parents loved them (and they probably still have them – pool room, anyone?). Making something – even if everyone else thinks you have no talent – counts for something. Plus, it’s something they can hang on the wall that will always remind them of you.
5. Write a poem
One of the most amazing and fundamental parts of poetry is showing vulnerability. Doing this is hard, and it takes someone special for you to be able to show those parts of yourself to. That’s why poems are such heartfelt gifts – you’re trusting someone with something precious! If vulnerability is not your thing, try an acrostic poem or work hard at a haiku.
6. Make a mix-tape (or CD… or playlist)
This is one of our favourites because it is SO. SIMPLE. Think of the songs that mean something to you and your loved one. Did your older brother take you to your first rock concert? Pop a song from that band on there. What’s the song that always gets you and your partner on the dance floor (even though they hate to dance!)? Did your mother sing you a song when you were little that you’ve never forgotten? It’s essentially a playlist for the history of your relationship, and a winner every time.