I've become a one woman painting factory the last few weeks due to the number of Birthdays, Christenings and other celebratory events requiring presents, and my limited means of income! However, it has inspired me to share my tips for finding that perfect gift on a budget.
Here are my top 5 Tips for being a Thrifty Gifty lady:
1. The obvious, but effective Thrift store. Like I need any excuse to go thrifting? But searching for that perfect gift is always a viable alibi. Thrifted gifts have the advantage of being unique, find something you know the giftee will adore.. that is perhaps somewhat rare... and most likely at a bargain price. In the past I've gifted vintage oil lamps, broaches, linens, tableware and of course clothes and accessories.
2) Antique Stores. I feel antique stores have a reputation of being expensive... but oh how wrong we all are. An antique store is a great place to find good quality vintage rarities... such as ornate vintage compacts, usually at a price point of £4.00 - £15.00, perfect for stylish ladies of any age... as well as jewellery (not always as expensive as you might think.. try broaches... costume rings and bangles) and occasionally you may even encounter some pretty little vintage undergarments and the all important hat!
The perks of antique stores over thrift stores; the quality is guaranteed to be top notch on most items.
3) Online. If you have the perfect gift in mind, always check online prices for comparison. For books/ dvds/ and many other gift items, the obvious choice is amazon. However, I would also recommend Play (free shipping!) Both offer second hand options too, for extra penny pinching!
As for anything remotely electrical, have a search of Pricerunner who will source the least expensive online outlet for you. I've used them alot, and saved many dabloons through their helpful searches.
I will also always recommend Modcloth to anyone, for anything pretty much! They have the most adorable selection of homewares and gift items, with price tags that won't cause your heart to flutter. Their Sale section is always very impressive too!
4) Sales. Maybe the sales are over, but remember for next time: buy your gifts in advance and save a penny or two :) You will also find that online sales tend to have a much longer life than in store... so always check the website!
5) And most importantly: Handmade! You don't have to be the most creative person to come up with a wonderful handmade gift. Utilize your talents. Something as simple as a cherished photograph (encased in that frame you found at the thrift store ;) perhaps with a lick of kitschy paint!) can make a heartfelt gift. Try re-moulding your own soap or candles, add a little lavender to the mix and gift wrap to perfection. The internet is saturated with DIY gift ideas... so go on, bow to the knowledge of Google!
Even when my budget does allow me to shower my loved ones with more substantial gifts, I still throw in a little handmade something.
This months budget however, required 100% handmade presents for the Virgos of my world... causing my bedroom to become a ghetto version of The Factory haha.
Here is a piece I did for my dear friend Hannah for her Birthday (she requested a Jurassic Park painting... naturally I was only too happy to oblige her!)
And another for my Brother in Law, who is currently experimenting with patriotism.
I hope my tips will be of use to you! Giving gifts is fun!
Ps I'm most likely going to start compiling a list of my favourite DIY gift tutorials to post in the near future, so keep them peepers peepin'!