Make A Thing: Last Minute Gifts For The Serious Procrastinators

Uh oh, you’ve totally slacked on knitting Grandma that scarf you had planned out. Now you don’t have a gift for her! You don’t have time (or the will) to brave the stores, you wanted to give her something more personal and you need something in like, two hours.

Don’t worry, I’ve been there, I am in a constant state of being there, and I’ve got you covered. I’ve rounded up some super easy, last minute gifts that you can make for anyone on your list in no time flat. That means less time worrying, more time sipping mulled wine. Or you could combine the two (straight lines are so heteronormative anyway, you guys).


From left to right, top to bottom:

Ring Gloves
These ring gloves are so cute and super easy. These are great for youngins as well as your grandmother as well as your femme best friend as well as your butch best friend if you just include the right buttons, you know? {tutorial via Trinkets in Bloom}

Sharpie Mugs
The very first Make A Thing! Awww. Still super easy, still holding up after all this time. {tutorial via Make a Thing}

Sugar Scrub
This sugar scrub is ginger snap scented and whoa, just so amazing. Easy. Everyone loves sugar scrub. {tutorial via Savy Naturalista}

Safety Pin Necklace
I love crafts that are ridiculously easy but look like you’ve put a ton of time into them, plus using safety pins in jewelry brings out your 16-year-old pop punk phase, when it was all safety pins, all the time. At least this version is a little classier. {tutorial via High on DIY}

Whale Journal
Stitching printed fabric onto a journal is one of those “Why didn’t I ever think of this?” crafts combined with “Whoa, this is really awesome, I want to make twenty of them.” {tutorial via Always Rooney}

Squirrel Luggage Tag
For the travelin’ soul in your life. Minimal sewing skills required. I’m sure you could hand stitch it, too, if you’re a die-hard. {tutorial via Squirrel and Walrus}

Puff Paint Socks
Remember how cool puff paint was? It’s still just as cool. I want to make a bunch of these for the small kids in my life (and also myself, shh). {tutorial via All Parenting}

Lacquer Serving Tray
Well, that’s just pretty. And if you packaged it with some of their favorite snacks, or maybe gluten-free, blueberry pancake mix and a pretty plate? That’s something I could get behind. {tutorial via Bueno Vida}

Book Necklace
For the adorable book or tiny object lover in your life. It took me ten seconds to make this necklace and my best friend still wears it all the time. {via Make A Thing}

What last minute gifts are you guys getting ready?

This has been another installment of Make A Thingwhere we make things with our hands and sometimes hot glue guns.

Header by Rory Midhani

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Hansen is the former DIY & Food Editor of and likes to spend most days making and cooking and writing. She teaches creative writing at Colorado State University and is pursuing a Masters of Fine Arts in her free time.

Hansen has written 189 articles for us.


  1. It’s like you can read my mind. I knew obsessively shopping for mugs at thrift stores would pay off one day!

  2. I guess I am selfish because I just want all the things for myself. Socks can come in like packs of 6 so maybe that will force my generous spirit into action or something.

  3. I made fire starters (paper egg cartons + beeswax + balsam + tiny pinecones + potpourri + candle wicks), a project I found on – and wow did they come in handy while the power was out from the ice storm!

    • Oh, and I also got several yards of custom-printed tea towel calendars from and hemmed them. This is the third year and now everyone starts asking around Thanksgiving if I’m doing them again and putting in requests for themes.

  4. the top right hand picture, i think it’s the sugar scrub, looks like a packed bowl from afar. i saw that and thought “neat!” :3

  5. So this was my best gift this year:
    You take a canvas (I used 8″x10″ but pick whatever size you want) and paint it whatever color you want. Then print out the outline of the state or country your intended gift recipient is from and cut it out. When the paint is dry, lay the state outline onto the canvas (ok, I used double sided tape, but you could just lay it on if you’re careful) and, using a different color of paint and short outward strokes, paint from just inside the edge of the state to about an inch outside the edge. Once you’ve gone all the way around, remove your stencil and paint the rest of the background. It’s super easy and pretty cheap if you already have some acrylic paints around. I got tons of compliments on the ones I made for friends. Here’s a tutorial with pictures and stuff:

  6. Just made the sugar scrub and I may have done something wrong(?) but I used olive oil to make a half-batch and it only smells like olive oil. Like, really strongly. :(

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