Tuesday, 12 July 2016

The Gift Cupboard

Homemade foodie gifts in the gift cupboard.

Now that it is mid year, I thought it would be a perfect time to tidy up and reassess the gift cupboard. Because, quite frankly, it was looking really cluttered in there and I had forgotten about half the things I had made! I wanted to take stock and focus on what kind of gifts I need to concentrate on making for the rest of the year.

I've mentioned before that this year I've been participating in Annabel's Christmas Challenge which involves crafting gifts for Birthdays and Christmas during the year. This really helps with being organized, saves money, avoids overspending and gives me craft to do all year around.  Also I have gifts at the ready if something unexpected pops up or someone I know is having a bad day. I wrote more about why stockpiling and having a gift cupboard is important to me here.

My gift cupboard is really just 5 shelves in my bedroom built in wardrobe, as this the only place I have room to keep everything. You don't need a designated cupboard really, just a bit of spare space to store the gifts.

I decided to designate the shelves for particular gifts. On the first shelf I have edible gifts like raspberry jam, onion jam, dandelion jelly, sweet mustard pickles, tomato relish, chilli and garlic oil, hot chocolate mix and herbal tea mix. I've just ordered some vanilla beans on Ebay (much cheaper than the supermarkets!) and plan to make some vanilla extract for gifts as well.

The second shelf is all store bought beauty products. There is moisturizers, bath soaks, body sprays, bath bombs and some make up. These were all bought for 50c-$2 each on clearance sales.

Third shelf is my handmade items. There are bottles of mineral bath salts, soy candles, natural face scrub, dandelion salve, bubble bath and soap packs, lip balm and bath bombs.

The fourth shelf is random handmade items like tea cup soy candles, heat bags, soy wax melts and a basket which holds packaged felt Christmas ornaments.

The bottom shelf is for kids gifts. Some hand made and some again, bought on clearance. Lots of colouring books and sticker packs, bubble wands, felt food, dress ups, sock dolls, paper window stars, and tie dyed/bleach resist tees.

By tidying up my shelves, it has become apparent that I have plenty of gifts for women/girls! For men I will probably make rocky road, fudge, biscuits, that sort of thing but this will be made closer to Christmas. I have a few friends with toddlers and babies due, and need to make some family gifts so I've been looking at Pinterest for ideas and that will be what I will focus on making for the rest of the year.

Do you make any homemade gifts?


  1. Hi Mel, This is my first time commenting here. I too am participating in Annabel's Christmas Challenge. I need to have something in my hands when sitting in front of the TV at night. By participating in the challenge I have a focussed direction for my crafting. I went through my cupboard at the start of June and found that I too had lots of girly gifts and not much for men. I am currently making bathroom bags for my make relatives. I've made some sage oil scented soap that will be for the males bags. I intend to make all things bathroom bag so this will be the gift given to my many male relies for Christmas.

    1. Hi Jane,

      Thanks for commenting :)I think it might just be a natural thing to craft lots of things we like? I love baths so make lots of salts, bombs etc. I like the idea of bathroom bags and the sage soap sounds amazing! I'd love to see photos when you are finished. xx

  2. Looking good Mel!

    I am yet to start my gift collection although I do have a few bits and pieces. I am definitely inspired by what I see on Annabel's blog. There are some very talented ladies out there with many gift ideas that they are willing to share.


    1. Hi Tania,

      Thank you. I also love the diversity of of gifts being made through the challenge. So many wonderful ideas! xx

  3. I have a present box, just a big plastic tub, at the bottom of my linen cupboard where I store gifts for during the year. I am trying to organise myself for Christmas though because I am a terribly slow crafter! I have made a few washcloths and I want to make some beautifully stitched felt dove ornaments too. I really like the diversity of gifts in your cupboard...great inspiration!

    1. Hi Meg,

      Thanks so much. I tend to get bored with making the same things hence the large variety of items in my cupboard! A present box is great. I used to keep mine in a box when I only had a few items. This is the first year I've used the shelves. My hubby and Mr 10 tell me I need to stop making things! Your washcloths sound wonderful and so do the felt doves. xx

  4. Dear Mel,
    Your cupboard is looking very healthy. As you know I am guilty of filling mine and then realising oops I forgot about the men! But this year I am doing better. Thank you for mentioning the challenge!
    Also I am the same. I forget what I have especially when Ive started in January. Its often quite a surprise!
    I aim to have excess. People have said to me how they only want to make a few gifts as they only give a few. My answer is give more! Give to someone you don't know, someone in need and to charity and bless people! This all allows us to give more! Its a wonderful thing and a big saver for our families. I love it!
    Well done on all your lovely creations! With love Annabel.xxx

  5. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  6. Hi Mel! Your gift cupboard looks so lovely and well organized. Mine is a hug overrun mess at the moment...something that I desperately need to get taken care of here soon. My plan is to put sticky notes on the things that I have bought for specific people so that I know what I bought for who. I do have some more "generic: type gifts also but I will frequently buy something with someone specific in mind and then forget what I bought them.

    1. Hi Debbie,

      Thanks so much. I like your idea about the sticky notes. I made a list in a notebook of whose Birthdays are coming up and what I have already in the cupboard for them. I think I accidentally deleted your post asking about the golden paste- so sorry about that. It is used an anti inflammatory and is good for fibromyalgia and arthritis pain. I always have heaps of turmeric in the cupboard so thought it was worth a try. This week hubby has only had one bad pain day. So far so good!