Guest post: How to DIY a Christmas gift hamper when you’re on a budget

If you have a quite few people to buy for this Christmas, the thrifty way to give your friends & family a treat is by creating a gift hamper. My friend Alina loves to make her own things so this year she decided to make her mum a DIY Christmas hamper full of homemade jam and other festive additions so I asked her to break down the steps she took to DIY the perfect hamper...

Hey! I’m Alina Ghost, a friend blogger over at The Fairytale Pretty Picture. I adore interiors, crafts and DIY projects, so it’s no surprise that today, I’m going to be sharing with you how to DIY your own Christmas Hamper. A massive thanks to the lovely Cassie for having me as a guest writer. I hope you all enjoy the post 🙂

There are plenty of places you can get luxurious hampers for Christmas but if you have a quite few people to buy for, the thrifty way to give your friends and family a treat is by creating one yourself. I also love to make my own things so this year I decided to make my mum a DIY Christmas hamper full of homemade jam and other festive additions. Here, I break down the steps I took to making it suit her personality perfectly.


We’re going to start from the bottom… arguably the most important part of your hamper is, well, the hamper basket! You can find cheap wicker baskets from places like The Works who sell them from £4 but then there’s The Range or other craft stores you can go into. Try charity shops for secondhand baskets too. If these fail, I always turn to eBay but remember you might have to wait a month for delivery if it’s coming from China. 

I’m thrifty (and no doubt you are too) so I’ve reused an old F&M Hamper I was given a couple of years ago. Once I used up the delicious items inside, I stored the hamper in my attic to wait for this particular opportunity. Any excuse to reuse beautiful items that are just sitting there, right? Notice that I decided not to keep the F&M logo which is usually at the front by painting over it. I thought it didn’t make sense to keep it, seeing as the bits inside will actually be made by me. I thought it added another personal touch and I hope you do too. 

Where you buy to items that you’re including in your hamper itself will massively depend on the bits you’d like to include. Below you’ll see that choosing a theme will really help this so if it’s food or treats then obviously go to a grocery store but if it’s crafts (for example, I added two Christmas baubles that I painted myself) then look at craft shops or online. Depending on how much you want to spend, you can even choose to have 1 or 2 luxurious items from famous brands like Whittards or Twinings for the tea and coffee sets or Majestic for that special bottle of wine. 


Choosing a theme will really help you include items that go well together and may even guide you in terms of decorating the hamper too. Obviously I’ve chosen a fabulously festive Christmas hamper but here are some other things you can choose from:

  • Traditional (alcohol, savoury & sweet treats)
  • Cheese and port hamper
  • Retro (for example liquorice and other retro sweets)
  • Cinema (a DVD, popcorn, marshmallows and candy floss)
  • Tea/coffee with mugs etc (for the drink lover in your life)
  • Celebration (i.e. a baby shower hamper like the one Cassie made last year or Easter)
  • Spa/pamper hamper (less food, more bath bombs!)
  • Luxury (special but often pricey goodies)
  • Handmade (all cooked and made by you!)


I chose a mix between the festive option and handmade hamper so here were my thoughts as to what I can include if my hamper was HUGE:

  • Cinnamon & festive fruits jam
  • Mulled wine
  • Sweets like candy canes and sweet rocks
  • Chocolate Santa and reindeers
  • Savoury options such as cheese and crackers or olives and nuts
  • Biscuits and shortbread are always a favourite in our house
  • Knitted or sewed homeware accessories (knitted hot water bottle cover or a cup warmer for example)
  • Recycled, which sounds strange but I’m using an old milk bottle and love how cute it looks

Wondering how you can decorate a hamper on a budget but still make it look luxury? Make sure to use filling like tissue paper under your items as this is what’s included when you buy it from the shop. Or you could just use a length of tinsel for a glittering, festive finish! Don’t forget the occasional Christmas bauble or decoration too. Why not wrap everything in a patterned cellophane too? There’s an art to fastening it with a ribbon though – beware haha!

Just to note – sometimes making your own hamper doesn’t actually save you that much money or time; mostly because if you make the food yourself then you’ll need to pay for ingredients. Plus, I do tend to fill it with as many things as I can, which means they get more surprises, but also means that I end up spending more..! So, rather than a money-saving venture, it’s the usually more about the love of making a DIY hamper yourself and for the personalised nature of the gift.

I’m sure your family will love receiving a hamper that’s themed to be absolutely perfect for them so it’s well worth the effort when you watch them open the gift on Christmas day. If you end up make your own hamper please do let us know in the comments below. I hope this was useful so go ahead and have fun making your personalised gift!


This blog post is guest post. The pink links in this post may indicate a collaborative link or information source.

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Cassie Fairy
Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in lifestyle promotion studies. She loves to 'get the look for less' so regularly shares thrifty fashion posts, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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