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Personalized Gifts: Make Your Own

Updated on November 30, 2009

If you frequent boutiques very often, you've probably noticed all the unique personalized gifts they offer for sale. And if you've peeked at the price tags, you know they're not cheap.The great thing about these personalized gifts is that you can make your own! You don't have to be an artist to create a great personilzed gift. All you need are some ideas, a little creativity, and a few supplies. I'll get you started with the idea part:

Wine glass: These are the rage now, and it boutiques, they sell for as much as $40 - that's for ONE glass. Save some cash and make your own. Buy an inexpensive wine or margarita glass - use glass, not plastic. Purchase some paint pens from the hobby or craft store made for use on glass, along with some acrylic or swarovski stones and some E6000 glue. On the glass, you can write the recipient's name or a cute phrase like "Birthday Girl" of "Fabulous Forty" or something like that. If you're more artistic, you might want to paint a little beach scene, pairs of shoes, sunglasses, or a palm tree on the glass. Embellish it with dots, swirls, and curlicues, and glue a few stones here and there for added bling. Follow the instructions for the paint you used. Some painted items need to be baked in the oven at low heat, while some just need to air dry for several days.

Beach bag: A personized beach bag is a great gift, especially for graduation, since it usually occurs at the begining of summer. Choose a large bag that will hold lots of stuff. Use stones to create the girl's name or initials on the bag. Fill it with sunscreen, lip screen, a small package of moist towelettes, a pair of sunglasses, and a pair of funky flip-flops, and she's all ready for the beach or pool!

Wall hangings: If your female gift recipient is a teen or younger, she'll love a canvas with her name on it. You can do it yourself. Purchase either a flat or stretched canvas from Walmart. Use acrylic paint to cover the canvas. Paint her name in the center, then add big dots, circles, flowers, paisleys, or vines with leaves all around her name. Glue a few stones on for added interest. Drill two small holes at the top if you used a flat canvas, and insert a narrow ribbon as a hanger. You don't need to do this for stretched canvas - it can hang on its own. Little boys like these, too. For them, I suggest camouflage or a cowboy of fishing theme. You probably want to avoid the stones for a boy.

Wooden initials: Buy a large wooden letter at Walmart or from a craft store. Get an unpainted, unfinished one. Sand it until the edges are smooth. Paint it in a color that will match the girl's room, then decorate it. Use paint pens to create the appearance of a green vine growing around the letter, and add simple dot flowers in bright colors. Instead of the vine, you might want to use peace signs, flowers, or stripes.

Clothing: Yes, Virginia, you can glue the stones to clothing, too! Don't worry, when the E6000 glue is used correctly, the stones will not fall off in the washer and dryer. Just place dots of glue on the shirt or other item in the shape of an initial, then place the stones and press them down firmly. To remove excess glue, wait until it gets firm, then remove with a wooden toothpick. Let the glue dry for a couple of days in a warm spot before washing the item.

For more tips on using rhinestones, click on my article below. I strongly suggest using real Swarovski stones instead of acrylic stones. The Swarovskis don't fade and get dull with washing and drying like the acrylic stones do. I found some great discounts online, and they can be found at the bottom of my article about stoning. Also listed is a special stoning tool, and if you're going to be stoning several items, tis would be a worthwhile investment. Just click on the article below. Happy Stoning!


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