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Saturday, December 17, 2011


Thrift a gift! What about a tea set? For me, the fun of putting it together is selecting pieces that go together well but aren't from a matching set. Two cute teacups and saucers, a platter and a vintage tin make an adorable gift! Make it even more deluxe by selecting a complimenting cream and sugar set, vintage silverware, or a teapot! By the way...this platter, teacups and tin cost me a total of 6 dollars. I would LOVE to receive something like this as a holiday gift!

Vintage tin, ceramic or pot (or any other fun vintage item) as a planter! What a cute idea. I've done this before in my home but it didn't occur to me as a great gift idea until I rediscovered it after stumbling upon this super cute blog: Thriftcore. Click the link to see her ADORABLE owl themed planter and wrap.

Thrift gifting is SO much fun if you choose a theme. For these planters I wanted a kitchen theme, so I chose a teapot and a reproduction kitchen themed tin and filled them both with basil. Pair something like this with a thrifted cookbook and you have an adorable gift for someone you know who loves to cook!

I personalized this simple glass canister (which I thrifted for .49 this week) with a monogram for my best friend who was recently married. It stands for her new last name...I thought it was a fun way to celebrate her new last name and her first Christmas with her new husband! :) There are some basic directions below, but as you can see, I just filled the canister with interesting dead foliage I spray painted silver! The monogram was also spray painted, and I added a few beads for an accent, and a blue ribbon. There is also a top to this canister and I will include that in my gift in case they'd like to use the canister for something else.

I found this vintage wood ornament in the original plastic packaging. It was so cool--a tassel Santa? Heck yeah! I put my son's initial on the Santa and plan to hang it on the tree "from Santa" on Christmas morning. :)

I'm proud of the little pattern I made for these adorable mug warmers. YES--those are jingle bell accents. Pretty cute, right? And they are actually lined with polyster fiber fill, so they are insulated! The crocheted loops button around the side and it simply wraps around the mug. I made these from recycled Christmas napkins that I thrifted for 99 cents! I got four of them for that price and you'll see other projects below that I used for them!

Upcycled Christmas placemat/napkin pillows! These were just too darn easy. I'll attach a few pillow tutorials below for you to follow along with. I added accents like a big jingle bell, and a letter monogram for the person it is going to! :) Don't they look cute stacked, with ribbon tied around them?

It's the upcycled tshirt scarf again! So easy...such a great gift to give, particularly for those who are eco-conscious OR just plain fashionable. :) See the Upcycled Tshirt Scarf blog for directions!

Thrifted bowl: .49. Rocks=free! Yes, all I did was find some rocks outside, spray paint them and paint on a few snowflakes, and put a tealight candle in the middle. This 10 minute DIY decoration is so cute. You could monogram the rocks with someone's name or initials, or decorate them in some other personalized way for a special gift!

This cute vintage silverware set was a family gift. As you can see below, it was in bad shape on the outside (wood laminate that was scuffed and scraped). All I did was spray bomb it silver--but look what a difference it made! I am keeping this set and I think I may monogram my own initial on the lid. :)

Here is the silverware before...pretty much an eyesore on the outside, despite how cute the entire set was!

Here's the canister I found. As luck would have it, a brown paper bag fit perfectly over the whole thing and became my stencil for spraypainting the silver! I hand painted the black accents around the letters and hot glued bead ornaments on. There are a number of ways you could do this: spray paint, fabric paint, acrylic. You could hand paint it on, or use a stencil as I did! FYI, if you do use spray paint, a magic eraser and a pencil eraser clean up softened lines or overspray excellently from glass!

I love sewing. Especially when you can pick up fabric for such inexpensive prices at thrift stores. The plus about using placemats and napkins is that they are so ready to be transformed into little pillows, neckwarmers, clutches and everything else. The stiff hemmed cotton is ready to go! All I needed to do was wash and press it and sew. It only took a few hours to do all of these projects! I plan on doing some quilted ornaments and more mugwarmers this week. I'm giving away Christmas mug warmers to some of my lucky subscribers! :)

15 great pillow tutorials from TipJunkie

As you can see, thrift gifting and handmade isn't so hard after all, and you don't need to spend a million dollars to make cute things. Besides the thrift items I listed, my supply cost was simply a few dollars for spray paint and three dollars for pillow fiber fill! You can get these items at any Super Store.

Try it out...what kind of interesting thrift theme combos can you think of to gift this year? What might be cool to personalize? How about:

--Soup toureens
--Old picture frames (I've re-primed canvas to paint personalized snowmen and other Christmas Decor before)
--Interesting planters (think tins, mugs, baskets, vintage shoes, toys, etc.) Pair with a matching book/item for a fun gift! Example: mug planter with peppermint herb plant, pair with coffee table book; Vintage shoe planter with a neat succulent, pair with a Vogue magazine; Child's toy planter with ivy, pair with a child's book.

Keep the creativity coming for Christmas! I look forward to hearing your ideas and comments, feel free to comment on my facebook page at Thrift Trick or email me at!

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