Sunday, March 20, 2011

Handmade Birthday Presents

I have a co-worker who will be celebrating her birthday early next week. So I set out to find her a gift that would be cute and useful. Her personality is a lot like mine so I knew that if I found something I liked, she would probably like it too. I am on a limited budget so I had to find something cheap! Well, turns out, eveything I liked was too pricey for my budget. So I decided to make her something. I have been seeing a lot of beautiful picture frames adorned with ribbons and embellishments on several different blogs and I thought I'd take some inspiration from them and see what I could come up with. I bought a $3 plain jane wooden 5 X 7 photo frame, scrapbook paper, some pretty coordinated ribbons, and a butterfly embellishment that I found in the jewelry department at Wal Mart and got to work.

I started by spray painting my frame white. Once dry, I lightly sanded around the edges for a distressed look. Then I took my ribbons and just played around with different bows and placements on my frame. Once I had them suitably arranged, I used a couple dabs of hot glue to adhere them to my frame. I then glued my butterfly embellishment onto the center of my top bow. Then I cut out a piece of matching scrapbook paper to fit my frame. I freehanded an abstract "T" from a coordinating scrapbook paper piece since that is the birthday girl's first initial. I glued the initial to the larger piece of paper and inserted this into my frame. I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out!

Here's the breakdown of the cost to create this beautiful frame:

5 x 7 frame from Wal Mart ~ $3.00
Butterfly embellishment from Wal Mart ~ $1.00 (I bought a pack of 4 for $4.00 but only used one)
2 sheets of scrapbook paper ~ $ .44 (I only used 1/2 of the sheet of blue and a tiny scrap piece of the patterned paper. Each sheet cost $.44 but I used less than one sheet on this project)
2 spools of ribbon ~ $2.00 (each spool cost right at $2 but I only used about 3/4 of one spool total so I'm going with $2 for the cost of ribbon)
1 pre-tied ribbon bow ~ $1.50 (I bought a pack of 2 which was $2.97. You could save even more if you tied your own bow, and while I would normally do this, I wanted to save some time so I splurged on this one!)
Total cost to create a personalized frame ~ $7.94

So for around $8.00, I have a nice, personalized gift for my friend. But, I wasn't finished yet! I wasn't sure if the picture frame would turn out the way I had envisioned, so as a back up plan, I purchased some tiles from Lowe's to make a set of coasters. Since I was on a crafting high from my awesome picture frame, I decided to make her a set of coasters to match her new frame.

I'm sure most of you have seen these around blog land so this is not a new craft. I took my sheet of scrapbook paper that I fashioned the "T" for my picture frame out of, and traced around one of tiles four times. I then cut out the squares, trimming them so that they fit a little smaller than the actual size of the tile. I did this because I wanted the edges of the tiles to show. Then I used Mod Podge and applied a thin coat to the tile, placed my cut out scrapbook paper and smoothed out any bubbles. Once dry, I applied another coat of the Mod Podge on top of the scrapbook paper to help seal it. I then sprayed a coat of sealer on them for a little extra protections from any sweating glass that may be set on them.

Once everything was dry, I attached self adhesive round cork pieces to the bottom as "feet" to protect the furniture.

Then I took some of the ribbon left over from the frame, and tied the tiles into a nice little bundle. All ready for gift giving!

Here's the cost breakdown for the coasters:

4 ceramic tiles from Lowe's ~ $1.40 (they were $ .35 each)
1 piece of scrapbook paper ~ $ .44 (I didn't use the entire sheet but am counting it as if I did)
1 piece of ribbon ~ $1.00 (I used less than 1/2 of the remaining spool left over from the frame)
Cork "feet" pkg of 36 from Dollar Tree ~ $ .75 (the price of the pack was $1.00 but I still have about 1/4 of the package left to use on other projects)
Mod Podge ~ free (I already had this)
Total cost for a set of 4 tile coasters ~ $3.63

So for a grand total of $11.57, I have a nice birthday gift for a crazy, silly, wonderful friend! I hope she likes it!

I'm linking up to these parties this week:

Running with Glitter

Until next time. . .


  1. Love them both! I'm sure your friend will too!

  2. So smart! so very smart and crafty! Good for you!

  3. handmade gifts are the best..cause they are from the heart..;) she will love them..because you took the time to make something just for her.;)

  4. What a beautiful gift Donna and I'm sure your friend will think so too.

    Enjoy your day,

  5. Handmade is always best!

    You did a wonderful job and I love that scrapbook paper!

  6. You did a great job! I know your friend will love them. Personalized gifts are extra special.

  7. I have that same scrapbook paper. :) Great minds think alike! I love personalized gifts so much more! I know your co-worker will just love them!

  8. I love this so much! I have been wanting to make coaster like this for a while! Beautiful paper, too. I'm your newest follower!

  9. LOVE the coasters! So creative! Love this post...thank you for linking up to Whassup Wednesday! Hope to see you tomorrow:)


  10. BeaUTiFuL!! One thing about looking at all the blog posts is that it sure makes you think outside of the box! I'm sure your friend will love these lovely gift...I would!

  11. Thanks so much for linking up to Terrific Under Ten today! You know I love your handmade gifts!

  12. hiya , soooo cute your friend will love them x i am visiting form at home with k , hope to see you at mine soon

  13. oops meant to say i am lovin your blog header its sooo springy x

  14. This would be a perfect gift! I love this! I'd love if you linked this up to my very fist link party!

  15. Wow, I love the fabric Donna. They look fantastic!

    Congrats on winning Kristen's giveaway! You will love it. I had to laugh when I read your comment. He!

    Have a great week.
    ~Melissa :)