7 Awesome DIY Gifts

Gift Guide

Make these pretty presents yourself—it doesn't get more thoughtful than that!


Photos by Lara Robby

Dip-Dyed Gloves

1. Soak gloves in warm water, then squeeze them out.

2. Make a bath with a light-color liquid fabric dye following the package instructions. Dip in both gloves halfway at the same time for 30 to 40 seconds. Pull out the gloves, squeeze them out, and set them aside on plastic wrap.

3. Make a second bath using a darker-color dye. Dip the gloves about a third of the way this time, again for 30 to 40 seconds. Squeeze them out.

4. Stack the gloves, wrap them in the plastic wrap, and microwave them on high for 30 seconds. Let the gloves cool, then remove them from the microwave. Let them sit for 30 minutes to an hour. Remove the plastic wrap.

5. Rinse the gloves under cool water until the water runs clear. Lay flat to dry.

GLOVES K3140 lambswool and angora knit gloves in vanilla, $24 per pair, carolinaamato.com DYE Rit liquid dye in rose pink and fuchsia, $4.50 each for 8 ounces, joann.com

Rope Bracelets

1. Wrap two pieces of masking tape around polypropylene rope about 8 inches apart. Center a utility knife over each piece of tape, and slice through the tape and the rope.

2. Wrap Chinese knotting cord around the resulting piece of rope, and secure with hot glue.

3. Use a strong glue like E6000 to adhere a jewelry end cap over the tape at each end of the rope. Let dry, then attach a jump ring to each end cap and attach a clasp.

ROPE ⅜"-thick polypropylene rope in hot pink and aqua, $8 each for 50 feet, atwoodrope.net CORD Tangles 'N Knots 1-mm-thick and 1.4-mm-thick Chinese knotting cord in assorted colors, $3.50 each for 10 yards, purlsoho.com HARDWARE Dazzle-It! Kumihimo 10-mm-diameter findings kits in gold, $3 each, and Darice 14-mm-long swivel lobster clasps in gold, $2 for a set of 4, both consumercrafts.com

Photo Coasters

1. Using a photo-editing program, resize photos so each one measures 4 inches wide by 3½ inches tall, then add a black border. (We used Instagram and Photoshop.)

2. Print the photos on temporary tattoo paper, following the package instructions, and cut them out.

3. Following the package instructions, transfer the photos onto 4-inch-square ceramic tiles.

4. Place self-stick felt circles on the back corners of each tile.

TATTOO PAPER Laser 8½" x 11" clear water slide decal paper, $23 for 25 sheets, decalpaper.com

Map Luggage Tags

1. Go to hgtv.com/diy-luggage-tags to download the templates. Print them and cut them out.

2. Scan a large section of map-print wrapping paper onto your computer. Print it onto T-shirt transfer paper made for dark fabric.

3. Iron the transfer paper's map image onto a piece of light-color leather. Trace the tag's templates onto the leather, then cut them out and glue them together according to the templates' instructions.

4. Create a plastic insert and an address label according to the templates' instructions. Slide them inside the tag. Thread leather cord through the hole at the top of the tag, and knot.

WRAPPING PAPER Cavallini & Co. Vintage Map Wrap Pack, $13 for 4 20" x 30" wrapping paper sheets and supplies, amazon.com LEATHER Veg tanned-leather remnants pack, $10 for 8 ounces, tandyleather.com CORD 3-mm-wide flat leather cord in yellow, $5.50 for 5 yards, cloudcrofttrading.etsy.com

Color-Palette Napkins

1. Mix chalk paint with fabric medium following the directions on the fabric medium's label (this will make the paint machine-washable). Using a small paintbrush, paint swatches on a cloth napkin, spacing them evenly apart. Let dry.

2. Iron the underside of the napkin to help the paint set.

CHALK PAINT Assorted colors by Annie Sloan Chalk Paint FABRIC MEDIUM Martha Stewart Crafts fabric medium, $7 for 6 ounces, amazon.com

Painted Cutting Boards

1. Tape off the top and bottom surfaces of a cutting board with painter's tape, leaving the edge exposed. Using a small paintbrush, paint the edge with crafts paint. Remove the tape while the paint is still slightly wet. Let dry.

2. Thread suede cord through the hole at the top of the cutting board, and knot.

CUTTING BOARDS For a similar look, try custom-shape cutting board, $30, sawdustishappiness.etsy.com CRAFTS PAINT Green Curry and Love Bird, both by Martha Stewart Crafts CORD 4-mm-wide flat suede cord in red, $9 for 10 meters, and 4-mm-wide flat suede cord in turquoise, $11 for 10 meters, both amazon.com

Decoupaged Jewelry Box

1. Trace the top of a box onto the back of a piece of decorative paper, and cut out the shape. Adhere the cutout to the box's top with decoupage medium.

2. Cut a second piece of paper to the height of the box and the lid plus ¼ inch and long enough to wrap around it. Adhere it to the sides of the box and the lid, wrapping the excess around the bottom of the box. (You'll be sealing the box closed, but you'll cut the lid apart from the bottom later.)

3. Coat the entire box with a thin layer of decoupage medium. Let dry.

4. Use a crafts knife to slice the paper between the lid and the box so it can open. Apply another coat of decoupage medium to the entire box. Let dry.

BOX Hexagon-shaped 6½"W x 5½"D x 3¼"H unfinished pine box, $4.50, joann.com DECORATIVE PAPER Pirouette Marbled 24" x 36" paper in turquoise, apricot, and raspberry, $7 per sheet, papermojo.com DECOUPAGE MEDIUM Martha Stewart Crafts decoupage in gloss finish, $10 for 8 ounces, michaels.com