10 handmade Christmas gifts for the whole family

Christmas brings families closer together over homemade meals, winter traditions and of course, presents. Forgo a store-bought gift and make this year more meaningful by crafting your own gifts by hand with the family. Below are 10 adorably festive ideas to delight do-it-yourselfers of all ages.

Make homemade baked treats. Whether it’s your famous gingerbread recipe or just some simple sugar cookies, get your whole family in on the baking experience. For kids that are too young to handle kitchen appliances, have them gather ingredients, measure flour or cut dough with cute cookie cutters. Bake some extras for the family to munch on and wrap the rest with a colorful ribbon and a sweet holiday note for a yummy gift.

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Decorate hand-painted wood ornaments. Unfinished wood ornaments have unlimited DIY potential. Paint a holiday symbol or saying on one side or cover it in chalkboard paint and give it to your kids to doodle on. Have everyone decorate their own, sign their name and hang it up on the tree.

Fill your own ornament. Stock up on clear glass ornaments with pop-off tops and drop in leaves, glitter, confetti - anything your heart desires. To make it more personal, cut out long strips of paper for each member of the family to write a secret message, roll it up and place it inside.

Play with your food. This is the one time of the year where you can break the rules and let kids have fun with their food. As an alternative to the classic gingerbread house, you can build candy trees with foam cones and a bit of hot glue or icing. Decorate foam cones with hard candies or peppermints and save an extra special treat for the very top.

Sweet, spice and everything nice. There’s almost nothing better than having a sweet-smelling home all season long. Make your own candles by boiling soy wax flakes and add a drop or two of your favorite essential oils. Alternatively, create your own potpourri with dried fruit slices and a handful of pine cones or cinnamon sticks. Wrap them in fabric sachets to pass out as gifts or leave them in a tray on the dining room table.

Repurpose glass jars. Mason jars are extremely versatile and can be used for anything from storage to drinking glasses, but set a couple aside this month for unique Christmas crafts. Drop in a few loose tree branches and some candy canes to place around the home for a fuss-free display. You could also craft your own snow globe by gluing festive figurines to the inside of the lid, filling the jar with glitter and closing it tight. Simply turn it upside down to see snowfall wherever you are!

Make a wreath for the home. Take a nature walk with your little ones to teach them about the great outdoors and pick up any viable branches or leaves for a handmade holiday wreath. Once you get back home, arrange your foraged finds around a metal wire wreath and fasten them in place with kid-friendly plastic twist-ties.

Stamp your gifts. If you have store-bought gifts for the family, you can still have fun with the gift wrapping. Collect ink stamps and pads in your favorite designs and colors and let your kids go crazy on plain wrapping paper. You can also go a step further and show them how to stamp burlap stockings and colorful decorative pillows for a more permanent personalized touch.

Create an advent village. Try an origami-inspired DIY project for a unique spin on the age-old advent calendar. Print and cut premade templates for mini boxes and teach youngsters how to fold them. You can purchase colorful paper with a pattern or have kids decorate the sides themselves with markers and glitter. Fill each one with a special treat that will have kids looking forward to waking up every winter morning.

Make a pompom garland. This project requires a big bag of colorful pompoms, a soft yarn needle, thread and some can-do attitude. Simply poke the needle through the center of each pompom and keep going until you’re satisfied with the length. Hang these adorable garlands from open shelves around the home or over your kid’s bed to showcase their work.