gift ideas

Affordable Holiday Hostess Gifts

Are you planning on attending any Christmas parties or dinners this year? I am excited to be able to be social again!

When I attend a home party, I always ensure not to show up empty handed. Your host is opening up their home, making a meal, perhaps opening their bar too….and even though they said, “bring nothing,” it’s always polite to bring something.

Now this something doesn’t have to be expensive or elaborate. I say ‘gift what you can afford,’ but make it look amazing! This is where creativity comes in handy. And let’s face it, a bottle of wine is now very expensive!

Have a look at 3 affordable, and creative host/hostess gifts created by moi, and for you to recreate and make it your own.

The Foodie Basket ~ Budget $15-20

we used a wooden salad bowl for our basket

If you have foodie friends, they will love this personal basket within a budget.

  • one dollar store container that can be reused. Suggestions: stainless steel colander, decorative plate or bowl.
  • one bottle of DIY infused olive oil (recipes below)
  • one bottle of DIY infused balsamic vinegar (recipe below)
  • one dollar store himalayan salt
  • store bought crackers
  • dollar store bamboo or wooden spoons or tea towel

The House & Home Basket ~ Budget $15-20

we used a white plate for this basket
  • dollar store basket, or small laundry style basket, decorative bowl or plate which can be used later.
  • dollar store decorative hand towels and/or paper napkins
  • tea light candles
  • 1 DIY jar of lemon hand scrub (recipe below)
  • 1 DIY foaming hand soap (recipe below)
  • 1 small succulent plant, or cactus ~ anything under $5

we chose a glass apothecary jar from the dollar store

Bath Care Basket ~ Budget $15-20

Have a friend who could really put their feet up? Or spend more time with their partner? This is a great pampering spa basket!

  • dollar store fabric or woven basket, or large apothecary jar to be used again.
  • 1 dollar store natural loofa
  • 1 dollar store head band and/or spa socks
  • 1 DIY relaxing bath salts (recipe below)
  • 1 DIY infused bath oil (recipe below)


Line your containers with tissue paper or colourful paper fizzle

Wrap with cello, or a reusable fabric wrap

Add a personalized label

As you can see, creating a beautiful and thoughtful gift doesn’t have to cost a fortune. I hope you enjoyed these gift basket tips. Please like and share on your own social media. The DIY recipes listed below are from the The DIY Apothecary book. You’ll find much, much more fun recipes for bath, body, and home. Order your paperback today.


Infused Olive Oil: You will need a clean, dry, 8 oz empty bottle with resealable lid.

Warm 1 cup of extra virgin olive oil into a saucepan. Add the ingredients you’d like to infuse. Popular items are, garlic clove, dried rosemary, chili flakes, or lemon peels.

Warm gently without boiling. Simmer for about 20 minutes, strain into bottles and seal.

Infused Vinegar: We chose balsamic, but you can use white or red wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar or malt. You will need a clean, dry, 8 oz empty bottle with resealable lid.

In a glass container or mason jar add 1 cup of vinegar, and the herbs of your choice. Popular choices are rosemary, chives, tarragon, thyme. Choose at lease 1-2 varieties and add to the vinegar jar. Lightly break up the herbs with a spoon and let sit for 24 hours. Strain into bottle and and seal.

Lemon Hand Scrub ~ page 126-127 The DIY Apothecary

You will need a 6 oz jar with lid.

1 organic lemon

1 cup coarse sea salt

3 TBSP olive oil

  • wash the lemon, zest peel, juice the lemon and set aside
  • mix the salts and olive oil together. Add in zest and lemon juice.
  • stir until juice is absorbed.
  • spoon into your jar, and seal with lid.

Foaming Hand Soap ~ page 128-129 The DIY Apothecary

You will need an 8 oz foaming soap container

1/4 cup liquid castile soap, unscented

1 TBSP liquid coconut oil

1 tsp essential oil (your favourite)

filtered water

  • In a clean, dry soap dispenser add soap, oil, and essential oil.
  • Fill the remainder with water, leaving 1 inch from the top.
  • Shake very gently to distribute.

Scented Bath Salts ~ page 89 The DIY Apothecary

You will need a clean, dry, 8 oz mason jar or container with lid.

1 cup epsom salts

1 TBSP coconut oil

1 tsp essential oils (your favourite)

  • Mix all the ingredients together.
  • Spoon into the jar and seal with the lid.

Bath Oil ~ page 86-87 The DIY Apothecary

You will need an 8 oz clean, dry bottle with resealable lid.

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup sweet almond oil

1 tsp essential oil (your favourite)

Mix all of the oils together and pour carefully into the bottle. Seal with lid.

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