25 Gifts Under 5 Dollars

25 Gifts under 5 Dollars! To be able to get anything for $5 or less is a real challenge but if you give yourself a little time and are up to doing some  work you can really wow people with your thoughtful but inexpensive gifts. 

You don't want any of your gifts to look cheap even though you haven't spent a lot of money on them and these don't.

With a little bit of creativity and time you can pull together a bevy of great inexpensive gifts for everyone on your gift list.

Remember that any gift that you give looks better when you spend some time wrapping it nicely. Read How to Wrap a Gift Professionally and Make it Look Expensive.

25 Gifts Under 5 Dollars

1. Vintage Cuff Links

Thrift stores and Antique shops are stuffed full of cuff links since they are not longer a fashion necessity for men.

While really rare and expensive ones are quickly snapped up by antique dealers really nice ones are still available for under $5 and sometimes sell for as little as 25 cents! You can try to find them with initials of the person you are looking for to make them extra special.

Many men have dress shirts that need cuff links but use double buttons instead. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

2. Books

 There are millions of books out there in every conceivable subject you could imagine and half of them seem to end up in Garage Sales and Church Bazaars. Look and you will be amazed at the prices they sell for, especially at the end of the day. Want to really show off? Lay the book flat, add some extra related small gifts (flower pots and seed for a gardening book, small muffin tin and spices for a baking book) and wrap it all up with cellophane and a huge bow.

3. Vintage Tie or Novelty Tie

It is amazing how cheaply silk ties sell for in thrift stores. Easy under $5 and often under $3. Most of these ties were obviously given to men that did not appreciate them and they were never worn.

The point of giving someone a vintage or novelty tie is that they have to have the type of personality that would wear it. Great for young men looking for their style and willing to push the limits. These ties have to be in immaculate condition as a tie is very difficult to clean and still come out looking good. Check the maker and you might stumble upon a designer tie from the 60's or 70's. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

4. Personalized Journals

If you have a friend or relative that is always scribbling notes about their hobby or other interest in stray notebooks or on bits of paper then consider making them a special journal. You can buy a nice journal with blank pages from almost any Dollar Store and then you would make a label on your computer that you would glue on with a glue stick. Some ideas are a gardening journal, a bargain hunting journal, cooking journal, health journal or a sports journal. You could write a note to them on the first page, such as,

Dear Amy, I have seen your wonderful interest in baking grow over the years and thought that you could use this journal to record you many successes and your very occasional misses, With all My love, Ingrid. 

5. Vintage Silver Charms

During the 50's and 60's charm bracelets were hugely popular and it seemed that every young girl had one. They fell out of favour in the 70's and they have been ending up in thrift stores and antique stores ever since. Dealers tend to snipe off the individual charms from the bracelets and sell them separately for about $5 and under, unless they are mechanical charms that have moving parts which tend to sell for more.

It can be a great deal of fun trying to find charms to match a person's personality. These charms can be attached to bracelets, necklaces or even dangle off purses. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

6. Playing Cards and Book of Card Tricks

What better to make your recipient the center of attention than for them to pull out a pack of cards and start amusing a crowd with tricks.

This is a perfect gift for someone who enjoys the lime light. If you have difficulty finding a book with card tricks you could create your own by going on line to find tricks. The great thing about creating your own book is that you can store it on your computer and print it off when ever you need it for a really inexpensive but interesting gift. It will take some time and effort in the beginning to make the book but the quality will show the more effort you take. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

7. Personalized Stationery

Yes there are still people out there that prefer to send a written message rather than to e-mail them. Personalized stationery can look rich and expensive if you take the time to do it well. You can also design for them a monogram that they can use themselves and when presenting it to them tell them that you will send them the monogram electronically so they can have it on their own computer. Monograms were traditionally used to decorate linens, mark fine furniture on the underside, and to use on cards and stationary. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

8. Potpourri

You can make a good quality potpourri for very little money and is a gift that they will enjoy in their homes for a very long time. Decide if you want to make a seasonal potpourri filled with the smells of Christmas or if you want something that evokes the thought of spring or summer flowers. Here is my Christmas Potpourri Recipe and my Peony Potpourri Recipe. This could become a yearly tradition with you giving a new sent every year. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

8. Vase 

These can be incredible inexpensive at garage sales and thrift shops and there are styles for every taste. If you buy one that is very plain then you could fill it with seasonal small fruit or nuts for presentation. If giving it to them for Christmas you could fill it with dollar store silver or gold ornaments. If you are giving it to them in the summer you can fill it with flower from your own garden. A bouquet of peonies or hydrangeas can look stunning and expensive. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

10. Chocolate Chess Set

Chocolate molds for chess sets sell for under $3. It will take you a bit of time to make a chocolate chess set but it is easy to do, instructions are included with the mold. This is another gift that you can make for several people once you have bought the mold.  Buy your chocolate ( white and dark) on sale after Easter or Christmas for further savings. You can also buy molds for checker pieces for under $3. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

11. Vintage Cut Glass or Pressed Glass Bowl

These can look stunningly beautiful if they are filled with potpourri, fruits, nuts, or chocolate truffles. They are a standard at thrift stores, antique malls and garage sales. They would be most suitable for someone who was traditional tastes. Latter they could use it as a catch-all in their bathroom, on their vanity or on their front table for their keys.

12. Letter Opener

Everyone receives mail and a letter opener is a practical and useful item to own. They are often in estate sales, garage sales and antique stores. While the high end ones tend to have silver handles and are extremely costly you can find nice ones with leather or brass handles for under $5. To make sure they understand what it is you could make a small tag on your computer that states, Letter Opener.

13. Fold Up Shopping Bag

As more and more stores are charging their patrons for plastic bags it is great to receive a really stylish cloth fold up shopping bag. You can find them at many stores and if you sew this bag is easy to make even for beginner sewers and you can customize the fabric to each individual. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

14. Personalized Pillow Case

You can make the romantic pillow case just by embroidering on the side edge of a pillow case. Either chose a saying like "J'adore" or Sweet Dreams. Have the colour of the pillow case match their regular linen and do the embroidery in a strong contrasting colour.

15. Clementines

Are a wonderful fruit that most people associated with Christmas. Often you can buy a box of these lovely little citruses on sale for under $5. Pop them into a garage sale basket with a bow and you have a great little gift perfect for those people who are always saying they don't need anything.

16. Framed Advertisements

Oh how times have changed. If you have a techno geek on you list then they might find ads from the 70's and 80's about cell phones and computers an absolute riot. Magazines that are old but not vintage show up at garage sales all the time and sell for pennies. Two of these in frames that you have picked up from a warehouse store, garage sale or thrift shop would be great.  Look for ads that have something to do with either their work, hobby, or lifestyle. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

17. Gift Basket 

Yes it is a standard but it doesn't have to be expensive or tacky if you start buying for it early and wisely. Gift baskets can be themed around a person's interests so you have a variety of ideas that you can work with. 

For a complete instructions and ideas on gift baskets read Make Inexpensive Gift Baskets That Look Expensive 25 gifts under 5 dollars

18.  All Natural Bath and Beauty Products

The three most common natural beauty products are Epsom Salts for the bath, Almond Oil for moisturizer and Cornstarch as skin powder. These are sold for outrageous mark ups when a few drops of dye and fragrance are added to them. They can be bought very inexpensively and you can repackage with instructions and health benefits as "All Natural with No Added Fragrance or Dyes". Place them in a basket with a cotton face cloth and you have a modern and practical gift.

19. Foot, Hand or Neck Warmer

Who would ever think that a cup of rice in a cotton bag could bring so much comfort.To make them you simply have to sew up a cotton bag and loosely fill it with rice and sew the bag shut. Write out instructions not to get the bag wet and to warm it up place it in the microwave oven for 15 seconds to 1 minute (every microwave oven seems to be different you will have to experiment). Little hand warmers are great to make for people who have long walks in the winter to get to school or work. Sew up a set of these Hot Dog Hand Warmers.

20. Paper Dolls

 There are many sites that have the original artwork for  paper dolls that you can print out for free on card stock. Search for paper dolls and you will find a variety of modern, vintage and antique dolls that you can download for free. There is everything to suit traditional to modern tastes. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

21. Bath Tub Crayons

Children love splashing around in the tub. Make a bath set for them by making tub crayons by grating down regular white soap and adding water and mixing it until it is a gel consistency. Pour  into small molds (you could use the plastic inserts from food packages for molds) and add food coloring to make each mold a different colour. Let dry for several days and then pop out of the mold. Place these in a cellophane bag with a label explaining what they are.

22. Teddy Bear with Book of Rhymes

Some people have a knack for rhyming and poetry and would enjoy making up a small booklet of bedtime rhymes on the computer where the child's name is frequently used. The front of the small booklet could have the title "Sara's (the child's name) Bed Time Book of Rhymes by Mr. Bear." Look for a plain teddy bear on sale and dress him up with a gorgeous satin bow.  On the cover of the booklet you could have a bear with a matching colour bow. The rhymes could deal with the child's day (try to channel Beatrix Potter) from breakfast to play time to dinner and bed time. Remove the bow from the bear for the safety of the child. 25 gifts under 5 dollars

23. Ball

 Do you remember the joy of playing with a ball as a child? Simple basic and hours of fun. Using a permanent marker either doodle a little image or initial it with their last name so it will always be recognizable as theirs.

24. Wood Blocks

The best toys for children are those that they can multi- purpose and use their imaginations on. Wood blocks are great for this. Not only can they build with wood blocks but they can incorporate their other toys with them and use the blocks for a wall their toy trucks have to break through or a fortress wall that there super heroes break down. 

Spending an afternoon cutting wood down to small sizes and then sanding them is all you would have to do. Wood block do not need to be varnished or colored.

25. Doll Wardrobe

If they have a favorite doll make a wardrobe for them. The dresses for dolls are very small and don't take up much fabric. This is a time consuming project but if you have sewing skill and like a challenge you would be giving them a gift that they will remember for the rest of their lives. Try to find out before you start if they enjoy their dolls having historical clothes like capes and dresses or more modern clothes like jeans and hoodies. 25 gifts under 5 dollars


Spending a little time can save you a lot of money while getting fun gifts that people will truly enjoy.


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