Remember Cadbury’s iconic tohfa laaya ad which had people rewrap received presents and pass it on to others. Admit it or not, we are all guilty of recycling the gifts received by us and Diwali is the time when this happens the most. It is not possible for one household to finish so many boxes of dry fruits and mithai before they start to go bad and hence, there is a need for unique Diwali gift ideas.

The tradition of meeting friends and family over Diwali, playing a few card games and exchanging gifts is what makes the festival so awaited and cherished. Unfortunately, very few people give much thought to the gifts they hand out and keep buying the same edibles each year. These gifts are perishable, calorie-laden and boring to say the least. Make this Diwali truly special by giving handmade gifts to your loved ones. This time around, be sure that none of your gifts are getting repacked and reshipped to someone else.

10 DIY Gifting Ideas For Diwali To Make Your Loved Ones Feel Special

Quick and innovative DIY gift ideas that will help you express your love for your friends and family this Diwali.

1. Handmade Candles

Candles and diyas are an essential part of every Diwali celebration. These handmade candles are a very intelligent gift option as they promise beauty with utility.

You Will Need:

  • Glass candle holders
  • Microwavable paper cups
  • Wax crayons in varied colours
  • Candle wax
  • Candle wicks
  • Wick securing bar
  • Stick for stirring the wax

Method:

  1. Put a small amount of wax in the microwaveable paper cup and heat it for 30 seconds.
  2. Once the wax has melted, pour it in a votive to form a thin layer. 
  3. Insert a candle wick in the layer and wait for the wax to harden.
  4. Secure the wick in the centre of the votive with the help of the wick securing bar.
  5. Now take three (or more/less as per your design preference) microwavable paper cups and add wax to them.
  6. Top the wax with one broken crayon each.
  7. Microwave one of these cups for 2 minutes. Take the paper cup out, give the wax a little mix with a stick and microwave again for 1 minute.
  8. Tilt the votive and pour this wax in. Rest the votive against a wall or stand and wait for 30 minutes.
  9. Once the first layer of the wax is hardened, heat the other coloured wax in the microwave using the same method as the first.
  10. This time, tilt the votive to the other side to create a diagonal colour block pattern.
  11. Rest the votive against a wall or stand and leave it for another 30 minutes.
  12. Repeat the same process with the third colour of wax.
  13. Once the last colour has hardened, remove the wick securing bar and cut the wick in the desired size.

2. Handmade Coasters

The best part about these coasters is that they are ready in a jiffy, require fewer materials and can be customised in any design to suit the preferences of the giver or choices of the receiver.

You Will Need:

  • Rope 
  • Hot glue gun
  • Craft Mat
  • Scissors
  • Fabric Paint (optional)
  • Paintbrush (optional)

Method:

  1. Place the mat on a flat surface.
  2. Squeeze a small amount of glue to the mat and stick one end of the rope to the mat.
  3. Now keep coiling the rope to form a circle, while applying glue to the mat with every roll.
  4. Continue the process till you reach the desired size of the coaster.
  5. Cut the rope and seal the loose end to the coiled coaster.
  6. At this stage, you should have a spiral rope circle stuck to the mat.
  7. Leave the coaster to dry completely. Once dry, you will be able to lift the coaster off the mat.
  8. You can choose to keep the coaster this way or paint on it to add some colour and design.

3. Handmade Pen Stand

This quick and easy pen stand is sure to remind your friends and family of you every time they step into their study or work space.

You Will Need:

  • Empty can  
  • Hot glue gun
  • Paper straws
  • Fabric flowers and leaves
  • Scissors

Method:

  1. Clean and dry an empty used can. (you can make use of a used baked beans/condensed milk can.)
  2. Cut paper straws in the desired length and stick them to cover the entire can. (If the straws are not readily available, you can also roll newspapers and stick them to the can.)
  3. Let the glue dry.
  4. Use your creativity to make a pattern on the pen stand by sticking the flowers and leaves on top of the straws.

4. Handmade Lamp

Light up the homes of your loved ones with this simple handmade lamp. Wine glasses are a symbol of good times and so shall be this gift of yours.

You Will Need:

  • Wine glass
  • Translucent paper (printed or textured)
  • Glue dots/double-sided transparent tape
  • LED candle
  • Lampshade template
  • Scissors

Method:

  1. Print a lampshade template matching the size of your wine glass.
  2. Cut the translucent paper as per the template.
  3. Use the glue dots/double-sided transparent tape to stick the ends of the paper and form a lampshade.
  4. Place the LED candle in the centre of the wineglass.
  5. Place the lampshade on top of the wine glass.

5. Diwali Handmade Cards

Sending out Diwali greeting cards is a tradition in many homes. While most people buy readymade cards, there are many simple greeting card ideas which barely take any time. This year, try making these easy Diwali handmade cards to add a personal touch to your wishes.

You Will Need:

  • Card paper
  • Tissue paper (in various colours)
  • Glue 
  • Scissors
  • Design template (optional)
  • Paper cutter
  • Pencil
  • Sketch pen/permanent marker

Method:

  1. Decide on the size of your folded Diwali handmade cards and cut the card paper double of that size. (For example, if you want your folded cards to measure 3” X 4”, then the card paper should be cut in the size 6” X 8”.)
  2. Trace your desired design on the outer side of the cards with the help of the template. You can also choose to free draw the design with a pencil.
  3. Cut out the design with the paper cutter.
  4. Apply glue to the entire inside part of the cards.
  5. Stick bits of coloured tissue paper to this side and cover the whole side.
  6. Use a sketch pen/permanent marker to write your Diwali messages on the front side of the cards.

6. Handmade Marbled Mug

These easy to make mugs are an ideal Diwali gift for parents as the colours can be coordinated to turn them into couple mugs. Note that this process will make the mugs unsuitable for the dishwasher or microwave.

You Will Need:

  • Nail polish (not the quick-dry type)
  • Big plastic bowl (one you don’t mind soiling)
  • Water
  • Toothpick
  • Tea/coffee mug
  • Paper towel
  • Nail polish remover
  • Earbud

Method:

  1. Take hot water in a big plastic bowl.
  2. Keeping the nail polish bottle close to the edge of the water, spread the nail polish in the bowl to cover maximum area.
  3. Use the toothpick to create a marbled pattern with the nail polish.
  4. Quickly dop the bottom of the mug in the water and swirl it around to transfer the nail polish to the mug. Try to keep the nail polish away from the sections of the mug which will come in contact with the lips. (The above steps should be done in quick succession as the nail polish will not transfer to the mug if it has dried.)
  5. Keep the mugs upside down on a paper towel and let them dry.
  6. Use an earbud dipped in nail polish remover to remove the nail polish stuck to the bottom of the mug.

7. Handmade Wine Bottle Vase

This wine bottle vase is a good choice of people who want to make multiple handmade Diwali gifts. These vases are beautiful to look at, are easy to make and can be made in a whole variety of colours.

You Will Need: 

  • Empty wine bottle (cleaned and dried)
  • Glue
  • Glitter powder
  • Newspaper
  • Paintbrush

Method:

1. Spread out a newspaper on a flat surface to catch all the glitter that drops off.

2. Start by applying glue to one portion of the wine bottle.

3. Gently sprinkle the glitter powder on the section with glue.

4. Continue doing this in parts on the whole bottle until the bottle is completely covered in glitter.

5. Leave the bottle untouched till all the glue is dry.

6. Apply a thin coat of glue on top of the glitter to hold the glitter in place and prevent it from falling off.

8. Handmade Chocolate Bouquet

When it comes to gifting ideas for Diwali, one can never go wrong with chocolates. Chocolate bouquets make a very good Diwali gift for sister or brother because you can make a handmade bouquet with their favourite chocolates.

You Will Need:

  • Planter
  • Sponge
  • Chopsticks
  • Cupcake wrappers
  • Chocolates
  • Glue gun
  • Ribbon

Method: 

1. Take a planter and line the inside with some sponge.

2. Stick your favourite chocolates on top of each chopstick with the glue gun.

3. Insert cupcake wrappers from the other side of the chopstick. Cut the ends of the wrappers to look like flower petals.

4. Poke the chopsticks into the sponge placed inside the planter to keep them from moving.

5. Tie a ribbon around the planter.

9. Jar Candle Holder

These jar candle holders are a perfect example of handmade gifts that can be created in a jiffy. These jars make it very easy for you to give a personal touch to your Diwali presents.

You Will Need:

  • Jam jar/mason jar
  • Spray paint
  • Stencil
  • LED candle
  • Ribbon

Method:

  1. Stick the desired stencil on the jam jar/mason jar. You can also stick strips of scotch tape for a striped effect.
  2. Colour the jars with the spray paint.
  3. Tie a ribbon around the jar and place the LED candle inside the jar.

10. Handmade Dreamcatcher

A perfect Diwali gift for sister, this floral dreamcatcher is a great piece of décor for any space. Gifting a dreamcatcher gives one immense opportunity to display their creativity.

You Will Need:

  • Embroidery ring
  • Tassels
  • Yarn
  • Fabric flowers
  • Artificial plant leaves
  • Glue gun
  • Rope

Method:

1. Take the embroidery ring of the size you like and make a loop on top of it with the help of a rope.

2. Use the glue gun to stick the fabric flowers and leaves in a desired pattern on the ring.

3. Cut and tie the strings of yarn to the bottom of the ring at equal distance.

4. Tie the colourful tassels to the ends of all the yarn strings.

The market is flooded with gifting ideas for Diwali. Yet, most of us struggle to choose that one special Diwali gift for parents, friends and siblings because the commercial gifts rarely succeed in showing our loved ones how special they are. Let’s just say, handmade Diwali gifts are maa ke haath ka khana in a world full of gourmet restaurants. Choose the gift you want to make, get your creative juices flowing and make this Diwali truly memorable for you and your loved ones.

Heena Paryani
Heena Paryani

Heena Paryani is an Operations Executive with a passion for teaching, jewellery designing, EXIM trade and writing. This Mumbaikar-at-heart is a wanderlust who enjoys cooking and sampling new cuisines.

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