Zeko enjoys writing about gift ideas and creative ways to celebrate holidays and special occasions.
Not everybody is in a position to spend a lot of money on gifts, so when a big holiday like Christmas or a special occasion like someone’s birthday comes around, many people are on the lookout for homemade gift ideas. College students, for example, often find themselves short on cash because of the high cost of college tuition. Other people let holiday shopping deplete their bank accounts way too fast. Whatever the reason, homemade gifts are a great way to give something unique to family and friends without busting your budget.
Even though homemade gifts are considered thoughtful and more meaningful than store-bought gifts, many often end up in the closet for several months, then go straight to Goodwill. The problem with those gifts is not that they are handmade. The problem is that sometimes people make them without giving much thought about whether or not the recipient would really like them or use them. So, before making those cute knitted coasters or scrap fabric hair clips, find out if the person on your gift list will actually use them.
The following article includes ideas for DIY gifts that teen girls can make for their besties and friends. They are all relatively easy to make and look like something you would buy in a store, so they are very likely to be a hit with most girls.
Fancy Friendship Bracelets
Handmade friendship bracelets have always been very popular accessories and you can never go wrong with giving one to a teenage girl as a gift. Nowadays, friendship bracelets have changed a great deal. They are no longer the simple bracelets made from colored yarn, which is woven into intricate patterns. They have gotten more glam and stylish, which makes them perfect gifts for fashionistas.
One great example of fancy friendship bracelets can be seen on the blog A Beautiful Mess. These are made from colorful leather straps and modern alphabet slide charms. You can make these adorable “arm candies” in, literally, minutes and personalize them with whatever phrase, acronym, hashtag or social media slang words you want. The lingo you choose to use would probably make many people scratch their heads, but your bestie will definitely understand it. This will make your homemade gift more special and treasured.
Designer Inspired Tablet Case
Almost every teenage girl has some sort of electronic gadget—laptop, e-reader, tablet, digital camera, smartphone, dumbphone, or phone of average intelligence. These gadgets usually need accessories, which makes a protective case a very good and practical gift choice.
There are tons of tutorials online for cases made of cleverly recycled paper envelops, old books, jeans, pieces of felt etc., but most of these don’t necessary look like something store-bought that someone would want. However, one accessory you can be sure that a teen girl would actually use is this stylish tablet sleeve from Honestly WTF. It is inspired by the chain-trimmed Stella McCartney’s Falabella bag and it looks so fantastic that it is hard to tell it is a homemade piece.
Another nice thing is that you can use the simple hand-stitching technique from the tutorial to make other accessories like phone or laptop cases.
Fab Homemade Jewelry Box
If you are looking for a nice homemade gift for a teen girl who has a lot of jewelry, consider making a jewelry box or some kind of creative display piece. There is a very neat idea for a jewelry box at Life Ann Style. It is a Tiffany & Co inspired jewelry box that is made from an inexpensive shadow box, painted in Tiffany-blue color. Watch the video on the right for a tutorial on how to make it.
This pretty DIY box would not only make an impressive birthday gift for a girl but would also be a great homemade gift for Mother’s Day.
Unique Handmade Carrying Cases
Another good idea for a homemade gift for a teen girl is a carrying case, because this is an indispensable item if you are a student at school. Carrying cases make good gifts also because they are very versatile—they can be used for storing pencils, stationery and other essentials, as alternative makeup bags or for other small items. This means that a girl will always find a good use for a case and your gift won’t end up at Goodwill.
Check out the video tutorial from Idunn Goddess to see how you can turn plain plastic folders into cute, fruit-shaped carrying cases. You don't need to even know how to sew to make these. All you will need is glue, staples, colorful shoelaces and zippers. Better yet, you probably have some of the materials you need lying around the house.
Decorative Clay Bowls for Storing Trinkets
Polymer clay can be used for making many creative gifts like jewelry, home decorations and pottery and it is lots of fun to work with. Polymer clay comes in a variety of colors and can be molded and baked. If you have never really worked with clay before, you may find jewelry making a bit complicated, but you can’t go wrong with these lovely clay bowls from 3tags.org. Even kids can create a set of decorative bowls. You just roll out different colors of clay into long strands, twist them together and then make them into a ball to create a marbleizing effect. After that, you roll the clay out with a rolling pin, make any shape bowl you want, bake it and there you have it—easy and great-looking homemade gift!
Teen girls can use the bowls for displaying their jewelry or for storing all of their trinkets. They are also perfect for things like bobby pins, change, paperclips and all kinds of tiny treasures.
If you want to make this gift even more special and personal, you can paint your friend’s initials in the center of the bowl with gold paint.
Trendy No-Sew Tote Bag
There are many beautiful gifts you can make at home with really inexpensive materials and tote bags are some of them. The great thing about them is that you can personalize them with whatever fabric color or pattern you want, whatever lining you want and even decorate them with your own artwork.
This cool tote bag made by Amy from Homey Oh My can be used by a teen girl for so many different things! It is sturdy enough to be used for carrying books and binder to school. It can be used as a laundry bag from someone who lives in a dorm or apartment without an in-unit washer or as a casual weekender bag. The possibilities are numerous.
If your sewing skills are non-existent or very rusty, don’t worry! It is a no-sew project. Instead of stitches, the fabric is bonded with a handy adhesive that is permanent, washable, easy to apply and dries fast. The final result is so professional-looking that nobody will believe you actually MADE this bag, much less made it without sewing! You can even give it as a Mother’s Day gift.
Some New Art for Her Room
If the teen girl on your gift list is one of those people who always has a creative idea in her head and likes decorating her room with unique and pretty things, then a wall art upgrade is something she may like as a gift. We know that it can be a little intimidating to make gifts for artsy girls, especially if you are not as artsy as them, but don’t worry!
This skull art piece won’t get buried at the back of her closet, because it looks clean, modern and stylish. The project is easier to make than it looks and people may actually think you bought it from a home decorating store. You just basically need to cover a skull image with brass thumbtacks. You can visit Steven and Chris to check out the instructions and download the free skull image.
Chic One-of-a-Kind Pendants
Here is another easy gift you can make with polymer clay—a chic double pendant. The thing that makes polymer clay convenient for making fashion accessories is that you don’t need any special tools in order to make something creative and of good quality. Many of the tools that you will need can be found in your kitchen—cutting board, rolling pin and knife.
This marble-like pendant will appeal to many teens, because it has a modern, yet classic feel. You can follow the instructions at A Beautiful Mess to create your own one-of-a-kind pieces that can’t be found anywhere else.
Cute Beauty Packs
No teen girl can have too many beauty gifts, and nail polish in one of the best gifts you can get a 15- or 16-year-old girl. An inexpensive nail polish and cute nail file can be transformed into a pretty gift by decorating the package with personalized gift tags and colorful ribbons. For the tutorial on how to do it, check out She’s Kinda Crafty. These simple and inexpensive homemade beauty packs are perfect for stocking stuffers or as an addition to gift baskets.
© 2011 iZeko
Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on August 16, 2015:
Amazing ideas and awesome, too. Real useful and voted up!
Vehyn from Sydney on December 21, 2014:
Oh my gosh! Those ideas are amazing! Thanks for sharing :)
Kelly from NJ, USA on November 05, 2014:
Great gift ideas for young girls! Thanks for the inspiration.
Marta Karpińska from Polska on November 03, 2014:
Always when I have occasion I try to do it a homemade gifts. My family and friends love that. That's a lot of fun for me too. I really like do it and give presents, even more than get it :)
Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on October 05, 2014:
Such beautiful home made gifts. I am not a big fun of home made gifts but I will be happy to give these beautiful creations anytime.
peachy from Home Sweet Home on October 01, 2014:
so many ideas. I am going to make pencil case and the bracelets. Thanks. voted up
lesliebyars on July 19, 2013:
I really enjoyed your hub. I especially like the sweater boots!! I voted up and awesome!
Jeremy Rawlings on January 28, 2013:
Many of these items are also good conversation starters!
whalefeather2 on August 28, 2012:
Love the teacup candle idea! Thanks for sharing!
carol stanley from Arizona on June 26, 2012:
Interesting and informative. Always looking for new gift ideas.
iZeko (author) on September 14, 2011:
Thanks, Carrie! I wish I had some of those when I was in school ;-))
carriethomson from United Kingdom on September 14, 2011:
hey amazing stuff here!! the decorative pens are just great and best of the list :) up and intresting
iZeko (author) on September 11, 2011:
Hi Movie Master! I’m glad you like the ideas. Appreciate your visit, the vote and comments very much!
iZeko (author) on September 11, 2011:
You are so right, Pras. Many thanks for dropping by, your comments and the vote. I really appreciate it. Take care!
iZeko (author) on September 11, 2011:
Hi Stephanie! You are very welcome. I’m sure your grandchildren will have a lot of fun with those. Thanks for coming by and leaving a note!
iZeko (author) on September 11, 2011:
Hi Tracy! Yeah, they are not difficult to make, especially by someone who likes crafts. Thanks for checking out mu hub and for the votes!
Movie Master from United Kingdom on September 11, 2011:
What great, creative and unusual gift ideas.
I love the teacup candles.
voting up and thanks for sharing.
prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on September 09, 2011:
This was so creative. I love all ideas about all these crafts. Creativity was never end if we want to make something beautiful and we can find all the material around us. I enjoy all the pictures and videos above. Vote up as always.
Stephanie Henkel from USA on September 09, 2011:
I love making gifts, and especially like things that I can do with my grandchildren. Some of these ideas are just perfect - they are artistic looking, easy to make and fun to do. I particularly liked the polymer clay gifts as my grandchildren and I love working with it. We haven't tried embellishing pens or silverware. That will definitely be on our list of projects! Thanks for the great ideas!
Tracy Lynn Conway from Virginia, USA on September 09, 2011:
What a great bunch of ideas! They all look reasonably easy to make and would all be wonderful gifts to receive. Voted up and awesome.