Last-Minute Homemade Gifts: Over 20 Incredibly Thoughtful Ideas

Wondering what are the best last-minute homemade gifts to give your friends, your mom or others who actually appreciate handmade gifts? I’ve put together this list of easy ideas, so you don’t have to!

There are certain people in my life who I just love to make something special for; for whom I’ll forgo a store-bought gift whenever possible.

When I’m under pressure, though, it’s SO hard to think of what to make that is somewhat unique and not beyond my (very mediocre) skill level.

I find it especially hard to come up with a handmade gift that is:

  • Easy to make or arrange
  • Actually useful to the recipient or meaningful in some way
  • Doesn’t cost 10X more to make than to buy

That’s why I decided to scour the internet to create this last-minute DIY gift guide for all the forgetful-yet-well-meaning mamas in the room.

(Solidarity, my friend.)

Thoughtful last-minute DIY gift ideas for friends and family who adore homemade gifts!

Last-minute DIY gift ideas- that people actually want

Below are 23 of my favorite DIY gifts which include a variety of easy-to-make homemade food items, bath and body and household gifts.

Several of these are ones I’ve given for birthdays and Christmas, dinner parties, as well as “get well” and housewarming gifts.

You could bundle a few of the related items listed below and arrange a fun gift basket as well!

Be creative, and have fun spoiling your friends and families with a gift you made yourself.

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Section heading: "Homemade Breads"- thoughtful last-minute homemade gift idea.

There’s nothing like a loaf of fresh bread to say I love you.  😉

I used to think that making bread was complicated and above my skill level.  After making it for several years, I can guarantee that it’s something you can learn quickly!

Here are a few excellent ideas:

sandwich loaf

This sandwich bread makes the perfect dinner companion and costs us around $0.65/loaf to make.  You could pair this with some homemade jelly or a jar of honey.

homemade bread gift idea

Crusty French Bread

I love to take artisan bread as a gift when we’re invited for dinner.  It’s great with soups and Italian meals especially.

Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon rolls are seriously my weakness in life.  This recipe is the one I make every time because it’s quick and they always turn out amazing!

Dark Chocolate Chip Raspberry Banana Bread

Banana breads are a favorite of many.  Take it to the next level with this dark chocolate and raspberry version.

chocolate raspberry banana bread DIY gift
Photo Credit: Sally’s Baking Addiction

Glazed Lemon Loaf

This Starbucks copycat recipe is really easy to make and sure to impress.

glazed lemon loaf-sweet bread gift
Photo Credit: Ahead of Thyme

Jalapeno Cheddar Bread

For a savory quick bread, try this yummy Jalapeno Cheddar recipe- one of my husband’s favorites.

jalapeno bread DIY gift idea
Photo credit: A Pretty Life
Section heading: "Sweet Treats" ideas for easy homemade gifts.

Skip the expensive store-bought boxes and try one of these impressive-yet-easy, giftable sweets.

Five-minute fudge

For the true procrastinator!  But seriously a delicious treat.

Chocolate Turtles

Simple method for making turtle candy, with only 4 ingredients.

chocolate turtle gift idea
Photo credit: i heart naptime

Homemade Peppermint Patties

Another winner for a treat that’s sure to impress.

homemade peppermint patties-gift idea example
Photo credit: Kleinworth &Co.

White Chocolate Latte Truffles

A great choice for your coffee-loving friend. (You’ll want to make extra for yourself too 😉 )

Homemade soaps, lotions and the like are super practical and are a hit especially with friends, moms and grandmas.

Section heading - "Bath and Body" DIY homemade gift ideas.

Foaming hand soap

I’ve given DIY foaming hand soap as a gift several times in the last few years. Fill a nice mason-jar style glass dispenser and include a tag labeling the scent used. 

hand soap DIY gift

Natural Body Lotion

You can quickly assemble this 3-ingredient lotion recipe and put it in a nice jar (like a pint jelly jar for instance).  Use your preferred essential oils for natural fragrance.

homemade lotion example

Body Scrub

This recipe for orange mint sugar scrub also comes with printable labels, making it perfect for gifting.

Shower Melts

There are a ton of recipes you can find, but I like this version because it only requires a few ingredients and can help clear your head during cold season!  (A great get-well gift.)

DIY gift idea-shower melts
Photo Credit: Busy Bliss

Also read: Gifts for practical women who don’t want gifts

Section heading: "Photo gifts"- homemade last minute gift idea

DIY photo canvas

This project involves minimal supplies and makes a sentimental and personal gift for a close friend or family member.

DIY photo canvas gift idea
Photo credit: My Crazy Good Life

Clip photo board

Simple clip photo frames are a popular decor trend, and you can make them at home in just a few steps.

clip photo board DIY gift idea
Photo Credit: An Oregon Cottage

Photo candle

Love this $5 DIY project!  Grandparents will love this too, and kids can even help make it.

diy photo gift idea
Photo Credit: It’s Always Autumn
Section heading- "Homemaking and Housewarming" last minute homemade gift ideas.

Gifts for the home are a great option for newlyweds, a friend buying their first home, Mother’s Day and really for any occasion.

Potpourri mix

Although you can’t make this at the last minute entirely, you could make it just a few days in advance.

homemade potpourri mix gift idea
Photo credit: Hearth & Vine

Simmer Pot recipe

Similar to potpourri but even easier.  Smell-good ingredients you can gift along with instructions for simmering on the stovetop.

Room spray

I like to avoid chemical-based fragrance, so natural room sprays are an effortless alternative!

Pressed flower art

Botanical prints and pressed flowers go with almost any decor and this one is really special.

Sharpie mugs

My friend Kate at A Hundred Affections shows you how to make beautiful, giftable mugs that don’t require a cricut machine.

sharpie mug gift
Photo credit: A Hundred Affections

Succulent planter

Photo credit: Teal Notes

Who doesn’t love succulents, right?  This DIY planter only takes a few materials and would make a great table centerpiece for a friend.

Homemade gifts for the win

Even last-minute, homemade gifts can be incredibly special with just a little time and creativity.

DIY gifts are often the most-treasured gifts in my home. I hope you’ll find just the right project for the sentimental gift-recipients on your list!

You might also like:

Gifts for Picky Women (who want nothing)

Unique Gifts for Christian Women

Free Fall Printable Signs

Art Gift ideas for Kids

Easy DIY gifts for women

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