The Alternative Christmas Gift Guide

10 ideas for when you’re absolutely stumped.


Am I really going to be the person who sucks all the fun out of Cyber Monday and suggests that instead of indulging in mass consumerism we reel ourselves back in a bit? No, because that would make me a massive hypocrite seeing as I spent most of the weekend (in between painting my hallway – see Instagram) trawling ASOS and Amazon for some bargain Christmas Presents.  I LOVE Christmas shopping – but only when I know that I’ve found the perfect present for every single one of my favourite people. I don’t like guessing, and you’ll never catch me wandering down the 3 for 2 gift aisle – even as a last resort. For me, that’s where I draw the line – that is mindless consumerism, in my opinion anyway.  The truth is that sometimes the best things and gifts in life are free, and a thoughtful gesture is often far better than throwing cash at expensive clutter or resorting to “stuff” bought down the gift aisle under pressure.

So if you’re struggling to find that perfect gift for someone, or just fancy thinking a little bit outside the box this year, then have I got the gift-guide for you. 🙂



I think the older I get the less interested I become in “stuff” – and in giving “stuff” at Christmas. These days when someone asks me what I want for my birthday or for Christmas, I’m more likely to say, “Let’s go somewhere” or “Let’s do something”. So why not book some tickets for a gig or for a show (if you’re Cardiff-based then the Millenium Centre’s got one hell of a line-up for 2020, including Six, The Lion King and Book of Mormon), or book a flight and head off on an adventure to somewhere new or somewhere special.


Memberships come in all shapes and forms and make for brilliant gifts. The best thing about them is that they usually tend to run for a whole 12 months, so if your SO, Mother-in-Law or Bestie end up enjoying it and getting the most out of it, you can make it a yearly gift! If you’ve got someone who loves getting out in the fresh air or exploring old properties and manor houses then you can’t go wrong with a National Trust Membership. My in-laws gift themselves a Cineworld Members Card every year which allows them to unlimited access to what’s on in their local cinema. You could also gift someone a Netflix or Amazon Prime Membership, or even a membership to their local Museum, Gallery or Golf Club. The possibilities are literally endless.

DIY Foodie Gifts

Here’s where I come into my own, because every year – without fail – I give every member in family a pot of my Homemade Chilli and Red Pepper Jam. I made it one year for my Mother-In-Law and she absolutely loved it, and so slowly over the years I’ve had added requests for a jar or two. I make a massive batch every Christmas now – and I love it! It’s an easy gift, and it’s personal. And of course, there are plenty of other foodie gifts, from easy Chocolate Truffles and Christmas Biscuits, to Brownies and Welshcakes. You could even create your own infused Gin or Vodka.


Kick a Bad Habit

Maybe you’ve got a bad habit that’s been annoying your SO for a long time, so then why not give them the gift of the promise to kick it for good? It could be something huge like vowing to give up smoking or drinking, or something a lot smaller like promising not to dump your clothes in a pile at the end of the bed every night.  Just don’t make it an empty promise, you’ve got to make good on it no matter what! 😉

Make a Donation

Some people just don’t want or need gifts – so why not put the money you’d usually spend on them to good use? Make a donation to their favourite charity in their name, or donate an advent calendar or tub of celebrations to a local food bank, or even buy a gift for someone in need. If you’re local, then I can’t not mention Hope Rescue for all the absolutely incredible work they do for stray and abandoned dogs. Every year they ask for donations of shoe boxes full of treats, toys and blankets for the dogs they look after.

Favours and IOUs

Are there a few things around the house that you’ve been putting off?  Maybe there’s some DIY or decorating that needs doing? So, why not get off your bum and get them done as a gift to the person who’s been nagging you about them!  Or, why not take over someone’s chores while they put their feet up?


Learn Something New

Do you have someone on your Christmas List who’d like to learn something new? Maybe they’ve always fancied trying out Pilates, or learning French, or fancy taking up a new hobby like Photography. So, why not sign them up for a class in the new year?

Make it a Weekly Thing

Sometimes, the best gift you can give someone is the gift of your time. I bet there are plenty of people on your list who’d love nothing more than to see more of you, or spend more quality time together. So, why not give it? Sign up for a class that you can both take together every week, or just make a plan to meet up once a week to go for coffee or brunch (…or gin?).

Magazine Subscription

This is such a fab gift if you’re stuck, especially for Mums, Sisters, BFFs. My in-laws got me a magazine subscription to Marie Claire a few years ago and it’s still one of the best presents I’ve ever had. I love reading magazines (even though Marie Claire’s retreated to the online world now *sigh*) and having one pop through my letter box every month is such a simple pleasure and a treat! Since then I’ve signed my Mum up for a subscription to Prima and she gets the same excitement seeing it on her doormat once a month. 🙂

Green Gifts

Personally, I love plants and flowers in all forms and I’d much rather get a bunch of hot pink roses than a shot in the dark gift every time. Plants are such easy gifts, as are seeds and grow your own kits. If you’re green fingered yourself, then why not give someone something you’ve grown yourself – or a cutting from your favourite plant?

Happy 2nd of December everyone! Have a lovely week! 🙂

4 thoughts on “The Alternative Christmas Gift Guide

  1. These are some great ideas! Definitely different to the typical types of gifts. I love experiences or even subscriptions I think they are perfect presents 🙂 xx

    Liked by 1 person

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