Valentine’s Day Gifts for Him 2017

Just about every year I make a lists of gifts to get the man in your life for Valentine’s Day. Why not one for her too? Sometimes I do, but I usually stick to the boyfriend gifts because it’s harder to buy for him. (AND we don’t appreciate men very much during this holiday. We should work on that.) Guys don’t give you hints and they don’t care where you go to eat as long as there isn’t a crazy wait. Most of the time. They just want to get Valentine’s Day over with.

With that in mind, I always try to come up with some creative gift or experience ideas to improve the outlook of the holiday. That means no cuff links, monogramed junk or lovey dovey quotes. I’m going to take a creative or practical approach to gift recommendations. Which also means the prices aren’t going to be astronomical. Let’s be realistic. You can say I love you (or I like you) without blowing your paycheck.

There are also some DIY ideas in the bottom half if you don’t want to go out and buy something.

Gifts to Buy

Stainless steel travel mug gift

OuterEQ Travel Mug – $19.99 with Prime

I know, we’re starting out super practical on this one. But seriously, stainless steel mugs with temperature retention are amazing. I have one (not this brand) for coffee and it keeps it hot for 4 hours and water cold for 8. So when I get called to a last-minute meeting and forget my coffee at my desk, it’s still nice and toasty when I get back. Traveling with these is awesome too. I’d recommend this mug to anyone as a gift. Bonus points for it be eligible for Amazon Prime.

 

leather knotted bracelet gift

Leather knotted bracelet – $11.90 with Prime

Disclosure: I’ve never seen this bracelet on someone in person. BUT I’d love to. The design is simple, yet elegant, in a way. It looks like it could either be dressed up or down. They’ve also listened to their customer’s feedback and made improvements recently. Can’t complain about that.

 

This gift by ADADesigns3 on Etsy is pretty neat. You can get the growler customized to the state you live in. They will even send you a proof before they make it to ensure you like the way it looks. Some states might look a little strange, but if you’re located in a spacious one, I say get on this!

 

This one, from alkohaulers on Etsy, is pretty exciting! An insulated growler carrier that attaches to your bike. The perfect gift for the adventurer! Don’t limit yourself to beer though. He could carry water, soda, or whatever other beverage he fancies.

 

Coffee painting gift

Coffee Painting – $20.99

Artwork on the Run on Etsy sells awesome coffee art. If the man in your life enjoys coffee, art or coffee shops, he’ll love this stuff. I bought this painting at a craft show last year and I really enjoy it.

 

Gifts to DIY

IMG_0404

It doesn’t have to be pink, obviously, but these DIY travel carriers are so easy to make and I’ve taken mine with me every time I’ve traveled since I made it about 4 years ago (it’s probably time for an update). Go to the Dollar Store, buy a wash cloth and ribbon, flip up the bottom and sew each compartment. It’s cake.

 

DIY Beer Bottle Magnets

Another really easy DIY gift is these beer cap magnets. You could do it with glass soda bottle caps too. Or whatever he drinks. Super glue a magnet to the back and stick it on his fridge. If he has a beer fridge, that works even better.

 

DIY photo magnets

Speaking of magnets, borrow some pictures from his Instagram and make these cute photo magnets. All you have to do is cut the images to size and glue them to the back of these glass tiles along with a magnet.

 

DIY manly beard oil

This homemade beard oil is pretty awesome, so I’ve been told. I made it for my husband a few years ago because he said he would get dry skin under his beard. It worked really well and he still uses it. His friends have even started asking for it.

More Gift Ideas

Here’s a list of my previous Valentine’s Day gift ideas for him:

 

I’d love to hear your ideas for gifts or date nights! Leave them in the comments!

 

 

DIY Grapefruit Lip Balm

DIY grapefruit lip balm

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you probably know that I have a big lip balm addiction collection. I’ve been using the stuff every day for years. Long enough that my lips no longer produce moisture on their own. I wish I was joking.

lip balm collection

My shameful collection

If people asked me what I wanted for Christmas, I’d tell them lip balm because I’ll definitely use it and it’s cheap. But how cheap is it really? Prices range from $2-$5 depending on how picky you are. I’m picky. So we’re looking at the $5 end of that range.

About a year ago I decided to try making my own, not only because it’s practical but also because it’s more affordable than $5 a tube. I started with a peppermint lip balm. I like that flavor a lot, but it’s also potent so I can smell just how much I’m using. It was a good starter batch.

Now, all of those are gone and I’m ready to make more! Since fall is here and I’m not quite ready to let go of summer’s warmth and fruity flavors, I decided to make some grapefruit flavored lip balm to get me through the winter.

It was a very successful DIY project and if you’d like to make some of your own, you can follow my tutorial below.

 

grapefruit lip balm recipe

Materials Needed for Grapefruit Lip Balm

You can get coconut oil at your grocery store. You might be able to get the jojoba oil there, too. Everything you might not be able to get locally has a link to the product on Amazon.

 

melting wax and oil

Step 1: melt beeswax and oils

Pour the oils (excluding the grapefruit oil) and beeswax into a jar.

Fill a pot with water about a quarter of the way full. Put the jar in the water and let every melt together.

 

lip balm tubes and funnel

Step 2: prepare the tubes

While you’re waiting, line up your tubes in a container and place the funnel in one of them.

This will prevent big messes.

 

grapefruit flavoring

Step 3: add grapefruit flavoring

When everything is melted, get a tea towel or tongs and pull the jar out of the water.

This is going to dry quickly so work fast.

Shake about 20 drops of grapefruit oil into the jar. Stir.

 

DIY grapefruit lip balm

When you’re ready, pour it into the tubes and let the mixture harden.

This stuff is wonderful. The perfect consistency.

I hope you like it as much as I do!

DIY Bead String Earrings

DIY bead string earrings

I disappeared last week. Sorry about that. I needed a mini break from all organized activity. Surely you’ve been in the same boat. But I’m back to crafting this week and I have a fancy set of earrings for you to make that’s quick and easy.

These are the kind of homemade earrings that make great gifts.

  1. They look more expensive than they are (but aren’t cheaply made), so that’s a win for both the maker and the recipient.
  2. They’re super easy to assemble.
  3. They go well with all outfits.

Want to make some? Keep reading!

materials for DIY bead string earrings

Materials for Bead String Earrings

  • Bead caps
  • Fancy beads
  • Earring rods
  • Earring hooks
  • Jewelry pliers (not pictured)

Tips for choosing beads:

  1. Choose beads that aren’t exactly the same size. You can see that some of mine are oblong, others are round and some look squished. Some are even textured.
  2. Choose beads with some shine. Beads that shimmer a little bit look so much better in indoor lighting.

I purchased all of my supplies at Michael’s (of course), but you can pick yours up at any craft or hobby shop.

Bead caps at top and bottom

Step 1: Start with a bead cap

Slide one bead cap to the bottom of your earring rod.

Follow that with a string of beads misshapen beads.

Lastly, top with a bead cap.

It’s like a sandwich of beads!

Note: Leave some room at the top of your earring rod. We’re using that space in the next step.

earring loop for hook connection

Step 2: Make a wire loop

Using your round-nosed pliers, twist the excess wire at the top of the earring rod into a loop. Don’t close it completely.

 

beaded earring

Step 3: Add the earring hook

Slide on the earring hook and close your loop.

Repeat steps 1-3 for the second earring.

 

DIY bead string earrings

When you’re finished, you’ll have this fancy pair of earrings! Keep them for yourself or give them to someone you know will love them.

You could always hang on to them and give them as a Christmas gift. I know, I know, it’s August. But Christmas sneaks up on you. You could be prepared for that.

Let me know what you think!

Happy crafting!

DIY Wood Branch Coasters With Gold Leaf Design

The Craft Challenge

This blog post is part of The Craft Challenge!  <— check out this link for more information on the challenge. If you’re interested in joining the challenge, send a message to Emily from A Pop of Red.

DIY wood branch coasters

This month’s theme for the Craft Challenge is wood.

When brainstorming ideas for the theme, I thought how much more wooden can you get than tree branches? Which is why I chose to turn tree branches into coasters. Can’t stop there, though. They needed a pop of color and I love the gold leaf color against the wood and the texture of the rings in the branch slices.

They’re super easy to make. I believe they took about 15 minutes. It actually took longer to write out this blog post than to make the coasters.

You only need a few items and you can find it all at the craft store (including the branch slices). If you really want to cut your own coasters, go for it. I don’t own a saw, so I bought them instead.

wood branch coaster materials

Branch coaster materials

  • Felt stud
  • Branch slices
  • DecoColor gold leaf pen

 

polka dot branch coasters

diy-bottoms-up-branch-coaster

Step 1: design the coasters

Paint on your chosen design with the gold leaf DecoColor pen.

 

felt stubs on coasters

Step 2: protect your surfaces

Add 3-4 felt studs to the bottom of your branch coaster to protect the surface it will be sitting on.

 

DIY wood branch coasters

When you’re finished, you’ll have some fancy branch coasters to keep on your kitchen table or side tables. Or give them as gift!

I’ve not had any trouble with the coloring coming off, but if it’s something you’re concerned about, you can always use a waterproof sealer, just in case.

Be sure to check out the Emily’s and Erika’s wood crafts.

Let us know what you think!

 

 

DIY Grapefruit Candle Wax Melts

DIY Grapefruit Candle Wax Melts

I love candles. If you’ve followed me for a while, you probably know that already based on the amount of candle crafts I’ve made.

Although I enjoy burning candles, I don’t always enjoy the smokey smell, so occasionally I’ll use wax melts instead. You know, the little wax cubes that you put in wax burners?

I was looking at the melts I have and thought, those look so boring. They’re just boxes. With that, I decided to make my own prettier version. Any why not? They’re easy and I can choose any fragrance I want. Grapefruit has been my scent of choice lately, so I decided to stick with that.

Want to make your own? Keep reading.

 

DIY wax melt materials

Candle Wax Melts Materials

  • Stirrer
  • Soy wax
  • Measuring cup
  • Wax melting pot
  • Soap/candle mold
  • Grapefruit essential oil*

*You can get essential oils at The Vitamin Shoppe and online. I always buy mine from Amazon and almost always choose the Doterra brand. You can choose whatever you want.

 

soy wax

Step 1: measure the wax

Measure a little over a cup of wax and dump it into your melting pot.

 

candle making

Step 2: melt the wax

Set the melting pot on the burner and let the wax melt completely.

 

melted soy wax

Step 3: add the grapefruit oil

Move the melting pot off the burner to a cooler surface.

Shake in 20-30 drops of grapefruit oil, depending on your strength preference.

Stir.

 

flower-shaped wax melts

Step 4: mold the wax

Very carefully pour the melted wax into your flower mold.

Let it harden for about an hour before removing it.

 

grapefruit wax melts

Step 4: enjoy your flower melts

Pop your melts out of the mold and enjoy!

 

DIY Grapefruit Candle Wax Melts

These would make a great gift, too! Make a batch and gift them in a Mason jar with a bow. Or in a small burlap gift bag. That would be adorable!

What scent would you use? Let me know in the comments!

Hope you guys enjoyed the tutorial and, as always, if you make your own, I’d LOVE to see them!

 

 

 

DIY Stacked Beaded Earrings

The Craft Challenge

This blog post is part of The Craft Challenge! If you want to learn more or are interested in joining the challenge, send a message to Emily from A Pop of Red.

diy stacked beaded earrings

The February theme for  The Craft Challenge is beads, so I chose to make wire-wrapped earrings. I found the beads at Michael’s last week and thought they would look cute stacked on top of each other. They look kind of elegant, don’t they?

They’re easy to make, you can buy all of your materials in one location (which is always a plus for me) and making your own is less expensive than buying them.

beaded earring materials

Stacked Beaded Earring Materials

  • beads
  • bead caps
  • earring pins
  • earring hooks
  • round-nosed pliers

 

stacked beads

Step 1: Stack the beads

Stack your beads on the earring pin, with rounded beaded between the square beads.

 

earring-beads

wire wrappingwire loop for earrings

Step 2: Bend the wire

Using your pliers, twist the top of the pin into a circle and cut off the excess wire.

 

stacked beaded earrings

Step 3: Attach the earring hook

Attach the earring hook to the loop you just made.

 

diy stacked beaded earrings

Voilà! When you’re finished you have a new set of pretty earrings.

I’d love to know what you think. Leave your thoughts in the comments. 🙂

Be sure to check out the rest of the beaded craft projects in The Craft Challenge by visiting A Pop of Red and Eclectic Enchantments!

 

DIY Decorative Photo Frame

DIY decorative wood photo frame

Do you ever get tired of doing everything digitally? Sometimes I just want to read a physical book and print real photographs.

There’s something about holding pictures in your hand and smelling the pages of book. It’s a feeling and an appreciation you can’t get from a device. This week, I was in one of those moods.

For my birthday, a few months ago, a friend bought me a subscription to Groovebook, which is a photo subscription service. You download the app, upload the photos you want, and they print and send them to you. I think I’ve printed every image on my phone.

Now, what should I do with them?? I should share them, right? Yep, I’m going to hang them in my living room!

Want to make one?

materials for photo frames

DIY Photo Frame Materials

  • string
  • paint brushes
  • mini clothespins
  • acrylic wood-safe paint
  • hot glue gun (not pictured)
  • decorative wooden photo frame (Michael’s)

 

painted photo frame

Step 1: paint the frame

Paint both sides of your frame.

Let it dry.

 

strings for the photo frame

Step 2: measure the string

Stretch the string out to the size of your frame and cut 2 pieces (at the same length).

These will be adhered to the frame to hold up the photos.

 

hanging photo string

Step 3: adhere the strings

Hot glue the string to the frame. Hold the string while the glue dries if you don’t want the string to be floppy.

I know, it doesn’t look beautiful, but no one is going to see it. AND it will make a nice bumper between the frame and the wall.

 

DIY decorative wood photo frame

Step 4: photos and clothespins

Clothespin your photos to the string and you have yourself a cute photo frame!

 

You can hang your new decor in any room in your house or give it as a gift.

Tip: print your Instagram photos and hang them up!

I’d love to hear what you think!

Happy crafting!