Host a DIY Christmas Gift Exchange Party



<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="This winter, throw a Christmas gift exchange party for your squad. Ditch the traditional white elephant game and exchange DIY Christmas gifts with those you love most. Gather a group of friends or loved ones and invite them to create a craft or gift for everyone; let guests know ahead of time how many people will be attending and ask them to bring that number of items so every person leaves with one of everything.” data-reactid=”11″>This winter, throw a Christmas gift exchange party for your squad. Ditch the traditional white elephant game and exchange DIY Christmas gifts with those you love most. Gather a group of friends or loved ones and invite them to create a craft or gift for everyone; let guests know ahead of time how many people will be attending and ask them to bring that number of items so every person leaves with one of everything.

The party setup

While a gift-exchange party doesn’t require a lot of set up, consider preparing an area for each guest to lay out their contributions. A large bench or table gives your guests space to display their projects. Part of the fun of this party is learning about your friends’ hidden talents admiring their sewing, painting or recipe-making skills, so make sure there’s enough room to display each guests’ creations. Once you’ve cleared an area for the gifts, prepare a potluck-ready food table, set out an ice bucket for cold drinks, hit play on your Christmas playlist and wait for guests to arrive.

Don’t forget to prepare your own gift for the exchange. Our free printable gift tags make it easy to designate a recipient for each craft you make—and helps you make sure you have one for everyone!

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Get the free gift tags” data-reactid=”22″>Get the free gift tags

Holiday hosting made easy

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="This is one Christmas party that isn't necessarily a case of the more the merrier. Since guests will need to create a project for everyone, think of 10-15 as a cutoff. You'll also need to send out invitations about a month early to give your friends and family plenty of time to create their gifts. We love the idea of sending a paper invite, but online resources can be helpful in organizing a Christmas gift exchange. To find a date that works for the most people, send everyone a Doodle link and have them select the times they’re available. Once you’ve found a day and time that works for your squad, send out our adorable Christmas party invitations—it’s free and easy to download, print and pop in the mail! ” data-reactid=”31″>This is one Christmas party that isn’t necessarily a case of the more the merrier. Since guests will need to create a project for everyone, think of 10-15 as a cutoff. You’ll also need to send out invitations about a month early to give your friends and family plenty of time to create their gifts. We love the idea of sending a paper invite, but online resources can be helpful in organizing a Christmas gift exchange. To find a date that works for the most people, send everyone a Doodle link and have them select the times they’re available. Once you’ve found a day and time that works for your squad, send out our adorable Christmas party invitations—it’s free and easy to download, print and pop in the mail! 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Get the free invitations!” data-reactid=”32″>Get the free invitations!

Declare it a potluck

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Since you'll be busy making your DIY Christmas gifts, turn this gift exchange party into a potluck! Ask each guest to bring a dish, snack or drink to the party along with their handmade gifts. To organize your guest list and potluck contributions, we use SignUp it’s a free (and super easy) service that will make sure your party runs as smoothly as possible. When guests arrive with their food and drink, let them add a festive note to the Christmas party food table by laying down a long piece of butcher paper and having each guest doodle around their dish. Add embellishments, words or write out the ingredients—this is also a great place to indicate which items are allergy- and gluten-free!” data-reactid=”43″>Since you’ll be busy making your DIY Christmas gifts, turn this gift exchange party into a potluck! Ask each guest to bring a dish, snack or drink to the party along with their handmade gifts. To organize your guest list and potluck contributions, we use SignUp it’s a free (and super easy) service that will make sure your party runs as smoothly as possible. When guests arrive with their food and drink, let them add a festive note to the Christmas party food table by laying down a long piece of butcher paper and having each guest doodle around their dish. Add embellishments, words or write out the ingredients—this is also a great place to indicate which items are allergy- and gluten-free!

Mix it up

Every party needs a drink table, and we’re totally loving this setup! We created two delicious cocktails—a pom-ginger cocktail and a beer smash—along with an adorable poster that includes the recipes. Posting the recipes at the cocktail station means guests can mix drinks themselves so you can spend less time bartending and more time enjoying the evening. Both of these cocktails are session drinks, which means they’re low-alcohol, big-flavor sippers. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Get the free cocktail poster” data-reactid=”53″>Get the free cocktail poster

Gift idea: Cookie butter

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="This fun Christmas gift idea is perfect for anyone who enjoys baking and crafting. Whip up one of our favorite cookie butter recipes and use our free printable tag to dress up the container. Add a dip-dyed wooden spoon to each jar for an extra special touch. ” data-reactid=”62″>This fun Christmas gift idea is perfect for anyone who enjoys baking and crafting. Whip up one of our favorite cookie butter recipes and use our free printable tag to dress up the container. Add a dip-dyed wooden spoon to each jar for an extra special touch. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Get the free tags” data-reactid=”63″>Get the free tags

Gift idea: DIY wrapping paper

Consider giving a practical (and fun) craft at this gift exchange. If you host the party earlier in the season, guests will most likely have some gift wrapping to do still. We’re obsessed with how cute this scrape-paint paper is, and a large roll of it makes a great gift before the holidays. All you have to do is drop dots of acrylic paint across the surface of your paper and use a plastic ruler as a squeegee to pull the paint from top to bottom, creating a flat abstract look. You can use large sheets of paper, or purchase a roll of plain white paper and cut lengths of gift wrap for each guest. Let the paper dry before rolling individual sets of DIY wrapping paper. 

 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Learn how to make scrape-paint paper.” data-reactid=”74″>Learn how to make scrape-paint paper.

Gift idea: Match strikers

We love burning candles in the cold winter months, so these adorable match striker jars make a perfect Christmas gift exchange idea. Purchase a set of matching jars, or head to your local thrift store to find a unique glass container for every guest. Use painters’ tape to create a striped pattern around the glass, and spray with a mix of paints. We used Krylon Looking Glass spray paint for a mirrorlike finish and rose gold then wrapped around 2-inch wide strips of self-adhesive striker paper to finish the project. For safety’s sake, keep matches in their box until the guests take them home.

Gift idea: Tote bags

Your guests are going to need a way to get their gifts home at the end of the night. As the party host, consider making these DIY tote bags as your gift contribution. We made these gorgeous bags using a Japanese style of embroidery called Sashiko. It involves using a running stitch to make repeating lines that form a cohesive design; we dyed plain tote bags mustard and used thick indigo thread to stitch on the repeating circular design. Use our free pattern to get the same look, and use transfer paper to easily add the design to your bag so you’ll know exactly where to stitch. If you’re not much of a sewer, you can get the look by tracing the design on to your bag with a fine-tip fabric marker. 

 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Get the tote pattern” data-reactid=”94″>Get the tote pattern

Gift idea: Clothespin doll ornaments

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Making personalized, meaningful gifts for each guest doesn't have to be difficult or time-consuming. With wood clothespins, wood beads, and felt you can create an adorable ornament for everyone attending the party. They're so easy to make, you can give each guest an ornament that looks like them, or create their whole family in just minutes. Our easy tutorial has all the instructions you need for this DIY gift idea, along with free downloadable patterns to make felt clothing. ” data-reactid=”103″>Making personalized, meaningful gifts for each guest doesn’t have to be difficult or time-consuming. With wood clothespins, wood beads, and felt you can create an adorable ornament for everyone attending the party. They’re so easy to make, you can give each guest an ornament that looks like them, or create their whole family in just minutes. Our easy tutorial has all the instructions you need for this DIY gift idea, along with free downloadable patterns to make felt clothing. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Learn how to make the clothespin doll ornaments.” data-reactid=”104″>Learn how to make the clothespin doll ornaments.

Gift idea: Seed packets and plant markers

It’s easy to run out of indoor activities to do while you’re stuck inside during the cold winter months. We love the idea of gifting each guest an indoor gardening kit so they can grow herbs or plants indoors while they wait for spring to arrive. To make the seed packets, cut a piece of colorful cardstock that measures twice the length of your seed packet (about 10”x3 ½”). Fold it in half, then cut a tag from a 3”x4” piece of cardstock in another color and use a crafts knife to cut two horizontal slits in the center of the paper. Layer the tag over the folded pouch so it aligns with the left side, and use a sewing machine to stitch around the three open sides of the packet, sealing it off and connecting the tag. Make sure to drop your seeds inside before completely sewing shut the packet! Slide a plant marker with the type of the seeds stamped on it through the slots of the paper tag. To make your own tags, use air-dry modeling clay. Roll a 6-inch clay coil and flatten with a rolling pin so it’s ¼” thick. Trim a point with a butter knife and stamp herb name at the other end. Let dry for 24 hours before adding any craft paint designs then seal the paint with a glossy clear coat like Mod Podge.

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