Birthday gift ideas on a budget.

Are there some months where you feel as though all you do is buy birthday cards and gifts for friends and family members? It can get quite expensive, can’t it?

Well, with money being quite tight at the moment, I’ve been looking for ways I can still go all out for someone’s birthday but without spending a fortune (if much at all!).

Here’s how to do birthdays on a budget.

1. Make Your Own Gifts

Often, it’s the thought that counts with birthday presents – at least, it should be. That’s why I’ve started finding ways to make my own gifts for loved ones. Whether you bake a cake for your cupcake-loving bestie or you put together a compilation CD for your hubby, there are so many ways you can make heartfelt gifts for next to nothing. Even something as simple as writing a poem or putting together a photo album can boast so much more sentimentality than a bought gift. And if you’re feeling particularly creative, why not have a go at making your own smellies, e.g. soap? Go to Pinterest for some great ideas of gifts to make from home. Sometimes gifts that are made from home are the best because it means that you thought about it and you have made something special that nobody else will have.

2. Buy Affordable Birthday Cards

One area where you can really splash the cash is birthday cards. With some exceeding £5, that’s a heck of a lot of money for a solitary piece of card! That’s why I look to places like the Card Factory for affordable options that still have just as much elegance and style – and cost less than half the price of most other options. Another great tip is to order a bulk of these birthday cards at once. You could plan ahead so you buy everyone’s birthday cards for the month, or buy some general ones so you’ve always got some handy (that way, you’ll never miss another birthday again!). Sometimes Card Factory have a sale and you can pick up 10 cards for £1, that is the way to go card shopping!

3. Give Someone an I-O-U

While you don’t want to disappoint someone by not giving them something to open, you can give yourself more time to get some money together by offering them an I-O-U. It doesn’t have to be as tragic as an I-can’t-afford-to-buy-you-something-yet memo, but could be a handmade token with a date night for two on a specific date, a meal for two next month, a trip to the cinema on the date of their choice – the possibilities are endless. By going the extra mile to put together a nice gift voucher or token, it means they’re opening a wonderful gift and it gives them (and you!) something to look forward to. Don’t feel stingy if you can’t afford to splash out on birthday cards and gifts. In fact, I think, by enlisting the help of these aforementioned tips, you’ll actually get much better reactions to your well-thought-out presents. You can also decorate a jar, write lots of I-O-U's on to love heart shape hearts that you can give to someone and then they get to choose a heart for the I-O-U.

Host Your Own Party

When you have a party, host it yourself as part of a birthday gift for your friend or loved one. You can easily do this by choosing a theme and getting everyone else to follow it. Have some fun things like a candy floss machine that you can hire at a reasonable cost or make your own waffles with a commercial waffle maker. This could also become a bit of a sideline to make some extra cash because you can use it to make and sell waffles on special days and fetes.