Making gift baskets is a great way to give personalized gifts that don’t break your budget. You don’t need to be a pro to create a luxurious-looking gift basket that will impress your friends or bring in the most money at your PTA raffle.
Here’s our step-by-step gift basket making process, from the materials you’ll need to some common themes you can follow. You’ll soon have an inexpensive gift basket that looks like a million bucks.
Materials for Making a Gift Basket
You’ll need more than a basket and tissue paper to make inexpensive gift baskets that look expensive. In fact, the key to making your gift basket look good is in the smaller details. Here’s what you’ll need:
- A container: It doesn’t need to be a basket! Head to your nearest dollar store and see what you can find. Large glass jars, garden planters, and metal tubs are all great, especially if they fit your theme.
- Shredded tissue paper: You’ll use this to fill the bottom of your basket and around your items.
- Cellophane: This can be a great finishing touch, especially if you’re selling your baskets or making them for charity.
- Ribbon: A fancy bow can make all the difference.
- Small jars and containers: Put store-bought items, like jam, seasonings, bubble bath, and lotions, into new containers with hand-written labels.
- The gift items: These will depend on your theme. We cover some creative ideas for making gift baskets
DIY Gift Basket Ideas
There are endless gift basket possibilities, from coffee to baking to ice cream parties. Here are a few of the most popular gift basket ideas:
- Spa gift basket: Include bath bombs, bubble bath, foot soak, face mask, loofah, scented candles, and relaxing music.
- Baby shower gift basket: Include wipes, swaddle blankets, burp cloths, baby soap and lotion, a book, baby socks and slippers, and rubber duckies.
- Candy gift basket: Choose a theme and go with it! Try a fun ’80s or ’90s theme, classic candy bars, sour candies, or old-fashioned chocolate.
- Lottery ticket gift basket: Include some snacks and coffee in addition to an assortment of lottery tickets.
Putting Together Your Gift Basket
Now you need to put it all together. Here’s how to make a gift basket in 5 easy steps.
1. Set Up Your Work Area
Any large table will do. Gather all your supplies listed above, plus scissors, tape, and a good marker. Transfer your store-bought items into individual jars, and add hand-written labels. Arrange all your items by size, and you’re ready to get started.
2. Line Your Gift Basket
One of the best tips for making gift baskets is to line the basket with tissue paper. Place the tissue around the inside of the basket so it’s completely covered, then add shred. Fill the basket to just below the rim, with enough shred that the tissue paper doesn’t move. If you’re not using a basket, just add shred! For larger baskets, put a small cardboard box at the bottom to help lift your items, then cover it in tissue paper and shred.
3. Add Your Items
Place any medium-height, sturdy item in the center—this is your “centerpiece.” Behind that, place any larger or taller items, and put other medium-height items to the sides. Tall items can also go on the sides, if you have a lot of them. Your smallest and shortest things go in the front. Fill in any gaps with shred, or use a small amount of glue to secure everything and help your gifts stand tall.
4. Wrap Your Gift Basket
If you can find a cellophane bag that fits your basket, that’s the easiest option. Just lower the basket in and tie the bag at the top. To cut cellophane to size, roll it out on the table and center your basket on it. Cut a piece that is three times larger than your basket. Pull the long sides of the cellophane together at the top of the basket as tightly as you can and tape it. Close the sides by pulling the flaps to the bottom of the basket and taping them in place.
5. Add a Bow
This is where you’ll need your ribbon and floral wire. Making bows takes practice, and is detailed. If you’re wondering how to make a bow for a gift basket, check out our course Start Your Own Gift Basket Business. And if you’re making gift baskets to sell, our small business courses like Creating a Successful Business Plan and Start Your Own Small Business are helpful, too.