The holidays are a great time of year, bringing family and friends together to express their love and create happy memories. They can also bring financial stress for many people. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, consumers, on average,  expect to pay $1,530 on gifts, travel and entertainment during the 2023 holidays. This is a 7% increase over the 2022 season.

If you’re worried about having enough money to cover your holiday expenses, know that with a little creativity and time, you can still enjoy the holiday spirit and exchange gifts without putting yourself into debt.

Pinterest, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube have hundreds of DIY gift ideas and instructions on how to create them. When thinking up gift ideas, make sure you play to your strengths—if you’re good at baking, whip up a batch of your specialty and give those out as gifts. If you’re good at building websites, offer that service to a new entrepreneur in the family. The most cherished gifts are thoughtful ones; those that show how well you know that person.

Here are a few more DIY gift ideas:

  • Gift basket – Fill a small box or basket with scented bath salts, chocolate, a bath pillow…whatever you think might be perfect for the person it’s intended for.
  • Christmas Tree ornaments and decorations – You can cross stitch, carve, paint, or Sculpey personalized ornaments for your favorite people or create holiday decorations for the home.
  • Coasters – You can make them out of tile, wood or even crochet them. Add an image or favorite saying the recipient will enjoy.
  • Candles – With a few simple items available at any craft store, you can create your own scented candles in a jar.
  • Certificate for a service – Offer your talents as a gift, like giving a few guitar lessons, free babysitting or cooking dinner.

Creating gifts can become a family activity as well, enabling you to pass on your talents to other family members.

If you’ve never made gifts before, try it this year. You’ll have more fun and less financial stress.