Christmas Present Shopping on a Budget

hey there,

A few days ago I asked my friends what to write about for this blogpost after snapchatting them about my successful Christmas present shop.. so this was their answer. It's not even December, but I'm 85% done with my Christmas shopping for this year. Seeing as I don't have to buy anyone Sinterklaas presents - I can just enjoy all the chocolade pepernoten my mom has sent me- I was able to just focus on Christmas this year. Usually Christmas is a very expensive ordeal, but seeing as I have a balloon payment due before and just after Christmas I could not allow myself to go all out. Luckily I didn't need to as I found some really good presents that I'm sure my friends and family will appreciate.

I know shopping for Christmas presents can be hella stressful, and I've been out there on the 24th. But I've sworn never to go there ever again, so I devised a strategy to combat the pre-christmas stress. Are you struggling with your presents? Let me share some of my tips

  1. Make a list.
    As I have a small budget this year, I had to filter out who to buy for and who not to buy for. I don't have a big family anyway so I just stuck to the small circle of people I usually celebrate with: my mom, aunt, and grandma. If it turns out I am celebrating with more family members, there's always the "Here's typical English food enjoy!" option. It's thoughtful enough to pass as a present, but cheap enough that it won't break the bank. As for friends: I have a group of friends that I just can't filter out so instead I just lowered the budget and split it equally between them. This way you don't have to disappoint yourself, or your friends. 
  2. Start early.
    Unlike papers, I start Christmas shopping well in advance. After making my list, I didn't necessarily start looking for presents, I just happened upon them in the shops and the things I saw reminded me of people. This is shit advice, but what I'm trying to say is that the earlier you start the less stress you have. The list of people you made will be with you unconsciously, so when you're shopping and you see something nice your brain might make that connection to one of the receivers. Plus, there's some pretty sweet deals on at the moment, try to use Black Friday or Cyber Monday to your advantage.
  3. Pick one.
    When buying for friends and family, pick one attribute that you want to play in to. What do they like, what are their hobbies, what do you like most about them? That's some of the questions I asked, answered, and then bought gifts according to those attributes. It's okay to go for the obvious gift too. There's no rule for christmas presents that says it has to be original or else you will be unfriended. Say, for example, you have someone who likes pandas, coffee, and makeup. There's plenty of places to find panda mugs, panda lip balm, or nice stationary. 
  4. Shop online.
    Besides getting someone pajamas (if you know their size!!), clothing sites like ASOS, New Look, or Boohoo have started selling some really good and affordable quirky gifts. And what's even nicer is that you don't have to leave the house for them. Some websites even have gift wrapping options, which saves you even more hassle. Other good websites are Amazon,, or all have fast delivery, good deals, and a return policy. Do some digging.
  5. Wrapping.
    It has nothing to do with the present but nice or funny wrapping paper really helps to 'elevate' the present. I bought the cat-in-christmas-hats wrapping paper from Primark for 90 cents. It's a cute start to a present that I'm sure your loved ones will appreciate. If you're desperate just wrap yourself in the stuff and put a bow on top. I'm sure everyone would love to receive you as a gift. 
If all else fails...
If you really can't find any store bought thing that fits your friend's/ family member's personality, or if they're someone who answer "nothing" to the what-do-you-want-for-Christmas-question, then you have two options really: make/bake something yourself, or gift them an experience. The latter sounds very expensive, but experience doesn't necessarily mean you have to take them skydiving. Take them out for coffee and treat them to their favorite Toffee Nut Latte (but a bigger size to show them you love the most). Coffee, lunch, shopping date; these all work as "replacement" Christmas gifts. I know I'd love it. Your other option is to make/bake something yourself. It's pretty self explanatory: maybe you make really good carrot cake, or are great at editing photos, so surprise your gift receiver with one of your many talents. 

I hope this was helpful, if it wasn't watch some gift guides on YouTube like those of Fleur De Force, she does many different ones. I'm sorry I couldn't share what I've actually bought, but some of you who read this have presents awaiting and I don't want to spoil it. I hope your Christmas shopping goes alright. Don't stress it too much, if they don't like it they won't say it to your face anyway.

- Y. 


  1. Yep I'm going Christmas shopping as soon as Ome DUO graces me with his money <3
    And I defo need to hunt down some cute wrapping paper!!

    1. Ome DUO supplying thousands of students with christmas paper. I promise I'll wrap your gift in the paper <3