Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Big/Little Crafts & Gifts
Don't totally bust your budget on expensive sorority crafting and gift buying. You can be sweet on sorority savings with these cost saving tips.......
• Save on Big/Little Gifting •
- Shop discount! Depending on your campus location, and your transportation options, never pay full retail. Buy “name brands for less” for every occasion. Purchase individual bits and pieces and then enhance them with your special touch. Or, gather a collection of items with a unifying color theme. You can create A-list gifts at lower prices. Marshall’s, TJ Maxx, Ross, Big Lots, Tuesday Morning and Home Goods (for example) all have goodies that you can work with and customize for your sorority.
- Build a craft supply box! Buying supplies, using them once and then throwing the excess away, is the most expensive way to go. And wasteful. But if you buy paint, glue, and jewels and keep them for next time - you will really save money. Space is limited, so share your craft storage with your roommate. Or keep a craft bin under your desk/bed.
- Duplicate gifts! Create the same type of gift for twin littles, but use alternate colors. For example - paint one picture frame pink & green and the other one green & pink. That way, each little gets an individual gift, but you are economically using the same paints. Buy candy in bulk, and give one gift in a blue bag and one in a gold bag. Share supplies, but tweak them, to make each gift unique.
- Larger quantities save money! It’s cheaper to buy a jumbo spool of ribbon, than a small specialty roll. Same holds true for glitter and other supplies. Go in with your roommate, or other sisters, to share the cost of larger sized supplies. But make sure one sister doesn’t use more than her fair share.
- Watch the pricy packaging! You can craft a picture frame and then spend more on the gift bag and bow than the entire gift costs. Regular gift boutique packaging is a lot more expensive than you think. Get creative with decorating solid colored bags from Michael’s, or buy inexpensive gift wrap from a discount store. Flowers, rhinestones, or photos glued to the front of a brightly colored paper gift bag is instantly cute. And it saves a lot of money.
- Shop online! There are paper goods and craft supply mega stores online that will give you cheaper options, especially if you buy in bulk. I have bought crinkly “shreds” for gift baskets, but they come in a really big box. If all the bigs/littles share, it could save everyone money. For ribbons, cello bags, boxes and other general gift supplies, buy in bulk. It really saves cash.
- Photos go a long way! Take an inexpensive picture frame, fill with your sisterhood photos, and it looks like a million bucks. Collage with photos, make a photo banner, mod podge a pin box with photos, decorate wood letters with photos, make photo pillows, make photo key fobs, order photo iphone cases, etc… Pictures always completely disguise the plain base product and they are cheap to work with. An instant keepsake!
- Stalk the sorority gift websites! Browse the online greek stores in search of inspiration and then create your own version for less. Etsy, Tumblr and Pinterest are also a good sources for gift inspiration. Instead of purchasing, DIY the painted wine glasses or sorority coasters you like so much.
- Think food! If you shop carefully, food gifts can be inexpensive and loved by all. Make cookies, rice crispy treats, no-bake mini pies, or cupcakes. Write a recipe book of your favorite treats or favorite drink mixes. Buy dorm friendly snacks, or candy in bulk, and then re-package them in a really cute way. Buy candy at deep discount after big holidays like Halloween and Christmas. Make a foodie kit for your littles. For example: give the ingredients to make s'mores, flavored popcorn, or an ice cream sundae.
- Give from the heart! Write a poem and frame it as a gift. Shoot a funny, heartfelt video. Create a big sister “little black book” with all your favorite restaurants, best delivery food, favorite smoothies, best bar, fun places to go, top things to do, favorite nightclubs, etc. Include all your best recommendations for your college town. Paint a picture, sing a sentimental song, write a song and play it on your guitar or the piano, perform a solo dance. Whatever your unique talent is, give it from your heart, it will be the best gift of all!