Stocking Filler Ideas - Christmas Shouldn't Cost the Earth

This week I decided to look at Stocking Filler ideas for 

I had planned to do a round up of lots of stocking filler ideas that I'd found. There are so many great handmade ideas out there for small gifts. 
But then something happened that made me stop and think a little more about what I was doing. There are so many round ups of ideas out there and I want to look at things differently - to think a little more about the whole idea of gift giving!

So, I was thinking about the novelty gifts we get at Christmas time, and wanted to show an example of a bought one - then show a handmade alternative - one that is more eco and budget friendly!

I got a game out of our cupboard that I knew we'd had for a while.
We got this a few Christmases ago. I've seen the range of these games in the shops - simple, traditional games that have been 'modernised' and packaged up prettily as a novelty gift.
Inside there are plastic football boots to put on your fingers, small plastic balls, plastic straws, small plastic strips to fix together to make goals and mini plastic goalies. That's a lot of little plastic bits!

When I got this game out to photograph the contents of the box, I lifted out the insert and found a mini packet of special cereal - Shreddies, that we get sent out from the UK every now and again as a treat (you can't buy it here in Australia!).
This packet of Shreddies was 5 years out of date!
(my parents like to use every bit of space when posting things from the UK as it can be expensive! In case you're wondering why there was cereal in a game box!)
Which means that we got this novelty Football game gift over 5 years ago...and have never played it!  A fun gift that we probably were happy to get at Christmas time and said it would be fun to play - but it has since sat in the cupboard, unopened. And as a result we've missed out on a bowl of tasty cereal too!

This made me think more about novelty Christmas gifts. I have to admit that love them. I like the over the top gifts and excess of Christmas - a time when we have silly and fun gifts, too much rich food and a generally decadent time. But how can we do this but still be eco and budget friendly? Of course anything hand-made  most likely fits the bill - but in particular, I want to find alternatives to the store bought novelty gifts.

So - I thought about this football game gift in particular and thought about how I could make a better alternative.
After all - just recently at our younger daughter's birthday party we had a game not unlike this one - using straws we had in the drawer, corks with blue tack to hold them in place and jaffas (chocolate sweets). It cost nothing but was awesome fun!

Then I remembered that as a kid - our Sunday lunches were always spent eating as a family at our dining table all nicely set up with a tasty Sunday Roast dinner.  For dessert we used to have chocolate biscuits. My favourite was a KitKat - which used to be wrapped in foil under its red wrapper.  After we'd all eaten, the foil was scrunched up into a ball and we'd flick them across the table, using the salt and pepper pots as goal posts - playing our own kind of table football.

So here's my Eco and Budget friendly Novelty Stocking Filler Gift:

The Original Table Football Penalty Shootout

I printed the following instructions on a piece of scrap paper:

Cut it out and stuck it to a piece of scrap card.

I wrapped a couple of home made cookies in foil

Then wrapped them all up, tied a ribbon around it an attached the label.

No little plastic bits. Home made cookies which would be eaten for sure and not left in the cupboard. And the game itself is part of the packaging - so you're encouraged to play the silly game when you eat the cookies rather than put it away for another time......years later!!
(And since it's Fathers Day in a couple of days time here in Australia - my girls now have a ready made gift for Dad!...shhh!!)

What do you think? Would you give a novelty gift like this? Or would you prefer the store bought one with all the coloured plastic bits?

So there you have my story about starting to look at Eco and Budget friendly stocking fillers.

No round up of lots of ideas this time - more thought about novelty gifts that are cost nothing except supplies you have on hand!

Two other stocking filler ideas I shared this week are:

Perfect for giving money or gift cards in! Tutorial here.

Novelty game in a little travel bag. Tutorial here.

Even if if was one of those games that sat in the cupboard (which hopefully it wouldn't be) - it cost nothing to make and has no little plastic parts!

There are endless stocking filler and small gift ideas out there - so rather than restrict them to one week, I'm going to add at least one new Eco and Budget Friendly Stocking Filler idea each week.

If you have your own ideas to add - then please do let me know with a comment plus link, or an email. Closer to Christmas I will do a couple of round up posts with lots of ideas together - so if you've like your ideas included in this, just let me know!

I've also created a 

where anyone can come and be a contributor and pin ideas for an eco and budget friendly Christmas.  Please do join us and pin away as many ideas as you like - it's all good inspiration!

1 comment:

  1. Wow. Starting early. Great ideas! Come link them up with us at SHARE IT 27 (


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