7 gift ideas for using your favorite photos
Anyone have those family members who seem to have everything already, and you never know what to get them for birthdays or holidays or Christmas? When I was younger I used to craft and hand make gifts for these people on my list, but in the season of life I am currently in I don't have much time for that. The idea is to give a gift they would not or could not purchase for themselves. Using your family or child's photos is a great way to give family members an item that is unique and special to them without breaking the bank or spending great amounts of time making from hand.
A lot of companies make it easy to upload and order unique and beautiful items to gift this holiday season. Here are some of my favorites...
** Photo blankets and pillows.
Last Christmas I gifted my in-laws a blanket with the photos of each of their grandkids on the blanket. They loved the gift and it makes for and fun and easy way to cuddle up and add a little extra to your everyday blanket. What I wasn't expecting is how much my one year old would love seeing her face and her cousins on a blanket. We laid it out on the floor and she would lay her face on her picture on the blanket. After mentioning it to our other family members how much she loved this blanket my husband's cousin told me she had the genius idea of getting each of her 4 sons their own blanket with their pictures on it. The thought hadn't occured to me because I probably wouldn't be found owning a blanket with my face repeating all over it but kids loved their special blankey being "theirs". If you have multiple children this makes it easy to tell who's blanket belongs to who, and kids love seeing their own photos. So you can believe that this year my daughter will be getting a blanket with her face all over it. Another great idea could be a blanket for a sports mom or grandma with their little athlete on them for those outdoor events that get chilly. Or maybe a class or team photo for that favorite coach or teacher.
After searching through different products and sites, I ended up ordering ours from snapfish.com They offer a variety of sizes and different styles of blankets and pillows, and they tend to typically offer sales and specials so that you can get a quality product for an affordable price. If you're on side that lacks creativity they also have a bunch of pre-made designs that will make for a beautiful blanket
*** The photo statuette.
Mpix has created these cute little beauties as a fun different way to display your favorite photos. This would make the perfect gift for someone who spends time working from a desk. A single person photo in a 5 X 7 starts at $16.99. What a great way to make the work day go by with a few more smiles.
Are you or your family members a sucker for tradition? What about an annual photo ornament for your tree so that over the years you can see your families growth on the tree, and laugh about past outfits and hairdos while decorating the tree as a family. Shutterfly has some very easy to make and beautifully designed metal ornaments and you can make one for FREE... yep FREE, you just pay for the shipping. These also make for a great way to take your Christmas wrapping to another level. A simple package turns into wow factor with a photo ornament embellishing the top. To start designing your free metal ornament click this link here.
This is my classic everyone knows they're getting one gift. My mom, mother-in-law, husband and sister all get a coffee cup with my kids silly photos on them every year. They are a staple gift and as we accumulate more coffee cups I find myself using those more than my ones that match our dishes set. I love starting the day with a visual reminder of my "why". Drinking my coffee with those little faces staring back at me reminds me not only of "why" I work, hustle, and keep driving for success but also the "why" I need more than one cup of coffee!
This one is great for the person with the big family. Photo calendars are by no means a new thing. It has been pretty simple in the past to upload some photos and have a calendar at no time. If you have someone in mind who would love a photo calendar I would push you one step further and do them a favor and include all your family member's birthdays and anniversaries on that calendar. Its that extra special touch that shows you went the extra mile on this gift for them. I like using mixbook.com for our calendar for the ability to fill in the date boxes of the calendar and mixbook is very easy to use design wise to get your product just the way you like it.
Do you have a jewelry lover on your gift list, but don't necessarily have the budget to meet their tastes? Photo Jewelry is an excellent way to give them something they will love. Just replace precious gems and stones with precious photos on their jewelry pieces. A bunch of different sites offer jewelry pieces, you can look at shutterfly, things remembered, and snapfish. The pieces I fell in love with this year is this silverplate photo necklaces from snapfish and a traditional photo locket done in a new way by this etsy shop. I made this one from snapfish. I love the idea of using a candid photo of a moment or memory instead of a smiling face. It makes it a little more subtle and easier than wearing a necklace for each of the kids ;)
*** Paint by number art from a photograph. This is my newbie this year for me. I’m excited to give it a try. This is the gift for the creative in your life. Who finds painting relaxing and not a burden. This site (and others out there) offers you to upload an image and they will create a paint by number style canvas with the appropriate color paints for someone to complete. The subject of the art is up to you. Is the gift receiver a dog lover? Do they have a favorite beach or vacation place? Maybe a painting of an old photo to show old memories in a new way? Opportunities are endless with this one.
***A family photo session.
Maybe you're thinking yes these gifts are cute but I don't have the images! Giving the gift of a photo session with a photographer local to your family member or friend is a great way to give them a gift that will last longer than just the holiday months. This is also perfect for grandparent gifts! I often hear that grandparents want images with their grandkids but don't want to make it a hassle for their kids to make that happen. For some families, booking a professional photographer can be time consuming and out of the budget. Ask your favorite local photographer if they offer gift certificates. If so wrap it up with a nice picture frame and voila done. Who knows maybe they’ll gift you something from the list above with their final product.
The point is you will never go wrong with a photo gift because the item is a memory or a frozen moment that speaks to their heart. I would love to know if any of you have received a photo gift that you truly treasure? Or have you gifted any photo gift items that were a huge hit?! Do share!