Quick, Easy & Affordable Gift Baskets from Goodwill

tea basket


By Bernadette Noll 

Are you feeling a bit holi-dazed by all of your gift-giving obligations? Sometimes it’s difficult to stay in the Holiday Spirit when your list keeps growing, and spending seems to take on a life of its own. There are teachers to thank and mail carriers to acknowledge and co-workers and coaches and…well, the list can go on and on.

Just remember the focus of this season is joy and peace, not angst and worry. Here’s how to create amazing gift baskets for all the special people on your list, with just a little bit of effort and not a lot of money, using affordable Goodwill items!

Creating Your Gift Basket

To make it easier, start with a theme. I chose several easy ones, but there are no rules on this! It can be anything from games to kitchen to entertainment – you are only limited by your imagination. You can think of a theme then find items to go with it, start with an item and build around it, or match a theme to a particular person’s interests. There are endless types of gift baskets you can create, and endless types of baskets available at Goodwill.
And if you want to “think outside the basket,” Goodwill has many other vessels to hold small gift items.
red vasestins
Here are some things you’ll need, regardless of the gift basket you create:

  • Baskets – believe me, there are more baskets at Goodwill than you can possibly imagine! more baskets
  • Ribbon – you can find new or used ribbon at any Goodwill, or you can make your own yarn, using an old t-shirt and a pair of scissors. yarn, ribbin, yellow tshirt
  • Jars – a plethora at any Goodwill store! These are good for presenting items in a festive way, and give your basket a homemade flair.

Tea for One Basket

This simple basket is a good one for just about anyone on your list who enjoys the ritual of a cup of tea. And really, isn’t that just about everyone?
basket with tea, cup & goodwill gift card

  • Red basket from Goodwill: $1.99.
  • Handmade ceramic mug from Goodwill (hundreds to choose from!): $1.99. santa mugs
  • Tea strainer spoon from Goodwill: 99¢.
  • Candle from Goodwill & bag of 8 candles: $1.99 (enough for 8 baskets, so this cost less than a quarter!).
  • Small canning jar from Goodwill: 59¢.
  • Can of tea from a local market: $2.89. Usually I use bags, but the can bumps it up a notch.

Handwritten Basket

This themed basket is for that special someone who holds an appreciation for all things handwritten. Think: teachers, co-workers or maybe even your mail carrier! basket with stationary supplies

  • Red basket from Goodwill $1.99. There are literally dozens of baskets to choose from at each store.
  • Cards and envelopes from Goodwill $1.99 for a pack of 100 cards and envelopes. (I made sets of 10 and wrapped each individually with festive green t-shirt yarn.)pack of envelopes
  • Pens from Goodwill: $2.99 for a pack of 8.
  • Sketch pad from Goodwill: $1.99
  • Canning jar from Goodwill: 99¢ (wrapped with red ribbon from the holiday aisle).
  • Book of 10 Postage Stamps: $4.90
  • Goodwill gift card: available in any increment you want! A Goodwill gift card looks great in any basket you create!

So get creative, and focus on the joy of giving. Once you get started, you’ll have a hard time stopping! If you decide you don’t have time, you can give a Goodwill gift card. Everyone on your list will find something they love!

Happy gift giving!




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