Charlotte Hannah
December 07, 2012

6 Handmade Gifts for Your Guy That Aren’t Totally Lame

So, you want to give your boyfriend a handmade gift for Christmas, but you’re not quite sure what to make for him. Well, first thing’s first: whatever your reasons for going the handmade route (It’s cheap! It’s thoughtful! It’s authentic!), it’s important to keep in mind that some of the most popular handmade gifts are… well… super lame.

I mean, come on. Love coupons? A calendar featuring a different picture of your smiling mug for every month? A personalized pillow with Dreaming of You… written on it? Lame, lamer and lamest.

Photo credit: Apatow Productions

Here are six useful, customizable, thoughtful handmade gifts you can make for your boyfriend – no glitter glue or sickly sweet declarations of love required.

Pegboard Organizer

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Most of us could use a little help keeping our stuff organized, which makes this simple handmade gift perfect for just about any boyfriend. A painted pegboard organizer can be customized to accommodate whatever your boyfriend’s hobby is, whether he’s a handyman, a gamer or an expert Nerf-gun marksman. This foolproof pegboard tutorial from Queen Martha herself will give you a rundown on how to make a very simple one. From there, you can get creative by adding a sign at the top (“It’s dangerous to go alone. Take this!”) or by painting outlines around everything you hang on it.


Photo credit: Zeldalicious, Etsy

There are two types of people in this world: People who use coasters and people who violently abhor them (but will still politely use them when visiting other people’s homes). If your boyfriend falls into the former category (or you’re trying to passive aggressively convert him), why not make him a personalized set of coasters? Since a coaster is basically just a flattish square or circle made of just about any material, the sky’s the limit when it comes to designing them. Try using bathroom tiles and photos, or even bottle caps.

Etched beer glasses

Your boyfriend loves beer. You love your boyfriend. Why not commemorate both of these things by making him a set of etched beer glasses? Making etched designs on glass is way easier than it seems – all you need is some etching cream and a simple design, and you’re good to go. Make him a beer glass with a funny phrase, a video game character or a cool design on it.

Coffee cozy

This one requires a bit of previously acquired skill to make, but if you know how to knit or crochet, it’s a quick, easy gift that will see plenty of use. A handmade coffee cozy is the perfect gift for the eco-conscious (or just really stylish) coffee or tea-drinker in your life. Make one in his favorite color, add a few fancy buttons and voila! He’ll think of you every day when he gets his morning coffee.

Paracord bracelet

If your beloved is the sporty, outdoorsy type, a handmade Paracord bracelet is a practical gift he’ll be grateful for – and if he ever finds himself in a wilderness situation where he needs to use it to construct a shelter or replace a broken shoelace, you’ll be grateful too! A Paracord bracelet is also a cinch to make. All you really need is some Paracord, a lighter and those macrame skills you honed in middle school.

Food in a Jar

Food mix in a jar is the perfect thing to make for a guy who enjoys a home-cooked meal but maybe isn’t the most accomplished chef. It’s so simple, so ingenious and so easy to customize. To make this gift, all you’ll need is a nice jar with a well-fitting lid, and all the dry ingredients for a recipe. (You can find a pretty comprehensive list of “in a jar” recipes here.) Layer all the ingredients in the jar, print off a label with the full recipe and cooking instructions, and you’ve got yourself a gift your boyfriend’s sure to love. What was that they said about the way to a man’s heart again?