Hampers, or gift baskets, are gifts that are easy to make and can be personalised to the recipient. You can make themed hampers, or hampers that include food and often the cost of putting together your own hamper is much cheaper then finding a pre-made hamper or alternative gift. Making your own hamper does not require creative ability, and is very simple to do.
Purchase the hamper container itself. The most common choice is a wicker basket, which gives the hamper a traditional look. These can be bought from most home decor stores, or gift shops, and some supermarkets. Choose a small basket for an individual hamper, and a larger hamper for a gift to a couple or family.
Prepare the hamper. This involves filling it with a material that fills the hamper, and holds the contents in position. Popular options include hamper straw, tissue paper or a folded up blanket that the recipient can keep. For Christmas hampers, you could also use tinsel. If you have spare materials, you could use these to decorate the outside of your hamper.
Choose a theme. You could pick a holiday theme, such as Christmas, or hobbies such as a movie hamper or a character-themed hamper, or an occasion such as a baby hamper. Consider the age of the recipient when choosing a theme, as some may not be suitable for younger children.
Buy the contents for the hamper. For a Christmas hamper, choose Christmas foods such as Christmas pudding, hot cocoa, Christmas cookies, gingerbread or alcohol. For children, you could use Christmas pyjamas. Movie hampers typically contain popcorn, films and soda, but you could also include tickets to a local cinema, a movie discount card, or movie candy. For a baby hamper, buy useful items such as diapers and soothers, bottles, wipes, towels, etc. alongside small gifts for the parents, such as baby-themed chocolate, a funny or serious parenting manual, or a subscription to a baby magazine.
Arrange the items in the hamper so the hamper looks full, and the contents look inviting. You may wish to add more filling to hold the items at different levels.
Cover the hamper in cellophane. Stand the hamper in the middle of a square of cellophane, and hold up the corners together. Tie a co-ordinating ribbon to hold into place.
Attach a tag to the cellophane stating who and/or what the hamper is for.
If you plan your hamper themes in advance, you can pick up items over an extended period, and spread the cost of the gift. You can usually purchase patterned cellophane from florists, which looks great.
Check the best before dates on any food items, to ensure they will be usable when they are received. Ensure any bottles or jars are securely cushioned by the filling to prevent damage.