Following from my recent post about beer hampers I was asked by a friend if I could put together a homemade Christmas beer hamper for around £40. First of all I wanted to see what was available in the way of ready-made hampers so I went online and did a search for ‘beer hampers’. There were lots of people selling beer hampers and gift baskets with prices ranging from as little as £20 right up to £80. Clearly further investigation was needed.
On closer inspection I found that many of the cheaper hampers were little more than tiny gift baskets with one or two bottles of beer in them. On the other hand, the expensive items were more like traditional food hampers with a few bottles of beer thrown in. In fact, nearly all of the hampers I looked at for under £40 had no more than 3 or 4 bottles of beer in them. With that in mind I decided to see if I could put together a DIY hamper that would have at least 6 bottles of beer in it as well as looking fantastic. Here is what I came up with…
This beer drinker’s Christmas hamper is a great place to start in putting together your own hamper. It has 6 bottles of beer and everything you need to make the hamper look fantastic. The total cost was about £34 at the time, leaving £6 left for a few bags of peanuts, pork scratchings or whatever else you fancy putting in it. Obviously these prices are subject to change, but it shows what you can do when you go for homemade over shop-bought hampers.
Food hampers are traditional Christmas gifts that always go down well with friends and family. In fact, they are appreciated so much that making them has become part of my annual Christmas routine. These days nearly everyone is mad on cookery programs and recipe books, so it isn’t surprising that food related presents are a big hit. People are becoming more aware of exotic ingredients and artisan products but they rarely get the chance to go out and buy them. That’s why food hampers are such a great present. In giving your loved ones a selection of tasty treats, you are giving them a bit of luxury and decadence that might otherwise pass them by.
Homemade Christmas Hamper with packaging by DIY Hampers
Food hampers don’t have to be ridiculously expensive. Not everyone can afford Fortnum and Mason hampers crammed full of Champagne, truffles, caviar and smoked salmon. Making your own DIY hampers is a much cheaper alternative. By making them yourself, you can set a budget that won’t break the bank. What’s more, making homemade hampers is actually great fun. In fact, I find that shopping for items to fill up my hampers is far more enjoyable than traditional Christmas shopping.
One way to keep costs down when creating hampers is to make some of the contents yourself. Homemade cakes and biscuits make fantastic hamper fillers. Jams, pickles and preserves also go down well. For my hampers I always make things like Christmas chutney, chilli jam, piccalilli and onion marmalade. By supplementing these with shop-bought cheeses, chocolates and bottles of wine, I can keep costs to a minimum.
Homemade Christmas hampers are highly personal presents that are always appreciated. They require a bit of thought and preparation, but that’s what makes them special. Making your own Christmas hampers allows you to create beautiful gifts, have fun and save money at the same time!
Beer hampers make ideal gifts for men who are difficult to buy for. Let’s face it, most men like a beer or three, so you can’t really go wrong with giving him a beer hamper for a birthday, Christmas or Father’s Day present.
The first thing you need to decide when making up a beer hamper is what type of beer to put in it. Most men will fall into one of two main camps, bitter drinkers and lager drinkers. For the bitter drinkers you want to be looking for ‘real ales’ from the UK. For lager drinkers you are more likely to be buying a selection of beers from around the world.
Of course, you can also make your hamper more specialist if you know what your man likes. For instance, a selection of stouts (E.g Guiness, Murphey’s etc.) would be perfect for men who like a bit of the black stuff. Also, don’t forget cider and perry (aka pear cider), although not strictly beers these are very popular at the moment and can make great gift hampers.
Once you have decided on what to put in your hamper, you need to find something to wrap it all up in. Whilst some men would doubtless be happy to receive their beer in a cardboard box, it is much nicer to put a bit of effort into making it look like a proper hamper. You can get hamper baskets online fairly cheaply. Just remember that bottles of beer can be quite heavy, so go for a fairly sturdy willow basket rather than a cheap bamboo one.
One thing I have found when making DIY hampers at home is that it’s not always easy to get the materials you need to make your hamper look nice. It’s one thing going to loads of trouble to put together a great selection of food or other items, but if you don’t get the packaging right it will end up looking like your gift was just an afterthought. So, what can you do about it?
Well, you could go to your local high street looking for hamper baskets but I can tell you from experience that finding empty baskets in high street stores is NOT easy! Alternatively you could go online and start hunting down things like wicker baskets, paper shred to make a lining for your basket, cellophane to seal the package and a nice bow to go on top. However, if that sounds like too much of a chore, don’t worry, there is a better way…
DIY hamper kits are the easy way to get everything you need to make a hamper look beautiful in just a few clicks. Kits are available from a range of suppliers and in different sizes, shapes and colours to suit any occasion. Some even come with a choice of greetings card included. All that is left for you to do is pop in your hamper goodies and you have a professional looking gift for much less than you would expect to pay if you bought it as a finished item.