With all the expenses of college life, the phrase “broke college student” exists for a very good reason! Not to mention that when you’re in a relationship, it may feel like you spend a lot of extra money going on dates or buying each other little gifts here and there. When it comes to Valentine’s Day—a holiday when gifts are practically expected of people in a relationship!—chances are, you just don’t have the money to buy a gift. But don’t fret…here are five easy DIY gift ideas that are free (or extremely cheap!)
1. Date Night Jar
Make a cute date night jar to give to your sweetheart! Next time you want to go do something, leave it up to chance to decide. Using popsicle sticks or pieces of paper, write down a variety of activities and place them in a jar. Make it cute and Valentine’s-themed with ribbon, heart-shaped stickers, and pink and red paper or popsicle sticks. Include both favorite things that you’ve already done together as well as new things that you’ve been wanting to try. Some ideas include e “go to a movie” or “go to a sporting event.” Whenever you can’t decide what to do or just want to avoid the back-and-forth of “I dunno, what do you wanna do?” simply reach into your handy jar and voila!—decision made! Another variation of this is to write down restaurants—again, both favorites and ones you’ve been wanting to try—to choose from whenever you’re deciding where to eat for date night.
2.) Coupon Book
Show your significant other you care for them this Valentine’s Day with the gift that keeps on giving! Using scrapbook paper (or whatever you have handy), make a DIY coupon book with rewards they can redeem whenever they want. Write things along the lines of “good for one back rub,” “good for one homemade dessert of your choice,” or whatever they enjoy that you can do for them!
3.) “Open When…” Letters
Make some “open when…” letters for your Valentine to open when you’re not there with them. All you have to do is write a couple of heartfelt letters for different occasions like “when you miss me,” “when you need to smile.” Put the letters in envelopes, label when they should be opened, and wrap them up!
4.) Memory Book
Make a little scrapbook of memories so you and your sweetheart can reminisce about all the good times you’ve had together. Compile pictures of the two of you together, ticket stubs from events you’ve been together, little things that remind you of inside jokes or memories you share together, and anything else that has sentimental value to your relationship. Then, put them in a mini photo album or glue them into the pages of a little notepad. So easy, cheap, and sweet!
5.) Candy Bar Love Note
Tell your significant other how much you love them with a giant love note made from candy bars! Using a poster board, a sharpie, and lots of their favorite candy, make some cheesy puns like “I love you to ‘Reese’s Pieces’” or “You’re one ‘Hot Tamale’” by gluing the candy bars to the poster and filling in the blanks with a marker. This one may not be entirely free, but it’s definitely still a very affordable gift!