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The Festive Fivers competition is back!

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The Festive Fivers competition is back!

286 replies 62.4K views

Thank you so much for all your festive fiver ideas. There have been some wonderfully innovativeideas to give lots of people food for thought. While the competition is closed please feel free to keep adding and discussing ideas.

The winners are listed below:

The £500 overall winner!

The 12 dates of Christmas - lil_liz

The best adult's suggestion winner

Paint sample calendar - sarahjgent

The best kids' suggestion winner

Santa's sleigh bell - vikki_louise

Runners Up

50 Sheds of Grey - ashton53
Hidden compartment book and story cubes - xfive71
Activity scrapbook - maudycow
Scrabble picture print - MissMonkeyMoo
Vinyl wall clock - meeshpeesh
Antique tea cup candle - babyshambles
Chocolate slab - Own My Own
Bling the grim - londonlydia

Also, check out the 2008 forum discussion for more great ideas of this ilk.

Back to the original post


We're re-launching our Festive Fivers competition to find the best clever, weird, romantic, thoughtful or practical present idea to make or buy, for a kid or grown-up for less than £5.

There's £500 up for grabs for the winner plus 2x£100 prizes for runners up.

What's a 'festive fiver'?

A sub-£5 present that can be bought (inlcuding any delivery), made, or a combination of the two. We've had a fantastic response in the past, with some truly original entries, including the "perfect" (gingerbread) man, sand art brownies and an edible art set for kids.

See the full list of past winners and runners-up in the Festive Fivers guide for some inspiration and get your Christmassy thinking cap on!

What'll happen to all the suggestions?

A list of the best suggestions will be categorised and published on the site in mid-November.

Remember, there's no such thing as a bad suggestion and even if you don't think it's a winner, submit it anyway as a gesture of goodwill for all the MoneySavers out there looking to save some pennies.

Previous entries won't be accepted (and this includes previous ideas rewritten).

For obvious reasons, entries that have been in previous competitions will be winners, so have a quick read of the previous Festive Fivers article to see what's already there before submitting your idea.

What's the deadline?

*Mon 12 Nov 2012*

The winners will be announced on the site and in Martin's Money Tips within a week or two from then. You'll then be contacted via private message, so please make sure you check your forum inbox to see if you've won.

How to enter?

Simply hit 'reply' and enter the details of your suggestion. You can enter as many times as you like, either in one post or several (and of course it's free).

Please put your answer in the following format
  • Name of present:
  • Whether it's bought or homemade:
  • Total cost:
  • Details (where it's from, how to make it etc):
  • A link to the offer if it's online (where possible):
For example
  • Name of present: Feet of love
  • Bought or homemade? Homemade
  • Total Cost: around £2
  • Details (the more, the better): Buy some clay from an art store and mould into a flat circle. Leave an imprint of your child's foot in the clay, carve in the name and then decorate with glossy paint. You could tie string through it to make a nice wall hanging. Alternatively, for a simpler (and messier) version, you could do the same with paint and paper and frame the footprints.
Good Luck!

The MSE Team


  • bella165bella165 Forumite
    13.1K posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker Stoptober Survivor
    oh sounds like a fab idea
    Replies to posts are always welcome, if they are done in the correct manner. If I have made a mistake in the post, I am human, tell me nicely and it will be corrected. If your reply cannot be nice, has an underlying issue, or you believe that you are God, please post in another forum. Thank you
  • knitnutknitnut Forumite
    743 posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts
    Name of present: ANTI-STRESS KIT
    Whether it's bought or homemade: homemade (most items you will have around the house)
    Total cost: £1 approx.
    Details: Get a small clear plastic bag like the ones you get a birthday card in. Put in the following items - a rubber, a penny, a marble, an elastic band, a piece of string and some chocolate sweets. Seal the bag and write or print the following and either attach to front of bag or put it inside.


    A RUBBER to make all those little mistakes go away
    A PENNY so you will never be completely broke
    A MARBLE for those days when you’re sure you’ve lost all yours
    An ELASTIC to help you stretch beyond your current limits
    A STRING to hold it all together when it seems to be falling apart
    And CHOCOLATE TREATS to remind you that someone cares about you.
  • This is something I once did as a present for someone when money was low and i'd had a lot of good times with them.

    Name of present: Memory Scrapbook
    Whether it's bought or homemade: Homemade
    Total cost: £0
    Details (where it's from, how to make it etc): All you need is some coloured paper or card, even white A4 paper, colouring pencils and some imagination would work! All you need to do is create a scrap book of memories you've shared with the person you're giving it to. Old cinema/gig tickets, photos, quotes...anything that reminds you of the times you've spent together. And instead of staples, hole punch the top corner and tie all the pages together with some pretty ribbon.
    For kids you can even make the book but leave it blank so they can fill it in from the start of 2013 onwards :).
    A link to the offer if it's online (where possible):n/a
  • Name of present: Memory Jar
    Whether it's bought or homemade: Homemade
    Total cost: £0 - £2
    Details (where it's from, how to make it etc): Use an old jar from food storage. Take some paper or card and cut it into Business card sized pieces. On each piece of paper write a memory of the person the gift is for, stick a photo, or a draw a picture. To help complete, you can get other friends or family to help by putting their memories down too. Once complete, fold the pieces in half and place them in the jar. Decorate the jar as you like, using old cloth and a rubber band for the lid, or ribbon, etc.
    The idea of the gift is that every day, your recipient will take out one piece of paper and read the memory, this will make them remember everyday for that year just how special they are and how much you love them.
  • Name of present: hanging hearts

    Whether it's bought or homemade: homemade

    Total cost: nil

    Details (where it's from, how to make it etc): cut 2 pieces of stiff card into a heart shape, I usually do one then use it as a template for all others. Roll some scrap newspaper into scrunches and stick them to hearts, leaving a gap around the edge. Add a good length of either string or ribbon through the middle and secure, leave a decent length on either end for decorations. Tape the other heart to first, lining edges up and squeezing so the middle is fat and the edges are all thin. Cover in couple of layers of Newspaper and final layer of kitchen roll or tissue. When dry, decorate with either fabric or paint or wrapping paper. Add big beads or other decorations to the bottom ribbon securing well, tie top into a tidy loop for hanging. I made three of these in descending sizes and hung them on the same ribbon, colour co-ordinated scrap fabric and they look fab! :)

    A link to the offer if it's online (where possible):N/A
    Saving 1 animal wont change the world - but it will change the world for that 1 animal

    weight loss since 19/12/16 - 1 stone!!
    Grocery challenge Jan '17 - unspent £35.17/£80 budget
  • 16591659 Forumite
    188 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts
    Name of present - Homemade vouchers
    Cost - pennies
    Simply cut up some paper and make into vouchers for your services. E.G. dusting, vacuuming, window cleaning, car washing etc. Try to offer vouchers for the specific chores that the recipients detest doing the most to make them really appreciate your gift. Wrap them up really nicely so they have a gift to open.
  • Name of present: Homemade Jam
    Bought or homemade? Homemade
    Total Cost: around £1 - £2 or even less...
    Details: Go for a walk and hunt for some blackberry bushes. Collect 500g for fruit or more. Download a nice recipe from the BBC website. You only have to buy jam sugar, and a lemon. Recycle old jam jars and decorate the lid with some nice material. :D
  • hvd201hvd201 Forumite
    713 posts
    I first did these a few years ago and keep on getting requests to do them for friends, family and when new additions arrive in a family.

    Name of present: Personalised Christmas baubles.

    Whether it's bought or homemade: Mixture of both.

    Total cost: The initial outlay is around £10 but then once you have the items you only have the cost of the bauble to consider. I would say that it works out at around £3 per bauble if making over 6 of them (the more you make the cheaper it becomes and the price also depends on the type of bauble you choose).

    Details (where it's from, how to make it etc):
    Time it takes: About 10 - 15 minutes per bauble at the begnning but the more you do them the quicker you get! If you do a few at a time it also takes a lot less time, plus it's quite fun to do.
    What you need:
    Firstly buy some plain baubles, I like cream or gold coloured ones (around £2 each, normally on some type of offer eg 3 for 2 or in big packs. The glass ones are more expensive than the plastic ones although I find the glass ones slightly easier to work with and the end result better. Preferably a matte surface rather than completely smooth). Try B&Q, Homebase, BHS etc. until you find one you like.
    Secondly go to a craft shop and buy a little pot of red paint (I use ceramic paint as that's what my local store had and it was cheap, but I'd have thought glass paint would be just as good. It needs to be fairly thick.) around £2 but this will do lots and lots of baubles. I'm still using the same pot after 3 years! You will also need some small flaked silver glitter (less than £1 but, again, will do many baubles, doesn't have to be silver but I think it goes best with the red paint), a thin fairly decent paintbrush (£4-ish), some optional pretty ribbon (£1 for a few metres) and some grease-proof paper (most people will have this in a kitchen cupboard!). Oh, and a pencil!
    What to do:
    What I do is go onto the computer and print out a stencil of the name I want to place onto the bauble in a pretty italic font and suitable size (this means it will be evenly sized, smart and professional looking). I use a dark pencil to trace the outline of the name and then turn the grease proof paper onto the other side and trace again filling in the complete font (so it is not just the outline but whole letters, and it will also look like it's written backwards). Now place this trace onto the bauble and rub the pencil over the top and the pencil lead should leave a mark with the pretty italic name directly onto the bauble (this is why you need a matte, not smooth, bauble).
    Get your paintbrush, dip into the paint and fill in the name left by the pencil mark on the bauble, make sure not to paint it too lightly/thinly as I think it looks better with fairly thick paint as it gives more depth and is better for the glitter to stick onto. When you are finished painting the name on then you get the glitter and sprinkle it over the paint whilst it's still wet. Leave it to dry by hanging it up somewhere (i use a clothespeg on a clothes line and dangle it by the attached thread). When dry I like to use some pretty ribbon (maybe red tartan) to smarten it up a bit for hanging it on the tree instead of the thin nylon hanging thread baubles normally come with.
    A tip: if you make a mistake with the paint, if you get a cotton bud and dip it in nail varnish remover then you should be able to fix any small mistakes.

    A link to the offer if it's online (where possible): It's homemade so not available online.

    With the stencilling I find that they look really professional and it means that if you have a family to do baubles for then they all look similar. We hang ours on our Christmas tree but friends hang them from the bed headboard, above the mantelpiece, they end up in all sorts of places.
    I will try and dig out the Christmas decoration box and show you some of my first attempts - as with most things they tend to get better the more you do them - but my first two were for my parents and they adorn the tree every year.

    Enjoy! I find making them fun, relaxing and very satisfying. I'm not normally very arty but even I can do these, no artistic skils necessary!
  • ashton53ashton53 Forumite
    718 posts
    Ninth Anniversary Debt-free and Proud! Home Insurance Hacker! Cashback Cashier
    Name of present: 50 Sheds Of Grey
    Whether it's bought or homemade: Bought
    Total cost/details: £2.48 Google Play Ebook (or £5 from Amazon including delivery if you want a hardbacked real-life version)
    A link to the offer if it's online (where possible): Google Play or Amazon:

    I bought this little book for my dad as he loves his shed and we both found it hilarious - it's a parody of the 50 Shades Of Grey book (about 140 pages of one-liners that are all shed or garden based Carry-On style double entendres). Nothing too naughty though. An ideal present for middle aged men (or women as I loved it too) who are into sheds or gardening (and you want an alternative from socks again).
  • Name of present: Finger Fairytale Tattoos
    Bought or homemade? Bought
    Total Cost: £3.50
    Details: Turn little fingers into puppets! really good idea for kids presents. Each pack contains 20 fairytale theme finger puppet tattoos. Variations can be bought; finger farm and finger monsters as well as tattoos for hands. (Temporary tattoos obviously!) pack sizes are 92 x 137mm - also good to send in the post! :)
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