Cute, Inexpensive, and Easy Christmas Gifts

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If you are like me, it is hard to afford buying Christmas gifts for all of the special people in my life, so to save some money, why not make them something instead?

I actually like the handmade presents the best. They are so much more meaningful !

So today, I am going to share how to make these…

diy tile coasters

Hand made coasters!

 

These have got to be the easiest, most inexpensive, yet cutest, gifts I have ever made for someone.

They make perfect Christmas gifts for school or Sunday school teachers, neighbors, co-workers, or anyone else on your list! You can make a large batch of these and cover most of your gift list!

Here is all you need:

4 x 4 white tiles (from Lowe’s or Home Depot)

napkins with a cute picture

*mod podge

*cork board

*acrylic sealer

glue gun

*sponge brush

*These products can all be purchased at places like Walmart, Hobby Lobby, Michael’s, etc.

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beneathmyheart.net

You can get the tiles for as low as 16 cents a tile!

I already had the cute Santa napkins from last year. But you can get a pack of napkins for a couple of dollars.

Now here are the easy steps…

1. Cover the tile with a layer of Mod Podge.

mod podge project

2. Lay the napkin (cut a little smaller than the tile) on top of the mod podge.

mod podge project

3. I usually let the the mod podge dry just a bit, and then apply another coat on top of the napkin.

mod podge project

4. Let it dry.

mod podge project

5. Cut the cork into square pieces that are a little smaller than the tile.

mod podge project

(You can get cork in different thicknesses. I prefer the thinner kind.)

 

mod podge project

6. Hot glue the cork to the bottom of the tile.

 

 

 

mod podge project

7. Spray the tops of the tiles with acrylic sealer and let dry. Be sure to do this in a well ventilated area. I usually spray mine in the garage or outside.

s-l1600

The sealer allows your tiles to get wet without ruining them.

That’s it!

mod podge project

8. Tie them up with jute string or a bow, and they are ready to give away!

mod podge project

 

mod podge project

 

Here’s another idea…

Monogrammed Coasters!

 

mod podge project

I printed the letter “H” off my computer and followed the same steps as above.

I just cut the paper around the monogram in a square smaller than the tile. I did NOT trim around the monogram.

You could also use monogrammed napkins if you don’t have a printer.

mod podge project

Look how cute they are tied up in this gingham bow!

I would love to receive these as a present.

mod podge

 

Thanks for stopping by and have a Blessed Day!

167 Comments

    1. Question…how did you keep the ink from the the monogrammed letters from bleeding or running when it got wet by the mod podge?

      LOVE them, just need to fix my issue!

      1. you might try spraying the letter and paper it’s on wih the sealer first, then put the mod podgeo n top of it and continue with directions as she has them written. I think the sealer will keep it from running.

    2. I made these coasters for Christmas gifts for my family and friends. I had a little trouble and was wondering if you could help me fix this issue. I followed all your steps, then I put those little dots on the corners on the back. The ones you put on furniture legs. (The coasters had been drying for about 5 days before I put the felt dots on the back.) I stacked them up on top of eachother as I finished applying the dots. When I went back to check them before I tyed them together with ribbon, I noticed that the felt dot had left a funny spot on each corner of the tile beneath it in the stack. It was almost like it made each corner rough. It was like it removed my spray sealer. Have you ever had this issue? What did I do wrong? The coasters are SO cute, but I hate to give a gift that has 4 bad corners on each one of them.
      Thanks for your help!

      1. Michelle,

        I had the same problem with mine. Did you figure out a fix for it? I wanted to make these as gifts but not if they wont hold up.

        Thanks,

        Terri

        1. I wish I had seen this before I made 176 of them. I had the exact same problem. I tried resending and then respraying, but no luck. they dried for days before i stacked them. for the ones with cork that I made, there were marked from the cork as well but not as bad as the ones with the pads on the back.

          1. Did you get an answer to your problem? I want to make some of these but not if they are going to be marred by stacking.

          2. Maybe too late, but the way around this is to spray with a different sealer (I use DupliColor clear engine enamel gloss). Do NOT put the cork on before spraying. After spraying (and drying), place in the oven for about an hour at 200 degrees. This will seal them.

      2. I haven’t tried this yet, but maybe try either using one or two coats of the furniture mod podge in the end, and/or a different sealer than the polycrylic?
        If nothing else at least maybe tissue paper between the tiles when stacking to give away?

  1. Just great Traci….I have a question, though. When you printed out your letter, did you cut around it with an exacto knife? Inquiring minds want to know!

    1. Toward the bottom she commented, I just cut the paper around the monogram in a square smaller than the tile. I did NOT trim around the monogram.” Hope this helps. :)

  2. Oh my gosh, you come up with the most amazing projects :-) I love this idea… gonna have to try and make these for sure. I did make a start on my shelf over the weekend (with a lot of help from hubby to work the saw) but I bought the korbels too small so I need to exchange them for larger ones before I can finish off the shelf. I will look for the tiles when I go in to Home Depot tomorrow.
    Thanks for sharing Tracey, this is a wonderful gift idea.

  3. Oh Traci!
    You have just solved (3) of my Christmas list gifts for the season. You know just a little something for the special friend at work, or blogger buddy that I wanted to make something special for. How wonderful is this. I just love it. Thanks for sharing this beautiful Sunday evening.

    Stop by and say hi. I so love it when you do. Country hugs sweetie, Sherry

  4. Wow! These are wonderful and so easy – I love that. Also will be inexpensive to make. Yay! I especially love the monogram idea. Where on the computer do you go to find initials like this to print out?

    Great idea. Blessings to you…

    Cynthia K. (Beauty and Blessings)

  5. I love this! I feel like I've been MIA in the kitchen this past week with this kitchen remodel. I'll be so glad to be done! How's your kitchen remodel going?

    Have a wonderful day.

    1. Think Personalized WEDDING GIFTS!!! :) I was going to buy some for my cousin’s wedding a while back & they were running at least $20. How do they hold up on the water, does it abssorb like a thirsty stone or just roll off?

  6. I've seen homemade coasters before but yours are THE BEST! The Santa ones are too cute! With napkins the possibilities are endless! And the monogram? Perfect anytime gift and REALLY great as a shower or wedding gift. Very good job!!!!

  7. Traci!!

    #1, I love these coasters. These are a little different from others I've seen. What a good idea to use napkins!

    #2, I love your new blog design! It's beautiful!

    #3, I love the prize you won at Melissa's! How exciting for you! Wasn't that the loveliest, most generous giveaway?

    #4, I love you. You are dear to my heart.

  8. Oh Traci, you are so clever!!!
    I think your Santa coasters are darling.
    I want to share this idea with my daughter.

    I like the way you have shown this project in steps. This is very handy! Thank you for sharing this way.

    May you have a super week.
    God love ya,
    d

    1. Ohhhh! you could use a coordinating solid color, open the napkin all the way up. center the solid napkin, then put the one with the picture over top of the solid square onto a 12″ tile. I love how you think… Secret Santa & Teacher Gifts here I come!

  9. super adorable… and easy! I adore mod podge. This year I am pulling out my cricut, vinyl, mod podge, frames, plates, and spray paint.. and I am making homemade gifts this year. I will have to add this one. I love the intital one too, because you can have them out all year round. Thanks for sharing.

  10. People love these! I've made them with pictures too (just make sure you have them printed somewhere, the modge podge will smear the ink from your home printer)

    Love the idea of using napkins to have different coasters for all year!

  11. What a great idea, the possabilities are limitless, I can see my grandkid's pictures on these. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Or the reverse… The Grandkids GIVING something like this to their Grandparents for Christmas… :)

  12. What a fabulous idea! I already have a box of 4×4 white tiles just sitting in my shed waiting to be used. I especially love the monogrammed coasters.

    Great tutorial! Thank you for sharing it with us.

    ~ Tracy

  13. Love this idea. I recently saw a tutorial on another blog where they used stamps on the tiles, but I like this idea too. Your use of napkins is so clever. I would of never thought of that. Wonder if you can use wrapping paper or the wrapping tissue as well??? Thanks for sharing this great handmade Christmas idea

    1. When my daughter was in preschool. They’d made crafts to sell at their Spring Fling. They used the stone like tiles (has a bit of holeyness to it) and they stamped them with cute Spring stamps. Then the teachers used their more steady hand & colored the stamps with Sharpie. turned out very cute. I bought some & it wasn’t even my kid that made them. :)

  14. Oh my little smart creative one! These are so cute. I have seen them before but not using napkins! How cute it this. I've just got to make some of these!
    You're awesome, Traci.
    Be a sweetie,
    shelia ;)

  15. I wish I felt on this last year, when my mom-in-law asked for coaster… She got tones from everyone…
    But none are as cute as yours!

    I also notice the change in the layout, I am right?
    if so (or if not, anyway) I love it! love the color scheme!

  16. These are so incredibly darling! I love the Santa faces. I may actually make some initial ones for some friends who just got married as part of their wedding gift. Wonderful idea and great tutorial.

  17. Positively darling idea! Definitely tucking this into my back pocket. Thanks for sharing it!

    Just stopped by your sisters and saw that today is your birthday! Blessings to you. Hope it's been a special day. No doubt your Momma is sending sweet hugs from Heaven.

  18. Great gift ideas! I am relatively new to the blogging world-so these are completely new to me! Thanks for sharing-I will be making these for my daughter's teachers!

  19. A little birdy told me it's your birthday today :-) I know it's been full of tears as well as laughter and love. I just wanted to send you birthday wishes and say you're in my prayers tonight.
    Hugs
    Denise

  20. Oh my…..how cute! I especially like the initial coasters. I have the same question as Cindy…"Did you cut all the around the letter with an exacto knife?" Please tell! :)

  21. I have made coasters using rubber stamps… I never thought of using a cute napkin like that. I think I might make some of these for neighbor gifts! How cute!

  22. I Love this idea, I have lots of ehite tiled left over from a D.I.Y job so I am going to have a go at this. Thankyou so much for sharing this, I will definitely visit you again.
    Jillx

  23. I am so going to do this! I don't have a lot of time to do crafts, but this one is so easy!

    It's my first time to see this blog, but for those of you that were asking, it looks like the monogram is a square piece of paper, not cut out with an exacto. You can tell in the last picture.

  24. Thank you for the adorable idea!!! I am hosting a Coffee at my church tomorrow night and showing cute, affordable homemade gifts. I found your blog last night, bought the materials this morning, and already have beautiful monogrammed coasters to show the ladies. Thanks again. (I love your blog… I am also a mom of 4 boys about the same age as yours! God bless you! )

  25. Hey girl I featured you again. Thanks for posting. I actually had tiles on my list to pick up this past weekend for a project but it got pushed off till next weekend.
    You are just too talented.
    Thank you for the extra gingerbread men. You did not have to do that. I would have totally understood if I didn't receive them this year.
    Cheri

  26. Tried this last night and am completely in love. My husband even said this was his favorite project so far that I have done. Thanks so much for the suggestion.

    Let me tell you what I tried…I have some of my napkins left over from my wedding almost twenty years ago. They were simple but pretty; black writing with names and date and a simple floral design. I used one of those on my coaster and absolutley love it. What a great remembrance!!

    I will be using this idea for MANY people this Christmas. Can't wait to see what other napkins or otherwise that I can come up with.

  27. Hi Tracy , you are a very lucky and popular girl to have so many followers , you now have 1 more . I joined your list , please pop over to my place if you have time . I shall be doing these pretty coasters, your fame is spreading to England—-cottonreel

  28. Love! These are so classy and I love the monograms. Easy to make and home made (which I love). These will definitely be going on my To Make for Christmas List. Thanks for sharing!

  29. I love,love,love this idea..did I say I love them?????? :). This is possibly the cutest idea I've ever seen..the little coasters are wonderful and I would love to get these as a gift.
    Oh My..I do love these little coasters… :).

  30. I loved these too – d you know if it work to do a bigger one for a hot plate to match? how would the modpodge and sealer hold up to heat?

    thanks!

  31. I love this idea. Thank you so much. I am going to try this. It's so nice to find something I can make myself and know that the person will like it and use it.

    Kathi

  32. I bookmarked this gift idea as soon as I saw it! Finally bought the supplies and attempted one set today, but I used scrapbook paper instead of napkins. Thanks for the great gift idea!

  33. Thanks SO much for sharing!! I just stumbled across your blog, and now know exactly what to do with the dusty box of leftover tiles in our garage. :)

  34. I have made coasters using rubber stamps… I never thought of using a cute napkin like that. I think I might make some of these for neighbor gifts! How cute!

  35. I am very impressed with your design ideas using plain old square tiles. Keep the crafting coming!!! Be blessed!:-) Thanks for sharing!!!

  36. Is there a way to print this info about making the tiles,without copying all the other writings on the page? As we get older,some of us tend to forget things and it would really help if we could have the directions in front of us. Some of us cannot move our computers around either. I really like this and thank you very much for this and maybe an answer.
    Yvonne

  37. Hello, these are so cute. Do you think that it would be a good project for 2nd graders, to give
    to their parents. I am room mom and looking for something easy, cute and affordable.
    How long does it take to dry the mod podge?

  38. Found these online yesterday and made them right away. Turned out to be great neighbor gifts. Thanks for the idea.

  39. I was scanning through comments & did not see the answer to my question…I think I already know the answer but to be sure I’m asking anyway. Q: did you use the whole napkin or just the front piece with the print on it? These are way too cute & I plan on making these so I don’t want to mess it all up :)

  40. Would like permission to share this idea out with my caregiver team as an activity to cue and assist our clients with memory disorders in making. How would I go about getting permission to copy this for our clients? What a great way to have an activity and a lovely family/friend gift!!

  41. Thank yo so much for your idea for the napkins. I have been hand paited them, this gives me another way and faster. Going to try to put my grandchildren’s picthers on next

  42. I tried these, and I have a few questions….with the napkins should I use the whole napkin or just cut out one square? How long do I need to let them dry before using them as actual coasters?

  43. With the coasters being sealed, would the sweat off of a glass roll down and off the coaster onto the table? Does the cork absorb the water? If so, would it leave a mark on your table?
    I love these but want something that will keep glasses from leaving water marks.

    Thanks
    Cindy

  44. This is the coolest idea for a Christmas gift EVER. Will be making this for my brother in law who has everything.

  45. I have a wedding napkin I am attempting to put on a tile and it looks all wrinkly right now. Have I done something wrong? I just love your ideas and I wanted to make one for a gift. Thanks

  46. Love the idea! I tried to make two different sets. I must be doing something wrong. You can see the strokes in the mod podge, even after they are dry. I used a sponge brush on one set and a soft brush on another. Same results. What am I doing wrong? Thanks!!

  47. Hi Traci,
    I made these and let them dry for several days. Once I stacked them on top of each other they left marks on the ones beneath them. Do you have any suggestions?
    Thanks!

  48. Does anyone have any hints on gluing the cork on the back. I can’t seem to get it to look really neat w/o the glue “showing”?

  49. can you use photos? or maybe even printing the photo out on the printer and then using it?

    Thanks so much I was really looking for xmas ideas, families are so hard!

  50. I saw these on pinterest and wanted to try it out…I got tiles at Home Depot for 12 cents each, Cork for 9.99 at AC Moore and napkins at Christmas Tree Shop for 1$ a pack! I made these and LOVE them. They are perfect gifts! THANKS FOR SHARING!!! :)

  51. Hi, I was wondering if you could do the same but with wooden coasters instead. I have a bunch of wooden coasters cut out and wanted to do something like this with them. Would this work? Thanks!

  52. Have you actually made these? I followed the directions perfectly and while they are cute to look at when I stack them or use them they are not so great. When stacked the cork sticks to the bottom one and when used if they get wet the napkin part (although sealed) becomes squishy and moves. I am trying to figure out if I am doing something wrong or what. This is driving me crazy as I have planned on making these for gifts. Any help is greatly appreciated!

    1. Use scrapbook paper instead of napkins. I tired one with a napkin and it was a lot harder to do than the paper. It’s cheaper too!

  53. I actually used scrapbook paper instead of napkins and they turned out awesome! Super easy and very cute. Made 12 sets of 4 for small gifts this year.

  54. I tried it with scrapbook paper. Looks great. No wrinkles. Then used felt on bottom. Bonded better than cork….

  55. I tried it with scrapbook paper. Looks great. No wrinkles. Then used felt on bottom. Bonded better than cork….

  56. Using scrapbook paper instead of napkins works way better. Napkins don’t come out good at all. Was very dissapointed in the napkins.

  57. I made a bunch of these and the are AWESOME, but I have a big problem…… I did they exaclty as you directed, but when I put a hot mug onto them, it sticks to the coaster!! Must be from the glue under the sealer! I used 4 coats of sealer, too:( So unhappy:( Should I try to just top with sealer, and not add that extra coat of Modpodge on top? I used the clear modpodge, does that make a difference?

  58. I just bought tiles at Home Depot…I am excited to make some! Planning to use scrapbook paper and maybe newspaper to decorate my tiles. Now I am concerned that they won’t turn out! and I won’t get to perfect them before Christmas. Oh dear. That’s why it doesn’t pay to be a last minute shopper, or DIYer.

    Good news though, the tiles were only .13 at Home Depot!

  59. Who wouldn’t want Christmas coasters! This is what I am going to make my coworkers this year. I can’t pin it yet or they will see. I hope I can find pretty Christmas napkins.

    1. You can find it in rolls at Walmart or any craft store like Michaels or Hobby Lobby. I am posting about some new tile coasters I made on my blog tomorrow. I used felt pads from Lowe’s on my tiles this time. Either one is fine. I cannot remember the price of either of these, but they are not very expensive.

  60. I find that hot mugs stick to the clear acrylic sealer and even melt the sealer a little (I’ve tried both gloss and matte finishes of several brands). Is there a heat-resistant sealer out there that can be used for these coasters?

  61. Is the acrylic sealer a must for this? I forgot to get some at the craft store which is far away from where I live.

  62. I have just made these coasters for the first time. Even when I firmly smoothed the paper I got bad air pockets–they look terrible! They appeared as soon as I applied the top coat of mod podge. Please help!

    1. Susan, I am so sorry. Sometimes I had air pockets and sometimes I didn’t. There isn’t really a rhyme or reason. I do think it helps if the paper you are applying is thicker. I just pressed my air pockets down and it did give a “crinkled” look, but it was still super cute! It looked like I meant to do it that way! :)

    1. I am so sorry Stephanie. It seems that everyone has different experiences with their paper. The thinner paper, like napkins, tend to bubble more. Thicker paper, like copier paper doesn’t tend to bubble much. Did you let the first coat dry?

  63. HI, great idea, but I have run into problem with hot cups of coffee “sticking” to the coasters. They were well dried and sealed with spray. I wonder has anyone else has that issue? Was thinking of trivets, but not with heat issue.nthanks, you have a great blog.

  64. These make really nice gifts for the teacher’s in your child’s life. I often have a hard time coming up with gift ideas (other than $$) especially for the male teachers. One 3-day weekend prior to Christmas break, my 6th grade son and I made a few sets of these for teachers and staff, at his school. During the process, I snapped a few cute photos of him working on the project. While we were tying up the coasters, I got the idea to print off a picture of him creating the gifts, and attached it as the Gift card. The recipient could see who made the gift.

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