The Christmas season excites everyone especially mums who make sure that everyone feels special this season through gifts. These presents need not be expensive, especially when you are running on a tight budget. Thrifty mum Monique Annetts, founder of AMA Event Management, has tips for mums who would like to start their Christmas shopping early this year. Here are Christmas thrifty tips for the perfect present without having it look cheap!
1. Trash to treasure markets
There are stallholders at trash and treasure markets who carry both new and used products. It's amazing what kinds of newly packaged toys and games you can find for half the price!
2. Fashion items
If you spend some time looking through what people bring to sell, you can always find something unexpected at the local markets! You could find designer label shoes and handbags, accessories, jewellery, clothes that still have the tags on them! Or, if you know what's valuable, you can buy it for yourself then flip it again online and make some money.
3. Cooking the Christmas feast this year?
The best, freshest and cheapest produce is often found at local markets. It's proven that naturally grown produce lasts longer than store-bought produce and it is a thrifty way to support local farmers and have the most delicious Christmas meal! You're spending less on packaged foods and more on yourself.
4. Books, DVD's, Records and CD's
These items are big sellers at Trash and Treasure markets. You can find so many bargains and rare finds make fantastic Christmas presents.
5. Are your kids into crafts?
Plaster painting kits, sand art kits and other craft activities make really creative and thrifty gifts for your kids’ friends. These can all be found at the markets and they don't break the bank. I can guarantee the kids will love them and so will your Christmas budget.
6. Christmas lights and decorations
It can cost a small fortune to decorate for the season and we often leave it to the last minute to go out and buy yet another over priced set of solar lights for our house. But the vendors at our markets actually carry the exact same items for literally half the price. Pro tip: see what you can find at the markets first before going to big-name stores!
7. Candles, candles and more candles
Candles are literally our number one selling item at any market and these handmade, naturally scented products are a must-buy for your Christmas gift list. Inexpensive, long lasting and beautifully smelling, you can't go wrong with a lovely candle, wax melt or reed diffuser for the women in your family or even your kids’ teachers!
The best, most unique and thrifty homewares are the ones you find at markets. Whether they're second hand, hand crafted, antique or new, these types of specialty items can be hard to come by. The markets are the best place to start your search for the perfect item without the extra large price tag. You're also supporting local businesses and craftsmen in the process!
9. Presents for the youngest member of the family
Buying for the youngest members of our families can often be the hardest. How many brightly coloured, noise making toys can a baby really need? BUT, what they do need are the little accessories that make life easier. Bibs, burp cloths, dummy chains, clothes and more are always available at our markets and are usually handmade, making them one of a kind.
Jewellery makes a fantastic gift but they can be pricey! The vendors who attend our markets bring beautiful jewellery items with them from watches, rings, earrings, necklaces, bracelets and hair clips. The perfect item is waiting for you without the hefty price tag.
11. Is Upcycling your thing?
The Trash and Treasure Markets on every Sunday at Prestons and every Wednesday at Fairfield are an absolute treasure trove for items that can very easily be upcycled with just a fresh coat of paint! Turn a $50 cabinet into something you would pay hundreds for in the shop with some sandpaper and paint!
12. Environmentally friendly gifts
It’s been proven that the target audience for eco friendly products is in fact the women of the house. The markets we run have a large number of vendors who sell eco friendly products from natural skin and body care to household cleaning products made from all natural ingredients. Shopping locally is an opportunity to avoid shipping and to get items at half the price.
Many of the vendors at the markets will have stalls filled with antique items. Whether it’s a painting by someone famous or a statement piece for your entryway, you’d be shocked at the amazing things you can find by visiting your local market. The best part about markets – negotiation! You can have a chat with the lovely vendors about the price and sometimes get a fantastic deal.
Tools can be an expensive commodity for any home. But if you’re looking for a more thrifty way to purchase tools, the markets are an untapped resource of new, used and collectible tools and handyman items. Our vendors who deal in tools will also have the parts and expertise to help you fix anything that’s broken.
The absolute best thing about markets is not only the thrifty ways to use them, but it's also the best opportunity to support small and local businesses. It's such a pleasure to shop local, support local and watch those businesses grow and develop.