If you’re like me then you’re not sure what to get your parents on special occasions, such as Christmas or birthdays, and it’s not because you don’t know them well. Instead, it’s a matter of realizing that they often value experiences and sentimental things over pricey items bought in store. So, what if you want to get them a unique gift that they can look at whenever they want but aren’t sure quite where to begin? I say create your own using fonts from sites that make creating DIY presents for parents easier than ever.
Here are the top 10, along with gift-giving suggestions.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Font Bundles to help you find the best – and most creative – ideas for your parents’ special occasions.
1. Font Squirrel
If your parents love their coffee – hi dad, I’m talking to you! – then why not design them a mug using a great-looking font file? Font Squirrel is one of a growing number of sites that offer fonts free in user-friendly formats so you can get creative with the wording and where to affix quotes or other heartfelt messages to your folks.
It’s fun to look around the “Hot Today” font list to see what’s trending. Today the list includes a font called Alex Brush that has great curvy lines without being overly fancy.
If your’e struggling with what to write on the coffee cup, how about “Most Valuable Pop” or “Momma Bear Needs Her Coffee”?
2. Design Cuts
Here you can find not just fonts but also graphics, add-ons, photos, and scrapbooking designs. There are signature fonts to use to create custom artwork for your parents.
For example, you could create a unique 8×10 print like I did last year that was a poem for my parents as a present to them just before I got married. The elegant text looked great in lilac within the classic frame.
3. Use Font Bundles for DIY presents for parents
Easily find the category, style, or occasion you want through the search box at Font Bundles, an alternative to Free Design Resources. For instance, I typed in “love” and found dozens of choices for pretty fonts that would be great for mom’s birthday on a homemade card.
Then I searched “handyman” because my dad is helping us out with renos around our condo. I love the “Mr Fix It” tool font that came up in the search results and the possibilities are endless for it, from an embossed t-shirt to a custom tool apron. Not you just have to figure out his size; thanks mom for providing the correct answer to the size question!
4. Abstract Fonts
Look through the curated collections to see what to use for a… tote bag! If mom or dad is all for supporting the environment then the chances are good that they take reusable bags to the grocery store.
So, a tote bag would be a useful gift! Once you pick a font, the next step is what you’re going to write on it, and here are some suggestions:
- “Mother of the Year”
- “Father Hero”
- A single word to denote something they adore, such as “Sea” or “Peace”
5. DIY presents for parents? Etsy is another font marketplace
When I was at a friend’s place recently, I commented on her cute coasters that featured heartfelt quotes on them. She said that her daughter made them for her birthday!
Aha, there’s another idea for a unique gift for your ma and pop. Take blank coasters like those in the photo above and add your chosen font in a quote, such as “Family is Everything.”
Font files galore are available through Etsy, with designs ranging from cursive to hand lettered or monogrammed. It’s up to you where you adorn the fonts for your DIY presents for parents.
Any fonts websites list would be remiss not to include DaFont but honestly I don’t find it super user friendly. I do like the Stencil category of fonts here though.
For instance, you might use the Top Secret font within the Stencil grouping to create a homemade card. Add another design to the card to depict one of their hobbies, such as film reels to represent their love of watching movies.
7. 1001 Fonts: Another option for DIY presents for parents
Despite what it’s name says, there are over 11,000 fonts here and growing. The categories available include comic, retro, sans serif, wide, and handwritten.
There’s a cool option to donate if you choose to download one of the free fonts. It could be this site that you use to create a custom smartphone cover; that’s if you have tech-savvy parents, of course. By the way, technology is helping keep families together so their phone love isn’t a bad thing.
A side note on using fonts
Be aware of the licenses for the fonts you’re using. Free fonts aren’t always available for any commercial use, for example. So be respectful of the designer if you’re planning to sell any of your clever gifts in the future.
If you’re thinking about going that route later then it might make more sense to get an affordable package from fontbundles.net or similar.
Are you a new mom? If so, then a onesie that says grandma or grandpa on it and is made by you is sure to be gift they’ll love! Keep the onesie at your parent’s house so that when they’re babysitting there’s a change of outfit ready to go.
Not sure where to start? FontSpring is one option to check out – Especially the Bestsellers section.
9. Behance as part of your DIY presents for parents project
Maybe you want to create candles like we did for my parents and parents-in-law for Christmas. If so, you could take the creative element up a notch by adding homemade labels to the bottoms of the candle jars.
To do so, find a font through Behance. Search “free font” if your budget has already been spent on the wax and candle-making supplies.
A final option is to design your own font. Yes, you can create one of your own through Prototypo.
Adjust it by thickness, width and contrast to look exactly as you want. Then you could even emboss your the first letter of your parents’ surname onto the background of a clock for a cool addition to their kitchen.
Do you create custom gifts? Will adding unique fonts help elevate your next homemade offering? Also, what are some other fun ideas for DIY presents for parents?