Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. Planning now for it will make it a memorable one that she’ll love looking back upon.
She watches you all year enrich people’s lives with your hands-on artistry. It’s time you thought about making something that shows her that you notice her.
By paying attention to how she works, plays, and entertains, you can find the perfect DIY gift to make her.
Nothing is as personal as a gift you make specifically for her. For as long as she has your handmade present, it will be a reminder of your special connection.
We looked for DIY ideas you could make for your girlfriend and came up with four special ones. These ideas are not only functional, but they show how you feel about her.
They’re easy to fit into your busy work schedule and small enough to keep hidden in your workshop, so she doesn’t accidentally discover your surprise.
DIY Gift Idea #1: Custom Wood Ring Holder
This DIY gift project is easy to hide in your workshop and keep secret until gifting day. It's a perfect way to use scraps of wood from your other projects and create a memorable personal gift from them.
Women love to have attractive and convenient displays for their rings. For this project, both square and round pieces of wood will work. Even slabs of timber taken from your latest firewood chopping chores will work.
With extra scraps of square wood, you can create a lovely ring display by cutting the wood into blocks. Vary the heights and angles of the wood pieces. A grouping of about five would make an attractive ring display.
Layout your pieces of wood in a grouping and get a good visual of where grooves to sit or hang the rings from would look attractive. Choose which blocks will hold a ring in the middle and which corners need a groove to hang a ring.
Cut grooves that the rings can sit into middle sections of the wood, and then cut grooves into the corners of some blocks for the rings to hang.
What tools you use depend on what you have experience with, but a Japanese hand saw works great for fine work like this on the corner grooves. For the inside grooves, we like using a Dremel burr bit on a rotary tool.
Once you're happy with your ring grooves, sand down the blocks with sandpaper and treat them with fast-drying polyurethane.
With round slabs of wood cut directly from branches, you can choose to use grooves or attach hooks for the rings to hang. This style of ring holder makes an excellent wall display when you use the hooks, and looks nice on top of her dresser when you use the grooves.
We showed you a picture of one you can create to hold the wedding ring. Just in case you’re getting ready to bend on one knee this Valentine’s Day.
For more ideas, search the internet for DIY ring displays and DIY ring holders. If your girlfriend has a lot of rings, you could make different styles.
DIY Idea #2: Handmade Wall Shelves
Women like attractive ways to better organize their life and wall shelves are a great idea. Making her a special shelf is one way to her heart.
Pallet wall shelves are all the rage now. Everyone has learned to appreciate recycling pallets into useful items around the house—especially shelves.
By ripping apart a pallet and using the varying lengths of wood in it, you can create a unique rustic shelf that's attractive on any wall. It's heavy-duty, sturdy, and much more functional than most store-bought shelving.
Here are some designs you can make with the wood from pallets:
- Window box style shelves.
- Use dresser door knobs to create a shelf with a decorative front edge where she can hang her scarves.
- Create a shelf with a towel rack below.
- Create a frame around a mirror with a shelf under the mirror, perfect for her bathroom or entryway.
- Create a broad front on the shelf that you can wood burn a particular word or design into, or you may paint the design.
- Create a shelf to hold her mail with pegs for keys below.
- If she's a working woman, create a hanging file shelf.
The possibilities with using pallet wood are endless. With an internet search for DIY pallet wall shelf, you're sure to find the perfect design to wow her.
If you have scraps of other high-quality wood, you can also create a wonderful shelf using iron piping for the sides and supports. You can either buy actual piping or shop the shelving section at the hardware store for pipes sold specifically for shelving.
Our shelf photo showcases a wood and pipe style shelf. This is one of many styles available to make with this combination.
DIY Idea #3: Personalized Wooden Hangers
Another simple DIY gift idea that's easy to hide in your workshop is personalized hangers. She'll love these hangers in her guest room when guests visit or for her coat closet.
For this, you need to find a bunch of inexpensive wooden hangers, a pack of rub-on letters, and some black ribbon. Make sure there are enough letters to get all the words you want in.
Some ideas for phrases:
- Home is where the heart Is
- Happiness is homemade
- There's No Place Like Home
- Home is my happy place
- Bless this house
- Sweet dreams
- Welcome to my home
- Love and Friendship
If you bought used wooden hangers, check the wood for any damage you may want to repair first, and then clean them. Make sure they're smooth so they don't snag any clothing that will be hung on them.
Next, decide what phrases you're going to put on them and cut out the letters for those. You'll want to lay them out on the hangers and determine the spacing ahead of time.
Pay attention to whether you're capitalizing words or not. Some lettering designs work better with all lowercase. Lay a phrase out and experiment. Choose the style that looks most attractive on the wooden surface.
Follow the directions to apply the letters to the hanger. Make sure you rub every bit of the letter entirely before pulling off the backing. If you miss a spot, you should be able to lay the letter back down precisely as you did before and rub that on.
Once you have the hangers done, tie a little black ribbon to the top of them for an accent.
Personalized wooden hangers are easy to experiment with different colors and stains for different purposes. Decide ahead of time where you think she'll use the hangers and choose whether to use wood stain or paint.
Our example shown in the picture is a good idea if you’re planning on asking her to marry you this Valentine’s Day. Or, even if she’s already said yes and you want to show her how you’re preparing for the big day.
Idea #4: The DIY Laptop Desk
We have two styles to showcase for this gift idea: a padded laptop and a wooden stand-up desk. If your girlfriend works from home, you could make both.
The padded laptop desk is best for women who prefer working from a recliner or sitting their work on their lap while sitting cross-legged on the floor. In these situations, the legs of the stand-up desk would likely get in the way.
The stand-up desk is versatile for enjoying breakfast in bed, working in bed, working on the couch, and sitting on the floor. This version allows you to play around with the design to make it suit the user’s preferences.
The Padded Laptop Desk
The padded laptop desk is a very economical and simple project to build. These instructions are close to the average 15” X 18” laptop desk size.
This size fits most needs, but you should check the size of her laptop and adjust accordingly. Make sure to figure in enough room for her mouse if she uses one. To get an idea, look at laptop desk options on Amazon. The specifications often tell you which size laptop they fit.
Gather your materials:
- Foam Board (cut to 14” X 16”)
- Poly Foam 3 inches deep (cut to fit the foam board)
- Burlap or fabric (enough to cover polyfoam)
- Wood for top ¾” (14.5” X 17.5”)
- Wood stain
- Polyurethane sealant
- Gorilla Glue Epoxy
- Hot Glue Gun
Step 1: Cut the foam board to 14" X 16".
Step 2:Cut the foam cushion to fit the board.
Step 3: Attach the foam cushion to the foam board.
Step 4:Wrap the foam cushion/board with your fabric.
Step 5: Apply a coat of wood stain to the wood.
Step 6: Protect it with a coat of polyurethane.
Step 7: Decorate the top with paint and stencils if you like, or leave it as it is.
Step 8: Attach the wood top to the assembled cushion bottom.
The Stand-Up Laptop Desk
You can make an all wood stand-up laptop desk with the scrap lumber around other projects. It’s also one you can quickly put together.
You need 2X2 for the legs, 1X2 for the aprons, and 1X12 for the top.
You should cut the legs to 9 inches in length.
The top should be 25 1/2 inches.
This makes the front and back aprons 25 inches, while the side aprons will be 10 1/4 inches. You want 45-degree angles on the corners so they'll fit smoothly together.
With wood glue and a nail gun, you can put all the pieces together to make a nice desk suitable for sitting on the floor or in bed.
Once you choose a wood finish and protect it with polyurethane, your new gift project is complete.
You can play around with the measurements according to space. For instance, shorter legs may work better in bed.
You could also use 1X4 for the aprons and bring in more wood and hinges to build a flip-top lid that hides a storage space underneath.
If you wish to allow space to secure pens or a phone, you can add ½ inch grooves into the top where they fit.
You can also retrofit a wooden serving tray as the tabletop if it’s going to be used mostly for serving her breakfast in bed. (Just be careful. You may find yourself committed to making breakfast more often.)
This desk is so simple it's sweet. The basic design gives it functionality without complicated pieces that hinder work, yet leaves you plenty of room to add more.
For more ideas, do an internet search for DIY laptop desks. You find different variations of both design and styles of wood. You’ll also see ideas from people who used other materials to create their own laptop desks.
That wraps up the 4 DIY Gift Ideas For Your Girlfriend. With any of these four ideas, you’re sure to impress her and make the day memorable.
- Ring stands are a great gift for any occasion and make an attractive display.
- Personalize wooden hangers say you’re happy to be with her.
- The shelving lets her know you appreciate her and love her home.
- The laptop desk shows how much you see what she does is important.
All these ideas help you express the love and appreciation you feel for her. It shows you’re grateful to have her in your life. She’ll feel that every time she looks at your gift.
DIY gifts for everyone in your life add that personal touch to any occasion. Once you finish these gifts, you may want to look for more ideas you can make for others.
Once you see your girlfriend’s happy reaction to her gift, you may want to offer to make handmade gifts for others. Maybe you’ll find inspiration to add another side hustle to your income.