Perfectly Practical Summer DIY Housewarming Gifts for Old Friends and New Neighbors

Written by Lyndsay McCabe  |  08. August 2014

Whether you have a friend or family member who is moving into a new home, or you have new neighbors moving in next door whom you have never met, a housewarming gift that helps the individual or family get started on their new journey is always the perfect present.  To make it even more special, instead of shopping for pre-made or pre-assembled gifts, create or assemble the items yourself to truly show you care.  Be sure to also include any of your own personal talents.  If you are a phenomenal baker, add some cookies or bread with your gift.  If you love to draw or even just doodle, buy a few paint pens in various colors and decorate a jar or bowl to hold your gifts to give it a unique signature touch. No matter what you pick to make for your new homeowner’s kit, include a note of welcome and be sure to introduce yourself and your family to open the door for a future friendship.

Barbecue Night Kit:  Your neighbors can still enjoy summer even with a summertime move, especially with a little handpicked kit of your favorite barbecue seasonings, rubs, and sauces to get them started.  Top it off with a tag that includes your favorite barbecue recipe.  Plus, you might even get invited over to enjoy it all as a thank you!

Dip-Dyed Bamboo Placemats:  Pick up some plain bamboo placemats and make them extra special by dyeing them in bright summery colors.  All you need is liquid dye, four quarts of warm water, a large plastic tub, paper towels, a tray, and gloves or tongs to protect your hands.  Add three or four teaspoons of the liquid dye to the warm water, stir it around, and then dip the bamboo placemats in the water until you achieve the desired color.  To get a darker color, you may need to leave it in the water for a minute or more.  Then, put it on a tray covered in paper towels to dry overnight.  Roll up the placemats with a bow and add a nice note to your friend or new neighbors.

Lemonade kit: A simple jar of bright yellow lemons, cute straws, and sugar packets is a great way to welcome a family to their new home, especially if they have kids who may want to have a lemonade sale in front of the house. 

Pasta Night Kit: Moving is exhausting, so make it easier on your friend or new neighbors by giving them a head start on dinner with a creative pasta night kit.  Collect all the necessary items for dinner, including a box or bag of pasta, a jar of sauce, a bottle of wine, some parmesan cheese, and a loaf of Italian bread, and arrange them in a colander with a bow for a perfect useful gift.

Tool Jar: Save your friends or new neighbors the hassle of trying to find their tools or going to the store for more by putting together a few of the most commonly used tools, such as a small hammer, pocket-sized level, extension cords, measuring tape, picture hooks, and a multi-bit screwdriver.  Deliver your gift in a jar with a bow, or possibly a small tool box to get them started (especially if they are young).

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