16 Items You Can Make Yourself

homemade gift wrapping
Lukas Korynta/Stocksy United

Making things yourself can be both satisfying and cost-effective. As you run out of things that you normally buy, challenge yourself to come up with a homemade replacement. You'll be amazed at how easy it is to make many of the products that you're used to buying.

Here are 16 things to consider making yourself.

  • 01 of 16

    Beauty Products

    Homemade Balms and Salves
    Homemade Balms and Salves.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Commercial beauty products are expensive and full of questionable ingredients, so start making your own. Lip balm, lotion, shampoo—they're all a cinch to . Pick and choose the ingredients according to your unique needs. Then, customize finished products with your favorite fragrance.

    Tip: Hang on to your empty store-bought containers, and refill them with your homemade products. Even lip balm and deodorant tubes can be washed and refilled. Just be sure to relabel the containers, so you remember what's inside.

  • 02 of 16

    Soap

    Homemade Soap
    Homemade Soap.

    /Flickr/CC BY 2.0

    Stretch your household budget by making your own ,  and . Then, whip up some treasure soap to give as gifts. Once you've cut your teeth on those projects, move up to hot-process soap. It's a bit more involved​ but will give you artisan-quality soaps.

  • 03 of 16

    Candles

    Melt Down Old Candles and Make New Ones
    Melt Down Old Candles and Make New Ones.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Round up all the leftovers from the candles you've burned (those hunks of unmelted wax and almost-empty containers), and use them to learn how to .

    Just pick up some wicks from the craft store, and you'll have everything you need to .

  • 04 of 16

    Cleaners

    Baking Soda and Vinegar
    Baking Soda and Vinegar.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Stop lugging home overpriced cleaning products, and . If you keep a few basic ingredients, like vinegar and baking soda on hand, there's no mess you can't tackle.

    Continue to 5 of 16 below.
  • 05 of 16

    Spice Mixes

    Homemade Spice Mixes
    Homemade Spice Mixes.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Use the spices you already have in your pantry to make the spice blends you need for recipes. , , —they're nothing more than a handful of spices mixed together.

  • 06 of 16

    Sauces

    Homemade Tomato Sauce
    Homemade Tomato Sauce.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Homemade and  are so much better than anything you can buy at the store. Load up on apples and tomatoes when they're in season. Then, make enough sauce to last you a year. Think you're too busy to fool with homemade sauce? Just pull out your crockpot, and it'll do most of the work for you.

  • 07 of 16

    Condiments

    Homemade Ketchup
    Homemade Ketchup.

    /Flickr/CC BY 2.0

    Made-from-scratch condiments make any meal better. Discover how easy it is to make your own ketchup, mustard, salad dressing, ,  and more.

  • 08 of 16

    Dairy Products

    Homemade Cheese
    Homemade Cheese.

    Erin Huffstetler

    , , , yogurt—they're a heck of a lot easier to make that you might think. Start a batch of cheese now, and you could be eating it in as little as 30 minutes.

    Continue to 9 of 16 below.
  • 09 of 16

    Jams, Jellies and Spreads

    Blackberry Freezer Jam
    Blackberry Freezer Jam.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Grocery store jams and jellies are meh, so grab some jars and make your own. If the idea of intimidates you, make . It takes minutes to make​ and requires no special equipment.​

  • 10 of 16

    Baked Goods

    Yeast Rolls
    No-Fail Yeast Rolls.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Don't settle for mass-produced bread when homemade is an option. It takes very little hands-on time to make a or a batch of , and the difference in taste and texture is huge.

  • 11 of 16

    Extracts

    Homemade Extracts
    Homemade Extracts.

    Erin Huffstetler

    There's a big difference in price between real and imitation vanilla extract, but that doesn't mean you have to settle for second best. Just grab a bottle and a couple ingredients, and you'll be well on your way to your first bottle of . You can even make your own ​.

  • 12 of 16

    Gardening Supplies

    Potting Soil
    Potting Soil.

    /Flickr/Public Domain

    Gardening can save you a lot of money, or cost you a lot of money—it just depends on how you approach it. Learn how to make  or yourself, and you'll fall solidly in the savings camp.

    Continue to 13 of 16 below.
  • 13 of 16

    Craft Supplies

    Oil Pastels
    Oil Pastels.

    /Flickr/CC BY 2.0

    Crafting is all about making things, so why not make your craft supplies, too? Did you know you can ?

  • 14 of 16

    Broth

    Homemade Broth
    Homemade Broth.

    Erin Huffstetler

    Real broth packs more flavor and nutrients per spoonful than boxed broth. Just toss some veggies and bones in a pot, and you'll be well on your way to your first pot of .

    On a low-sodium diet? Just scale back or omit the salt to meet your needs. When you make your own broth, you have complete control of the ingredients. You can even make .

  • 15 of 16

    Gift Wrap

    homemade wrapping paper
    Lukas Korynta/Stocksy United

    Save money, and cut down on waste, by finding things around your house that you can or .

  • 16 of 16

    Pest Control

    Fruit fly trap
    Fruit fly trap.

    /Flickr/CC BY 2.0

    Battling , , or some other pest? See if you can come up with a homemade solution, instead of paying for one. You can get rid of: