The 2021 Buslifers Guide to Homemade Christmas Gifts

Buslifers with homemade gift

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Instead of buying new this Christmas, why not show the Buslifer in your life just how much they mean to you with a homemade gift? 

Whether you’re a self-proclaimed homemade gift hero or a complete craft novice, this DIY gift guide for Buslifers will help you channel your creative whims into the perfect gift for a home on wheels. From gingerbread bakes to pine tree scented soaps, and customized journals to original works of wall art, we have every craft covered. Remember, even if your holiday fudge turns out a little more fudged up than you’d hoped, it’s the thought that counts.

Why opt for homemade Christmas gifts?

Well, first of all, nobody needs the traumas inflicted by crowded malls with crazed Christmas shoppers over the holiday period. Especially not when you already have your weird aunt to deal with that you’d never otherwise choose to see. 

But aside from avoiding added holiday stress, there are many other benefits to making your Buslifer Christmas gifts yourself including:

Expenses

Making things yourself is often much cheaper than buying it store where the packaging, shipping, and marketing costs are all calculated into the markup. By DIY-ing it, you’re cutting out the middle man and cutting costs too.

Sustainability and ethics

Forget about buying brand new gifts from a department store where the products are produced en masse at the hands of cheap labor. Instead, reduce, reuse, and recycle. Find unused, unwanted items and give them a new lease of life that a Buslifer will cherish. 

Consumerism

Do you feel disheartened that Christmas has become a commercial holiday revolving around consumerism? If so, gifting homemade gifts is a wonderful way to participate in the festivities without getting caught in a material web.

Sentimentality

When you think back to the best gifts you’ve received, they often hold sentimental value. With the love, thought, time, and care that goes into homemade gifts, they always hold a special place in the recipient’s heart.

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16 homemade Christmas gifts that your Buslife buddies will love


As Buslifers live in such a small space and have different needs and priorities to those that live in a fixed home, it can be tricky to know what gifts they would most appreciate. Whatever your reason for wanting to make your Buslifer a thoughtful handmade Christmas gift this year, this list will help you decide on the perfect present for them. From jewelry, art, sewing, and baking, we’ve covered all the crafts so you can create a gift that matches your skillset.

Macrame wall hanging

Macrame is such a hot trend right now, there are tutorials out there about how to make everything from macrame wall hangings and dreamcatchers to plant pot holders and paper towel racks. It’s the perfect accessory for any boho Buslifer to hang proudly on their walls. 

Bunting

This is another easy homemade Christmas gift. If you have some extra fabric lying around the house, why not repurpose it by transforming it into kitsch bunting? It can be whipped up quickly with a sewing machine or by hand if you have the time. The result will be a creative decoration to add color to your Buslifer’s home on wheels.

Travel journal

Sometimes Buslifers are so busy enjoying life on the road they forget to stop and document it all. While social media is a quick and easy way to do this, there’s no better way to record memories than in a handmade travel journal. They’re easy to make too — just buy an empty notebook and fill the pages with fun journaling prompts.

Photo book

Give the Buslifer in your life the gift of great memories with a photo album. Although tight on space, every Buslifer has room for their loved ones in their VW Bus, even in photo form. Go traditional by placing printed photos in an album, or design your own custom photo book online.

Wall art

Whether you’re an avid artist or strictly a stick-man specialist, any Buslifer would be honored to receive your original piece of art — no matter how professional it looks. While family and pet portraits are often popular, they are not the easiest subjects to draw. Instead, how about a painting of the beautiful VW Bus your loved one lives in?

Throws and blankets

If you have the time, patience, and some decent knitting skills, consider knitting your Buslifer a warm, cuddly throw or blanket. Whilst they are cute and decorative gifts, they are also practical for those chilly days in the VW Bus. Just make sure it’s machine washable!

Scented candles

Not only are scented candles easy for even the least crafty crafters to make, but they are also one of those gifts that are always well received. So clean out your old peanut butter and jelly jars and get melting. Will you go for classic scents like sandalwood and jasmine or festive scents like gingerbread and cinnamon?

Window covers

Useful for privacy and insulation, window covers are an essential Buslifer item. However, they’re often a boring black or eyesore-silver color. By restyling window covers with a pretty patterned fabric, you’ll brighten your Buslifer’s home and warm their hearts.

Chocolates/ cookies

With so little space in their home-on-wheels, Buslifers are often ‘Marie Kondo-ing’ their buses. That’s why edible gifts are always a hit — they only take up space for as long as they last. So why not gift them indulgent sweet treats like homemade chocolate liquors or Christmas cookies?

Natural soaps

As long as the ingredients are available, soap-making is a skill that anyone can easily acquire. Being longer-lasting and more ecological than regular shower gel, naturally scented soap bars are often a best-selling Buslifer essential. Personalize your soap bar with colors, scents, and patterns that you think your Buslifer would like for an extra thoughtful touch.

Customized mason jars

From rice to pasta, quinoa, and nuts, mason jars are a great way for Buslifers to store long-lasting dry food. By customizing clear glass jars with your recipient’s favorite travel quotes, patterns, and colors, you can transform them into thoughtful and meaningful pieces of kitchenware that can be treasured forever.

Body creams, masks, and scrubs

Living on the road exposes you to the elements, which can be tough on the skin. Therefore, Buslifers would love to have some home skin remedies to hand which would help them feel good and smell even better after long days of hiking or driving. Go for a gingerbread body butter or Santa’s sugary body scrub.

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Jelly and jam

Homemade blueberry, raspberry, and marmalade jams are one of those gifts that everyone loves to receive. Especially Buslifers who prefer to keep long-lasting foods. Not only are they fruity and delicious, but they can look adorable too. Just cover the jar lid with a checkered cloth and tie a string around with a dried orange slice on.

Fabric journal

Every Buslifer likes to have pen and paper at hand in case they feel like writing down their unique experience, Buslife lessons, or even a travel book! A set of cute fabric-covered journals to match the recipient’s style and interests would encourage them to record their memories and musings from life on the road.

Handmade jewelry

With some chains, clasps, wire, pretty stones, and a pair of plyers to hand, making jewelry can be an easy craft! The only question is, does your Buslifer like something simple and elegant, loud and colorful, or edgy and alternative?

Christmas card

It’s true what they say, it really is the thought that counts. With that in mind, a heartfelt Christmas card is just as good as any gift. If you make the card by hand, it’s all the more special. Art enthusiasts could paint a wistful Christmas scene while craft lovers could cut and paste a clever collage. 

If, after all, you have decided that homemade Christmas gifts aren’t for you, see what other gifts our Buslifers would love to receive in the ‘A Christmas Gift List for Buslifers 2021’ article.

Emily Draper
Author: Emily Draper

Having visited over 70 countries across all seven continents, it's safe to say Emily has the voice of a true traveler. She has lived with the Hare Krishnas in Chile, an Amazonian tribe in Peru, and a retiree named Jerry in a Wisconsin trailer park. Now, Emily has embarked on the coolest adventure yet: across Europe in her self-converted bus.

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