5 Frugal Father’s Day Gift Ideas

June 8, 2015

Frugal Father's Day Ideas

Father’s Day is coming up and this year, don’t hit the department store the day before. Skip the tie and give him something he won’t want to hide in a box. Here are some great sentimental and frugal ideas for your dad.

A picture says a thousand words

Websites like Shutterfly offer countless options to take your photo and put it on anything. If your dad is an avid biker, get him a water bottle with a photo of you two together.  Photo mugs are a bit cliche but still a good pick.

A nice frame with a photo inside is always a good idea. Better yet, compile old and recent photos and make them into a calendar for his office. You can even add custom holidays that the two of you share.

Celebrate his life

One year in honor of my mom’s birthday, I made her a timeline of her life up until that point. I bought stickers from Michael’s and used construction paper to draw out her achievements. Even though it cost me less than $20, she still counts it as one of her favorite presents more than a decade later.

Why? Because it shows how well I know her and that I respect what she’s done with her life. Sometimes we forget that our parents were people before and after us. Creating a timeline with milestones outside of family life can remind them of all they’ve done. What’s a better way to say “I love you?”

Custom pottery

If your parents are anything like mine, then your first-grade drawings are framed everywhere around the house. But as we get older, the miscellaneous art projects stop and our parents have to start buying real art for their homes.

Treat your dad to something handmade and go to a place where you can pick out a piece of pottery and paint it. Everyday items like a catch-all dish for his keys, a coffee mug or even a coaster for his favorite beer can all be great ways to remind him of you on a regular basis.

These small items can cost around $20-$30. Take your time painting and even this frugal gift can last forever.

Add to his collection

One of the easiest ways to get a good gift is to think about what they already like. My dad loves the British Navy and collects figurines of Scottish terriers. Everywhere I travel, I try to bring back something to add to his collection.

Depending on what your father might collect, this is usually an easy way to get him something you know he’ll appreciate. Flea markets and thrift stores can be great places to scour for something unique that you can’t get in a catalog. Plus it’s more fun than shopping on Amazon.

Buy him something he wouldn’t buy himself

We all have those items that we would love to own, but hate to spend money on. As a rule, this is usually the best gift you can give someone. If your dad loves whiskey, but hates to spend more than $20 on a bottle, treat him to a nicer variety. If he loves to fish, buy him some new supplies that he refuses to upgrade.

Whatever you decide to get, your present should reflect your dad, not every dad. If your dad, like mine, collects ties from the Grateful Dead, get him one of those. If he loves to drink beer, find a six-pack he hasn’t tried before.

Even though it’s cheesy to say it’s the thought that counts, it really does matter that the gift reflects the person he is. Don’t get him cologne if his only bottle is collecting dust or a new shirt if he prefers his ratty old ones. Ask your mom or friends of his what he’s mentioned lately. As long as you think about your purchase, you can find something perfect and frugal.




4 comments so far.

4 responses to “5 Frugal Father’s Day Gift Ideas”

  1. Pia says:

    Ties and little techy things are always my go to. My dad has this tie with Santa’s all over it so I found one with Easter bunnies and maybe next year I’ll find some Halloween pumpkins!
    All these ideas are great 🙂


  2. Paula says:

    Great ideas!


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