GIU Day 2 – A Year Long Gift

Welcome back to day 2 of my GIU (Growing in Unity) week. Today’s creations are gifts that can be used all year long and given at various times of the year.

Often times I find myself needing a quick inexpensive gift that doesn’t look quick and inexpensive to share with co-workers or to use as a secret Santa gift. Below I will be sharing a desk calendar idea and a couple coasters. Both items can be used all year and cost about $5 or less when paired together as a gift. 

To create the calendars, I start out visiting the dollar store to pick up a few frames in various colors and sizes. Once I get home, I pick out some stamps that I feel fit the recipients (Stamps sets are listed below). I got to work stamping my images on a heavy weight cardstock and then color them. For todays calendars I used Color Burst water color powders by Ken Oliver to color my images. While the images were drying, I pulled together some additional elements for the Sloth calendars and the sunflower calendar. I also plugged in my hot glues gun so it could heat up. The next step was too fussy cut my images and start laying out my designs.

Time to assemble the snail calendar. Using Tombow mono adhesive to glue the sentiments at the top. Using pop dots, I adhered the snails and the frog. The clip was already attached to this picture frame so that made adding the calendar easy plus makes it inner changeable. 

To assemble the sloth card, I started by adhering the burlap to a karft card stock using dots clear adhesive dots. I then used the same dots to adhere the pink ribbon over top. Using super glue, I glues my solo flower to the bottom right corner then glued my sloth, sentiment, and a mini clothe pin to the base. Bam calendar two done.

Moving onto my third calendar, which was my quickest. I cut out some a scrap piece of Fields of Summer pattern paper I cut out some sunflowers to fit into the corner of my frame. Next, I picked out a sheet of blue card stock that coordinated with the sunflowers. Cutting to size, then running it through an embossing folder I created the wood textured background base. To help the graining pop more on the background I brushed over the top with a blue ink pad. From there I glued the sunflower cut out to the top left corner. Feeling the base needed a little more demission I added some twine and then glued the calendar straight to the card base. Still feeling like I was missing an element I decided to look through my sentiment and came across one fitting for this calendar. Once I stamped the image out on leftover heavy stock, I cut it out and then distressed it to fit the calendar. Glued that bad boy down and bam, done. 

Creating the below coasters are just as quick and simple as the above calendars. To start I purchase blank white gloss tiles from Home Depot in bulk. Yes, in bulk. These go quick when you are making them and buying 100 at a time allows me to save some money, plus always have them on hand. While I’m at Home Depot I also pick up a spray can of high gloss clear protectant glaze. This too will last a while. Some other supplies you will need are alcohol inks and a Stazon pad. Both can be purchased from most craft supply stores. 

The best way to stamp on the tiles is to us a stamp block instead of a stamping platform. Stamping the images can be a little tricky because the stamp may want to slide when you press down. For best results you want to stamp straight down with a firm press but not too firm that the stamp slides, lift straight up when picking up the stamp. Then you should get a good impression. If the images are not perfect or the way you would like it you can simply wipe your tile off with rubbing alcohol. Allow tile to dry and try it again. Once your image or sentiment is how you want it, allow it to dry for a few minutes or over night before you apply colored ink around the edges. When adding color to the edges you can use a paint brush and paint it on or drop small amounts of ink straight to the tile. If you have an image you want to color in you will want to carefully paint the image with alcohol ink using a paint brush. Be careful and don’t touch the side of the image with your brush because the black Stazon can smear. When painting on the color using a brush the ink will spread on it’s own across the surface. A little ink goes a long way when creating these tiles. Don’t be afraid to play around with this. Like I mentioned above you can always wipe off your tile and start over. 

Once you are satisfied with your tile you will want to let it set for a minimum of 24 hours before you apply the Spray gloss protectant finish. I apply three layers of the protectant finish allowing each layer to fully dry in between. To complete the coaster I adhere a cork coaster to the bottom side of the tile. 

I hope you have enjoyed today’s creations. Please let me know if you have any questions or need more details on how to create either of these fun gifts.

Don’t forget to leave a comment for a chance to be one of two winners drawn at the end of the week for following along.

  • Many of these stamp sets are on sale this week too, be sure to stop by the Unity site and stock up on stamps for a smoking deal.

Products Used


Snailed It – Stamp set

Frankie – Stamp set

Sloth Endearments – Stamp Set

Everything inside you – Stamp

Being Kind Strengthens Other – Stamp

I am right – Stamp

Fields of summer – Paper Pack

Misc Products

Taylored Expressions mini calendars


Glue Dots

Tombow mono adhesive

Hot glue

Ken Oliver Color Bursts

White Tiles

Picture Frames

High Gloss Protective spray

Tim Holtz Alcohol inks

Stazon Black Ink

Solo wood flower


Clothes pin

31 thoughts on “GIU Day 2 – A Year Long Gift”

  1. Great gift ideas!! I’ve done coasters a very long time ago. The calendar idea is a perfect gift! Thanks for sharing😊

  2. I love this! Great ideas. And buying the tiles in bulk- I love it! Thanks for sharing these great ideas for quick gifts. We all need them at times!!! Can’t wait to see the rest of your week!

  3. So many great ideas and perfect timing. I’ve never known how to stamp on the tiles and appreciate the step by step tutorial!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *