Many parents approach Christmas and other gift giving occasions already feeling as though they are drowning in a sea of colourful, noisy plastic. If you are buying gifts for children that already have too many toys, here are some ideas for presents that produce little, if any, clutter and will be appreciated by kids and parents alike.
The most important thing with many of these clutter-free gifts for children is that they are about creating memories rather than things.
1 - Art and craft suppliesThis is my absolute favourite clutter free gift for children, although I'll admit that it does lead to the problem of what to do with the art that is created. General art supplies like felt pens, paints and both plain and coloured paper will always come in handy. Even better, gather together some art and craft supplies into a suitable storage container so that they can be kept both tidy and handy.
2 - Organising suppliesPerhaps this is a gift more for the parents that the child (I personally love our Bath Toy Bag) but you can still find some fun organising supplies for children, and if you buy a good quality toy box it will be appreciated and kept for years.
3 - Baking suppliesMost children love baking, and you can easily put together some dry baking ingredients. If you still want to purchase an actual gift you could package them in a mixing bowl with some child size baking implements like wooden spoons, rolling pins and cookie cutters.
4 - Vouchers for a family experiencePerhaps some vouchers for the whole family to enjoy a trip bowling, to the cinema or vouchers to a suitable, local and family friendly restaurant.
5 - A season ticket to a local attractionIf there is an attraction close by that you know a family likes to visit regularly, a season ticket is the perfect gift. As well as large attractions and theme parks, many local places such as farms and zoos also offer the option of a yearly family pass.
6 - A hamper for some family timeTo encourage time spent together as a family, you could package together vouchers for a DVD rental (or an actual DVD if you know one that the family want or will enjoy), some popcorn, and soft drink. Or perhaps a family board game and box of chocolates.
7 - Stamps and writing paperStamps are expensive, and these days children are more used to firing off an e-mail or making a phone call than sending a letter. But nothing beats receiving a letter through the post, and if you make sure that children are fully stocked with stamps and writing paper, they may even write you a thank you note!
8 - Fun and good quality toiletriesYou can buy bubble bath which is themed with almost every children's character (make sure first that the child you are buying for doesn't have any allergies or only use specific toiletries). For a young baby in particular parents may appreciate a gift of baby bath or moisturiser that they can use rather than another plastic toy.
9 - ClothesYou do need to be very careful with this one, as tastes vary and you also may not know what clothing the parents already have stashed by for children to grow into, or the exact sizes of the children. Socks are always useful, as are pajamas. I've also found long-sleeved t-shirts to be very versatile, as they can be worn throughout the seasons.
10 - A magazine subscription or book vouchersI don't class books as clutter, so I nearly made this one books. But at least if you purchase a gift voucher then the child can choose for themselves so there won't be any duplicates. There are also lots of magazine subscriptions suitable for children, for example National Geographic Kids is both educational and fun.
I hope that you enjoyed this list of gifts and presents that are reasonably clutter free! If you have any more ideas, why not add them below in the comments.
Are you looking for gifts for young children? Try these ideas:
Gifts for very young babies
Gifts for young toddlers (age 1 - 2)
Gifts for older toddlers (age 2 - 3)
Gifts for pre-schoolers