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10 Hipster Gifts for College Students

Here are 10 unusual gifts for college students, some of which you can buy and others you can make yourself. While they make great Christmas gifts, they also work well for other times of the year. These are great ideas if you’re on a budget since many can be purchased or made for less than $30.

Beer Bottle Cap Magnets

It’s the perfect gift for the student beer lover. Get six different beer caps and glue a magnet to the bottom of each one. Place them in a small eye-catching box and you’ve got yourself a six pack conversation piece for the fridge. Why buy this when it’s so easy to make? The only tough part is removing the caps from the bottle without bending them.

Wine Cork Magnets

If it’s good enough for beer then it’s fine for wine. Take some elegant wine corks and carefully slice them lengthwise with a sharp knife. Glue a magnet to the cut surfaces and you’ve got yourself a pair of wine cork fridge magnets. Though you can buy these, they’re super simple to make.

Invisible Shelf

This is the perfect storage solution for the space-challenged college student. The base of the shelf is made from an old hardcover book that hangs on the wall with an L-bracket. The base blends in with other books stacked on top, thus appearing invisible. Buy it or make one yourself from basic materials and hand tools.

Vintage Camera Nightlight

Definitely a one-of-a-kind gift, a vintage camera nightlight is made by re-purposing an old non-functioning camera. It’s a nice conversation piece for the camera buff. This item requires a little more skill to make, but it’s still within the realm of possibility. You might want to search online at places like Etsy if you’re looking to purchase one.

Vintage iPad Case

Make your iPad look like an Etch-a-Sketch, an old book or television, or even a slab of bacon. There are numerous artisans these days working feverishly to create unusual iPad cases. With so many varieties available, you’re unlikely to see two of the same on any college campus.

Retro Smartphone Cases

What works for the iPad also works for the smartphone. The same designers that make vintage iPad cases create similar products for smartphones, especially for the iPhone. You can make your phone look like a cassette tape, old school calculator, payphone and even a boom box. These designers surely are an imaginative bunch!

Retro Film Canister Gift Tin

This unusual gift idea is simple to make, as long as you can find the right pieces. Eastman Kodak used to sell their film in tin canisters, which you can still find in flea markets and even online. Take a canister and glue a retro-looking drawer knob on top and you have one classy gift tin. It looks much more expensive than it actually is. Now you just have to find something to fill it with. They’re the right size to hold small presents like jewelry, money, gift cards and anything else that your budget can afford.

Old Globes and Maps

An old globe makes an unusual gift in itself, but there are a lot of gifts you can make with old maps. If you’re handy with decoupage, you can turn an ordinary metal waste can into an extraordinary piece of art. You can even turn maps into blinds, coasters and nightshades. All it takes is a little creativity and a modest amount of skill. Looks like it’s time to go through your stack of old National Geographic magazines.

Recipe in a Jar

Simple and stylish to make, just take your favorite recipe and layer the dry ingredients in an attractive jar. Attach a ribbon with a pretty tag, put instructions on the back and you’re all set. Make a few of these because your college kid is sure to love it! An easy to make recipe like mocha cocoa works well with this idea.

Sewing Kit in a Jar

You can also fill the jar with an assortment of needles, thread and buttons to make a compact sewing kit. Place a pin cushion on top of the lid for an added touch. It’s perfect for the DIY college crafter.