here is a fun craft idea for the littler gift givers.
chunky (wooden) beads
ribbon or shoelaces
i raided my stash once again, so i don't have a specific cost on this one, but i would guess a few dollars at most if you have to purchase the beads. plan for 15-30 minutes of time. it depends on the speed your little one will go and how much help they need (or more likely want - "mama, i do it for myself.").
luca, age 4 and a half at the time, made his little sister this chic number. i helped him with his first knot but he made all subsequent knots (great practice!). he chose the beads, patterm , and ribbon on his own. he was so proud to give it to gia. "you like it? because i think you look pretty."
gia, age 2 and three quarters at the time, made this for her big brother. i helped her with all the knots, but she chose her pattern and did most of the stringing. i gave her a shoelace (easier to string with her chubby little fingers) and set out a variety of beads in 3-4 coordinating colors for her to choose from. she couldn't wait to give it luca. "here, yuca, i made you a neckwace. put it on!"
they would be sweet for a special little friend or, like above, a beloved sibling. with the right materials, i think super cute ones could be made for grandmas, teachers, or even (hint, hint) mamas.