15 Clutter-Free Birthday Party Gifts for Kids

When it comes to simplicity, birthday parties can feel anything but simple. We want to give gifts that a kid will love, but we also want it to reflect our values as well. For our family, that means I try to avoid gifting items to others families that could potentially turn into clutter. I love gifting experiences, but there are other options too. Here are 15 ideas for clutter-free, low-waste gifts that kids will love.

  1. National Geographic Little Kids. This is my favorite magazine subscription for little kids. I usually print out a mini-image of the cover and stick it in the envelope with a note that says the child will be receiving a one-year subscription.
  2. Transfer Stickers. These stickers are anything but typical stickers. They are a great fine motor activity and can easily be recycled after they are completed.
  3. Art Making with Moma. These art kits are great for the non-Pinterest savvy families. They contain everything you need for a free-flowing artistic experience.
  4. Seedling Activity Kit. There are a million different Seedling kits. They tailor to a variety of interests. Most are environmentally friendly and allow kids to create projects that facilitate free play.
  5. Create-Your-Own-Puzzles. These puzzles are a blank slate. Not only is it fun to decorate and create them, but then they can be used and reused for fun.
  6. Paper Dolls. I loved paper dolls as a kid. This classic will still be a hit with children.
  7. Think Green Cardboard Maze. It’s a maze that you get to build, play with, and then recycle. You can enjoy it and you don’t have to feel bad about getting rid of of it.
  8. Organic Mushroom Growing Kit. This kit contains the necessary components for kids to grow beautiful mushrooms. Maybe they will even eat them. 🙂
  9. Coloring Pad. I prefer these coloring pads to traditional coloring books. Children can pull out and easily focus on one page at a time.
  10. Green Kid Crafts Subscription box. I have tried a few subscription boxes and I like this one best. The activities are simple, thematic, and eco-friendly.
  11. Easy Playhouse. This simple house has loads of creative potential. Decorate it and then use it for open-ended play until it’s ready to hit the recycling bin.
  12. DIY Natural Bathbombs. I haven’t tried these, but I want to. I would be totally happy if my kids made some of these for me.
  13. Dessert for the Family. It can be hard to find experience gifts that are affordable. If I am gifting an experience gift to the child, I prefer to make it substantial enough to cover the whole family–ice cream or dessert usually fits that budget.
  14. Bubble bath. Bubble bath is a special treat in our family. Because it’s consumable, it can be a great clutter-free gift to give to others as well.
  15. Back to Roots Garden in a Can. These herb kits include everything you need to be grown and harvested right in the [included] can. You can either leave it in there or transfer it into the ground.

What are your favorite clutter-free gifts to give?

Denaye Barahona

Denaye Barahona is a loving wife and mama of two. She's a therapist for moms, an author, and the host of the top-ranked Simple Families Podcast. Denaye holds a Ph.D. in Child Development and is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She has been featured on the likes of The Today Show, Netflix, The Wall Street Journal, Real Simple, Forbes, and numerous other media outlets.