DIY Christmas Cracker Filling Ideas

Add some excitement to your Christmas dinner with your very own Christmas crackers. Whether you're looking to cut down on expenses or make your Christmas feel special and unique, creating your own Christmas cracker can be a fun, small sign of appreciation for the people you love.

You can fill a Christmas cracker with all sorts of things, from beauty products and baubles to sweets and mini lights. There are so many fun and creative ways of spreading some festive fun. In this guide, we'll look at a few DIY Christmas cracker-filling ideas to get all your guests feeling festive.

How to make Christmas crackers

Before we delve into filling options, here are some steps on constructing homemade Christmas crackers:

  1. Gather the materials: You'll need cracker snap strips, cardboard tubes (toilet paper rolls are fine), festive wrapping paper, ribbon or string, scissors and tape. You can also add on some decorations like stickers, glitter, or bows if you'd like.
two people doing crafts at a table
  1. Cut wrapping paper: Cut your coloured paper into 30cm by 16cm rectangles and place your tube in the centre. If needed, you can cut the cardboard tube to fit better.
  1. Prepare paper: Using scissors, mark your paper at each end so it's easier to pull. You can also cut small diamond shapes out of the paper.
wrapping paper and scissors
  1. Wrap the cardboard tube: Use tape or glue to perfectly wrap your cardboard tube. Take one side of the cracker and carefully twist it around the ends of the cardboard tube. Secure it with a festive ribbon and thread the cracker snap through. The cracker snap will add the signature "pop" when the cracker is pulled.
  1. Add your cracker fillings: From the other open end of the cracker, place your items. Once the fillings are in place, secure the other side of the cracker with a ribbon, creating a neat closure.
chrismtas crackers
  1. Add finishing touches: If you want, you can decorate the outside of the cracker with bows, ribbons, or other embellishments to make it look even more festive.
  1. Decorate your table: Once complete, place your own crackers on the table for guests to enjoy.

By following these steps, you'll have a lovely homemade Christmas cracker that will add a personalised and joyful touch to your holiday celebrations.

Ideas for Christmas cracker fillings

Once you’ve mastered how to make Christmas crackers, you’ll want to collect some fillings to surprise and delight your family and friends. We’ve compiled a list of the following items you could put inside your cracker:

  1. Write personalised notes
a handwritten note saying "i love you"

Whether it's a heartfelt message for a partner or a funny joke that brightens up the evening, personalised notes can be an easy and effective cracker gift. You don’t need to create an elaborate gift to make your crackers unique and interesting. Writing something personal can open up so many hilarious and beautiful moments between you and your loved ones. Not only is this a sweet and thoughtful gesture, but it reminds everyone how much you cherish and value them. There’s so many stories, anecdotes and fun facts you can share to relive some treasured memories. 

  1. Miniature toys

Filling your cracker with tiny toys can be a great idea, especially if you have kids. From mini figurines of beloved characters and animals to little vehicles and keychains with soft, squishy toys, there are a lot of small toy items you can put inside your cracker. 

You could either visit local stores and search for specific toys for certain people to match their interests and personalities or gather a collection of items that fit with your Christmas decor theme. 

As you assemble your Christmas crackers, keep the interests of your guests in mind so they can enjoy and appreciate your thoughtful gesture. One thing to keep in mind when looking for toys, however, is whether they are safe and age-appropriate. All toys should come with age requirements and safety instructions, so use this as a way to gauge which items you should choose for your guests.

  1. Sweet treats
christmas candy and gingerbread at a market stall

Christmas is a time for giving… and eating! Satisfy your sweet tooth with some fun, festive treats that will put you in the festive mood.

You could fill your crackers with a selection of candy, chocolates and lollipops that can serve as a delightful surprise for your guests. If you know someone has a particular favourite treat, you can cater your cracker to their tastes and gift them something you know they’ll love. This also works vice versa, too, as you can eliminate certain sweets you know people don’t like. 

Although buying some bags of sweets can be an easy option, there’s nothing stopping you from baking your own treats. From gingerbread men and chocolate chip cookies to brownies and shortbread, you can get creative and fill your cracker with some tasty snacks. If you opt for this, however, you should wrap your baked goods in tissue paper and make them small enough to fit in the cracker.

Candy canes and gingerbread men can also work really well with traditional Christmas trees and other decorations to create a warm and cosy atmosphere.  

If you’re curious about what Christmas colour schemes would work well together, check out our guide! 

  1. Miniature beauty products

Keep yourself and your guests looking and feeling glam this Christmas with a range of luxury beauty products. 

For makeup gurus, fill their crackers with small, travel-sized lip gloss, eyeshadow pallet, nail polish and blush to add to their collection. These can be items you believe would really suit your guests or something that you know they would like more of.  

Beauty doesn’t just stop at makeup, however. Skincare products, perfume and jewellery can all be great gift ideas. 

With skincare, include mini lip balms, hand cream and little moisturisers to give everybody  a mini spa experience and offer them something calm and replenishing. Tiny perfume bottles can also be a sweet idea as you can assign different scents to different people and jewellery like rings and bracelets can be a lovely sign of friendship. Not to mention that there are a plethora of hair accessories you can include as well, from hair clips to funky hats. 

  1. Ornaments & trinkets
a woman holding a christmas tree ornament

Filling your crackers with little ornaments and trinkets can be a really festive and wholesome gift idea. If you want to stick with a particular theme, you can design your crackers to reflect your decor. A winter wonderland themed Christmas could have white and blue crackers with snowflakes, baubles and mini Christmas tree decorations. Not only will this fit in with the festive season but your gift could potentially appear on your friend or family members Christmas tree as a nice little memento.

Although this is Christmas, you can also include items that are more party and celebration oriented. This could include badges, stickers, balloons, bubbles and party poppers as a fun alternative filling idea. If you end up having too many of these items, you can also use them for other occasions like birthday parties, anniversaries and other special events. 

Read our full guide for more information about neutral Christmas tree decorations

  1. Stationery

While it may seem an odd gift choice at first, stationery can be quite a lovely and thoughtful cracker filling idea. Whether your guests are avid writers in desperate need of some new pens and pencils or you’ve got some little creatives who love colouring with crayons, there is quite a range of stationery options. 

Other items could include sharpeners, magnets, measuring tapes and bottle openers that could all be quite useful in daily life. If these items don’t scream festive fun, you can always seek out stationery with fun designs to match your party guests. 

7. Gardening items

seeds, gloves and other gardening equipment

Gardeners will definitely appreciate the flowery love with these next filler ideas! From mini gardening tools and seed packets to plant markers and tiny succulents, these items will inspire your guests to get their hands dirty and nurture their own little green havens. 

These items don’t just have to be practical, however, they can also be delightful decorations you can hang on wreaths and garlands or place around your garden to enhance the overall ambiance. 

Read our full guide for more information about where to hang wreaths & garlands at home.

Have fun with Christmas Tree World

With all these filling ideas in mind, you can craft delightful Christmas crackers that add a touch of magic to your celebrations. No matter your budget, you can create lasting memories at the Christmas table and gift your loved ones with something heartfelt.

At Christmas Tree World, we offer a wide range of Christmas decorations at affordable prices. From Christmas trees and lighting to wreaths and garlands, our high-quality products are made to last, so you can enjoy using them for many years.

Decorate your living space with our collection of decorations today, and you can receive a 10-year guarantee plus FREE UK mainland delivery when you spend over £30!Read our delivery & returns specifications for more information.