How can we find fun holiday gifts for friends and family on a student budget? We get creative. Photo/ MCT Campus

As the holiday break is approaching, there are many things on students’ minds. Am I going to pass my finals? What should I do for housing next semester? Why are all the classes I need to register for full?

These are the things I hear students talking about lately.

This time of year is always a stressful one for college students, and if it weren’t for me constantly saying to myself, “Stress gets me nowhere; there is no point in stressing out,” multiple times a day, those worrisome student thoughts would be in my head too.

But I have holiday-break fever! I am in great spirits and cannot stop thinking about the many things that will come with my break from school: sleeping until noon and not feeling guilty, having the time to read “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” before I see the movie and, most of all, Christmas shopping!

Yes, I am worried that my aspirations for elaborate holiday presents for loved-ones will be stomped on by the lack of green in my wallet, but there are still some great holiday gift ideas that are not only cheap and creative, but fashionable as well.

Velvety apparel

This fabric is timeless and screams “holiday present” for a fashionista in your life! Try a simple skirt, clutch or pair of leggings made with this material in a dark color like forest green, maroon or royal purple. For those with an especially tight budget simply get a necklace or bracelet with a piece of this fabric in it. Most of the ones I have seen lately contain a velvet strip tied like a bow to the piece of jewelry.

Book ends 

For your friends or family who value their large stacks of books, or even for those who appreciate interior design, try a pair of book ends! These can be found in an array of styles, my favorites being on two ends of the spectrum: very modern and very vintage. Book ends can be found at a local thrift store and even look great when they are mismatched.

Stylish hats

It’s no secret that 2011 has been a year for stylish hats. Fedoras, cloche hats and even knit toboggans could be a great gift this holiday season. They keep people warm during the cold winter months, look great with jackets and many layers, and can be purchased in a wide variety of colors. For your male friends try a toboggan or a flat cap!

Shoe inserts

This one is for the ladies! As every girl has experienced at some point in their life, the cutest shoes can also be the most uncomfortable, especially those boots and high heels worn out to dinner dates or uptown for a night out at a club. Lucky for those with fragile feet, shoe inserts can now be found cut for high heels and boots instead of standard sneakers. These could be the relief your best girlfriend needs after a long night of dancing.

Haley Twist is the former Niner Times Editor-in-Chief. A Religious Studies student who worked with the Niner Times for two years, she has previously served as the Lifestyle Editor and the Arts & Entertainment Editor for the paper. She is a 2012 recipient of the Randall Beavers Memorial Award and a 2013 recipient of the Shameka Smith-Hamilton Award.