Gifts For Nursing Home Residents That They’ll Actually Like.


If you have a friend or family member who’s a nursing home or rehab resident, or jsut a homebound senior, it can be nice to bring them gifts every now and then, whether for a birthday, holiday, Christmas, or just because.

When my inlaws were in a nursing home we would bring them the usual equipment and things like that, but every now and then you want to give someone something that’s special, not just useful. It’s hard to be in a nursing home, and getting a gift that’s a little more personalized, or even a little frivolous, can be a nice thing.

Here are some inexpensive gift ideas for senior citizens from our members that tend toward the “fun” side, and some that are both fun and practical.

gifts for nursing home residents

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Handmade soap and lip balm set.

Soap and lip balm gift set

This gift set from Botany Barn Opens in a new a nice choice for something that’s both useful and indulgent. It has a bar of handmade soap and lip balm, and will be something that a nursing home resident will love.

Dog-themed handmade soap.

soap with a dog on it

The Sudsy Goat Soapery makes cute handmade soapOpens in a new tab. with dog portraits on the bars. This would be a cute and useful small gift for a n elderly person who loves their pet.

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Toiletry bags.

Timeless Kreations makes pretty toiletry bagsOpens in a new tab. that could be used for multiple purposes. These would be a handy bag for makeup, but a nursing home resident could also use it to keep medications or anything else that they want to keep track of in it. Storage containers are items that nursing home residents need, so they might as well be nice-looking and not institutional.

Reusable heating pads.

If your friends or family member has access to a microwave in their nursing home, a reusable therapeutic heating pad by Natural Body Comfort Opens in a new tab.would be a nice gift. You can get one that’s used for a specific body part, like this knee wrap, or one that’s rectangular that can be used as a general warmth source. It’s a nice warm gift for an elderly person that can be reused.

Flower arrangements.

All Seasons House Decor makes pretty artificial flower arrangementsOpens in a new tab. that will brighten up a nursing home room and won’t need to be watered. Nursing home room decor is important to create a more homey feel for the resident and their visitors.

Fun wall art.

wooden fish wall art

Brighten up a nursing home room with some fun wall art. Novelwares Opens in a new tab.creates unique wall art made from wood, and you can combine multiple pieces to make a full arrangement.

Macrame wall hanging.

macrame wall hanging

Another fun wall art option would be a macrame wall hanging from Wires And Knots.Opens in a new tab. These are handmade and she also sells kits, so you can do a DIY project to make one if you want to do that.

Lap quilts.

Pink and orange flowers lap quilt

Tahoe Quilts makes unique lap quiltsOpens in a new tab. that would be both useful and a pretty addition to brighten up a nursing home room.

Fingerless mittens.

My mother-in-law had trouble with her hands being cold all the time, and I know that a lot of older people also do. These fingerless gloves by Vaida Petreikis Opens in a new tab.will help by keeping the pulse points in the wrist warm, which can help warm up the entire hand.

Custom throw pillows.

grandparents throw pillow with a poem from the grandchildren printed on it

Krista Custom Shop has personalized pillow coversOpens in a new tab. that would make a nice gift and would also be useful in a nursing home room. The grandkids’ names on it make it more special, and there are other designs to choose from as well.

Colorful throw pillows.

Throw pillows with red flowers on it

Sonal Creative Soul makes colorful throw pillow covers Opens in a new tab.that would brighten up a nursing home living room or bedroom. There are a lot of designs to choose from, and new additions all the time.

Photo blankets.

Blanket with family photos

This custom family photo blanketOpens in a new tab. would be a nice gift for a nursing home resident. Word Sass Designs will put one together from photos that you send, and it will be both a useful and sentimental present.

Wooden quilt puzzle.

wooden quilt puzzle

Sanders Woodworking creates some simple wooden puzzlesOpens in a new tab. that will help keep fingers busy, and that are easy to solve so they won’t be frustrating.

Simple arts and crafts.

teapot stitching kit with pink fabric

If your friend or family member enjoyed crafting before moving into a nursing home, there’s no reason why they wouldn’t still like doing a project. Markets of Sunshine sell slow stitch kitsOpens in a new tab. so that you can make small projects at your own pace. This would be a cute project for a nursing home resident to work on.

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Paintable craft kit.

This cute paintable watering can by Krista Custom ShopOpens in a new tab. is a simple project that will be fun to make, and will be a nice decoration in a bedroom after it’s done.

Bible study printables.

printable bible study materials

If your family member would be interested in doing some Bible study, the Bible Study Collective has printable material Opens in a new tab.that you could print out and bring to them. This would be a meaningful way to spend time with your elderly relative, too.


Laura nightlight with turtle

Me Plus Thee creates personalized nightlightsOpens in a new tab., which can be handy in a nursing home environment. It’s good to have names on things that might be taken out of the room since it will help the staff track things down.

For a gift guide for new grandparents, click here.

Writing journals.

cat junk journal

Ila and Alice makes junk journals and postcards Opens in a new tab.for journaling and writing. You’re sure to find something interesting on her website, and whoever receives one of her handmade junk journals will think that it’s fun to look at even if you don’t write in it!

Custom portraits of pets.

cat portrait made on an embroidery hoop with needle felting

If your family member had a favorite pet, a custom needle-felted portraitOpens in a new tab. would be a nice addition to their room at the nursing home. Mariela Felts makes these by hand using needle felting, so they have a soft texture to them.

For more unique pet owner gifts, click here.

A cute shirt.

quilter tshirt

One thing about moving into a nursing home is that you tend to not get out to go clothes shopping as much as you used to. My mother-in-law really enjoyed it when she got new clothes as a gift, since she didn’t go out to buy things for herself. This quilter t-shirt by Sew Many Quilty ThingsOpens in a new tab. would be a fun addition to a quilter’s wardrobe, and it will be a conversation starter for sure.

For more gifts for people who like to sew, click here.

Adult coloring sheets.

coloring sheet

These printable coloring sheets can be a fun way for a nursing home resident to relax and create something to decorate their room with. Doodlecore Designs makes hand-drawn coloring sheets Opens in a new tab.that you can download and print as many times as you’d like, so you can print and color a bunch of them in different ways.

Birthstone bracelets.

birthstone bracelet

Birthstone jewelry from Shokh JewelryOpens in a new tab. is a nice reminder of family members. Add stones for each grandchild, or for whichever family members you want to include.

Adult bib that looks like a stylish scarf.

scarf style adult bib

This scarf is actually an adult bib Opens in a new tab.that looks like a fashion accessory, not a bib. It’s created to help maintain the dignity of the wearer while still protecting their clothing at mealtimes.

There are a lot of options for gifts that would be nice for a nursing home resident that are less practical and more on the fun side. I hope that this list gives you some ideas.

And of course, the best gift that you can give someone is to spend time with them. That’s the thing that most nursing home residents want more than anything else, so make sure to visit them as much as you can!


Kara Buntin

Kara Buntin has run a profitable home-based business since 1999, and has a background in art, theater design, and cake decorating. She's a top Etsy seller with over 51,000 sales on Etsy and her own website, and helps other home-based business owners with their business goals and SEO. She founded the Artisan Shopping Directory website to promote the artisans who are members of her EShop Success marketing program.

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