If you are looking for an inexpensive gift for you whole barn or even one or two people you should get the new Nickerdoodles horse treats in the Xmas containers that have like 8 or 9 in them and are only sold by retailers but are really great for an inexpensive gift. I bought a few they are great so excited to give them to my friends!!!
I'm really into making gifts, and a few years ago I made some adorable bran mash treats for all the horses in my barn. I bought the icing bags, the ones (that are cone shaped) filled the bottom 2/3 with bran, put some sweet feed on top, and then crushed up a candy cane on the top, tied off the bag with a ribbon and handed out 30 home made bran treats. The horses loved them, and so did the owners! It was easy and inexpensive but it made a really nice gift.
Someone on another thread mentioned that they make their barn a peppermint candy wreath, so I googled it and found this great video tutorial: http://www.livingonadime.com/candy-christmas-wreath/. I'm so going to make one now! I just moved barns and haven't met all the boarders, so I can't get something for everyone, and I don't know yet if there's anything that would be super useful for the barn, so I figured a communal horse treat wreath would fit the bill.
My Horses & Hope calendar is a great gift for horse lovers- $19.95 each. You can feel good about your purchase, because 100% of the proceeds are donated to help horses in need, the order is fulfilled by a great small business, and it's a year-round treat for your barn, kitchen, or office. Please click on this link to see some wonderful reviews of the calendar (including horse world luminaries Barbara Livingston, Gina Spadafori, Fran Jurga, and Sue Finley), plus more details about where your money goes when you support this project (including over 250 colts who were successfully gelded with calendar funds!)...... http://thetdnblog.blogspot.com/2012/...-cure-for.html
I think I am going to make home-made tack wipes. I was going to do it last year but ran out of time. I use about 1/2 cup liquid glycerin or castile soap and about 1 cup of water in a plastic container (big enough that you can get your hand into the container (I use 20 oz DiGiorno parmesan cheese containers- but I'm sure other things would work fine). Then buy some fabric such as flannel (fine to use old PJs from Goodwill) cut into squares and add to the liquid. I use this to wipe off my tack after use and then just wash and reuse the fabric squares.
I also really like the horsey bran mash idea as well.
Another fairly inexpensive gift idea is to a framed 8x10 photo of the recipients horse (can get relatively cheap frames at Michaels or other craft stores). A regular old candid shot of the horse just being a horse works fine.
A couple of years ago I made picture frames. I bought inexpensive frames with flat sides and then decorated to look like a jump. I walked thru the craft store and just let things jump out at me that would make jump material. Flat sticks made the standards, rounded ones the rails. Little half barrels for roll tops, train track greenery and little flowers for the fillers. I ended up with 8 different ones, including a dressage arena and a cross country jump. I am not creative but these ideas just flowed along!
I am doing boot socks and toe warmers for everyone this year. Something that can be used and appreciated! And, for each horse, I bought a large bag of horse treats and divided them into ziploc bags and tied off with a piece of Christmas ribbon. Festive and inexpensive!
I made a photo book for my riding buddy at the barn. We both have all the tack, horse related items that we need. I collected up a bunch of pictures from the different activities that we have attended this year. I titled it the Bucket List Book and the cover is a picture of a small bucket with a hunt logo and ribbons that we won at a hunter pace we did this year. I included pictures of our beach trip, team penning clinic, spring fling trail ride, the musical freestyle Pas de Deux we competed in and the Christmas parade. I can't wait to see if she likes it.