Teacher Appreciation Week is the first full week in May – do you have your teacher’s gift yet? If you need an inexpensive teacher gift that looks amazing and will be totally useful, this dollar store teacher gift idea is perfect.

I love finding clever ways to say thank you. Let me show you everything you need to know about Teacher Appreciation Week.

dollar store teacher gift

Dollar Store Teacher Gift

Gifts Teachers Can Use

I used to teach Jr. High. Loved it, but struggled to smile sincerely during teacher appreciation week after opening up my 32nd ‘#1 teacher mug’. Okay maybe not 32 of them, but I got my fair share of them. I don’t mean to sound ungrateful because I know it’s the thought that counts and getting a kind gift from a teenager is pretty impressive.

Anyways, I was trying to think of something for my daughter’s teacher that could be found at the dollar store and wouldn’t be taken to the teacher’s lounge and ‘accidentally’ left there.

So how about a teacher appreciation organizer…a cute classy organizer that would be fun and functional to have on a desk.

dollar store vases

How to Make This Dollar STore Teacher Gift:

It is easier than you think to turn dollar store vases into expensive-looking containers for office supplies!

I started out with 4 square glass ‘pots’ or vases. They were in the vase section not the mugs and glass section of the dollar store…BTW

vinyl lettering on vases

Have you ever used the reverse of vinyl? It works as a pretty snazzy stencil. No exact-o knife needed! Using your Cricut choose your font and…perfection! Cut out your vinyl and pull the back part off (as shown). Place it where you want the letters to be etched.

supplies to make dollar store teacher gift

I used the etchall etching cream. Say that 5 times fast. You only use a little bit, so grab a few friends and do it together! The instructions say to use gloves…I am showing you the gloves…they weren’t on my hands apparently.

etching words in vases

With a paintbrush glob some in the vinyl letter openings. Don’t get it on any other part of the glass.

wash of etching cream to reveal letters

Wait for 15 minutes. Run the glass under water removing all of the glob and then pull off the vinyl. It will look really clear and I thought I did it wrong until it dried. Do you see the letter ‘e’? That one is dry. The other letters are still wet and harder to see…until they dry.

Pencil organizer final product


pink pencils in organizer

Add ribbon and pencils and pens to complete this dollar store teacher gift set.

The middle one says clips and I did one that says candy. So…Pens, paper, clips, and candy, but the pictures looked cuter with just the three.

desk organizer for teacher

These teacher appreciation gifts would be fast and thrifty to make for your kid’s teachers. My daughter is very excited to give hers to her teacher!

SUpplies needed to make this Teacher Gift:

Just in case you can’t make it to the local dollar store I compiled a list of supplies you can order online to make this incredible teacher gift. With the options shared here, you will be able to make at least two sets of four desk organizers. (Affiliate links are included in this section)

More Inexpensive Teacher Gifts

The gals from HowDoesShe? and are so thrilled to share one of their favorite Teacher Appreciation crafts with you! For more crafts, recipes, decor ideas, organization tips, and more be sure to pay them a visit.

I would love to keep you fully stocked with creative ideas, yummy recipes, fun crafts, and loads of free printables. Subscribe to Skip to my Lou to get new ideas delivered to your inbox. Follow me on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram for all my latest updates.

About Cindy Hopper

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  1. Love the ideas on your site. As a middle school teacher, as much as the thought counts, I would much rather have a Thank You card than one more gift with an apple on it! Thanks for thinking out of the box.

  2. The “reverse of vinyl” she is referring to, is actually the remainder from sich machine as a Silhouette, or CriCut after removing your letters you actually intended on using 🙂

  3. Love the idea, but I like others am lost on the “reverse of vinyl” and not needing to use an exact-o knife–how then is the stencil made? Really interested in doing this… Thanks in advance for clarifying .

  4. I am also confused on how to use the vinal cutouts. If you could please explain this I would love it!! Making this for my son’s teacher and need a little help. Thanks!!

  5. I really would like to make this craft but I am as lost as the others. Are you emailing the instructions about ‘reverse vinyl’ and how to cut out the letters? I don’t see a response anywhere on your site.
    This is a great idea and can be used on many different items

  6. Such a cute idea! I am also confused about the vinyl reverse part. Where do you buy the vinyl lettering? Do the letters just pop out or do you need to cut them out? I would love to make these this week for teacher appreciation which is next week and also some for Mothers Day. Thanks for the idea!!!

  7. Uncertain how to pull the letters out– without using exacto knife… interested NEED this idea because it is GREAT for mom’s day and teacher appreciation 🙂

  8. I need some help understanding the “No exactO” but the “cut out the vinyl” part. How do you get the letters cut out?? Sorry…. I am just not understanding… VERY CUTE Idea….

  9. Can you give more information about the reverse of vinyl? Where would you find this product? Thank you!

  10. I love this idea! I’m going to have to try it. It would be a great Mothers Day gift too! 🙂

  11. As a teacher, I think this is a great gift. You could be even more frugal and just do one etched with the teacher’s initial, wrapped with a pretty ribbon, and filled with her favorite candy.

    Something to consider adding, a short handwritten note letting the teacher know that he/she is appreciated. We tend to save those things and they come in handy on the rough days 🙂

  12. I love the idea just a little lost of the vinyl part how do I put the letters out??HELP!!

  13. This is simple, elegant, organized………I think this is my favorite teacher appreciation craft so far! Thanks for sharing all these great teacher appreciation ideas. I’m the cook for a preshcool/kindergarten and I know the teachers I work with would love all these gifts. 🙂

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