How To Avoid the Urge to Overspend This Christmas

Northwest Custom Apparel presents Tacoma Corporate Gift Ideas: A festive banner featuring a smiling person in a Santa hat holding a dog, with a Tacoma cityscape in the background, framed by holiday decorations

Hey there, it’s Erik with festive savvy tips! I’m tackling the common struggle against Christmas overspending head-on. With the holiday charm and the urge to gift-give, it’s tempting to go overboard. Yet, I’m determined to savor a merry Christmas without financial regrets. Remember, the value of a gift lies in its sentiment, not its price tag. So, I’m here to guide you through avoiding unnecessary expenses while still making the season bright. Ready to embark on a budget-friendly festive quest? Let’s dive in!


 "A selection of employee appreciation gifts featuring Carhartt tool bags, plush blankets, and embroidered caps, each item offering a unique way to show gratitude to your team.
Carhartt Bags, Jackets, Blankets and Caps

Setting a Realistic Holiday Budget to Avoid the Urge to Overspend This Christmas

As we inch closer to Christmas 2023, I can’t stress enough the importance of setting a realistic holiday budget to curb the urge to overspend. It’s easy to get caught up in the spirit of giving, but remember, it’s not about the price tag. It’s about showing love and appreciation.

Start by listing everyone you plan to gift. Set a spending limit for each. Be sure to account for holiday meals, decorations, and other expenses.

Next, stick to your budget. This might mean getting creative with homemade gifts or experiences.

Lastly, start saving now. The earlier you start, the less of a financial burden.

A realistic budget is the best gift you can give yourself this holiday season.

Prioritizing Your Christmas Spending

Once I’ve set a solid holiday budget, the next step is prioritizing my Christmas spending to avoid the urge to overspend.

I list down important people and allocate a budget for meaningful gifts they’d appreciate. I then set limits for decorations, meals, and other essentials, ensuring I stick to them.

If the budget is tight, I reassess and adjust. It’s crucial to remember that the spirit of Christmas is about thoughtful giving, not financial strain.

A festive graphic with flying gift boxes and the text 'How will you show Employee Appreciation? SURPRISE!' alongside the Northwest Custom Apparel logo, suggesting thoughtful and unexpected gifts to value employees.

Creative DIY Gift Ideas

Shifting my focus to creative DIY gift ideas, I’ve found they’re not only a great way to save money but also add a personal touch that can’t be bought.

Think personalized photo albums or homemade candles. Making your gifts allows you to pour love and thought into each one.

You can even turn your DIY project into a fun, family activity. Create beautiful ornaments or knit cozy scarves. If you’re good in the kitchen, try making a batch of festive cookies or a jar of homemade jam.

These gifts aren’t just cost-effective; they’re also unique and memorable. So this Christmas, let’s get creative, save some money, and avoid the urge to overspend This Christmas

Smart Online Shopping Tips

Embracing intelligent online shopping tips is my secret to avoiding overspending this Christmas. I compare prices, stick to my list, and use price alerts for the best deals. Shopping early avoids panic buying. While I love sales, I buy only what’s needed. Remembering to include shipping costs keeps my budget in check.

Maintaining Financial Discipline Post-Christmas

Post-holiday, I take stock of my finances to sidestep any budget blues. I meticulously review past spending to pinpoint excesses and develop a recovery strategy. Prioritizing debt repayment is key to dodge steep interest. I embrace home cooking, minimize eating out, and halt non-urgent buys. A rigorous budget and early savings for the next festive season are my safeguards. Embracing the lessons from ‘Avoid the Urge to Overspend This Christmas’ has set me on a path to wiser spending habits for the future.

"Northwest Custom Apparel's storefront sign, proudly showcasing the company logo with lush greenery and a vibrant red plant in the background, located at 2025 Freeman Road, Milton, WA
Northwest Custom Apparel is located in Milton, WA., 10 minutes from Tacoma.


So remember folks, it’s entirely possible to create a magical Christmas without going overboard on spending. By setting a budget, prioritizing, considering DIY gifts, shopping smartly online, and maintaining financial discipline post-holiday, you can keep your wallet happy.

After all, Christmas isn’t about how much you spend but how much love you share. So, let’s make this Christmas a meaningful one without breaking the bank.

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Antonio Massey

Production Team: Folder

Antonio Massey recently joined NWCA in June of 2022. His role on the Production Team has greatly improved our processes and productivity. Antonio is always willing to lift heavy boxes or help his co-workers during busy times. In his free time, he enjoys playing with his dog and mastering video games.


Alicia Wada

Shipping Clerk

Alicia Wada is passionate about helping her co-workers at Northwest Custom Apparel in any way that she can. She works in our Shipping and Logistics department. Alicia, who goes by Ali, has a bachelor’s degree in Applied Mathematics. She lived in Japan for ten years and recently brought her family to America in 2019. She is interested in learning crafts and textile art from around the world.


Erik Mickelson


Erik Mickelson’s position as Manager is more than a job, it’s a passion. It’s always fun and exciting because he enjoys marketing, computers, and coming up with innovative ideas to help NWCA grow. He majored in accounting and finance at Washington State University, graduating in 1996, and returned to school to obtain his Master of Business from WGU, graduating in 2016. Erik continually strives to advance his education through podcasts, audiobooks, and industry tradeshows. He is married to a remarkable and caring wife named Wendy, a Registered Nurse, with whom he shares his many hobbies and a love for the outdoors.



Ruth Nhoung

Production Manager

Ruth Nhoung is our Production Manager and Northwest Custom Apparel is lucky to have her. Thanks to her vast knowledge of machine embroidery and dedication to creating a comfortable and supportive work environment, the production plant runs smoothly and customers are pleased with our work. She is a loving mother and grandmother and enjoys spending quality time with her siblings. She says, “I love everything about Northwest Custom Apparel: the people, the atmosphere, the work, and the customers. I love what I do and I embrace all of NWCA’s core values”.


Steve Deland

Art Director

Steve Deland has been our amazing Artist since 2017. He loves working at Northwest Custom Apparel because he appreciates the goal-oriented, progressive-thinking management style. He is most passionate about his art, which includes scroll saw woodwork, and his five grandchildren.



Taylar Hanson


Taylar Hanson is a highly acclaimed Saleswoman at Northwest Custom Apparel. She has a BA in Apparel, Merchandising, Design, and Textiles from Washington State University. “Go Cougs!” The best part of Taylar’s job is getting to work with longtime customers who trust us to do the best work and take care of their needs. She is passionate about appreciating nature, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.


Nika Lao


Nika Lao is very knowledgeable in how the business is ran because she began as an Embroidery Machine Operator and has worked hard to become the excellent and personable saleswoman she is today. She enjoys the stress-free environment and the many chances to connect with her co-workers over potlucks, BBQs, and bowling parties. Nika is a proud sister of two highly successful brothers and can boast mastering three languages herself: Khmer, Thai, and English. She is an avid camper, enjoys going to farmer markets, and loves cooking.


Bradley Wright


Bradley Wright has been a vital team member of NWCA since 2017. As our accountant and knower-of-all-things, Bradley is proud to work closely with his wonderful colleagues. He studied at the University of Washington. These days he dedicates his free time to his new house.


Dominic Nguyen

DTG Operator

Dominic Nguyen recently joined our Direct-To-Garment department. He says he loves the family work environment at Northwest Custom Apparel. In his free time, Dom likes to listen to music, hangout with friends, and play video games. He comes from a very big family which can be very chaotic at times, but is always exciting.


Sothea Tann

Production Team: Trimmer

Sothea Tann recently joined the Production Team in 2022. She finds Northwest Custom Apparel to be a good working environment with helpful and friendly staff. In her free time, Sothea spends quality time with her family and, overall, focuses on a peaceful and happy lifestyle.


Brian Beardsley

DTG Supervisor

Brian Beardsley has been with Northwest Custom Apparel since 2018. He is our DTG Supervisor. Brian loves that he gets to work with high-tech machines in a fun atmosphere. He has a bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design. He said, “I always wanted to create visually interesting assets in a variety of mediums”. In his free time, he enjoys building and painting models, playing video games, designing, and playing his guitar.


UT Tri Tran

Embroidery Machine Operator

UT Tri Tran loves Northwest Custom Apparel so much that, although she has already retired after a long career in machine embroidery operations, she is happy to return part time. She says, “I love the family style work environment and how everyone shares food, laughter, and fun on a regular basis.” In her free time she is dedicated to living a healthy and peaceful lifestyle with her friends and family.



Embroidery Machine Operator

BunsereytheavyHoeu, who goes by Theavy, won our Operator of the Year in 2021. She takes on many roles in the production team. She says, “These are not my co-workers, these are my family! I cherish all the memories we make together”. When she goes home to be with her family, she makes the most of her time with them by holding family get-togethers and even karaoke competitions.


Sreynai Meang

Embroidery Machine Operator

SreynaiMeang is a hard-working Machine Operator. She is most passionate about helping people. Sreynai, who goes by Nai, likes to exercise in her free time and talk with her family in Cambodia.


Kanha Chhorn

Embroidery Machine Operator

Kanha Chhorn has been an Embroidery Operator with Northwest Custom Apparel since 2018. She is delightful and always makes everyone smile and laugh. Kanha takes on additional tasks that allow us to exceed our customers’ expectations. In her free time, she can be found at her local temple or spending quality time with her family and friends.


Savy Som

Embroidery Machine Operator

SavySom is one of our Machine Operators who is passionate about embroidery and sewing. She enjoys working at NWCA because of its flexibility. She has two teenage sons and loves spending time with her family on the weekends.



Embroidery Machine Operator

SorphornSorm has been a Machine Operator since 2011. One of her four sisters works here as well. Her other relatives are in Cambodia. In her free time, Sorphorn studies English, listens to music, and enjoys exercising.


Jim Mickelson


Jim Mickelson, after a successful career with a major oil company, founded Northwest Embroidery in 1977. This was the first commercial embroidery in the Pacific Northwest. Over the years, Jim has become the guru of embroidery never refusing to answer a question or offer advice to his fellow embroiders. Jim and his wife Leeanna raised four wonderful children who went on to successful business careers.

Northwest Custom Apparel
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Heidi Christiansen
The company I work for has been buying custom apparel for the team members for years now. We love working with NW Custom Apparel because the process is easy, delivery is timely, and materials are high quality. Anytime I’ve ever had an issue, they’re quick to resolve it. We’ve purchased both embroidered items and DTG graphic tees. We’ve purchased blankets, shirts, jackets, hoodies, etc. Everything ends up looking super professional, and our team members always have positive things to say. Ally is always there at the warehouse with a smile and a friendly greeting when I pick up materials. She is so helpful and respectful. Taylar is a wonderful customer service rep. I’ve sent her some complicated orders—like 20 different items with all different colorways and styles or 150 items with three different styles—and she is so good at getting everything just right. I plan to continue purchasing from NW Custom for high-quality custom apparel.
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Hoa DeBusk
Have used them for years. Knowledgeable team that is always so helpful in recommending options or creating designs. Great quality too for embroidery or digital prints. Very happy with them as a vendor.
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Stacey Perez
We use Northwest Custom Apparel for all of our professional embroidery needs for the orthodontic office I work at. They do great work, are quick and have never missed a deadline. Highly recommend if you need any custom apparel needs.