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Event planners and party-goers alike would agree that one should never show up to a holiday party empty-handed. Whether you bring awesome wine gifts, a scented candle, or a glass set, it doesn’t matter! You need to show you have at least put some thought into it. Common courtesy necessitates bringing at least a small something for the hostess that was gracious enough to open up her home for a festive holiday gathering. Luckily, gifts for the hostess don’t have to be dull and meaningless….they can attest to your special relationship with the hostess or add a streak of excitement to her chaotic night.
First and foremost, here are a few basic rules to keep in mind when selecting a gift for your sweet hostess:
- Don’t bring anything that will create more work for her. Chances are, she’s already spent a lot of time cooking, decorating, and preparing for this party, so try to make your gift effortless on her end. Don’t bring her flowers without a vase, for instance, and don’t show up with an uncooked appetizer or dessert that will require extra kitchen space or time in the oven to prepare.
- Know her well. Even if the hostess isn’t a close friend or family member, it’s still important to know a few key details about her when selecting a gift. For instance, if she has any food allergies, it’s best to not bring a dish with those ingredients. If she doesn’t drink alcohol, proceed with caution when thinking about bringing a bottle of wine. Even though she might appreciate having it to serve for her guests, it’s not as personal if you know she won’t use it herself. However, if she does drink wine and enjoys it then why not check out these gifts for wine lovers here? But make sure that before you buy her wine, you know that that is her drink of choice. There are loads of other types of drinks you could get ranging from these gin gifts to perhaps a non-alcoholic type of drink – since not every drinks alcohol.
- Know the party. It’s okay to phone her beforehand and ask her if she’d like you to bring anything, but it’s very possible that she will say no. Regardless, you should still bring something, and make sure it’s fitting for the party as a whole. For instance, if you know it’s a family party, consider something that adults and kids can enjoy. This also applies if the hostess is a mother and/or wife; she’d probably love receiving a gift that her whole family can enjoy later on.
That being said, here are some of our favorite gift ideas to thank your host with class and style:
- Drinks: In most circumstances, you can’t go wrong with a great bottle of wine or champagne. If you know your hostess’ exact taste, it’s never a bad idea to give her a couple of bottles of that. But don’t be afraid to bring a more eccentric brand or variety. If you want to go a different route, consider bringing the ingredients for one of your favorite cocktails. Otherwise, try a nice bottle of sparkling wine from Total Wine’s list found here.
- Snacks: Snacks are always crowd-pleasers, and even if your hostess doesn’t set out your gift for her guests, she’ll probably love receiving a little something to put out for herself or her family later on. Classic snack options are spiced or salted nuts and small chocolates or hard candies. Sites that offer an extensive variety of choices for any palette you can find here.
- Flowers: While not a super common gift for holiday parties, every woman loves receiving a beautiful, home-brightening bouquet. Popular winter flowers include cineraria, cyclamen, English daisies, and pansies. As previously stated, make sure you bring the flowers in a vase; it’s probably a good idea to cut the stems beforehand as well. Visit Pro Flowers or FTD to find the perfect bouquet for your hostess.
- Food: A hostess will rarely turn down an extra platter of goodies or a scrumptious appetizer, even if she chooses to save them for herself and not set them out for the guests. Desserts are always the safest route to go, but make sure they don’t contain anything she’s allergic to. Even a simple plate of frosted sugar cookies or a pan of fresh brownies will make a great impression; just make sure you’ve baked them the day of the party. If you’re interested in bringing an appetizer or side dish, make sure it’s okay with her first; you don’t want to overload her menu or her counter space. Pinterest is always an excellent source of unique recipes for every palette on her invite list.
- Knick knacks: For a non-perishable gift your hostess will surely love, consider something that will brighten her home for months to come, such as a candle or kitchen tool. Depending on what your hostess enjoys, things as diverse as a cookbook, bags of coffee, tea sets, or coasters can make an awesome and memorable gift. For more inspiration, visit Delish for great holiday hostess gifts or Business Insider for holiday host gifts under $25.
At the end of the day, your hostess will surely love the thoughtfulness behind your gift. If you know that she would like a game, then why not be a bit different and get
her a LoL Smurfs account? Or perhaps that is more of a birthday present than a hostess present though. As long as you take her personal tastes and party preferences into account, finding a gift for her can be a fun and meaningful process.