Sunday, September 20, 2009

Gifts for the Hostess with the Mostess

With the holidays just around the corner, I started thinking about hostess gifts. We all know that a nice bottle of wine or some beautiful flowers are always appreciated, but I am hoping you all will have some more unique ideas. What do you like to give to your friends when they host a cocktail party, holiday dinner, or invite you over for a weekend stay? What was the best or most meaningful hostess gift you ever received?


Karen said...

What I am planning to give this year is a square glass vase with the recipient's initial etched on one side.

I plan to make these myself, however, my first attempt was a bit of a disaster.

Bonnie- amour amour said...

I like to give gifts of very prettily wrapped soaps. Combined with unique gift tags from Etsy they look great.

(These are the soaps-

cotedetexas said...

I usually bring wine - and I dont' even drink! what a gorgeous bed - the image brought me in!!!

Linda in AZ * said...

* Our "hostess gifts" for dinner party invites are individually chosen according to the SPECIFIC & SPECIAL INTERESTS of our host n' hostess, and of course that varies...

* Something truly "extra special" we enjoy gifting to "very special" friends are theatre tickets, a special dinner for two at the couple's fave place to dine, or a "couple's experience" at a fab spa...

I enjoy taking great time w/ these gifts, so that our APPRECIATION of their generosity is known. (Besides, it makes me feel good! And yes, sometimes I'd like to be my "OWN" guest! Grins!)...

Other successful ideas over the years: Monogrammed pool robes for friends who had a poolhouse built, and a "private" tour of a winery for dear friends who are truly wine connoisseurs...

Above all & IMHO, a truly THOUGHTFUL & MUCH APPRECIATED gift is one that was THOUGHT-ABOUT in ADVANCE so that it is HONESTLY "SPECIAL" to the recipient... (HOWEVER, it should NEVER be so costly as to make the recipient uncomfortable)~

You're so right~ it IS "about that time again" to put on our "gift-giving, thinking-hats" ! I LOVE the idea of the presentation, too!!! THT's almost the MOST FUN thing of all!!!

Linda in AZ *

The Antiques Diva™ said...

My fav hostess gift? A friend from England brings me 1 or 2 antique Staffordshire red & white transferware plates each time she visits. As a result of her I've started an eclectic collection in a pattern I love, but hadn't started collecting myself! It's an excellent gift and it's such a sweet gesture knowing she looks all year long for the perfect addition to my collection!

Jackie Sharbrough/The Urban Market said...

I love to plant some fresh rosemary in a pretty pot - it smells fantastic and is great for cooking! Maybe even tie on a great recipe with a pretty ribbon!

Fargerike Dagny said...

I don't really care if I get a hostess gift or not. However I do prefer simpler gifts, like flowers, scented candles. We do get a lot of wine, but since I don't drink, we just have a huge collection that's taking up space.

I do love giving away tea in cute boxes (like - they really have fabulous tea in silk sachets), truffles and flowers.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy giving some kind of journal to the host or hostess. These days you can find wine journals, reader's journals, and travel journals.

LindsB said...

What a great question, I am interested to see what peoples favrotes are.

My friends are big drinkers so booze or wine is always a big hit.

Katherine said...

I love any hostess gift! I have received things from Tiffany's (a small crystal vase, a Christmas candy dish...)-- to simple and lovely soaps from Crabtree and Evelyn.

One of my favorite gifts was a tin of beautifully decorated sugar cookies (for hosting Thanksgiving dinner).

Any gift from the heart is truly appreciated-- even a small scented candle or a bottle of Martinelli's Sparkling Cider.

I often bring a box of Godiva chocolates or something seasonal from The Body Shop or Bath and Body Works. I try to bring something that the host/hostess will actually enjoy and USE (not end up re-gifting)!

The Gift Geek said...

I have a blog dedicated to what I believe are unique gifts. Here is my post today, dedicated to the perfect hostess gift.

I think the perfect hostess gift really depends on the host/hostess and their likes and dislikes, but here are a few of my favourites:

1) Attending a summer garden party? Consider this unique gift. Buy three different magazines- magazines that will interest your host or hostess. Buy a basket or container to display each of the magazines. Add some tissue paper and a note card offering a subscription to one of magazines you gifted. Voila! A perfect yet practical gift, that will keep on giving all year.

2) Who doesn't love organic soaps? Check out Homesense for the greatest collection of delicious organic soaps that will make your senses dance and your hostess smile.

3) It isn't the delicious scents that make me love the fragrance lamps by Lampe Berger of Paris, it is their classic bottle designs. They look similar to elegant perfume bottle. Lampe Berger makes it possible to improve air quality and to fragrance it. What hostess wouldn't want one?

4) After falling in love with Paris, I found the nicest kitchen towels with the Eiffel Tower embroidered on them. I also bought a set for my good friend and wrapped them nicely with a ribbon. Although they were only towels, they look classic in my friend's kitchen and she loved them.

5) Stationery - I am obsessed! At my last Friday sushi and wine night with Tara & Amy I brought each of them a box of Kate Spade "circus tent" design stationery. I bought it thinking that the stylish Kate Spade box would look beautiful on their desks. This gift got a lot of smiles.

Be creative, be fun ... make your gift the perfect one!
The Gift Geek

Averill said...

I love to give personalized stationery -- it's thoughtful/personal, you can never have too much of it and there are a ton of wonderful stationery sellers on Etsy who sell lovely sets for under $25!

Marian Cohen said...

Happy, happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childhood days, recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth, and transport the traveler back to his own fireside and quiet home! .. hope a good week end and good blogging!!!

Anonymous said...

I think the presentation is very important and always take time to ensure every present I give - big or small - is wrapped with a lot of love.

The gifts I give depend on the person & their interests or situation.
Some examples:
- bottles of wine with home-made labels (can be fun, occasion related, personalized etc)
- basket of treats (e.g. breakfast in bed hamper for morning after the dinner party)
- personalized stationary for newly weds
- cute stack of specially made business cards for a friend starting up a business or who has recently moved house.
- guest book with first entry written in advance
- 'certificate of friendship' for those who truly are good friends
- a tree for someone who has just bought a house (planting roots)
- special book
- hammock for a person in need of some relaxation

Most importantly - I tailor them according to the person as I believe the key is to show you have taken time to think it all through.. It is the thought after all - right?


deliciously organized said...

I always bring wine! I should come up with something more creative though :) I love A Gift Wrapped Life. There is something so sweet about receiving a perfectly wrapped gift.-carlee

sfwinegirl said...

How about some useful wine-related gadgets for the hostess that loves to entertain? There are some great gadgets out there that no hostess should be without!

Rizwan said...

some of these i have had few of these and also good to see some new things
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