My Favorite Hostess Gift
Here's a hostess gift idea that is personal, fun and filled with things your host will find beautiful, creative and useful. If you ask yourself the questions below, you can come up with a unique and treasured gift, time and time again.
Do you love being a weekend guest in someone's home or is the hostess gift, having to make small talk, etc. stressfull? I can't really help with the small talk, but here is one of my favorite (and most loved) hostess gifts. Yes, it is a big gift, but each element of it could be a hostess gift on its own.
We all want to arrive with something special, lovely, and personal. Flowers are wonderful, especially if you know their style. If they enjoy a cocktail, wine always works. And homemade food is both personal, delicious and useful. (I love stopping by a farmers' market on my way to someone's house and filling a basket with goodies.)
When I created this gift, it was a doozy as I had not formally met the hostess until arriving on her doorstep.
I was consulting on an event that was located out of town and during the planning, was invited to one of their committee meetings and the patron reception. Turns out I was being hosted in this incredible home by someone I had chatted with over the phone but had never met. So, of course I was going to bring a hostess gift (or bread n' butter gift as my mama used to say), but this particular hostess, whose home had been featured in several designer coffee table books, seemed to warrent more than a bottle of wine.
I had spoken to her enough that I either knew or could guess some of her interests. So, I decided to ask myself a few questions:
What does she love to do?
What is her life like?
What are the things she values?
I came up with: Shopping | Entertaining | Travel | Writing | Family & Friends | Music
I created a card that explained each area and how the item connected to it and I tied onto the basket - was so simple! I just made sure the font fit the color scheme of the overall feel. Since I was going to be physically handing it to her and explaining it in person, I didn't feel the need to write a more to-the-point note.
Most of the interests above probably resonate with a lot of people, so here are a few other thoughts to make this work.
Any of these would be just fine on their own and you can still explain the "why."
all of these things were alREAdy in my house - will do a post soon on my gift closet
(it's really a box)
This is not the easiest gift if you are flying rather than driving.
At the end of this post I have a card you can download that is more generic. Give her something for her trip, rather than something from yours. A playlistof songs rather than a cd (I know -- old school) from a luncheon.
Here are a few other hostess gift ideas that I have given and think are fun.
A subscription to a magazine you know she will love- be sure to bring a copy of the current issue!
Are they starting any new projects? Yoga? A new business? A blog? Baking? All sorts of tutorials and inspiration can be found on-line and on Pinterest, but what about a real book that speaks to what he or she is stepping into?
By all means, bring the wine (especially if you come to my house!), but wrap a tea towel that can be used in a guest bath, or even a wonderful scarf, around the neck.
If you ever find fabulous beach towels (I found some that were prints of old Vogue covers), buy them, put in your "gift closet" and then roll one, tie it with a ribbon and voila!
Finally, just think about what matters to your host - of course, probably what matters the most is YOU.
Are you pressed for time and have to get on the road? Make it intentional - during the weekend, look around and notice what might make your host happy, or would fit perfectly on that shelf in the dining room, or would make her life easier. Then, simply send it after the visit with a note (handwritten, of course!)