I’ve gotten a few emails recently asking me for some additional hostess gift ideas. One reader wanted to know what her new boyfriend should send her parents after a weekend spent at their place; another was just meeting her potential in-laws-to-be for the first time and didn’t know enough about them to pick and choose based on their personal tastes.
While these are still my favorite ideas, if you’re nervous about what to give your host/hostess, just remember this: even more so than with most gifts, this is all about the gesture. The point of hostess gifts isn’t necessarily to rock the recipient’s world; it’s to express your appreciation and brighten their day in some small way, ideally with something they wouldn’t have bought for themselves.
So if you’re feeling stressed about what to get, play it safe with these can’t-go-wrong items: they may not blow anyone away with their originality, but they are guaranteed to go over well.
- Beautiful notecards. This is the kind of thing that may seem a little frivolous, but will end up getting used constantly – trust me. I use mine all the time, just because they’re there, and it’s so convenient and lovely to have pretty cards laying around for thank-yous and what have you. (Kate’s Paperie has a great selection, including these Kate Spade boxed notes for $35.)
- A book for each of your hosts (try cookbooks, design books, or bestselling autobiographies/biographies). A couple of classic DVDs tied up with a bag of microwave popcorn works well too.
- A decadent candle or reed diffuser (my apartment is filled with the Nest scents – I particularly love Wild Oats & Bourbon and Blue Garden).
- A plant (especially if they have a garden to plant it in), like this lemon tree from 1-800-Flowers.
- A game. Hello, icebreaker! My mom is obsessed (obsessed) with Yahtzee, but click here for a selection of fun retro games. Or just go for Cranium (as long as they don’t already have it)…everybody loves that one.
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