Gift baskets are the greatest invention in the history of gift-giving.
You can create one for any occasion. Seriously. For ANY occasion!
I don’t create your typical gift basket…I pretty much hate anything in an oversized wicker basket wrapped in cellophane.
I have a weird thing about cellophane. Just thinking about that crinkling is like nails on a chalkboard to me.
I have a tendency to get super carried away with gift-giving. I find great joy in going to million and one stores to find six different items that perfectly match each other to create one unified basket of happiness.
I can get pretty matchy matchy in ways that make my husband shake his head.
Anyways, I have come up with a few tips for creating some really unique and personalized gifts.
- Come up with a theme. It can be based on the occasion (baby shower, housewarming, etc.) or something the person enjoys (wine, books, movies, etc.).
- Think of one (or more) main items and go from there. I usually give myself a price-point which I will either meet with one big item or a few smaller ones. For example, to create a movie-themed basket I can spend $50 on a special-edition box set of a movie or I can split the $50 on movie tickets and a gift card to a restaurant.
- Add “fillers”. These are meant to be small, inexpensive items that add to the theme of the basket. For example, to add to my movie-themed basket I can get a package of microwave popcorn, a box of their favorite candy, and a bottle of soda-pop.
- When possible, buy items that fit into a color scheme. I will add ribbon and tissue paper in colors inspired by one of the main items in the basket in order to make everything look unified.
- Be smart about the container! Few people need giant wicker baskets (which are expensive anyways) cluttering up their house. Find containers that fit the theme of the basket and that can be used by the recipient. For example, I can put my movie-themed items inside a bowl or tub that can be used for popcorn.
Here are examples of some of my more recent baskets:
For the birthday of a close friend, I created a “Nook and Coffee” basket. This included:
- a Barnes & Noble gift card
- a Starbucks gift card (cleverly placed inside of an empty Starbucks cup)
- candied almonds and gummy candies (gotta have munchies while you read)
For my long-time mentor who moved to Kansas I created a “Roadtrip” basket. She would be spending five days to drive across the country with her sister, so I filled her basket with
- calming CD’s (I knew she would enjoy Celtic Thunder and a compilation of classics on the guitar)
- hand sanitizer (because gas station bathrooms are gross)
- Snacks (granola bars, small bags of cookies and crackers, and Ghirardelli chocolate squares)
- Drinks (two bottle of her favorite soda and two bottles of water)
I placed everything inside of a mesh basket that could be used in her new home!
Finally, for a coworker who moved into her own apartment, I created a “New Home” basket. I thought about things you might need to set up a home and ended up with:
- a mini hand broom and dustpan
- duct tape
- extension cord
- reminder post-its
- removable wall-hanging hooks
- a picture hanging kit
I put it all inside of a small plastic bucket that would be perfect for holding “under the sink” things like sponges.