Never give a re-gifted hostess giftcourtesy @MurraysCheese
Especially if an item is dusty or a little beat up-looking, it will be obvious you grabbed it out of the closet at the last minute. Not to mention that you might not remember who gifted it in the first place, which could end up being rather awkward. “You never know if the original giver will be at the party!” says Gottsman.
A gift they know is fresh and just for them is a beautiful cheese plate if you know you share a love of cheese. How about a beautiful cheese and charcuterie platter from Murray’s Cheese? The gifts range in price from $50 to $300 and can be shipped anywhere in the U.S. Or, if you know they love to cook, a cookbook you love and think they might as well, such as Chrissy Teigen’s Cravings cookbook or Shannon Sarna’s Modern Jewish Baker. Golden Door Spa’s three-pack of gourmet honey would also be a sumptuous treat here. (And honey will stay fresh forever if you do this one thing.)
Personalize the gift based on the hosts’ preferencecourtesy Edible Arrangements
Not all hostess gifts have to be one-size-fits-all. And customizing your gift to your hosts’ taste and lifestyle shows you’ve gone the extra mile. “For example, for a seasoned cook, give a good bottle of olive oil and specialty balsamic vinegar in a basket with fresh bread and fruit,” Gottsman suggests.
Do they love dirty martinis? The Bitter Truth Olive Bitters makes mixing a dirty martini surprisingly simple. Mix a few dashes with gin or vodka and there’s no need to add any olive brine to the drink. Or add a couple drops to Bloody Marys for a salty kick at brunch the next morning.
Fruit fans will love the festive Holiday Spirit Gift Set from Edible Arrangements, with chocolate dipped strawberries, chocolate dipped bananas, fresh pineapple, and more, all artfully arranged in a beautifully designed Happy Holidays container.
Hostess Gift TaboosMatthew Cohen/Rd.com
Of course, when you are visiting someone for a holiday dinner or party, they are very busy entertaining, prepping, cooking, plating, and clearing. That means there are some gifts that are just not an appropriate choice, and may end up offending, insulting, or inconveniencing them. What you should never bring as a hostess gift, says Schweitzer, includes anything needing immediate attention from the host or hostess, including fresh flowers that need to be placed in a vase immediately, cuisine or gourmet food for consumption that evening unless it was pre-planned (after all, they are making you dinner already!), anything that requires assembly that evening, a gift certificate to a gym or fitness center (which can feel like an unwelcome hint), or hygiene-related items that can be misinterpreted, such as body sprays or deodorant. Also, never bring alcohol to the house of someone who is in recovery.
Don’t miss these other affordable hostess gift ideas.
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