Think Outside the Gift Box: How to Find the Perfect Present for Anyone
Tips & gift ideas from a self-proclaimed “professional shopper”
Every holiday season, we always have that one person that is tough to shop for. It may be because they don’t express their wants or because they have everything. Whatever the reason, I promise you there is always a way to find something this person will love!
- Pay attention: This requires preplanning, which is not all of our strong suits but it’s one of the simplest ways to select the perfect present for someone. LISTEN to them. What do they like? For example, my friend mentioned she loves butterflies a few years ago, so I gifted her a necklace with a butterfly pendant. Bam! I got the woman who has everything, something she loved. If we really listen to the people in our lives, they tell us what they want.
- Social media “creeping”: Check their profiles! Look at their interests, the things they like on Facebook, the articles they share. This is an excellent way to pick out just the right book. You can never go wrong with a book as a gift.
- Books: As mentioned above, books are always a great gift idea. Is your uncle dabbling in carpentry? A how-to book would be a perfect book for him! My father is a huge country music fan, so we bought him a Hank Williams biography for his birthday. A lot of bookworms re-read books as well, so its a gift that keeps on giving. A little tip: Chapters will wrap your books beautifully and for free!
- Charitable gifts: This is one of my favorite gift ideas. For the philanthropist in your life, you can make a donation to a reputable charity in their name. There are even “adopt an animal” programs! For a low cost, they will receive a letter, usually a few little gifts in a bag, and assurance that the money donated will go towards the conservation of that specific species. Another charity I came across in my research was called “Saratoga Warhorse”. Based in Saratoga Springs, NY, this charity pairs a veteran combating post-traumatic stress disorder with a horse that is considered “off-track”. The program has been shown to be very therapeutic for the veteran and the horse. If you go to their site and purchase an item from their site, the money from your purchase goes towards this program. Warning: Charitable gifts are heartwarming and may induce tears.
- Handmade items: I crochet, and I have never gotten a bad reaction to giving one of my creations as a gift. If you are crafty, get to it! This is also a way to save a little money as well. If you are not crafty, hit up a craft show or visit Etsy for gorgeous handmade items. I bought most of the items for my wedding from Etsy and was never disappointed!
- Gift-giving Don’ts: Pets, fitness items (unless the person is into fitness), regifts, cheap perfume, self-help items.
The main thing to remember when trying to pick out the perfect gift is to “know your audience”. The people in your life tell you what they like and enjoy, we just have to listen more and talk less. When all else fails, a gift card to their favorite store is a great default option!