November 23rd will mark Thanksgiving Day in the United States, so we thought you fabulous peeps out there might like to check out some groovy gift ideas for the brave souls who are hosting this year. : )
We'll post more awesome hostess/host gift ideas over the next couple of weeks.
First & foremost, an important reminder:
Select the Gift with Your Hostess or Host in Mind
Don’t assume that your hostess or host loves the same things you do – unless you already know this. For example, the gourmet cupcake tins you present as a gift may become next year’s garage sale fodder if your love of baking isn’t mutual.
Make it a point to learn what you can about the recipient before you select their gift. If you’re already good friends, this is easy. But if you’re attending a party with people you don’t know well, check out some of the more generic gifts below. Remember, a host or hostess gift should delight the recipient – not the gift giver.
1. For the Home Bar Enthusiast or Mixologist
If your hostess or host has a bar at home or simply enjoys creating and serving cocktails, there is a plethora of bar accessories currently on the market - from vintage to new, classic styling to fun shapes & colours and so on and so forth. It really comes down to how much you want to spend.
Naturally, our first recommendation is a set of our versatile, unbreakable stemless wine glasses, on which you can get an additional 25% off by clicking here for a coupon code! ; )
Then, depending on your budget, you might want to add things like:
- cocktail shakers & strainers
- citrus pressers
- wine bottle stoppers
- colourful glass or eco plastic swizzle sticks
- stainless steel or stone ice cubes
- unique cocktail napkins
- ice buckets
- coffee table books
2. For the Foodie
Almost everyone uses some type of sugar, but not everyone can claim to have Lavender Sugar or Rose Petal Sugar in their home. They are both so easy to make and can be gifted in pretty little glass jars with delicately created labels for a custom touch.
You will need:
- 2 tbsp dried culinary lavender
- 1 cup sugar
- Grind the lavender finely (a clean coffee bean grinder works well) and mix with the sugar.
- If you want to dye the sugar a soft lavender, slowly add food colouring until you get the right colour, then dry it on a cookie sheet or in the oven at the lowest setting.
- Pour the sugar into a pretty jar, decorate if desired & attach your customized label.
Rose Petal Sugar
You will need:
- 7-8 cups of rose petals, picked from the garden (Never use petals that have been sprayed with insecticide. If you don’t grow roses, some high-end grocers sell edible flowers.)
- 3 cups of sugar
- Preheat the oven to 140 degrees. You’ll need to dry out the rose petals.
- First, wash the petals and pat dry with a paper towel. Then, place them on a cookie sheet and into the oven.
- Once in, turn the oven off and leave the petals there for 2 hours.
- Place the dehydrated rose petals and the sugar in a food processor and pulse until blended.
- Pour the sugar into pretty jars, decorate if desired & attach your customized labels.
3. For the Romantic
Handmade Votive Candles
To make potted terra-cotta candles, start with a collection of three-or-four inch flowerpots. Then, if you're craftsy and/or feeling really creative, you might choose to decorate the pots using heat-proof paint, gold foil, or anything that can handle the heat while the candles burn.
- Cover the drainage hole in each of the pots with a penny or a bit of aluminum foil before beginning the actual candle making process:
- In an old saucepan or crock pot, melt a block of beeswax or organic soy wax on low heat.
[For aromatherapeutic candles, stir approximately 1 teaspoon of essential oil per pound of melted wax with an old wooden spoon or skewer. You will require a bit less of the more strongly scented oils, such as eucalyptus or cinnamon, than of the lighter scented ones.]
- Tie a 6-inch length of medium gauge wick (called "W-2") to a twig or pencil, so you have a "handle".
- Holding the twig or pencil, dip the entire wick into the wax and pull it straight with your fingers ( who doesn't get a kick out of peeling cooled wax from their fingertips? ; ) ).
- Suspend the wick in the centre of the pot, then pour a tablespoon of wax into the pot to secure the wick in the bottom; let harden for about 15 minutes. A clothes peg can help to hold the wick in place while the wax sets (see photo).
- Fill the pot three-quarters full in three stages, allowing the wax to harden a bit after each addition.
- Remove the twig, and trim the wick.
- Repeat with the remaining pots until you have used up all your wax. Voila!
*If you find yourself pressed for time, go ahead and pick up a bouquet of cut flowers; then be sure to arrange them in a vase or some sort of cute vessel so your hostess or host doesn't have to take a time out to do it.