Thank your holiday hosts with unique gifts that reflect their lives.
Host and hostess gifts have replaced the custom of bringing a bottle of wine to holiday gatherings, said Lora Hobbs, owner of Live With It gift shop in Peckville. People gravitate toward gifts because they know their hosts already have wine for the occasion or they feel like a bottle is not thoughtful enough, she explained.
Such gifts can range in cost from $10 to $100, Hobbs said, putting the average buy at about $30. Kathi Whitney Davis, owner of Over the Moon in Scranton, estimated her customers spend between $40 and $75 on presents for their hosts.
“Holiday candles are always a good idea,” Davis said, and they’re one of her shop’s most popular sells for hostess gifts. Select a seasonal scent such as Fraser fir or balsam and pair it with a set of printed cocktail napkins for a gift your hosts can use during the holidays.
Both shopkeepers recommended gifting glass ball ornaments, whether it be Hobbs’ detailed orbs in seasonal colors or Davis’ clear ones with “2017” emblazoned across them. They make an easy gift that can help your hosts replace decorations they might have broken, Hobbs said. And people remember where they acquired their ornaments, noted her husband, Dave, so your hosts will have something to remember you by.
Other seasonal decorations, such as small nativity scenes, can do, too. Davis carries glass Christmas trees made by Simon Pearce that come in several sizes and “are always very popular,” she said.
“A little piece of holiday gift wear is always a good recommendation,” she said.
Help hosts with future meals by gifting practical tools, such as oversize stainless steel serving utensils or bowls.
“They can always use an extra plate or an extra bowl for service,” Dave Hobbs said.
Some are part of larger collections that release a new piece annually, he added, and people come by each year to get the addition.
Or, combine two gifts in one: Make a special treat and present it on a serving platter to keep, or place goodies in a glass candy dish, such as a Christmas tree-shaped one like Davis carries.
For the kids
Not every gift goes to the adults in the home. If the hosts have a new baby, guests can bring items such as a child’s dish and utensil set or a porcelain keepsake, Dave Hobbs said.
If your hosts prefer beer over wine, grab a well-made glass for them to pour their favorite brew into, such as ones made in the beer-making hub of Germany.
“A nice set of higher-quality, specialty beer glasses are often given,” Lora Hobbs said.