A Simple Guide to Gift Giving

Along with parties, come gifts. Whether it’s a dinner party with the girls, a 30th birthday celebration, or your BFF’s wedding, there’s usually the dreaded act of also finding the perfect gift. You want to be sure it’s well thought out and fitting for the person you’re giving it to. Here’s a few tips in the act of gift giving.

Baby Showers, Wedding Showers and Weddings

Registry or Money. That’s it that’s all there is to it. People register for things, or ask for money because that’s what they want. They don’t want a picture frame you think will look perfect hanging in their living room, or a bowl you’re 110% sure will look really great in their kitchen – because spoiler alert, their style isn't the same as your style.

There are times when it’s okay to go off the registry and get something personalised that you’re 100% sure will mean a lot to them - like a canvas print with the lyrics from the first dance at their wedding or a hand made wooden swing for around their fire pit with their names carved in it.

But, for the most part – registry and money people. Say it with me. Registry. And. Money. Also, for those of you wondering, rule of thumb goes: $40 - $60 for shower gifts, $50 – $150 for wedding gifts (depending on your level of friendship).

Hostess Gifts

When you host a party it’s a lot of work. It’s lots of prep, planning, and money. Let’s be honest, when your friend attending the party comes bearing gifts of wine, you’re not going to turn them down. A few general ideas that will work for most hostess gifts: wine, stationery / notepad / cards, flowers, lotion or candles. Even better – if they’re a really good friend and you want to do a little something extra, put together a themed “thank you” gift bag or box.

Nothing says thank you like wine 

Nothing says thank you like wine 

Birthday Gifts

This one can be hard. Is it your bestie? Just an acquaintance? Do you want to make it personal? Do they like to drink? Do they like coffee and/or chocolate? Is it a milestone birthday? Here are a couple tips for those scenarios:

Bestie Birthday: Go personal. Etsy is a great place to do some searching – there’s millions of personalized items. What would you like to receive? Many times you and your bestie will have similar taste.

Something I’ve been focusing on trying to do more of is going on birthday dates – because spending time together is much better than giving a gift your friend may or may not use. Plan a date to have a bubbly brunch and get your nails done – you can’t go wrong.

Milestone Birthday: Go personal. Again, shop around Etsy. Help throw them a party. Get them a wine glass with some saying about entering another decade and a wine subscription for a few months. (Tip: It’s always good to stick with a theme.)

Just an acquaintance: Keep it simple, wine and a card. Don’t know what type of wine they like? Ask their partner, or get bubbles. Everyone likes bubbles.


Plants and wine. OR, a gift card to the nearest hardware store. Every person who owns a new home knows the pains of projects that come up after you move.


Why are men so terribly hard to buy a gift for? Every anniversary, birthday and Christmas it seems to be the same issues. Here are a few ideas:

For the crafty: A photo book of fun things you’ve done together. A jar with date night ideas. A book of bucket list items you’ve crossed off together, and thing you want to experience.

For the adventurers: A trip together. A date night in a new area of town you’ve never explored. A weekend away camping.

For the outdoorsy: New fishing / hunting gear. Hit up their BFF’s who will know the newest, must-have gadget for your boo.

For the sporty:  Tickets to a sporting event, or an afternoon playing the sport they love (e.g. golfing – who said you can’t be the beer girl?)

For the boozers: An afternoon brewery hopping or checking out a distillery tour.

For the artsy: Tickets to the latest show in town, or an afternoon grabbing coffee at trendy coffee shops browsing through museums.

I just need something asap: New clothing item / hat from their fave store.

The perfect gift box for men

The perfect gift box for men

Gift Boxes

These are my new, personal favourite obsession. Who doesn’t love getting a Christmas stocking. They are the best because they’re filled with lots of little things that you love. GONE are the days of fruit baskets and whatever else those horrid gift boxes used to entail and IN are the days of trendy, themed gift boxes. Below are a few examples of things you could put together as themed gift boxes:

BFF’s Birthday: Cake pops, candle, scarf, mini bottles of champagne, straws

Male B-day or Anniversary: Beard oil, t-shirt, bottle of their favourite beer or liquor, bottle opener

Engagement: Mr. + Mrs. cups,  mugs, wine glasses or shirts, bride sunglasses, mini-notebook for wedding planning


Just Because / Thinking of You Thank You: Candle, stationery, bath bubbles, washcloth, lotion

For the Wine + Coffee Lover: Mug /cup/glass, coffee/tea/wine, chocolate

While gift giving can be a nuisance, it doesn’t have to be. Always keep a few things on hand that you can grab to bring to your next dinner party, or when all else fails, wine.

What’s your favourite gift to give?



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