Whether you’re invited to a holiday party, a dinner party or an overnight stay, the customary thing to do is give the hosts a gift as a way of showing your gratitude.
What is a Hostess Gift, Anyway?
Traditionally speaking, a hostess gift is something a host or hostess would use while entertaining. Hostess gifts differ from birthday gifts, for instance – another something you could bring to a party- in that the birthday gift would be personal in nature, like jewelry, a book or a baseball hat. A hostess gift would be used for entertaining at a future party, like place cards, coasters, hand towels, a candy dish or serving tray – even board games or Christmas ornaments.
Forget Flowers and Food
Even though they’re often a first thought, try to avoid giving flowers, food and even wine (although wine has become a go-to hostess gift for sure!). Why?
Unless the flowers are delivered or brought in a vase, they can be a source of stress for the hosts. They would have to find a vase for the bouquet or the hostess may feel obligated to display a delivered flower arrangement at her party, so she wouldn’t be rude to the giver. Consider having flowers delivered after the party instead.
If you give fresh or homemade food, especially at a dinner party, the hosts may feel obligated to serve the treat along with their planned menu – even if it doesn’t fit with their theme. Consider a breakfast basket or a tin of tea instead.
Give wine to hosts in the spirit of hope that they will enjoy it at another time, rather than serve it at the party. Unless, of course, it’s a request … or a wine party!
Hostess Gift Etiquette
It’s likely not every guest will bring a hostess gift, so you’ll want to be discrete when giving yours. Try making the exchange as soon as you arrive or even at the end of the evening. If you are the one receiving a hostess gift, be ever gracious. Try to hold off unwrapping or opening the present, since this is traditionally not done in front of the giver so that people who didn’t know to bring a gift don’t feel awkward. Set it aside to open later.
When you do open your gift, make sure to let the giver know how much you appreciate it, because people appreciate the gesture in kind. Of course, if an opportunity presents itself where you and the giver have a private moment together, open their gift in front of them so that you can thank them in person.
Personalize Hostess Gifts at PlaqueMaker
From ornaments, signs, photo frames and wine sets to clocks, chess sets, coasters, plaques and many more personalized gifts – you can customize all of our products into beautiful hostess gifts. Add that personal touch with:
● free unlimited text
● one free logo, clip art or photo
● free digital proof
● free standard shipping on orders $99 or more
included with each order. Most orders ship within two business days from approval and payment of your proof.