Secrets to Giving the Perfect Gift for Every Occasion.

Secrets to Giving the Perfect Gift for Every Occasion.

One of the most valuable things you can know about gift giving is what not to do. So if you don’t make it past this introduction, you will still have improved your gift giving by miles.

The most important don’t is religious gifts. You might get away with it a few times. But it will eventually come back to bite you. There are only so many things you can possibly know about one’s religion. There are tens of thousands of variations on Christianity in the form of denominations. 

There is also the problem that what you once knew about a person’s religious beliefs goes through change, sometimes, quite dramatic change. That little snow globe with the laughing Jesus was perfect three months ago. Not so perfect today. Avoid religious gifts.

Another category of gifts to avoid are gifts that are too personal. Even a spouse barely knows enough about a person to gift them socks and underwear. Don’t presume you know what kind of toothbrush a person will prefer. And forget about foods like orange juice. Are they allergic? Do they prefer pulp? No pulp? Moderate pulp? Forget about it!

If you want do give the best gifts and not just avoid giving the worst, read on:

Gifts for Creatives

It is the rare creative that doesn’t like coffee, or tea, of fizzy water. What they love even more than drinking it is making it. There is something about a fussy process of preparing the beverage that the artfully inclined can’t get enough of.

Feed their thirst for something like an espresso maker from Italy. It doesn’t even matter if they already have one. They will find a place in their life, or on their desk, for another. Just be sure to include the espresso grinder for that extra special touch. The more steps in the process, the better. They may not use it forever. But they will love it for a season or two. And they will never forget the one that gave it to them.

Gifts for the Holidays

The holidays are all about smiles and pleasant surprises. So keep it light and airy. Avoid gifts that are provocative and challenging on the holidays. No one wants to be provoked or challenged. They want to be surprised and delighted.

They also don’t want to feel like they were cheated Out of a gift by being given something you would have bought for them, or they would have bought for themselves anyway. So try to avoid gifts that seem too useful. The holidays are a perfect time for frivolous indulgence. So indulge.

You will notice that most of the items on this holiday top list are not things most people would call needs. These are wants. And they are things that a lot of people would not buy for themselves, but would be very curious about.

The perfect holiday gifts taps into that sense of fun and adventure, pampers wants rather than needs, and delights by surprising. It is a guaranteed smile, never a challenge or a cheat.

Housewarming Gifts

Housewarming gifts might be the easiest of all. This is a time when needs and utility outweigh wants and frivolity. A big block of snack cheese and soda goes a long ways when one is unpacking boxes for days. Pizza gift cards will never go unused at such a time.

If a person is moving into a house rather than an apartment, you might try smart home items like a smart door look, or smartphone enabled lights. Art is nice, but is subject to taste. At the time of the move, a huge casserole would probably be more appreciated. Just take dietary needs into consideration.

Giving the perfect gift is all about timing and thoughtfulness. Keep in mind the type of person you are shopping for, such as creatives and their particular habits. Keep the holidays all about whimsical delight. And make practical times like moving all about practical and immediate needs.



  1. This is an interesting list. As a creative I believe other creatives want creative gifts. I always suggest etsy for getting the most unique out of the box gifts!


  2. I would not have thought about frivolous indulgence for holidays. But I kind of agree with the sentiment behind it. You want to do something different and original. But I also think you want to give them something that uniquely represents you and the relationship you have with the person.


  3. Why is gift giving so hard? I appreciate guides like this when I am stumped. Creatives are the easiest to buy for in my opinion. (Maybe because I am one!)


  4. So many good ideas for gift giving. I really like the idea of giving food or food gift cards to people who are just moving in that is super thoughtful. That same idea would work really well for busy Moms and Dads too.


  5. I always peruse specialty stores in my free time and often end up buying unique items as gifts for people, when it’s not even close to their birthday, or Christmas, etc. I usually find things when I’m not pressured to buy them!


  6. Great information for those who are wondering what to give. I have started doing more experiences for gifts rather than items. Movie tickets, play tickets, passes to a waterpark, gift cards, etc. I think it is fun to give the gift of memories!


  7. There are some good ideas here . I love to give gifts but sometimes have no idea what someone would really like. Thanks for giving this some perspective for me.


  8. Great tips for sure! I love to give handmade gifts, myself. And you’re right, housewarming gifts are the most fun to give! I enjoy sewing homemade coasters or similar to keep on hand for housewarming gifts or even hostess gifts at a party. I also think anything monogrammed seems to go over fairly well…a nice pack of notecards with a person’s initials always seem to be a hit! And I love that the NES system made the list you shared.


  9. I think you have nailed some very important points in this post! Too often religious gifts can offend or be duplicates. I like to stick to practical gifts (coffee and tea are awesome!). Housewarming is easy. My husband and I love the movie “Its a Wonderful Life’ so each time someone moves into a new home we give them a bottle of wine so they don’t go thirsty, a loaf of bread so they never go hungry and a box a salt, so life always has flavour! Its quirky but we love it!


  10. I try to keep my eye out for gifts whenever I go shopping. I like to buy unique things for people. I keep a list of ideas I see online. I also like to crochet so I am always looking for some great deals on yarn.


  11. I have to agree with many of these ideas. And especially what you said about not giving a religious gift – unless you know for sure the person would appreciate it! I always have the hardest time coming up with holiday gifts for men and my in-laws, lol, so I like what you said about keeping it light and airy!


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