Photo by Matt Harrington

‘Tis the season of gift giving. From family and friends to dinner party hosts, it may feel daunting to find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. But with a little creativity and imagination, a gift can be a thoughtful gesture that’s as special as the people in your life.


Photo by Matt Harrington

We teamed up with celebrity event planner Marcy Blum, to help you effortlessly (and affordably) master the art of gifting this holiday season.

1. Avoid giving your host an extra task
If you’re heading to a holiday party, be mindful of creating more work for the host when bringing a gift. If you’re giving a bouquet, Marcy recommends gifting an accompanying vase to leave with your host.


Photo by Matt Harrington

“It saves your host from scrambling to find a vase when you arrive,” she says. “And gives them a lovely option for next time.”

2. Make your potluck contribution personal
Pick out a platter or tray that reflects your host’s style and bring it with your contribution. It creates a beautiful presentation and doubles as a hostess gift. Add a notecard with the recipe so they can recreate it at home — it’ll be a gift that keeps on giving.


Photo by Matt Harrington

3. Potted herbs make for the freshest gifts
If your potluck dish requires fresh herbs — like basil, mint or thyme — why not bring the whole plant? Guests can clip off as many or as few leaves as they want, right at the table.


Photo by Matt Harrington

Marcy suggests tying a bow around the pot along with a pair of scissors for clipping — the perfect for any green-thumbed friend!

4. Make a cheat sheet
“I like to get my creative juices flowing by drafting up a cheat sheet before I go shopping,” says Marcy. “I’ll list out all the recipients’ names alongside things I know they enjoy, like ‘the color blue, traveling, dogs and gin.’ It serves as a fantastic way to jog my memory when I’m in a store, and helps me to shop creatively.”

Include price ranges on your cheat sheet so you can stay in budget while shopping for gifts.

5. Curate a themed gift
Gift baskets reflect thoughtfulness and are one of the easiest ways to personalize a present. For someone who loves to cook, pair a colander with dried pasta and sauce.


Photo by Matt Harrington

A dog lover? A dish coupled with treats, toys or a framed photo makes for a great gift box for their four-legged friend.


Photo by Matt Harrington

6. Wrapping can double as a bonus gift
“Forego wrapping paper and tuck your gift into a soft, woven throw from HomeGoods,” adds Marcy. “Tied up with a beautiful bow, it’s the perfect bonus to your gift and saves you from having to throw away that mess of crumpled paper!”


Photo by Matt Harrington

7. Create a tradition that builds each year
Find an item they love, and continue adding to the collection each year, such as a framed photo of you with the gift recipient, a holiday ornament that’s based on a memory or glassware to help outfit their bar cart.


Photo by Matt Harrington

Not only is it something special for them, but you’ll be creating your own holiday tradition together, too.

8. Make a gift card more memorable
When in doubt, give a gift card and personalize it with a small item, or even write a thoughtful note with an invitation to go shopping together.


Photo by Matt Harrington

So make your list, check it twice — and find a gift that’s unique and beautiful, no matter the occasion. At HomeGoods, there’s something for everyone.

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