Gift buying can be a treacherous task. There are a few people on my list who will be easy. Those who I'm close with, who I talk with, shop with -- I know their style, or what they are currently lusting for. I will look forward to exchanging gifts with them, confident in the knowledge that they will be delighted with what they receive.
But that group represents only 10% of the people who I'm shopping for this season. The rest will be hard, and include:
Friends who I have given gifts too for the last three years but not received anything from them
While I don't mind one sided giving, we live in a society where people might feel awkward or even offended if they are given something and don't have anything to offer in return. Should I assume lack of receiving gifts means they want to cut off the exchange and are hoping I'll take the hint? Or do I just contuine buying for them because they are my friends and I can if I want?
Extended family who I see at holidays but otherwise aren't especially close with
It doesn't matter that we are friends on facebook or that we are related -- I know very little about these people and what they might like to receive for Christmas. There are only so many years you can gift a scarf before it starts to appear obvious what you are doing.
People who are engaged/newly married
One gift? Two gifts? Something substantial for "my main person" and something small for their newly chosen mate? Equally good gifts? If they are gifting me as one person, than should I do the same?
Okay, this is easy. Individual gifts are a total waste, home baked goodies left for public consumption in the kitchenette are the only way to go.
I recently noticed the gift I gave him last year sitting in a dark corner with the cellophane still intact. What do you get someone who clearly dislikes everything you've ever given?
I'm thinking cash in a plain white envelope. Buying a pretty card would be a waste.
And when you once you've managed to find and purchase, thoughtful, budget-conscious, creative gifts for all these people, you've still got to wrap them all. So really, I wont be done until December 26th (if I'm lucky!)
I of course, aim to please. I'm more than happy to share the things I'd enjoy receiving, and make shopping much easier for others. (See, totally selfless list of stuff I want.)
Faux Fur Muff, $24 at Urban Outfitters
Wonda Studded Oxford, $39 at G by Guess
Sparrow Cinch Belt, $24 at Urban Outfitters
Dolman Sleeve Sweater, $50 at The Limited
Snow Fox Ornament, $16 at Anthropologie
Kate Spade Twirl Perfume, $65 at Amazon
When will you be finished holiday shopping?