Typically, most party hosts this holiday season will appreciate a nice bottle of wine or a yummy box of chocolates, but sometimes it’s even nicer to put a little thought into the art of giving. The problem with this idea however, is that most of us are tight on time, money and those jeans we can barely button. (Thank you, egg nog and potato latkes.)
Who better to turn to for help on this topic than design expert and television host Nate Berkus? Check outthe slideshow above to see Nate’s suggestions for great host gifts that won’t break your bank but will earn you major points on the thoughtfulness scale (and guarantee your invite for next year!).
Perfumes can be a tricky gift, but these by Arquiste are subtle and lovely and work for a man or woman. I wear Flor Y Canto.
Arquiste, $165-$175, (barneys.com)
Coffee Table Books:
I love giving books. Pick one that you know they'll love or one you wanted them to read so you could talk about it. Make sure to write a personal message on the opening page as well.
New York, Portrait of a City, $69.99, (TASCHEN)
Vintage Board Games:
To this very day, I hold the Pac-Man record around my house. Even my sister Marni (the one writing this very article!) would admit that I remain unbeatable. Video or otherwise, I just love games. Bring your favorite along and tell them up front you'll happily stop by any day to kick their butt on game night.
Vintage Board Games, less than $20.00, (vintageboardgames.net)
(Editor's note: Hey Nate, Marni says bring it!)
"I don't cook much, but my boyfriend does. Through him I've come to understand the importance of spices. Who knew one day I'd be running out to grab some cardamom and tarragon? Italian sea salts and a low stone dish can make a beautiful gift when you know the hostess knows her way around the kitchen."
Porcelain Mortar & Pestle, $49.95, (Williams Sonoma)
I love anything woven. It just adds texture to any space. Your hostess will be able to assign these baskets a million-and-one uses from bread basket to mail bin.
Bamboo Bread Basket, $24.00, (Ten Thousand Villages)
If you have enough advance warning, sources like Etsy are a great source to get a set of linen bar napkins, stationery or towels monogrammed. The personal touch will make whatever you choose look and feel rich.
Personalized Stationery Cards, $13.00, (Etsy)
"A lucite tray is a fail-safe gift to give. They work in any room in the house, holding perfume bottles in the bathroom, mail on a entry table and chips and salsa for Sunday Night Football."
Boom Design Lucite Simple Tray, $65.00, (allmodern.com)
Linen Animal-Print Scarf/Throw:
"To me, animal print and metallics work anywhere. This scarf is something that easily draped over the corner chair for guests to grab or tossed in bag to go with you on a cold night."
Nate Berkus 100% Linen Animal-Print Scarf, $19.95, (HSN)
In my kitchen, I have stacks of bowls, dessert plates and small dishes. They work great for serving dishes and add color to the table. Just stack four bowls in a bright pattern, tie them up with some twine and add a bag of nuts and some olives into the mix.
Atom Art Bowl, $8.00 per each, (Anthropologie)
Why not add a few extra items from your gift closet for the pet owners in your life? This way, you have the perfect gift for the hostess with a 4-legged family member. This site is one to bookmark. I especially love the reclaimed leather and rope collar.
Rope & Leather Collar,$54.00-$60.00, (foundmyanimal.com)