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Whenever possible, add a personal touch to anything you gift. A gift card with your best wishes written by hand, a tiny DIY gift to accompany the main present, or maybe some sort of creative wrapping... Put your heart into the matter!
Buy a blank Rubik's cube (or just peel off the colored stickers), print a bunch of your photos, and glue them to the cube's sides!
Prepare a pan of delicious tea, coffee, hot chocolate or mulled wine and take a mug with you for a walk.
If you're having trouble finding the perfect thing to give, think about giving an emotion or experience. For example, how about booking a hot air balloon flight for the lucky guy or gal?
Not all DIY gifts suck, especially if you put your heart into it and start at least a month before the occasion. For example, how about filimg a movie about your relationship with the lucky recipient, huh?
Use the magic of social media! Scroll through your recipient's feed and post history for clues about what they would love to get. Even if you don't find direct mentions, you'll surely get inspired enough to awake your own ideas.
Don't forget to check if your recipient has a public wihlist on Amazon on Wishlistr. Even if you choose not to give anything from that list, it will surely give you a few ideas on what to gift.
Size matters, at least relative size. A chocolate bar is a terrible gift for someone's 50th birthday, and a new car is an inappropriate gift for your first week dating anniversary.
An easy way to level up a mediocre or cheap gift is to give it along with a few other presents with a similar theme - make a gift bundle! For example, a dinosaur-themed bundle would include a T-Rex t-shirt, a dino taco holder, a set of Jurassic World stickers, a fossil dig-up toy, and a ticket to the local archeological museum. C-c-combo!
Hire a professional artist to draw the recipients portrait, maybe even in the style of their favorite animated show!
Leave the gag gifts for special occasions, like White Elephant parties or Secret Santa events. If you still want to give something funny on a normal occasion, give it along with something decent.
Hire a professional DJ, bartender, or photographer to ensure an instant level up for the celebration. Btw, that's also a fabulous gift!
Give them the gift of a perfect suit or dress<.b>: book a visit to a professional tailor for them.
A good way to predict the impression your gift will make is to imagine your recipient telling about it to all their friends and family. If their reaction is along the lines of "WOW, COOL!" - you're on the right track.
Knit them a scarf. You can learn how to do this in a single evening - and the recipient will be enjoying the result for years!
Don't limit your gifting just to the usual occasions: a gift for no particular reason is always extremely pleasant, even if it's just a cup of latte.
Buy a huge bedsheet or canvas - and draw something beautiful together. The emotions you'll create will be a bonus gift!
A great idea for a thoughtful gift: take the recipient for a medical check-up. This is especially important for the parents & relatives who seem to do anything to avoid the doctors.
Order a fancy engraving on something your recipient loves - like a watch, a pen, a ring, or anything else.
Don't give niche stuff without proper research or extensive personal experience. Your recipient is a coffee maniac while you can hardly tell the difference between Arabica and Robusta? Don't give them coffee, that's too risky. Give something coffee-related instead, like a smart mug or a gourmet coffee subscription.
If possible, make sure to visit your recipient a few weeks before the special occasion, just to refresh your memory about what they like, what they need, and so on. Really, this will be a huge help when picking an awesome gift.
Most likely, your recipient will remember this gift for at least a few years to come, so do your best to make these memories just fabulous.
One of the best gifts in life is to be relieved from your chores and mundane duties. A dishwasher, a robot vacuum, a gift card that can be exchanged for a month of food delivery... Free your recipient from the boring stuff and let them focus more on what really matters for them!
Get in touch with the recipient's relatives and friends and ask them to record a short video of them saying pleasant things. Combine all the videos into a single one!
Go for a nostalgia evening: visit the places you used to love, order some food you've eaten together a lot, listen to some nostalgic songs...
If you're not sure your recipient will like your gift (or maybe they already have a similar thing)–just ask their best friend, spouse, or close relative! Sometimes the insight they can give is worth a thousand guesses.
Make a thousand origami cranes. According to the Japanese tradition, that's enough to make any dream come true!
Pick a country - and prepare a themed dinner! For example, chese & wine for a French evening, sushi & sake for a Japanese feast. Bonus points if the recipient's childhood years or especially pleasant memories are from the chosen country.
As the ancient Chinese wisdom goes, a good gift card (or even just a bunch of ordinary dollars) is often better than a terrible gift with no soul in it.
Organize a surprise party. It doesn't have to be in the recipient's home: you can pick any bar or restaurant, and then ask one of the invited guests to serve as a "lure" and lead the lucky recipient straight into the trap!
A delicate handmade vase may be a bad gift for a big family living in a small apartment. A cute puppy will turn your friend's life into sheer hell if their spouse is afraid of dogs. A bunch of exotic nuts means death for someone allergic to nuts. Stay alert!
Everything has a FABULOUS and a meh version when it comes to gifts. A chocolate bar is a meh-gift, a set of exotic chocolates from around the world is a fabulous one. A book written by your recipient's favorite author is a meh-gift but a book signed by this author, well, that's something legendary.
People forget things, that's natural. Save the gifts that caught your eye for later, maybe even add them to a shortlist.You never know when you'll need them!
If the recipient has a favorite toy, book, or clothing piece that has really wore away with the years, consider ordering a restoration service (or hire someone to create an identical item).
No matter what you actually give your recipient, don't forget to gift yourself as well. Be present, be mindful, spend the big day with them as much as possible with no distractions. That's the best present you'll be able to find, in the end.
A gift that forces the recipient to buy or throw away something is always a bad gift. If the recipient doesn't have a TV - don't give them a gaming console. If there's no extra place in their apartment - don't give them a huge couch.
Distance isn't a good reason to stop gifting. Remember that there's always the mail, Amazon, delivery services. Show your love from far away!
Sometimes one awesome gift is better than five average presents, but the big ones usually cost a lot. Don't forget you can always split the cost with family and friends to give your recipient something truly amazing!