Said hostess will most likely reply with a polite, "Nothing. Just yourself," or something of the sort.
Before you breathe a sigh of relief and think "dodged that bullet," you MUST REMEMBER: Never show up to someone else's home empty handed. Period. End of discussion... well beginning of discussion actually.
If a pal is kind enough to open her home to a bunch of hooligans, the least you can do is bring her a token of your appreciation for all the scrubbing, cooking, organizing and hiding of dirty laundry that probably took all day in anticipation of your arrival.
By token of appreciation, I don't mean a bottle of wine that you plan on drinking, or some other crappy item that you're re-gifting from last Christmas. Give her something good - something you would want.
A few suggestions....
1. Wine - I know its contradictory to my above statement, but bringing HER favorite wine, or more than one bottle if you plan on sampling is perfectly acceptable. Just don't show up with your favorite and polish the whole thing off, all the while feeling rather full of yourself for your exceptional etiquette.
|Santa Margherita is always welcome in my home|
2. Lafco Mini Candles - for $20, these super cute candles are completely affordable and come in a variety of fresh scents. I happen to love the tins they come in, complete with matches neatly tucked into the lids!
3. Fresh Sugar Honey Tinted Lip Treatment - $22 may seem a little over the top for a chapstick, but this stuff is INCREDIBLE! Makes a perfect gift for the winter months when lips take a beating.
4. Paper Source Notecards - It makes me so sad that the art of a handwritten letter or thank you card is nearly extinct. Don't you remember the days before you started receiving bills and credit card offers, when you would receive a birthday card or - gasp - letter from a pen pal? You'd be lying if you didn't say your heart skipped a beat.
A thank you note, or just a quick note to say hello is such a refreshing change from bills, junk mail and the wayward pieces of mail that belong to your neighbor. I say let's keep it alive! Give your hostess a delightful set of notecards and I'll bet she writes you a thank you note on one!
Paper source has a great variety of set of 10 notecards with matching envelopes for around $12! Buy some for the hostess and buy some for yourself!
|A personal favorite|
5. Sur La Table Apron - Sur la Table has great vintage-y aprons for between $20-$30 (depending on whether or not they are on sale). These aprons make a great gift for a baker or purveyor of vintage finds. I happen to have given this gift twice myself - one to my maid of honor who hosted my bridal shower and one to my mother-in-law.
Sur la Table also has mother-daugher matching aprons and sets of matching aprons and pot holders, if that's something that suits your fancy.
So be bold, and in homage to my past at Barneys... Give Good Gift!