What is the Etiquette for Hostess Gifts? (And 7 Gift Ideas)

Many people consider it customary to give a gift to a host or hostess. While giving a hostess gift you have to follow some etiquette such as be discrete and greet the hostess while giving the gift, wrap the gift if required, don’t expect to unwrap the gift on the spot, and many more.

A hostess gift refers to a small gift that is usually given to a host or hostess as a gesture of thanks for inviting them to the party. Moreover, there are lots of works involved in throwing a party. For example:

  • Planning, cleaning, shopping, and cooking for the party
  • Refilling drinks and edibles throughout the party
  • Makes every guest feel welcomed and included
  • Cleanup the mass after the party

So a hostess gift is an excellent way to honor the effort of the host or hostess for organizing the party. Sometimes a “Thank You” might be enough but a pretty small gift can be a great way to express your gratitude.

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Hostess Gifts Etiquettes and ideas

Hostess Gifts Etiquette

In most parts of the world, it is an unspoken law to bring hostess gifts while attending a party. Not bringing any hostess gift is considered as a bad manner. In a sub-continental country like Bangladesh and India, it’s customary to bring gifts for the children, too.

So here are few hostess gift etiquettes that you should follow.

  • Bring a Gift to a Home you’ve Never Visited

It is considered as a good manner to bring a gift to a home that you have never visited. You might be visiting your friend’s new home, or visiting your aunt’s house for the first time after they have shifted to a new place or your new neighbor invited you over for a glass of wine. So a small gift shows your appreciation for inviting you.

  • Choose a Gift that Matches the Occasion

You should pick a gift for the hostess that matches the occasion. If it’s a formal party then you should pick a formal gift. For example, if you are invited for a cocktail party then it requires an elegant gift compared to a gift for a backyard cookout. Moreover, the length of the visit also influences gift selection, too. If you are staying for several nights then a small hostess gift is not adequate!

  • Give a Gift that can be Used Later

Don’t expect the hostess will use the gift straightaway. Gifts like the aprons, coaster sets, napkin rings, etc. are perfect hostess gifts and flair for throwing a party but most of the good hostesses will set your gift aside to open and enjoy later.

  • Give a Thoughtful Gift

If you have a clear idea about the hostess then you should try to give a thoughtful gift. You can gift a lovely teapot or assortment of teas if the hostess loves drinking tea. Music lovers or book lovers will appreciate the latest release by their favorite authors or musicians. You can consider giving a framed photo of you with the hostess as long as you aren’t offending his/her partner or spouse.

  • Consider the “Allergies” while Picking a Gift

If you are not sure whether your hostess or any of the family members have allergies then don’t pick a gift that contains high-risk items. So you must skip food gifts that contain nuts, wheat, or soy. So you should check the gift baskets and see whether there are any products that contain known allergens. If you are not sure then avoid these types of products and give something else.

  • Don’t Bring a Bouquet

Many people are allergic to flowers. So bringing a bouquet is not a wise decision especially if you aren’t sure whether the hostess is allergic to flowers. A hostess gift that makes them sneeze is no gift at all. Flowers can be a great gift if you are giving them with a beautiful flower vase. You can give a potted plant alternative to the bouquet.

  • Don’t Expect the Wine Gift to Be Served That Night

A good bottle of wine or other liquor can be a gracious hostess gift if the hostess is into the adult beverages. However, don’t expect that the wine will be served that night. Because, the hostess has already planned what he/she will serve during the party. A bottle of wine is not that gift that you can expect the hostess will share with you that night.

  • Don’t Choose a Gift that Requires Knowing Their Size

The etiquette for hostess gifts says you should not choose a gift that requires knowing the right size of the hostess. No matter how well you know your hostess it is not a good practice to give gifts like slippers, sweaters, or other clothing.

  • Don’t Bring a Gift that might Offend Others

When you are buying a gift for the hostess you should not pick a gift that would not offend others. You may have a close relationship with the hostess but giving a gift like the naughty salt and shaker set or other gifts might offend other party-goers.

Hostess Gift Ideas for Dinner Party

Many people bring food items as a gift for the hostess and expect to eat that item during the dinner. You have to understand that the hostess has planned everything before and that is not a food but gift. So, it totally depends on the hostess whether he/she would serve that or not. If you are invited to a dinner party to a restaurant then a hostess gift is not mandatory but the host is footing the bill for the entire party so a gift is much appreciated and it will show your gratitude. While attending a restaurant dinner party you don’t have to bring a gift that will match the price, but bring a gift that you would bring to a home dinner party.

Here are some appropriate hostess gift ideas for a dinner party:

  • Bouquet of flowers in a vase
  • Boxed candies
  • Potted plant
  • Bottles of wine
  • Tin of cookies
  • Decorator candles
  • Guest soaps
  • Flavored vinegar
  • Coffee table book
  • Tickets to a movie or event

Hostess Gift Ideas for Holiday Parties

If you are invited to a holiday party then you should bring a hostess gift. This time of the year is considered as the best time to give each other gifts and share joys, happiness, through giving. When you are picking a gift for the hostess, take into consideration the occasion as well as your relation with the hostess. You would not give your boss the same type of gift you’d give your best friend.

Here are some appropriate hostess gift ideas for a holiday party:

  • Ornament or other holiday decoration
  • A gift basket with cookies, popcorn, coffees, teas, and hot cocoa mix
  • Holiday-themed tins of candy or baked goods
  • Bottle of wine or holiday-flavored liqueur

Hostess Gift Ideas for an Overnight Stay Party

If you are invited to an overnight stay party then you should thank the hostess with something nice because this type of party requires more preparation like the extra laundry, cleaning, and additional meals. You can include items that you might use while staying there, but add something extra that the host or hostess can enjoy later.

Here are some appropriate hostess gift ideas for an overnight stay party:

  • Spa basket
  • His and her robes
  • Restaurant gift card
  • Gourmet food basket
  • Wine basket with a variety of wines and a couple of wine glasses
  • An item the host or hostess specifically mentions wanting
  • A gift card to a store that the hostess likes

Hostess Gift Ideas for a Housewarming Party

You should bring a hostess gift to a housewarming party. You can pick some thoughtful gifts that the hostess can use for their new home. Try to pick a gift in a neutral shade or style that will go with any decor. 

Here are some appropriate hostess gift ideas for a housewarming party:

  • Tree sapling
  • Dishtowels
  • Bath towels
  • Picture frame or collection of frames
  • Glasses or stemware
  • Boxed toolset for a new homeowner
  • A basket filled with small items, such as coasters, soaps, pens, notepads, etc.
  • Maps, restaurant menus, and information about the new area with a personal gift
  • Basket of homemade treats, such as muffins, cookies, or candies

Hostess Gift Ideas for Future In-Laws      

If you are meeting your future in-laws for the first time then you can bring gifts to ease the nervousness. While choosing a gift make sure you know their tastes to prevent the embarrassment of giving something inappropriate.

Here are some appropriate hostess gift ideas for future in-laws:

  • Flower arrangements in a vase
  • Plant in a decorative pot
  • Variety of potted herbs
  • Basket of wine and cheese
  • Coffee or tea basket

Common Hostess Gift Ideas for any Occasion

  • Cheese Board and Knives
  • Candles
  • Coasters
  • Gift Baskets
  • Glasses and Other Stemware
  • Artisan Soaps
  • Chocolate

1. Cheese Board and Knives

Cheese Board and Knives are great hostess gifts for any occasion. You can choose a cheese board and knives for the house warming party as well as the dinner parties and other occasions. The hostess can use this gift to serve appetizers they’ve prepared or stored them away for future get together. If the cheese board matches the home décor then they can use it as a regular décor.

If you are looking for a unique high-quality cheese board and knives then my recommendation is Picnic at Ascot Patented Bamboo Cheese/Charcuterie Board with Knife Set. Below are the reasons I have picked it:

BrandPicnic at Ascot
Dimensions18 x 18 x 3.2 inches
Item Weight4.5 pounds
Other BenefitsThis is an excellent cheese board with 3 Piece Cheese Knife Set. It is a multi-level cheese board with a hidden drawer on the lowest level. The unique design of this board ensures a sturdy cutting surface without any instability. The swivels open to an 18″ Diameter and fold ways to a compact 9.5″ size wedge for easy storages. This classic cheese board comes with a lifetime warranty.    

2. Candles

If you are invited to a dinner party then candles may not be the thoughtful gift however, if you are invited to stay at night then candles are a great gift to thank the hostess for letting you stay with them.         

So, what is the best candle for an overnight stay party? My answer is Diptyque Feu de Bois Candle. Just take a look at its features and you will understand why I have recommended it:     

Dimensions3.3 x 3.2 x 4.2 inches
Item Weight1 pound
Wick TypeLead-free cotton
Wax TypeProprietary Soy Blend
Approximate Burn Time50-60 Hours
Other BenefitsThere are home scents that work perfectly in all rooms; the Diptyque’s cult-classic Feu de Bois is one of them. It is a great sexy, smokey candle that you can give as a hostess gift to any person you desire. It is a high-quality candle with an approximate burn time of 50-60 Hours. This candle is made from Proprietary Soy Blend wax and it has Lead-free cotton. So there is no harmful element available in this candle.

3. Coasters

Every hostess is afraid of guests staining their nice wooden tables. So coasters will be an excellent solution to this problem. In fact, coasters offer a practical and stylish solution to this problem. Coasters are available in different styles so you will have lots of options while buying this gift for the hostess.

So, if you are wondering which coasters you should opt for; consider the Barvivo Drink Coasters Set of 8 because of its uniqueness and quality.

Dimensions4.09 x 4.09 x 0.2 inches
MaterialBlack Silicone
Item Weight8.2 ounces
Other BenefitsThese coasters from Barvivo will be an excellent gift and it will become a large part of the Hostess’s daily life as it will keep the countertops and furniture safe from the long-lasting stains in an elegant way. These are reliable non-slip coasters and they have a special non-slip coating to avoid the mess. These coasters are dishwasher safe and suitable for both hot and cold drinks. You can use Barvivo coasters on your dining table, coffee table, or even for your favorite cup at the office.      

4. Gift Baskets

Gift baskets offer a variety of items and it is an excellent way to thank the hostess for inviting you to the party. Moreover, there are different types of products that come with the gift baskets so the hostess might find the item that he/she was looking for. For example, a coffee-themed gift basket will be a thoughtful gift for coffee lover hostess because this type of gift basket contains above and beyond a simple coffee mug or bag of beans.

Below are the reasons why you should buy the Spa Gift Baskets for Women:    

Dimensions15 x 5.5 x 9.5 inches
ItemsLarge Bath Bombs, Shampoo Bar, Shower Gel, Bubble Bath, Bath Salt, Body Scrub, Body Butter, Body Lotion, Body Mist, Eye Mask and Flower Bath Pour
Item Weight5.4 pounds
Other BenefitsThis is an elegant lavender spa gift basket for lady host. This ultimate luxury spa basket includes 13-in-1 lavender bath and spa goodies. It combines premium ingredients to help balance the mind, body, and spirit with natural lavender botanical oils. You can give this gift basket on different occasions like the holiday party, Christmas party, anniversary gifts, birthday gift, wedding bridesmaid gifts, Pampering gifts, Mother’s day gift, hostess gifts, and many more.      

5. Glasses and Other Stemware

If you are invited to a fancy dinner party or a holiday party then you should bring some fancy and elegant gifts for the hostess. For elegance, you won’t find anything better than the Wine glasses or other types of stemware. Moreover, the hostess will appreciate this type of gift as they are always in need of more glasses.

If you have decided to give wine glasses as a hostess gift then Libbey Stemless 12-Piece Wine Glass Party Set will be your best option. Here is the reason:

Dimensions15.13 x 11 x 10.44 inches
MaterialLead-free; durable and dishwasher safe glass
Item Weight6.8 pounds
Other BenefitsThis wine glass set includes six 16.75-ounce red wine glasses and six 17-ounce white wine glasses. These glasses have a stable, ergonomic, and balanced base that helps to prevent tipping. You can give this wine glass set as a gift on occasions like birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, celebrations, hostess gifts, etc. This stemless wine glass set from Libbey provides an instant, effortless, and affordable upgrade to your drinkware.         

6. Artisan Soaps

If you are not comfortable with giving candles as hostess gift then you can consider soaps as another way to provide some apothecary to your host or hostess. You can give a collection of three or four different soap scents as a hostess gift and it ensures your hostess will find a scent she enjoys.

So if you are looking for a suggestion about artisan soaps then you can consider Bali Soap – Natural Soap Bar Gift Set for their quality, soap scents, and reasonable price tag.

BrandBali Soap
Dimensions3.9 x 3.3 x 3 inches
Ingredients Coconut, Papaya, Vanilla, Lemongrass, Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang
Item Weight1.32 pounds
Other BenefitsIf you are looking for a soap gift set that provides real skin conditioning, moisturizing, and is gentle enough to use all over the body then this soap set from Bali will be the best option. This soap set includes long-lasting six soap bars with extra moisturizing which helps to prevent dry skin. These soaps are made from an exotic blend of organic ingredients from the Indonesian archipelago. Six soaps come with a stylish gift box and it’s a perfect gift for a holiday party, wedding, office gifts, bridal showers, hostess gift, and many more.  

7. Chocolate

Chocolate comes in many forms so it gives you a variety of options to pick a gift for the hostess in a creative way that is still delicious. You can either gift chocolate strawberries and truffles together or you can gift an organic, luxurious collection of different dark chocolates. Moreover, you can make a chocolate gift basket with a combination of different types of chocolates to make your gift look more graceful.

Why Lindt LINDOR Milk Chocolate Truffles is the best option for you:            

Ingredients Milk, Chocolate
Item Weight1.28 ounces
Other BenefitsThis chocolate box contains 60 individually wrapped truffles and it’s a perfect gift for occasions like the birthday, anniversary, office party, hostess gift, etc. These chocolates have a classic milk chocolate flavor that melts into a unique chocolate experience thanks to the irresistibly smooth melting center. Each chocolate candy is made from premium ingredients which are fermented and dried to perfection by the Master Chocolatiers of Lindt. So if you are looking for the finest textures and tastes, Lindt LINDOR Milk Chocolate Truffles are the best!      

Final Thought

When it comes to acknowledging the hostess, you should give something that they will appreciate. There are lots of easy and affordable options available to show your thankfulness for inviting you to the party as well as for all the time and effort they put into the party. Just make sure you follow the etiquette for hostess gifts to avoid creating any awkward moments.

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