One of the most satisfying gifts to put together is a gift basket. It makes for the perfect hostess gift or corporate gift and can be tailored to any taste or budget. They are also great for last minute Christmas gifts as almost all of the items can be picked up at a local grocery store.
Luckily in my line of work I am responsible for all the corporate gift baskets (for admin day, accountants day, clients and vendors at Christmas – I love making them up for any occasion). So much cheaper and more imaginative than the generic baskets, try your hand at putting one together yourself.
Here’s my guide for putting together a thoughtful gift basket –
Step 1: Presentation is important.
Your gift needs to be something that the recipient is excited to receive – a treat to delve into. Invest in a good quality gift basket or bag and the corresponding tissue paper, tags and garland.
For bonus points, at Christmas I like to decorate my gift bag with a coordinating decoration that your recipient can pop on their tree.
Step 2: Carefully select your goodies.
My corporate gift bags are going to companies and departments where they need to be shared. As such, a key component is edible treats that can be enjoyed by everyone.
This is where budget comes in – you can be as lavish or as frugal as you wish. I usually purchase a couple of big ticket items (the champagne, locally made Christmas cake and the handmade toiletries) and then save the budget with some cheaper filler items, nuts, chocolates, cookies etc. so that they still receive a decent selection and there is plenty for everyone. Be sure to mix it up with savory and sweet.
Budget tip: if you can, purchase a few items in bulk and the separate out into individual glassine bags tied up with ribbon. I purchased two 200g boxes of Amaretti biscuits which I split into 5 bags (plus a couple of quality control cookies for me…) to make the treats go further. (Be sure to tie your bags up nice and tight so that they don’t go stale.)
For my individual gift baskets I think it’s nice to include some personalized items, so the recipient is left in no doubt that it is intended for them. Here I included the Kate Spade initial tumbler and handmade toiletries as the bigger items and then added the chocolates, candle etc. Since these aren’t designed to be shared these little pieces can be a mixture of edible items and trinkets to be kept.
Step 3: Assemble your basket.
The fun part! Generously line your gift bag with your tissue paper and then arrange your gifts. I like to pull together smaller items with some clear wrap so that they aren’t lost and swimming around in the bottom.
Make sure to put your heaviest items in first (like the champagne) so that more delicate items won’t get crushed.
Christmas gift bag ideas –
Champagne (or a sparkling apple cider if alcohol isn’t appropriate)
Christmas cake (keep it relevant to the occasion)
Nuts and dried fruits (especially smoked or unusually flavored nuts for something a bit different)
Peppermint Bark (try making these yourself, if you’re gifting to a friend)
Candle, candle tray and decorative matches
Premium coffees or teas
Jams, relishes or chutneys
Personalized mug or notebook
Have fun with it – I hope that your lucky recipient loves your effort!
Ps. Apologies for the dodgy office strip lighting and naff surroundings. Since these are a few of my corporate baskets I was assembling them at the office!