We’ve all received gifts that don’t match our personalities or lifestyles. It’s clear when someone gives us something that was picked out last minute, maybe from an impulse section of a supermarket or pulled from a box in the closet. On the other hand, you’ve probably also received a gift that felt like it was crafted just for you, something special that you held close to your heart for years to come.
And it feels wonderful to give a gift that is truly appreciated. Seeing the look on the recipient’s face when they open your present can fill you with joy and pride at being able to give them something they love. If you want to give a thoughtful gift, it will take some foresight and care. However, the effort is worth it!
Here are some tips for finding, purchasing, wrapping and giving a thoughtful gift to someone you love.
Know the person
The perfect gift for one person could be a flop for another. Start your gift quest by really thinking about the recipient. Think about their relationship to you, how you got to know them, the things they like to do, the things they wear or use, the places they’ve been and the things that are part of their life. The more you contemplate the individuality of the recipient, the easier it will be to pinpoint something that they’ll appreciate.
Give what they need
Listen carefully when your gift recipient talks about things that are bothering them or problems that they have. Is there a hole in their favorite shirt? A stressful day? Chapped lips or sore hands? A craving for something sweet? Listen and jot a note in a notepad or your phone as a reminder when your loved ones say something that triggers you to think, “Hmmm… I bet they could use this!”
- Mountain Wine Tumbler$30.00Out of stock
- 8 oz Lotion$10.00
Give what they are able to do or use
A truly thoughtful gift is something that the recipient can do, use or display. Think about any sensitivities or preferences the recipient has. Before giving a food gift, find out if the recipient has any allergies or food restrictions. Consider any favorite (or not-so-favorite) scents when choosing lotions, soaps or candles. If the person has a small home, think about an experiential gift (like a gift card or something easily used or consumed) instead of something they need to store or display.
Choose a gift for their love language
The five love languages (a concept by self-help author Gary Chapman) are words of affirmation, acts of service, gifts, quality time and physical touch. If you know or can guess what your recipient’s love language is, try to choose your gift or modify your gift based on what the recipient might appreciate the most. For example, a PA State Parks Passport Book could be a wonderful gift for a “quality time” person, especially if you add a note with a promise to visit some parks with them. Or, if they are an “acts of service” kind of person, consider making a meal for them using high-quality ingredients.
Add a heartfelt note
Most gifts can be elevated and enhanced by simply adding a genuine, heartfelt note about why you chose the gift and how much the person means to you. The note can be sweet and sappy or humorous and zany. This adds a personal touch and reminds the recipient that a gift is much more than just a physical object. They might even remember your words each time they use, wear or think of your gift for years to come.
Find your perfect gift, handcrafted and designed in the PA Wilds
For more gift ideas, browse the PA Wilds Marketplace! If ordering for the holidays, be sure to check the seller’s shipping policy.