Showing up empty-handed to a party at another’s home is a bit gauche. Bringing something—anything, really—shows that you’re appreciative of all the energy and expense it took your host to plan the event.
“As much as I love to entertain, I’m the first to say that even a casual get-together requires effort. A hostess gift is a kind gesture that recognizes the work put in to have people, and it doesn’t have to be a big present, says Mary Hollis Huddleston, an event planner and co-author of Without a Hitch.
Budget between $25 and $75 and focus on an item that brings joy but will fit seamlessly into the host’s home, like a plant or bouquet, or a small piece of home décor. Consumables or utilitarian items are also crowd pleasures. Think of a nice bottle of whiskey or wine, cookies, a coffee table book, or a beautiful serving tray.
To get your wheels rolling, we’ve rounded up 18 hostess gift ideas that’ll get you invited back.
This stunning, richly grained wood plate is hand-carved by artisans in the Philippines and made with sustainably sourced wood. You could even bring a little something to share on top of the plate!
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This one’s perfect for both experienced bakers and those who like to dabble. The kit includes everything you need to make a yummy, traditional olive oil cake, including two bottles of olive oil infused with vanilla maple and meyer lemon, vanilla bean salt, a recipe card, and a gift box.
Usual Wines Sparkling Brut, $48 (6-pack)
These chic, petite bottles of sparkling brut will be a real crowd-pleaser. It features a fine bubble and crisp dry taste. We like the idea of buying a six or 12-pack and gifting two at a time. Each is enough for one glass.
If you prefer to gift a classic bottle of wine, we suggest Sonoma-Cutrer’s Vine Hill 2018 Pinot Noir. Perfect for the holidays, it’s a beautiful reddish-purple hue with notes of sweet red cherries, dark chocolate, baking spices, sweet vanilla, and juniper.
Wine is always a good option, but spicing it up with an award-winning bottle of whiskey is always a good move! Old Elk comes packaged beautifully already—just add a bow!—with its faux wood stopper and sleek vessel.
A flight of tea? Oh yes. This one from Chariteas features the brand’s cozy wintry flavors, including Minty Meadow, Christmas Morning, and Fireside Orange.
If your hostess is a fan of charcuterie or cheese plates, this is an easy pick! Each marker is made from reclaimed wood, and the design allows the market to slide into each wedge of cheese easily.
Who can say no to cookie dough? Deux’s cheery “Spice Girls” trio features three different flavors: gingerbread enhanced with ashwagandha, pumpkin spice enhanced with zinc, and sugar and spice enhanced with maca.
Every bar needs a bar knife! This one, from Heritage Steel, features a hefty wood and steel handle and skewer tip. It’s perfect for spearing olives or cocktail onions, peeling citrus, and cutting whatever you need.
Speaking of cocktails, this Mixology Kit from Gentleman’s Hardware lets your giftee create delicious concoctions. They’ll get a muddler, jigger, and cocktail shaker featuring a contemporary black and grey speckled pattern print.
This one’s perfect for plant lovers who appreciate whimsical décor! Green Philosophy’s Succulent Plush Pillow is inspired by the rosette shape of a succulent and adds a nice burst of color to any room.
If you think your giftee would prefer a fresh plant instead, consider Modern Sprout’s chic hydro grow set. It comes with herb seeds (lavender and chamomile), tumbler, hydroponic wick, net pot, dirt, activated carbon, coco pith disk, plant food, and instructions.
An Oprah favorite (so you know it’s good), Clever Blends Starter Kit comes with two apoptogenic-infused SuperLatte mixes (you choose the duo) and a frothing tool. Each bag makes 14 lattes—just add water or milk.
We love this hostess gift for couples or families who love to play in the kitchen. This one includes everything you need to make a mean slice, including Chicago Pirro’s homemade pizza sauce, savory Tempesta Salami, Jacobsen’s hand-foraged sea salt, Hayden Flour Mill’s hand-cultivated pizza flour, and Spice House’s organic crushed red chili flakes.
Bougie Bakes Chocolate Chunk Cookies, $36
Bougie Bakes specializes in healthy cookies, so no guilt here! Plus, they come housed in a chic, reusable tin that’s ready for gifting.
We love a good champagne toast—especially when it smells this good! This gift bundle from Bath & Body Works comes with a candle and foaming hand wash.
We guarantee your hostess’ mind will be blown by this remote control candle. It ignites a real flame with the press of a button. So cool!
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IKEA Proofing Basket, $12.99
If your host is a bread baker, this chic proofing basket from IKEA makes for the perfect small something. You could even add a few packets of premium yeast and a bag of flower to round out the gift.
We’ll leave you with one last pro tip: Keep a selection of host gifts tucked away, that way you can quickly grab something before the party without having to overthink it in the moment. Just plop a bow on it and you’re golden (keep the bows on hand, too).