2017 gift guide for the hostess or entertainer

Next up on our list is a gift guide for the hostess and the entertainer. These are all small gifts that are easy to bring with you to the holiday parties you inevitably have scattered throughout December. Hostess gifts can be a fun opportunity to branch out and find a unique or luxurious item that your friends usually wouldn’t buy for themselves. Since they are often small, you can find something great without breaking the bank.

Gift Guide for the Hostess

| cocktail napkins | holiday oven mitt 1, 2,3 | pretty matches | reindeer candle snuffer | candle |
| milk frother | brass candlesticks (more modern ones here) | sugarfina box |
| cheese markers | pretty plate 1, 2 | box of tea forte | serving board | ceramic pour over |
| monogrammed mug | reindeer bottle opener |

I love combining some of these fun items with something homemade, to make the gift more personal. The host and/or hostess put so much time and effort into cleaning, cooking, prepping and decorating, so I like to do anything I can to make the gift a fun, but thoughtful one. Some of my go-to hostess gifts are a pretty plate filled with homemade cookies (shortbread is the easiest and so tasty!), a unique cutting board topped with a homemade loaf of pumpkin chocolate chip bread, or a round of scone dough and a bag of locally roasted coffee to make the next morning a little easier. While you could definitely gift any of these items on their own as a beautiful hostess gift, I’m going to do something different here and give additional ideas on how you could pair some of them with other items, sometimes homemade, sometimes not, to make them even more special.

1. clever cocktail napkins + a fun mixer or a bottle of punch for them to use for cocktails.
Many entertainers love a fun bar cart set-up. I love these cute cloth cocktail napkins on their own for the cocktail loving hostess, but it would be even more fun and thoughtful to grab your favorite mixer, or even put a bow on a bottle of flavored simple syrup, like this autumn simple syrup. Not only do they have a pretty new item for their bar set-up, but they also have a fun new drink on hand.

2. fun oven mitt + a Christmas cookie cutter and your favorite holiday cookie recipe.
Giving a cherished Christmas cookie recipe always seems so personal and loving, and is quick and easy to do even if you don’t have time to make cookies. If you don’t do a cookie recipe, just make sure it is something that is baked so they have a chance to use their new oven mitt!

3. reindeer candle snuffer + candle or cute matches.
A candle is a great hostess gift on its own, but if you are looking for a fun addition, pair it with this chic reindeer candle snuffer or a fun set of matchers. For a unique version of this gift, just give the candle snuffer and pretty matches. They’ll have something cute to start the fire and something cute to put it out. ;)

4. pretty pour over + locally roasted coffee.
I didn’t know a pour over brewer could be so pretty. This would be the perfect simple gift for your entertaining friend who also loves good coffee. Our favorite local coffee to give and receive is Counter Culture Coffee from Durham, but you may have coffee roasters that are closer to you. If you gift Counter Culture, they have a limited time winter blend called “Iridescent”. Stumped on where to find local (or non-local) coffee beans? Try asking your favorite local coffee shop, or pop into a Whole Foods in your area, as they often have a good selection.

5. milk frother + breakfast pastries
As the host or hostess of a party that goes late into the evening, the last thing you want to do after cooking, hosting, sending everyone off, and cleaning up until the wee hours of the morning is get up and make breakfast the next morning. A charming milk frother and some croissants or scones makes a great gift for the busy entertainer at any party you attend. Breakfast treats take the pressure off of them the next morning, and the milk frother is something they can get great use out of long after the holiday party season is over.

6. candlesticks in their style + taper candles.
It is always nice to get a gift you can use right away. Including inexpensive taper candles with candlestick holders is like giving a kid an electronic toy and batteries. White candles are always classic, but if you know their style it can be fun to find a new color (like these pretty fuchsia ones or Kelly green ones).

7. cheese picks + your favorite cheese, a bottle of wine, or some fancy crackers.
This pairing would also work for a cheese board. For those of us who aren’t cheesemongers, picking cheese from the vast selection can be difficult. It is always nice to get fancy cheese recommendations that you can trust from foodie friends. Pass along cheese markers or a cheese board with your favorite swanky cheese, or even just a list of recommendations, to your entertaining friend who likely has lots of opportunities to eat or serve them.

8. a pretty cutting or serving board + a loaf of quick bread.
My sister first told me about this idea when she wrapped up a loaf of pumpkin chocolate chip bread on a cutting board to bring to an out-of-town friend she visited earlier this year. Since then, my mom and I have both taken up the idea, getting pretty, but inexpensive, cutting or serving boards from Home Goods or Target and switching up the type of bread. If you don’t have time to bake anything, Grab a quick bread mix from the store to include with the board (Trader Joe’s pumpkin bread mix is almost as good as the homemade stuff – just add chocolate chips and no one will ever guess it is from a box).

9. monogrammed mug + tea or a pack of hot chocolate mix.
Christmas mugs are my favorite :) They always make me so happy. Want to know a cheat for this gift? If you are gifting hot chocolate to multiple people, buy a large tub of hot chocolate mix and portion it into cellophane bags (or Ziploc bags with the zipper cut off). Tie them up with a bow and a candy cane and it couldn’t be easier or look fancier.

10. a unique dessert plate + homemade Christmas cookies.
This is one of my go-to gifts during the holidays. It is perfect for neighbors, co-workers, hostesses, babysitters, pet-sitters, you name it! A pretty or unique plate is something people don’t often buy for themselves, but can always use for decoration or for serving treats when friends come to visit, and homemade cookies give it a thoughtful touch.

I hope this gives you some new ideas for fun hostess gifts to give this season!

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