We’ve all had a strange year in 2020, which adds a little bit more pressure on Christmas this year. If you’re buying gifts for friends, you might be feeling the pressure to make sure you give them something thoughtful, especially if you know they’re having a difficult year. Here are some ideas for some thoughtful gifts for your friends to cheer them up this Christmas.
Gifts For The Home
We’ve all spent a lot of time at home this year, and will likely be spending some more time there next year too. Gifts that add something nice to the house are bound to be well-received. Think about your friend’s home and how they like their decor. What could you give them that would suit their style?
A nice scented candle is a classic gift, but one that people always like. Spend some time choosing one with a scent you know your friend will like. Think about the perfume they wear or the candles they burn themselves they wear to help you choose.
Indoor plants are a great gift too. If your friend doesn’t have much of a green finger, choose something easy to care for, like a succulent. If they’re more confident with caring for plants, you can get something a bit more challenging to look after.
A digital photo frame will also go down well. We’re all missing people this year, so being able to load up lots of photos of happier times might make your friend happy.
Does your friend have a hobby they love? A thoughtful gift would be something related to their hobby to help them along. For example, if your friend loves to cook, you could gift them a new recipe book by a chef you know they like or some new kitchen equipment. Posh cooking oils might also go down well.
If your friend has taken up a new hobby during the lockdown, choose a present related to that. A lot of people took up things like baking, making their own beer, or sewing. Hobby kits could be a fun present to help along someone new to a hobby, like packet mixes for a bread maker, kits to make felt animals or kits for beer brewing.
Sometimes the most thoughtful gift you can give is something that makes the receiver laugh. The year has been sad, stressful, or anxious for a lot of people, and a good laugh could be just the thing. If you’re buying for one of those people who is tough to buy for or who already has everything, a funny gift can be much easier to be.
You don’t have to buy a gag gift that they will laugh at, then never use again. Instead, aim for something that will amuse them but actually get some use. For example, if your friend is the girly sort, they’re bound to be entertained by giving a mermaid blanket. They’ll laugh when they open it, but then actually be able to get some use out of it on the sofa in the evenings.
Avoid the novelty coffee mug idea, as everyone has cupboards full of mugs they never use. They might like an oversized wine glass though.
Getting something that is personalised to the receiver shows that you have thought about them. Jewellery can be good for this gift theme. Buy them a nameplate necklace or earrings in the shape of the first letter of their name.
If your friend loves smartphone cases or uses a tablet a lot, you could get them a monogrammed phone or tablet case. A laptop sleeve with their initials on would be nice for someone with an office job. If they travel a lot, buy a personalised passport cover or some monogrammed luggage.
Gift an experience instead of something else you have to struggle to wrap nicely, and something they need to find room for. Gift them a membership or subscription to something they like.
If they love coffee, for example, gift a coffee subscription, where different beans will be delivered every month for them to try. Buy a subscription to their favourite magazine. Buy a membership for a local theatre or a museum so they get access to benefits like advanced tickets, and get to support a local place they love at the same time.
Think about the things you know they like to do, and look for something to help them enjoy that all year round. They’ll enjoy their gift for much longer than just Christmas and will think of you all year when their subscription arrives or they use their membership.
Give the gift of some memories. Spend some time going through some photos of the two of you together, or you both with your family and friends. Choose your favourites and arrange them in a large photo frame together as a collage. You could arrange them in a photo album instead if can’t narrow down the pictures enough to fit into one frame.
Your friend will be touched by the effort you’ve made and will love having all those photos to enjoy. We all take a lot of pictures now, but we usually post them on social media and don’t print them off, so don’t always have a lot of physical photos to enjoy at home.
Make a gift themed on a special trip. For example, print out some photos from an amazing holiday you took together, and arrange them in a collage with things like ticket stubs or receipts from the same trip.
Buying thoughtful gifts for your friends can be difficult, especially if you’re trying to cheer someone up after a rough year. Remember that it is always the thought that counts, and you making the effort will be enough to please your loved ones, whatever you decide to get them. Spend some time learning to wrap gifts beautifully to up the excitement and enjoyment even more, and you’re sure to put a smile on their face.