Now is the time to start one!
Your Gift Closet can be a shelf, a drawer, a Rubbermaid bin or a box under your bed. By planning ahead you can save time, money and energy. (And who doesn’t need more of those things!?)
Thanks to my Gift Closet and my “shop all year” philosophy, my Christmas shopping was completely finished by the first week of December, I didn’t break the bank doing it, and nothing went on a credit card.
Just start one and try to take advantage of good deals.
Kohl’s still has Christmas decor and it’s 90% off. Retail for these things would have been $234, but just check out what I got for $22:
The little seashell ornament was 59 cents and it’ll be used with my summer decor. (I’ll put it in a bowl or apothecary jar filled with shells and pebbles.)
The CDs were 79 cents each and I will listen to them next December while I am spray painting the metal reindeer ($3.99) white and covering him with glitter.
The pine cone ornaments were 49 cents each and will go on next year’s tree.
That stuff sounds like it’s all for me and what does any of that have to do with my Gift Closet?
Nothing, I just love a Plan Ahead For Next Christmas Good Deal.
These are the things going into the Gift Closet:
The little silver “HOPE” blocks are going to be tucked into cookie baskets. ($1.50 each)
The cranberry scented reed diffusers were $2 a piece and will be great holiday gifts.
The little frame out of antlers was 39 cents. (How cute will it be with a kid or grand kid’s photo in there and tied onto a Father’s Day gift?)
The rhinestone R and E can be tied onto a gift bag or wrapped present as a gorgeous (but inexpensive: 60 cents) embellishment.
There are always great deals on After-Christmas items that you can give as gifts for next Christmas, but always be on the look-out for things that don’t look Christmas-y. Candles, frames, vases, linens, etc. I’ve been able to snap up $45 Bath & Body Works gift sets for $4 in March and April. I have them on hand for all kinds of occasions.
Does it mean that I care about my gift recipients less because I paid less for their gifts?
Of course not! In fact, I think it means I love my recipients more, because with a bit of planning and a watchful eye, I can give them more.
If you are out and about and see the perfect gift for a specific person (at a great price), get it. Right then and there. Buy it. Make yourself a note somewhere. I keep an email going in my “Drafts” folder. I’m not ever going to send it anywhere, but I have “Gift Closet” in the subject line and it serves as an inventory of my Gift Closet. I make notes about specific gifts for specific people. If I have purchased multiple quantities of the same item, I make myself notes as to who I have given one to, and how many I have left. (You don’t want to give anyone the same gift twice!)
A taboo subject: Re-gifting.
I’ll admit it, I’ve done it. (And if you’re being honest, you’ll admit it too.)
Something too big or too small, (once I was allergic to an ingredient in a delicious bath set) or for whatever reason, we will not be able to enjoy the gift. Personally, I think it is a shame to have a gift sit unappreciated and unused. I would rather pass it on to someone who I know will enjoy it. Therefore, on a few occasions a gift I have received makes its way to the Gift Closet. Go ahead. Report me to the Gift Police.
If you’re going to re-gift, do it properly and discretely. I tie a big note onto the item marking who gave the gift to me. I also list the gift on my draft email list and I change the text to red.
One of my re-gifting criteria is that I will not re-gift to anyone who even knows the original gift giver. Another is that if the person who gave it to me assigned any sentimental value to it, I keep it. (Even if it makes me break out in hives.)
Picture frames, candles, good deals on ribbons and wrapping… Whatever you find yourself paying retail for at the last minute, try shopping before you need it. You’ll be so happy you did. Being judicious with your time, money and energy is a great gift to give yourself.