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Whether you’re the new girlfriend, a coworker, or a family friend, deciding what gift to bring your host over the holidays is always a tricky one. You don’t want to go too overboard or bring something your host will never use, yet you want to show you put a significant amount of thought into your offering. It’s all about showing your appreciation after all. So, we asked lifestyle expert Bahar Takhtehchian for her recommendations. Turns out, they don’t need to be expensive or elaborate. Check out her great gift ideas below.
“When it comes to wine, you don’t have to break the bank,” Takhtehchian says. “Aim to bring a bottle that’s between $15 to $20, and just make sure you’ve tasted it before so you know you’re gifting a wine that’s worthy of drinking.” A good rule of thumb is to bring an adaptable (meaning it goes with many meals) and approachable wine like Riesling.
Or, maybe there’s a bottle you love that has a story behind it you can share. If you’re presenting the gift in person, tell the story to start conversation, or attach a note if you plan to send it later. To dress up the bottle with some festive flare, Takhtehchian says to wrap it in shiny paper or tie on a fancy ribbon.
“During the holidays, every host appreciates a homemade dessert or [dish],” says Takhtehchian, explaining that it’s always nice to contribute something so that he or she doesn’t feel like they have to do it all on their own. To avoid duplicate dishes, consider telling them ahead of time what you’re bringing or ask what you can contribute.
“If you’re bringing a treat, serve it on a decorative platter that can double as a nice gift for your host or hostess. If you don’t have the budget to buy a platter that’s reusable and decorative, opt for something that’s plastic and dress it up with colored cellophane and ribbons,” suggests Takhtehchian.
Takhtehchian adds that even if you’re not bringing food to the party, platters and dishes make great holiday gifts. Makes sense. But if you are going to gift a platter, adding even a store-bought confection or appetizer to it is a great way to make your gift stand out.
Bahar Takhtehchian is a multi-faceted writer, content creator, and television personality based in New York City. After spending three years as the Editor-at-Large of SHAPE magazine, Bahar is currently working as a freelance journalist in the beauty and lifestyle space. A trusted and recognizable on-air expert, Bahar has appeared in more than 600 television segments, and can be seen regularly on the Today Show, Wendy Williams Show, Fox & Friends. Visit Takhtehchian’s website, and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.