thrifty hostess gift

over the weekend, we were invited over to a friend's house for dinner.  though i asked and offered a few times, i was told that i didn't need to bring anything to contribute to the meal.
still, it would have pained me to show up empty-handed, so i wanted to take my friend a small hostess gift.
as weekends go, the time got away from me and there were about thirty-seven temptations for me to scratch the idea all together; but in the end, i'm glad i put forth the {simple and very easy} effort to get this little gift basket together.

here's what goodies are in there:
☛dark green berry basket {found during my early-morning dash through Michael's.  it was on fall clearance for 80% off...for a cost of $1.89.}
☛mrs. meyer's lemon verbena hand soap and countertop spray {in this post, i share how you can get eight mrs. meyer's products for only $2.24 each.  these are great for gift baskets...or for stocking stuffers if you've any adult stockings you need to fill this christmas!  by the way, the countertop spray may be my very favorite mm product ever...and the lemon verbena is my very favorite scent ever.}
☛hand-stitched quilty hoop.  i've been selling some of these autumn-inspired hoops over on instagram...they're stitched on whimsical pieces from vintage quilt tops.  i specifically wanted to include one of these in my gift basket.  after a doctor's appointment that ran over an hour late and an unexpected run to the pharmacy, i ended up stitching this at the very last minute.  it still turned out so cute...and i really think a small, handmade touch makes any gift that much more special.
☛chocolate.  really, need i say more?

so, here's the low-down.
the berry basket from Michael's cost me $1.89.
the two mrs. meyers products were in my "gift stash", on saturday, they didn't cost me anything; but originally, they cost around $2.24 each.
the quilty hoop was made from supplies i had on hand...little to no cost.
the chocolate was in my personal treat "stash." {are you sensing a theme here with my "stashes?" i do tend to tuck many items away for later, treats, etc.} again, no cost to me on saturday, but an original cost of around $3, i believe.
the basket, twine, acorn ornament, and granny square were all gathered from here and there around my cost.
add it all up and for under $10, i had a cute, thoughtful hostess gift to take to my sweet friend.

like i said, there were several times during my manic saturday morning that i was tempted to just forego the entire idea.  it wouldn't have bothered my friend in the least if i'd shown up gift-less.  but i wanted to take her something...i wanted her to know i had thought of her.
i think all too often we forsake the good on the altar of the perfect.
i can't put together a gift basket like her. 
i can't stitch that hoop.
i don't have a gift stash.
i don't have time.
i don't have money.
personally, i am so very guilty of this.  there are so many things that i just do not do because i feel i can't do them perfectly.
and that's just silly.
i'm admitting that about myself.  that is silliness.

maybe you don't have a spare basket lying around.  what about a bowl?  grab a fall leaf and a bit of paint and "stamp" a cardboard box.  do you have a pressed-paper strawberry basket hanging around from the summer? maybe a cute vintage pillowcase?  you have something you could use to hold those goodies.  stretch your creative!
maybe you can't stitch.  can you paint?  maybe you are a couponer. couponner? coupon-er? ever you say it...maybe you're one of those crazy coupon ladies.  stick some of your favorite recent deals in that basket!
maybe you don't have a gift stash.  start one.  i'm serious.  a friend of mine turned me on to this idea several years ago and it's been a life-saver time and time again.  click on that link above and get the mrs. meyers deal.  save some for yourself...and then tuck the rest away for when you need a last-minute gift.  when you find brand new items at the thrift store or at garage sales, tuck them away for gifts!  oh geeeez...quit rolling your eyes at me.  next time your little one has an unexpected birthday party to go to, you'll be happy you bought that brand new lalaloopsy for $5 at a garage sale, rather than having to shell out the $32 wally-world is asking for the same cheapo piece of plastic.
maybe you don't have time.  nope.  i don't buy it.  you do have time.  we all have time to be thoughtful.  make the time.  take the time.  if nothing else, grab a cute vintage mug at the thrift, a box of fancy tea, and a small bottle of honey.  tie it all together with a ribbon.  bam.  again, you're under $10.  and all of that can be purchased on your next grocery run.  if you don't have time to run to the thrift, grab a mug out of your own cabinet...chances are you have plenty to spare.
and really and truly, maybe you don't have the money.  but all the ideas i've thrown out today have been for $10 or less.  skip two starbucks runs and you've got your money.  or if that amount is still not doable, get your creative juices flowing even more and stretch those few dollars you do have.

above all, don't skip the small, thoughtful bit that you can do just because you can't do some large extravagant gift.
like i told someone today, something is better than nothing.


  1. Ugh! I need to refill my gift closet! Fail! :). Thanks for sharing this idea. You really are the most considerate guest with whom I have shared my home!

  2. Beautiful, useful& thoughtful gift!
    love the granny square and hoop.


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