Monday, August 16, 2010

To Gift or Regift?

Last week, I had a momentous occasion. I did a little online shopping. On sale items. For Christmas gifts. For someone other than myself. 

I know, I know, very impressive, right?

Granted, I also then proceeded to "spend" $600 on my SUV that went into the shop with only a broken seat belt (kind of important since it was the driver's one...), but came out assessed with also a cracked something-belt (?), leaky rear shocks, and dirty brake fluid. I guess I ended up spending some money on myself this weekend, after all. And yes, fine, I also spent like $20 on Christmas decor on the same e-shopping trip. It was all on sale, I promise.

In any case, when I stumbled onto this post by our Atlanta neighbor Mandi at It's Come to This, I knew I had struck real inspiration.

What do you do when you see those "great finds" in the Target Dollar Aisle, or things marked for final sale on the back endcaps? What about all those tempting "going out of business sales" at stores like Pier 1, when you have no real "need" to go buy things? Discounted home decor items, cooking accessories, and jewelry are all absolute torture to ignore, if you are a sale-aholic like me.

The Solution: spend a little money here and there throughout the year on these items, and put them into a Gift Bin to keep for gift "emergencies" like the following ...

Emergency Situation 1: You have been invited on Friday afternoon to a get-together at your coworker's new house that evening. You want to bring a housewarming gift, but don't have time to swing past the store and find something that she might like. 

Emergency Situation 2: It's your friend's birthday, and woops, you forgot. You are meeting them in 20 minutes for celebratory drinks ... and a gift exchange, yikes!

Emergency Situation 3: You are heading to your aunt's house for the weekend, but are walking out the door to the airport when you realize you forgot to pick up a hostess gift. Egads!

A well-stocked Gift Bin (and a variety of gift bags and paper!) is the perfect savior in such Betty Emergencies. You are always prepared for the unexpected, and it has the added benefit of letting you "shop" a little more frequently, knowing your purchases will be used for good. You can also throw in here any odd gifts you might receive that would be appropriate for re-gifting somewhere else.

So go on, buy that super-cheap candle set on the Kohl's Summer Clearance rack. Just don't bust it open for use on your own coffee table :)


Cindy said...

I am all about a gift drawer. I fill mine with candles, cocktail napkins, cute playing cards, notepads, etc. Kate's Paperie had a huge sale on all kinds of Lilly stuff and I loaded up.

Unknown said...

Cindy - a gift drawer is so smart, too! Cocktail napkins are another weakness of mine too :)