Post Category: Inspiration

Hostess Gifts on a Budget for Every Personality


In your parents’ day, no one ever went to a party empty-handed. As etiquette rules relaxed, so did the tradition of host or hostess gifts. Thanks to Tik Tok trends, the host or hostess gift is on trend again, leaving some wondering what exactly they’re supposed to give and when.

Planning a party or event is a challenge. That’s why people who can often opt to pay a professional party planner to do everything for them. To recognize that work, it’s tradition to say thank you for hosting an event with a small host or hostess gift.

But how do you know what kind of host or hostess gift to bring? We’ve assembled a list of unique and personal hostess gift ideas for saying thank you.

Sticker with the text "Let us know grow weary of doing good" on a water bottle

Do Good Badge Sticker designed and sold by Chloe J Letters

How to choose the perfect hostess gift

By nature, host or hostess gifts are small, relatively inexpensive, and thoughtful

Common host or hostess gifts often include the following:

  • Wine
  • Chocolates, cookies, or other desserts
  • Flowers (although these can get tricky with allergies)
  • Candles
  • Scented soaps
  • Household items (if you’re attending a housewarming party)

While these all make great gifts for some people, the key to selecting the perfect gift is choosing your gift thoughtfully and with the recipient in mind. Personalize the gift to your host as much as possible so they see it as more than just a new knick-knack they have to dust later.

For the caffeine addict

Hostess gifts for coffee addicts mood board

Products included in this mood board

Some artisan coffee grounds or a gift card to their favorite coffee shop make great go-to gifts for the coffee-loving host. Tuck it into a new coffee mug or travel mug that perfectly fits their personality. 

If you want a more out-of-the-box gift, consider giving a magnet with a witty coffee pun or an art board print celebrating the joys of coffee.

For the bookworm

Black Bibliophile pin

Gold Bibliophile – Black Pin designed and sold by Stella Bookish Art

Obviously, a new book makes a great gift for any bookworm, but it can be hard to know what they already have in their library. Instead, consider a tote bag with a sophisticated book pun they can use while shopping for new books or a pin or button that proudly proclaims their book nerd status.

For the cat lady

"Stay Pawsitive" sticker on a water bottle

Pawsitive Cat | Nikury Sticker designed and sold by nikury

Thanks to Taylor Swift, being a cat lady is much more glamorous than the old stereotype. While giving the hostess who loves cats a new cat may sound like the ultimate gift, it’s definitely not appropriate as a hostess gift. 

Give the cat lady hostess something small but fun. Pair a cute sticker they can put on their laptop with an adorable pet bandana for Tiger.

For the anime fan

Google Gil water bottle

Goggles Gil Water Bottle designed and sold by wacca

During your next watch party, bring your host a personal gift showing how well you know their taste in anime. A plushie or small figurine of their favorite character makes a good choice, or an anime-themed water bottle to keep them hydrated while they binge-watch a new season of their favorite anime.

For the dog lover

Coasters with an illustrated pug

Pug Puppy Cartoon Coasters (Set of 4) designed and sold by fizzgig

A set of coasters with an adorable dog or a small acrylic block with the perfect dog pun make cute yet practical hostess gifts for a dog lover.

And don’t forget Fido! Thank them for all their hard work greeting every guest with a new pet food mat.

For the plant parent

Mood board of hostess gifts for plant parents

Products included in this mood board

Flowers have historically been acceptable hostess gifts, but with everything we know about allergies, giving something that might make someone sneeze or trigger a migraine is a bad idea. Plus who wants to give a gift that dies?

So skip the bouquet of flowers and give the gift of a journal with a beautiful plant pattern where they can jot down their gardening ideas. A beautiful coffee mug with a houseplant pattern will brighten their morning as they water their plants.

For the teacher

You Get a Gold Star pin

You Get a Gold Star Pin designed and sold by doddlebymeg

If your host is a teacher by day, they’ll appreciate this gold star pin as a thank you for their hosting efforts. Looking for a more humorous gift? This Oops Eraser sticker makes a perfect water bottle accessory, and a reading-themed tote will help them carry their papers home in style.

For the wine aficionado

Hung Over coasters

Hung Over Coasters designed and sold by Teo Zirinis

A true wine lover will never turn down a bottle of wine as a hostess gift, but try to think outside the box. Pick up a funny set of coasters for their wine glasses or a witty art board print immortalizing a funny wine quote.

For the art lover

Abstract Plant 3 Magnet

Abstract Plant 3 Magnet designed and sold by ThingDesign

If you know what art style your host loves, bring them a new piece of art in magnet form. If they have a street art vibe, they can bring their artwork to work with them with a travel mug sporting a street art pattern.

For the bicycle enthusiast

It's a Good Day to Ride sticker on a water bottle

It’s a Good Day to Ride Sticker designed and sold by ELVEKTORKITA

A biker can always use a good sticker to spice up their helmet or an acrylic block featuring a mountain on a bike for a good laugh.

For the movie buff

Mood board of hostess gifts for movie lovers

Products included in this mood board

Attending a movie screening at a friend’s? You could bring popcorn, or a stand-out gift like this acrylic block featuring a stack of VHS tapes or New York City noir coffee mug.

For the self-proclaimed geek

Science! magnet on fridge

Science! Magnet designed and sold by Steven Rhodes

Your geeky host will appreciate a geeky pun like this Negative Atom sticker. Or find something that speaks to their geekiness and one of their other passions, like this Chemistry of Coffee’s Aroma art print.

For the ice cream fan

Ice Cream Skull Coasters

Ice Cream Skull Coasters (Set of 4) designed and sold by no-eye-deer

For the host with a sweet tooth, ice cream-themed gifts are perfect, regardless of the season. Get them a fun sticker to make them laugh or some artwork for their kitchen.

For the feminist

Don't Be Good be Defiant Sticker on a water bottle

Don’t Be Good Be Defiant Sticker designed and sold by fabfeminist

Show the women in your life that you love and support them with feminist gifts. Let her know she’s enough with an affirming coffee mug or help her break gender roles with a powerful tote bag.

 For the music fan

Vintage Turntable Hardcover Journal

Vintage Turntable Hardcover Journal designed and sold by sobsannix

The next time you’re headed to a listening party, bring a cool piece of artwork for your musically-inclined host’s music room. A sticker for their guitar case also makes a great hostess gift for the music fan.

For the crafter

Mood board of hostess gifts for crafters

Products included in this mood board

During the pandemic, it seemed like everyone was learning to sew or knit to pass the time, and the hobby has stuck for many people. Get your host with a crafting hobby a sewing-themed zipper pouch to keep all their supplies organized or a clever magnet for their fridge.

For the wanderer

Woman wearing Wanderluster Bucket Hat

Wanderluster Bucket Hat designed and sold by cabinsupplyco

Get the host who would rather be outdoors a camping sticker for the water bottle they take on every hike or a unique piece of art to remind them to return to nature. 

For the holiday hostess

Ho Ho Ho Coasters

Ho Ho Ho Christmas Typography Coasters (Set of 4) designed and sold by ShowMeMars

The holidays are prime party season, so bring your host a bottle of wine to relax with an adorable Letter to Santa magnet to put a little Christmas spirit on the fridge or a holiday coffee mug they can use for their eggnog.

For the foodie

Gingerbread Feast Christmas Pattern Coffee Mug

Gingerbread Feast Christmas Pattern Coffee Mug designed and sold by roksidesigns

Foodies are in their element during the holiday season. So many delicious meals and cookies just waiting to be devoured. Make sure to thank your foodie host for cooking dinner with a new apron or a new notebook to record all their recipes.

For the environmentalist

Every Day Is Earth Day Water Bottle

Every Day Is Earth Day Water Bottle designed and sold by zoljo

Your environmentally-conscious host will love a gift that is also socially responsible, so pick a small thank you that is sustainable. A practical tote bag is always a good idea or a pin promoting change can help them spread the word about climate change.

For the astrologist

Mood board of hostess gifts for the astrologist

Products included in this mood board

An astrology buff will never say no to some astrological-inspired artwork or a colorful sticker referencing their astrological sign.

For the minimalist

Overthinking Spiral Notebook

Overthinking Spiral Notebook designed and sold by Maarten Leon

While minimalists may object to a gift that will clutter up their space, they’ll love a hostess gift with a purpose. Coasters with a minimal design, a tote bag with a black and white ink illustration, or a unique travel mug would be much appreciated by your minimalist hosts.

For the humorous host

Unicorn Fart Magnet on fridge

Unicorn Fart Magnet designed and sold by zoljo

Whether their humor leans towards dad jokes or sarcasm, any host with a sense of humor will appreciate a hostess gift that’ll make them laugh. Give them a punny sticker or an acrylic block with a funny quote.

For the retro Y2K lover

Daisy Time Retro Floral Pattern Acrylic Block on wooden shelf

Daisy Time Retro Floral Pattern Acrylic Block designed and sold by Kierkegaard

A host who is either a 90s baby or a Gen Z-er who loves current trends will love any hostess gift that references Y2K. An acrylic block with 90s-style artwork or a spiral notebook with a VHS tape cover can bring the T2K vibe to any space.

Hostess gift etiquette

While you can never go wrong by saying thank you with a small token, not every situation calls for a host or hostess gift. Etiquette experts suggest these guidelines:

  • A hostess gift isn’t required if you are attending a formal dinner where you don’t know the host well. 
  • When you go to a party celebrating someone, like a birthday or a baby shower, you only have to bring a gift for the party’s honoree. But a hostess gift would be appropriate if you are the honoree and aren’t hosting the party. 
  • In almost all other situations, you should bring a gift, especially if local customs call for it.

When giving a gift to your host, it doesn’t need to be wrapped, although you can get creative with your gift wrapping if you want.

When you arrive at the event, greet your host first, then discretely hand them your gift. Do not make a big deal out of it, and don’t be upset when they don’t open it right away. They are in host mode, which means they need to see to all their guests while possibly putting the finishing touches on a meal. 

If you bring wine or a dessert to a dinner party, don’t be offended if the host doesn’t serve it. They’ve probably spent hours designing and cooking the perfect menu, and whatever you brought may not match the vibe. Plus, the gift is for them to enjoy as a thank you, not share with everyone else.

Finally, if you arrive at a party and realize you forgot a hostess gift, don’t get dramatic about it. Instead, thank your host for throwing the event, and send them a small gift the next day with a brief thank you note.

Medication Frog Sticker on a water bottle

Meditation Frog by Tobe Fonseca Sticker designed and sold by Tobe Fonseca

Whether you’re attending a New Year’s Eve party, a baby shower, or a family gathering, make it a mission to spread a little love and kindness this year with a small host or hostess gift. When you get a gift as personal and unique as the ones available through our independent artists, the host knows you care. 

Still looking for the perfect gift? Check out all our gift ideas or give a gift card so your host can pick out the right thing for them.

Featured Image: Party Animal Elephant designed and sold by lizzydeestudio

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