Let’s face it, shopping for gifts is hard. In some ways it can feel like the ultimate “how well do I know you” test and it feels like one designed for failure. Not only do you have to decide if a particular gift is something that the recipient will like, but you might also have to decide if they already have this gift, if it’s too expensive, or if it’s something that you want for yourself and you’re just projecting.
Gift cards can come across as impersonal and might make you appear lazy, and the Bacon of the Month Club only works if you’re sure that the person actually eats bacon. DIY gifts are insanely popular, but for those people who wouldn’t know mod podge from a glue gun that effectively eliminates that idea.
So what’s a gift giver to do?
One thing that you might consider is a personalized gift. While a coffee mug or a monogrammed set of hand towels might immediately come to mind, the truth is that the world of personalized gifts has changed a great deal in recent years and you have more unique choices than ever before.
If you’ve found yourself in a gift-giving quandary, take a look at some of these ideas for personalized gifts that might make your next special occasion just a little bit easier.
1. A Watercolor Painting
Did you know that you can send a photo to an artist and receive a stunning watercolor rendering in return? If not then it’s high time that you did. Thousands of starving artists will happily perform this service for a little money and you will have a one of a kind gift to give for any occasion.
Swipe a photo of your friend’s baby from their Facebook page and have it turned into a watercolor for the child’s first birthday or Christmas. A funny watercolor portrait of your mom’s cat will likely be the gift that she really treasures. The watercolor world really is your oyster in this regard and you might find yourself submitting some of your own photos for a watercolor transformation as well.
2. Personalized Checks
The truth is that all checks are personalized; they have the account holder’s name right there one each one. You may also think that checks are a thing of the past and wouldn’t necessarily go over well as a gift. However, more and more people are returning to the use of checks, so what better gift than a carefully designed book of checks?
You can order personal checks online and choose from a wide array of colors and designs. Of course, this gift idea is ideal if you don’t have to ask someone for their account information, so this might work best as a gift for a spouse or another person to whom you are very close.
3. Montage Photo Book
Have you ever wished that you could share your Instagram photos with people without having to shove your phone in their face? If you have, then you need to look into creating a unique photo album for a special occasion that simply begs for a special gift.
If you took a number of iPhone photos at your friend’s wedding or during a family trip, why not have those photos preserved in an album (after adding filters, of course)? All you need to do is upload your photos and choose the book size that you’d prefer.
Your photos are then artfully arranged and your book is printed, bound, and sent directly to you. This truly is the pinnacle of personalized gifts.
4. Creative Cookware
Most people are familiar with the souvenir, etched-glass champagne flutes that are all too often given as wedding favors or the plate that was picked up at a garage sale because it had your initials on it. However, there are many more choices when it comes to cookware and serving pieces that are unique, personal, and don’t come with a spotty past.
A stunning wood cutting board with a monogram could be the perfect wedding gift, or a set of casserole dishes with your mom’s name etched into the glass will be her go-to cookware for neighborhood potluck dinners. Specialty orders of everything from plates to glasses to silverware can be made and you can choose from a wide array of personalization techniques and options.
No matter the occasion gift giving is the bane of the existence of many people. If you’re struggling to come up with the perfect gift, consider one of these great ideas for a personalized present.
And if none of these choices work for your situation, you can always go with the good, old bobblehead.