I'm a big fan of gift baskets - both giving and receiving them. When done well, I don't think there are many gifts I enjoy opening more. I love giving them because they lend themselves to so many creative possibilities. I usually decide on a particular theme for my basket then let inspiration guide me from there. Most of the time my baskets are a mix of homemade gifts, second hand treasures, and the odd new purchase just to round things out. I love the fact that I can put together a really great gift basket at just a tiny fraction of the cost of a store bought one, and usually the quality is far better. It also allows me to personalize it specifically for the person I'm giving it to, which you can't do with an off-the-shelf basket!
Although I've been giving gift baskets for many years, it didn't occur to me until now that I could make the baskets my husband gives to his clients. He's a realtor and giving your clients a gift is standard practice for his industry. He had been buying gift baskets at a neighbourhood store, and while they were nicely done up and he was supporting a locally owned business, there wasn't really a lot in there for the price he was paying. So I decided to take a shot at it myself.
In this case, I didn't know much about the couple I was making the basket for, except that they were a young couple that had just moved into a really cool old (century plus) home. I decided to go with a "clean kitchen" theme, with items that almost anyone would find useful. My husband was pretty sure the kitchen was blue and white so I tried to incorporate those colours as well.
Here's everything I put in the basket:
For the "basket" itself I used a tin pail. I like to use a container that can be easily recycled or repurposed and I love these tin pails for their versatility. They can be put to use in almost any room of the house - for holding washcloths in the bathroom, potted plants in the living room, stationery supplies in the office, dinky cars in a kids' room...endless possibilities!
To fill the pail:
-2 knitted dishcloths
-fridge memo pad (not quite in keeping with the "clean" theme but I thought it was a cute little extra!)
-cute kitchen scrub brushes in a colour to match their kitchen
-homemade herbal degreaser in a spray bottle (recipe in The Naturally Clean Home) and lemon scouring powder (made by mixing baking soda with a few drops of lemon essential oil)
The finished product looked like this:
I was quite pleased with the results and I had lots of fun with this "theme". It would be perfect for a bridal shower as well. The total cost was about half of what my hubby usually spends for a gift basket and I think it turned out a lot nicer, too!