Gosh…Christmas already!  Where has the year gone? I thought I would share this post I have written for Wayfair Australia – I thought it was appropriate given the season!

Christmas is a time for giving (and receiving).  For many it can be a time of stress defined by a fear of overspending, not having the first clue of what to buy and disappointment on the face of the receiver. Now, let’s look at it from another perspective.  There is nothing sweeter than receiving a gift that is a little bit luxurious, a little bit unexpected and completely you!  This is the winning combination that defines the art of gift giving and can be achieved with a little bit of thought and research.  You have also got to be organised.  It obviously helps if you know what the person is into and in this case, a dream home enthusiast throws up a plethora of options. Here are a few pointers that will help you nail the art of gift giving each and every time.

Making a List and Checking it Twice

Start with a budget and then list some home related options that cover the things that he or she may like.  Family….friends….this system can be applied across the board.  Create an excel spreadsheet with your gift receiver’s name/s listed in column one and across the top, add  individual fields for the approximate amount you wish to spend, ideas, ‘go to’ shops and online stores and a final column to indicate ‘task completed’.  It  may sound a little clinical but is a great strategy for buying en masse and keeping track of where you are at.

Brainstorm Your Ideas

Now for the fun bit; the brainstorm of ideas.  Sit down with a pad, pen and a cup of coffee (or wine) and jot down your thoughts. If it helps, put yourself in your receiver’s shoes and visualise their home and what they might need or like. After you are done, file your top ideas in your spreadsheet.

Here are  few of my top five ideas to get you started:

Print Perfect

You can never have too many coffee table books.  If there person is into art, photography, fashion or architecture you will have no shortage of options but if buying online, be mindful of the shipping costs. There is nothing more beautiful than a stack of books in hard covers.  I personally love the Adore Book (www.adoremagazine.com) that was published this year as an extension to its monthly online publication – it has a gorgeous fuchsia and gold foil cover that looks very glamorous on any surface.

Fresh is Best

A collection of potted succulents, cacti, orchids or a gorgeous  desert rose, frangipani or bougainvillea also make stunning gifts for the home and garden.  Just be mindful that whatever plant you are giving is appropriate to the lifestyle and location of the person who will need to look after it.  You want it to live and you want it to be loved.  Your local nursery is the best place to go if you know the person is interested in gardening and has

The Table is Set

The dining table is a great source of inspiration  when it comes to nailing the perfect gift.  You can never have too many table napkins, napkin rings, table mats or candelabras.  Be generous in your quantities when it comes to dining settings.  Don’t buy a matching pair, buy eight – then you will outfit the table for the family or a dinner party. Glassware is also another no-brainer that will be well received for the entertainers out there.  Also try and buy something a little bit more special than you would buy yourself – so it feels like a treat or luxury for the receiver.  As a dream home enthusiast they probably have all these basics but it gives them another styling or theme option when it comes to colours, textures.

Softly, Softly

Most homemakers have a love affair with soft furnishings.  There is nothing more effective at reviving a living area or adding comfort to a bedroom.  Cushion covers and throws make the ideal gift and come in an endless variety of options and price points.  Again, go for something a little bit special and try to opt for tones that would suit the person’s interior decor.

Great Things Come in Small Packages

Beautiful handmade soap and luxury candles will always hit the right note with dream home enthusiasts.  These people are all about attention to detail and it is thew little things like fragrance that counts when it comes to making a house a home.

Have a happy Xmas ‘yule


About Pip Miller, Pip Miller PR

Pip Miller is a publicist, content producer and stylist in her home town of Cairns.  She also happens to be a mum of five children ranging in age from six to 19.  Her business, Pip Miller PR was established in 1994 and will celebrate its 21st anniversary in June.  With experience comes understanding and Pip is adept in the art of bringing a story to life, along with the importance of good quality photographs and imagery.

This knowledge has also helped nurture a styling career that began almost 30 years ago when she cut her teeth in the world of media  as a cadet journalist with Australian Consolidated Press.