5 Ways to Shop For Thoughtful Gifts

5 Ways to Shop For Thoughtful Gifts | Thoughtfully Handmade

Have trouble getting the perfect gift? This blog post is for you! With the holiday season coming up, we're starting to think about buying presents. Plus, there's always a birthday or another occasion to get someone a gift!

But, gift-giving gets hard sometimes, especially if you want to get them something thoughtful and personal. That's why I'm sharing all of my gift-giving secrets. Keep scrolling to uncover them!

Make a gift tracker

Raise your hand if you ever forget if you've gotten someone's gift yet. I certainly have! That's why I created a gift tracker on Notion to keep track of which gifts I've bought and which ones I still need to get. I include a budget as well so I can keep track of how much I'm spending.

It doesn't have to be on Notion either. A simple list that you keep in a notebook is good too! I'll share a screenshot of my gift tracker below so you can get a rough idea of how you can make yours.

Gift Guide Tracker | 5 Ways to Shop For Thoughtful Gifts | Thoughtfully Handmade

I also use my tracker to jot down random gift ideas when I'm doing other things because inspiration hits me at weird times. I think this is the best way to get someone a truly personal gift.

For example, your mom is window shopping with you, and she tells you that she likes something but doesn't end up buying it. Well, if you write it down and get it for her later, your mom will definitely be impressed!

Shop handmade

I've written previously about the benefits of buying handmade. It's the best way to give super unique presents that are customized to the recipient!

For example, slipping a gift card inside a custom handcrafted birthday card is much more personal than doing the same with a Hallmark card. The recipient knows that a person made their gift as opposed to a machine.

We all know how awkward it is when you get two of the same thing. It's even more embarrassing when you give the same gift as someone else. You avoid this situation entirely when you shop from handmade vendors because no one else will do it precisely the same way.

For instance, my cards are entirely different from my friend's because we apply different methods: I combine scrapbooking and watercolour while she uses embroidery and origami. So, even though we both call ourselves handmade cardmakers, we make entirely distinct products!

Shop local

Like buying from handmade artisans, I've explained why you should shop local in my blog before. The same argument from above applies!

Since you're sourcing locally, there's less of a chance for giving a repeat gift while ensuring that you can find a thoughtful present that suits the recipient's personality. I always get the most incredible finds at nearby thrift stores, consignment shops and pop-up markets!

What I love most about shopping local is getting to learn the story behind the business and product. It makes the item even more special! When so much effort and care are put into the product, the gift becomes thoughtful even if it's not 100% suited to the recipient's interests.

Get them something useful

For some reason, the longer you know someone, the harder it is to get them a gift. I think it's because I try to give something different for each occasion, which becomes more challenging the more times you gift something! I mean, you gotta run out of ideas at some point, right?

My foolproof trick to giving a present the recipient will love and appreciate is to give them something they find valuable. I don't mean valuable in money but valuable in usefulness. One of my favourite gifts I've received is a pair of fuzzy socks because my feet get super cold in the winter.

This is where the gift tracker comes in handy! If you note when they say "I really need..." or "I keep forgetting to get..." it'll make your job easier. Of course, something doesn't always have to be practical to be helpful. For example, I have a bunch of stickers on my water bottle. Do I need more? Maybe not. Would I be thrilled if someone gave me cute stickers that match my other stickers? Yes! So, when in doubt, get them something they need.

Thrift your gift

Honestly, don't be afraid to re-gift! Sometimes, you get a gift that you like but already have something similar, or you just can't use it. That's okay! Personally, I'd rather the item goes to someone who will appreciate it than have it sit in a closet untouched for years.

Also, I encourage you to look for gifts from thrift stores, yard sales and garage sales! You never know what incredible treasures you can find. If the person you're shopping for loves vintage, I'd highly recommend this option!


So, those are my 5 tips to gift more thoughtfully. Did you like them? Do you have any suggestions to add that I missed? Let me know by commenting below!

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