There’s less than one week left before two of the major gift giving holidays for many Americans – Christmas and Chanukah (or Hanukkah, or Channukah, or Channukkah….). Many of us are still scurrying around, trying to find the perfect gift for the ones that we love. We like to think that we know them best and will give what they want – whether guided by a list or not. Sometimes we’re right. Other times, not so much.
In recent years, there’s been a wonderful invention to help – the gift receipt. Stores are very happy to print out a proof of purchase that hides the price. If the gift isn’t quite right, it gives the recipient the freedom to exchange sizes. If they are feeling brave, they can select an entirely different item. The customer is happy and stores don’t have to worry about questionable returns.
I specifically chose the word “brave” because some gift givers or receivers may see a return as a form of rejection. Someone who cares about you went out of their way to choose this specific sweater/vase/necklace/tie, out of love (or, for many, it was within arm’s reach while in the checkout line). It might be considered rude to return it. This person might expect to see this chachki the next time they come into your home.*
Not only do we want to avoid this situation ourselves, we want to keep our loved ones from being in position as well! I present to you the best option of all: the gift certificate. I’m not talking about a bank gift card that is good ANYWHERE. We do want to show some thought. A store gift certificate says “I’m smart enough to know what you like/need, want to give you something that makes you happy, but not arrogant enough to think I know exactly what expresses who you are.”
One example: a friend who is particular about the fit of their clothes or has a passion for bra shopping. A gift certificate to their favorite clothing or lingerie store might make them happy, or a gift certificate to The Strap Saver, which can enhance any wardrobe of overthings or underthings.
With the holidays just a few days away, this solves the problem for the last-minute shopper from the comfort of your own home. May store gift certificates (like ours!) are delivered to your inbox immediately. (Although our new shopping cart doesn’t offer the prettiest email. If you’d like us to send you something nicer, please contact us with your order number and we’ll email you print-worthy gift certificate with your codes)
Avoid gift receipt guilt. Be thoughtful but don’t attempt to be a mind reader. Give a gift certificate this holiday season!
*I actually don’t subscribe to the idea that we should hang onto gifts out of guilt. I don’t think that’s the intention of the gift giver. We should only surround ourselves with things that are useful or beautiful. It’s a very minimalist philosophy. But, I needed a blog on gift certificates and “gift receipt guilt” sounds snappy, doesn’t it?