hostess gifts

Plenty of invites and so many bottles of wine are endlessly toted to party after party. It’s time to be more thoughtful with your choices of gifts you bring to the hostess.  As the style contributor for Marie Osmond's show, I shared a variety of choices that satisfy everything from a host with a sweet tooth to a green thumb.


Let the host have a reprieve from the kitchen. Bring the hors d’oeuvres so friends and family can have a chance to socialize before sitting down to the main meal.  Or if it’s a causal gathering watching football or playing board games, this mix of savory and sweet options from Hickory Farms satisfies everyone’s snacking needs. $25-65

The host has enough to deal with after the party cleaning up so make the next morning easy by filling a basket with gourmet goodies to take care of breakfast. If you’re spending the night, be sure to get up and make the host breakfast as an extra bonus.

Gourmet goodies and basket all from HomeGoods, $30

Sure you could bring wine, but if your host is a dog lover, why not bring treats for their animals. Make sure it’s a healthy treat and add a dog toy or canister to hold the treats.

Dog treats from

Does your friend have a green thumb? Everything he or she touches just grows with abundance?  Or perhaps a friend who would like to do some planting? Give them a garden they can grow inside or enjoy when the weather turns warmer.

Herb garden, butterfly habitat and bonsai trees from

Sweet tooth? Skip baking and bring the host some our her favorite candy and instead of wrapping it up put it into lacquer boxes that she can place on a coffee table or once empty use for jewelry. Going to home with kids then bring along Nestle holiday boxes with candy inside and trivia to keep them occupied.

Nestle holiday candy and lacquer boxes from Home Goods

The host has enough to take care of without taking out the camera and snapping lots of photos. Take the pressure off him or her and offer to take all the photos and instantly share with all the guests using the new free app from Familiar.

Free photo app from

Share one of your favorite recipes with the host and wrap it up in a new apron or pot holder, napkins and wooden spoon.  I’m a fan of sharing a carrot soufflé recipe that I make every holiday.

Apron, napkins, pot holders from

Carrot Soufflé recipe

A delicious side dish, dessert or breakfast!


1-lb. cooked carrots

   (I use a 1-lb. bag of baby carrots)

3 eggs beaten

½ cup sugar

½ cup melted butter

2 tablespoons flour

1 cup milk

1/3 teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon baking powder

Preheat oven at 350 degrees.

Cook carrots and mash them. 

Put mashed carrots into a blender and add milk. Blend.

         Mix all other ingredients together in a bowl. Then add mixed ingredients into blender. Blend again.

Pour into a butter greased round soufflé/casserole dish or small ramekins for individual servings. 

Bake for 45 minutes to an hour at 350°.

It will rise like a soufflé and get slightly brown on top.



I’m a big fan of vintage shopping and antiquing and had been making plans to shop the famed Rose Bowl in Pasadena for months when lo and behold my hair stylist friend extraordinaire, Theodore Leaf  ( and I learned that Eddie Ross ( was coming to town to lead a group through the masses of flea market finds.  We were both fans of Eddie’s work on Bravo’s Top Design and I’m always a fan of a preppy guy. So we signed up for the “walk along.”  There were about 15 of us and with coffee in hand and my tote bag empty and ready to fill with negotiated bargains we headed off into the rows of booths and tables filled with silverware, glassware, fabrics, knick-knacks and furniture.  Eddie would stop at a variety of outdoor booths and give the lo down on how to re-do furniture to update it, give advice on how to determine the worth of an object and what’s good stuff from the “trash.”  Let’s be honest it shouldn’t all be someone’s trash is another’s treasure, some of it is just junk.  Theodore, his boyfriend Matt and I had so much fun—how could we not?  A warm, sunny day, Eddie and his main man Jaithan to escort us through the finds of The Rose Bowl plus he gave us some nifty ideas on hostess gifts and table settings. It was a relaxed atmosphere and we met many other gals and guys to socialize with along the way. Eddie suggested and Theodore literally translated into a hostess gift a small jar of olives with the antique fork and personalized ribbon for me the next time he came to dinner. I added my version of a spoon with a colorful ribbon and lavendar honey. Anything can work just by taking antique silverware and pair with cheese, olives, jam, or chocolate sauce and tie with a ribbon and small note. I took his suggestions and created my own small, but charming gifts for my next dinner outings at friends’ homes. Besides, silverware and vintage cloth napkins I also bargained for this camel saddle (walked away only paying $25) that with new leather became a cool footrest in my living room.
© 2015 Alison Deyette  |  Website by Medium