Hi y’all,

The Tangled Tomato captures stories on hospitality, style, and design. She is currently based in Washington, DC.

Year-round hostess gifts under $15

Year-round hostess gifts under $15

Image Source:     These Four Walls

Image Source: These Four Walls

My love language is not gifts. I mean, I love receiving them, and I love giving them, but what I really love is helping other people determine what gift to give. It’s all a strategy game - What is the recipient like? What is the occasion? What is your budget? I recommend collecting a few small pieces that make sense as a package, and I always take the opportunity to share some of my favorite makers and creatives.

So what about hostess gifts? I prefer to just have these on hand at all times, tucked under my bed, so that whether I am running to a dinner party or hopping on a plane, I can have a small token of appreciation join me on my journey. Though the holidays are the most popular time to give hostess gifts, it is also the most practical time to shop for them. There are so many great sales right now, and you will be grateful that you stocked up in advance. Here are a few recommendations that you can have on hand to mix and match for a perfect hostess gift!

Image Source: Brooklyn Candle Studio

Image Source: Brooklyn Candle Studio

During Black Friday last year, I picked up a set of travel candles from Brooklyn Candle Studio - each set comes with four candles, and you can individually select fragrances for each candle. The candle is the perfect size for throwing into my suitcase if I’m going to be staying with a friend in another city! I’ll wrap it in a cute muslin bag (like these) and leave a note. PS - Brooklyn Candle Studio has 10% off right now :)

Image Source: Smith Tea Maker

Image Source: Smith Tea Maker

Smith Tea makes a variety pack that I swear by - their teas are so unique and well-packaged, and this variety pack comes with 12 different tea flavors that are great to throw in with the travel candle or with a soap. Plus, the box is super cute, so once you’ve given away all of your tea bags, you still have a little something to call your own.

Image Source: Usual Wines

Image Source: Usual Wines

Sure, you could bring a full bottle of wine, but these mini wine bottles from USUAL Wines are also just really cool. Each bottle is a generous pour, and when you order a pack of 6 or 12, you can mix and match between rosé and red. I’d also recommend those little La Marca Champagne bottles, which you can find at Whole Foods - I like to tie a ribbon around the top and attach a note, but honestly, these wine bottles can surely hold their own.

Image Source: Formulary 55

Image Source: Formulary 55

Formulary 55 has a lot of gorgeous soaps in scents like Aloe & Mint, Balsam & Fir, and Gardenia Blossoms. These are my all time favorite soaps, and I have to keep myself from purchasing too many whenever I see them in a store! They offer a guest bar size for $5 and a full size for $10, and the holiday scents are on sale currently. They also offer a soap of the month subscription if you are really feeling fancy!

claudia-pearson-city-tea-towels-c.jpg

I collect tea towels, I won’t deny it. Just like stationery, it feels like something small I can pick up on my travels that will remind me of a place, while also being something that I can really put it to use in my home. I love these ones by Claudia Pearson, and they would pair so well with two wooden spoons and a ribbon. West Elm sells these, or ones very similar, in store, so stop by your local store to see what their offering is!

DC folks, where is your favorite place to shop for gifts?

Colorado: Trip Recap

Winter Cocktails For When You Are Still Feeling Festive AF

Winter Cocktails For When You Are Still Feeling Festive AF