A Guide to Picking the Perfect Last Minute Gift

My top tips to picking the perfect last minute gift that screams ‘I put effort and thought into this’ and not ‘opps, I forgot . . . again’.

I’m so last minute. Like, with everything, almost. I think this year was the first time I finished my niece’s advent before November 31st. Although I only finished wrapping them this morning . . .  Since I am so familiar with the last minute life style, I thought I’d share my tips to picking the perfect last minute gift that screams ‘I put effort and thought into this’ and not ‘opps, I forgot . . . again’.

Make It Personal

This is the number one thing to keep in mind when last minute gift shopping! You want our gift to really fit the person and what they enjoy doing without being the super typical gift card. If you still have a week or two, personalized items off Etsy might not be in the cards. To make it feel as personal as that, really dig into their interests.

My dad dives and travels a lot, but he also enjoys techy gifts, so I usually try to find something techy that can be used on his long dive trips. This yer I’m nabbing a Bluetooth smart key holder with Tile capability. He can use it to hold up to 10 keys and can find it anywhere – he can use it to find his phone! 

Make It Unique

Ok, I know this is dangerously similar to ‘Make It Personal’, but sometimes you don’t know the person well enough to tailor it to their needs or hobbies. It might be a Secret Santa for the office, somebody you’ve been seeing lately, or, let’s be real, you could’ve literally waited until the last possible moment to get your gift. 

That last one is totally me – and maybe you?

I think all too often in this situation people err on the side of caution and opt for the scarf/glove combo, a cute mug, or one of those kind of over priced, prepackaged giftables you can grab at TJ Maxx. These aren’t bad gifts. I honestly LOVE getting mugs, but these are better gifts when they are super unique.

Tips for Last Minute Gifts; BySarahShea.com

A scarf or pair of gloves with fun embellishments or from a company that gives back to the community, an adorable mug featuring a quote from a popular tv how (I’m not a regular mom, I’m a cool mom!), and you can totally create your own gift basket for wayyyy cheaper and get a cooler variety of products.

Troll local stores, tiny antique shops, and Etsy year round to have an amazing stash of go-to last-minute gifts. This is legit my secret weapon. I troll sales at my favorite stores and websites for quirky, unique stoking stuffer style items and a few stand alone presents and I keep them in a footlocker. This totally drives Cody crazy but it’s saved me tons of times!

White elephant gift exchange? No problem! Grab that kitschy little Shakespeare bobble head with the hipster clothes you found at that art museum.

Forget your girlfriend’s birthday and you two are getting together in 15? HA! You got this! You can put together a fun little grab bag in less than 10.

Stuff It Full

This tip is great for those you know SUPER well. Think besties, significant others, parents you want to spoil . . .

Buy something they actually need like a new wallet, a pair of fuzzy slippers, jeans, or a cute jacket and stuff it full with other presents like gift cards to Steam or their favorite stores, tickets to concert or show, cute notes, and photos of the two of you.

The best part of this is that you can tailor it to any budget! 

When all else fails  . . . 

Subscription boxes always wow. You can pick how many months they get it for and they have subscription boxes tailored to every single interest. They are amazing gifts to give when you have zero gifts on hand and zero time to get one. 

I like subscription boxes for a last minute gift because, if the box fits them and their personality, it feels just as thoughtful as if you’d curated a box for them.

Some of my personal favorites are RocksBox for jewelry, Sephora Play! for makeup, and Butcher Box for the home chefs. If you aren’t sure what would be a great box, check out My Subscription Addiction for tons of ideas. 

Last Minute Gift Must

There aren’t that many guidelines when figuring out a last minute gift, and I could totally write a long book about why time isn’t a defining factor for a gift, but it wouldn’t matter if you forgot this one important, cannot forget, MUST for a last minute gift :: be thoughtful.

If they love sci-fi an d video games and you show up with the latest Nicholas Sparks movie and a candy they hate, it’s going to be a flop. You can put so much effort into a gift that isn’t in line with their interests and it won’t matter.

Being thoughtful is the most important thing in gift giving and taking into account the receiver’s interest is honestly the difference between nailing your gift – last minute or not.

Still not sure?

You can follow my blog, or follow me on Twitter, to get the latest scoop on my Last Minute Gift List series I’m doing this Blogmas! 

I’ll be tackling last minute gifts for him, makeup lovers, long distance friends, and more! 

What’s your favorite last minute gift? Drop a comment; I’m always looking for new ideas. 

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