Monday, December 12, 2011

Gift Guide: Pop Partiers

No matter which holiday you celebrate--Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Solstice, or Festivus (for the rest of us!)--you're more than likely going to be invited to someone's home at some point this season. It's pretty much inevitable. If you were raised by my mother, this invitation means you will need to bring a "hostess gift" with you.

Ah, the hostess gift (or host gift, depending)! That lovely little gesture that shows the party-giver you appreciate their hospitality. This isn't supposed to be anything huge, just a bottle of wine or a tin of cookies, or something along those lines. Basically, they're opening their home up to you, so you bring something for the home to say, "Thanks for having me!"

These things stress me out more than you can imagine. I don't want to bring the same thing everyone else is bringing (like the New Year's Eve party where everyone brought a bottle of champagne, and we ended up with a dozen open bottles and no choice but to drink them or toss them out--and it was one bottle to a person! That's a New Year's Day I'd like to forget). I don't want to bring something inappropriate, either, but I also don't always know the home's color scheme or decor theme. Also, I don't want to go too "over the top" size-wise...oh, I hate shopping for hostess gifts. I adore giving them, but I hate, loathe, and absolutely despise selecting them.

So, this year, I've decided to think out of the box. Most of my friends are into pop culture--Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, etc--so I thought I'd see if I could dig up some fan-themed spins on classic gifts, just to spice things up a bit.

First up, the old standard: a bottle of wine...

Photo Credit: House of Kitty Blog
...Hello Kitty wine, that is! How precious are those bottles?! The line consists of four wines: Angel (white Pinot Nero), Devil (red Pinot Nero), Sweet Pink (sparkling white), and Brut Rose (sparkling deep rose). I know nothing about wine, other than I occasionally like to drink it, so I clicked on a couple of reviews to see how this fared. The good news is, it's cute as heck, and reasonable priced ($18.99-$30.99, The bad news's just okay. It doesn't suck, but it's not fantastic. It's really pretty in the glass, and, according to one site, would be great for a bachelorette toast, but it's nothing really special to drink. However, if you're going for a novelty gift for a non-afficianado (such as myself), this is a solid option.

Next: cookie cutters...

Photo Credit: Williams-Sonoma
...are anything but cookie cutter when they're Star Wars cookie cutters! The little darlings are from Williams-Sonoma, and feature a cutting-edge (ha! *sorry*) spring-loaded design for ease in use. Four styles are included: Yoda, Boba Fett, Darth Vader, and Storm Trooper. $19.99, Williams-Sonoma.

*UPDATE! A vehicle collection is also available for only $9.99! Millenium Falcon, TIE-Fighter, X-wing Fighter and Death Star are all included!

Another standard: decorative soaps...

Photo Credit: Digitalsoaps
...takes on a tech saavy vibe when it's shaped like a Portal Companion Cube! Better yet, it smells like Mountain Dew! What more could a gamer want? Oh, yeah, it's also handmade, vegan, and completely adorable. $22.99, Digitalsoaps.

Of course, you could always bring barware...

Photo Credit: ThinkGeek this beautiful stein, inspired by The Hobbit. Choose from two pub designs (pictured pint glasses available, as well), etched into the glass so it will last through all the wear-and-tear you can bring (except breaking. It is glass, after all). $29.99, ThinkGeek.

Lastly, you could always bring something for the home. A throw pillow, perhaps...

Photo Credit: WBShop
...straight from the Hufflepuff common room! (Pottermore tells me that we Hufflepuffs are real big on throw pillows...) This gorgeous pillow is woven--not screenprinted!--with the Hogwarts School crest, and is an official Harry Potter product, direct from the Warner Bros. store. 18" by 18". $29.95, wbshop.

Hopefully, this helped, and the next time you're rockin' around the Chrismakahwanzoltice Pole, you'll be on the hostess' (or host's) nice list.

1 comment:

  1. the man's comment re: the portal companion cube soap - "is that how they're trying to make gamers bathe? make it like the cube and scent it like mountain dew?"

    nothing else need be said.


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