Both my parents come from big families (eight and 11!), so Christmas was always a busy day with literally hundreds of people. But when we moved to Texas when I was nine, the holiday suddenly became a quiet day at home with my brother, mom and dad.
Not to be deterred from creating new family memories, my mother came up with so many ways to make the day special. Our new traditions included melted hot chocolate with whole milk while we opened presents followed by a long luxurious brunch with my grandfather’s favorite eggs—scrambled eggs dotted with chopped bacon and cooked in the bacon drippings. My favorite tradition, however, is my mother’s thoughtful gift tags.
Since there was no confusion who bought the gift in our small family, we use the “from” space for a clue to the gift inside: a new pair of boots are from “Nancy Sinatra” and the new Harry Potter book from “He Who Shall Not Be Named.”
Not only does this add some flair to opening presents, it makes wrapping presents more enjoyable too! You can try to stump your loved one with a tough clue, or go with something funny.
Here are 9 other ways to spruce up your gift tags:
A favorite family recipe would make a great tag for a home cook. You could print this on some nice paper, or for a more retro feel, write it on a notecard like your great aunt did at a Tupperware party.
A spring of rosemary or thyme adds a festive scent, and looks great with craft paper or other neutral wrappings.
For a riff on the gift tag clue, sign the tag with an inside joke. A gift for your roommate can be signed by your goofy super, your best friend’s gift is from their favorite wine, and your sibling's gift from a childhood inside joke.
Using a large and a small cookie cutter, you could make salt dough ornaments. Take the bigger size to make the shape of ornament, and use the smaller one to create a cut out. Thread the ornament on your bow, or hang from the gift with some twine.
Add some Hanukkah gelt to a gift tag for some sparkle and a sweet treat. No one is ever sad for some chocolate with their gift.
Use some of the million art projects your kid brings home to make colorful gift tags. If you are handy with scissors you could cut these out in a fun shape, but I would probably stick to tracing a small round glass.
Do you collect stationary, then never remember to actually send the cards you purchased? Just kidding, I don’t do that either. But if I did I would cut off the fun portion on the front and turn it into a gift tag. Bonus: You can write your own fun message on the back so a birthday card becomes a holiday gift tag!