Gift Baskets

A gift for the person who has everything.
By Donna Hamer
December 2008

Cooking Pot: A cooking pot is a great alternative to a basket when making a gift 'basket' to give as a gift. Andrey

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Ever wondered what to give the “person who has everything”? A gift basket could be just the thing. Have you been from shop to shop and thought, “Yes, this is it,” and then discounted the gift because it wasn’t really what you wanted.

My best friend has everything, and when I say everything, I mean everything. She has either been given or purchased every conceivable gadget available in the last five years. She loves to shop. One of her mottos is “Shop ’til you drop, spend ’til the end.” And she lives by that rule!

When it comes to gifts for my friend, she is “the hardest person to buy for.” Oh, did I tell you, she even has a kitchen sink on her car key tag!

It was while looking for a present for my friend that I thought, “What about a gift basket?” I was in a specialized shop, and the sign said “For the Person Who Has Everything,” and the light turned on.

I’m not sure if you are aware, but these days, gift baskets have changed. No longer are they the old-style cane baskets, although there are some very attractive cane baskets available on today’s market. Today, gift baskets come in all shapes and sizes. In fact, it is basically up to your imagination as to what a gift basket should be. You can use old shoes, buckets, calico bags and pot plant holders – in fact, anything that holds what items you purchase to fill the basket with.

Gift baskets are lots of fun to create and very easy to make. Gone are the days of saying, “Oh, I’m not creative enough to make a professional-looking basket.” Anyone can make a professional-looking basket as long as you have some imagination and a willingness to give it a try.

If you are stuck for a present for that person who has everything, then a gift basket is for you!

First decide on a theme – or if you aren’t sure, then write down the interests of the recipient (golf or tennis, shopping, etc.). You could even base it around a coming event. Once you have made the list, work your way through it until you find something that stands out that would fit into your gift basket theme.

Let’s say your friend loves to entertain, and one of her favorite meals is Italian food.

You could choose a selection of baskets for this theme – we’ll use a large pasta bowl as our “basket” or a large cooking pot. Our basket needs to be large enough to hold the goodies that we are going to purchase so that we can then turn this into a professional-looking gift basket. If neither of these ideas appeals to you, let your imagination take over, and choose something that fits into your theme selection.

Next, take yourself down to the local supermarket or deli that specializes in gourmet foods. Set yourself a budget as to what you want to spend, and then go about buying nonperishable items to fill the basket. Speak to the shop attendant to ensure that the items you are purchasing fit into your theme. Buy different colors and types of pasta to give a variety of color and shape to your basket.

Next, take yourself to a department store or kitchenware shop and purchase some really great utensils to go with the other items that you have purchased. You could also add an “easy step-by-step guide” if they need cooking help, or send them to a cooking lesson for something extra.

Once you have gathered these items, it is time to assemble your gift basket.

Depending upon the type of basket you have chosen, you may need to fill the bottom of the basket with some shredded paper, as this will give the basket height. Place the items in the basket to give a layered effect. Layering items at different heights in the basket makes the overall design more pleasing to the eye.

Use small pieces of tape to hold items in place. Next, wrap clear cellophane around the outside of the basket and tie the top with wired ribbon or curling ribbon to match the color scheme of your gift.

To finish off your basket, make a gift tag and tuck a small item into the ribbon around the basket to give a professional look.

Congratulations, you’ve done it – a present for the person who has everything: a gift basket!

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About the author: Donna Hamer is the author and publisher of 101 Gift Basket Ideas. For a free 5-part mini-course on how to create your own “Personalized Gift Baskets,” visit

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