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Party Time: 9 Affordable and Unique Host and Hostess Gifts

“Please, don’t bring anything.” We’ve all been there: You’ve been invited to a party and you’re not bringing a dish to share. Rather than show up empty-handed, you want to bring the host or hostess a little something – but you’re not sure what. Enjoy these affordable and unique hosts and hostess gifts that will put a smile on their faces without breaking the bank.


While it may be true that this gift isn’t particularly unique, it’s a gift-giving standby for a reason. The host or hostess can pop the cork now or stow it away to savor later. To help your wine stand out as a truly unique gift, scoop up a bottle that supports a cause like ONEHOPE wines or picks up a bottle from a local vineyard.


There’s nothing like a pop of color to brighten someone’s day. Despite their reputation, flowers don’t have to be expensive. Depending on where you live, you might even be able to cut some stems from your own garden and put together a mixed bouquet with a little parchment paper and twine for an extra personalized touch. If you’re not blessed with year-round sunshine, opt for seasonal flowers or greenery and shop smarter. Your local grocer likely sells the same bouquet at a fraction of the cost as a fancy florist.


If you want to take a cue from nature, but you’re looking for a gift that is equal parts affordable and unique, go for the green with a plant instead of flowers. Bring over a set of basil seedlings that you started from seed, or select something from the store. All plants are lovely, but choosing an herb or aloe makes for a gift that is as unique as it is practical.


Another affordable and unique gift idea is to share your favorite seasonings. Maybe there is a rub that makes any meat tender and juicy. Perhaps it’s a marinade that works as well for main dishes as it does for vegetable sides. Bonus points if you share a favorite recipe with the host or hostess. What a great excuse to be invited back to the party!

Infused Oil

Olive oil has come a long way since its Rachael Ray EVOO days. While it still goes by its initials, it’s not just the olive that matters anymore when it comes to this oil. Infused olive oils are gaining popularity and for good reason. They add a unique twist to everything – from salad to pasta. If you are feeling crafty, you can create a blend yourself by adding herbs and giving your oil a little time. If your party is more last minute, check your neighborhood for local olive oil shops.


The host and hostess thought of everything. Except maybe those late-night cravings. Whether Aunt Mary has overstayed her welcome or the game headed into double overtime, it’s possible the party has stretched out longer than planned. Showing up with something savory like an assortment of nuts can be enjoyed the day of the party or later on.


Looking to make a habit out of spending time with the host and hostess? Bringing a game is the perfect affordable and unique way to do just that. Whether it is a go-to game like Apples to Apples that you know the host doesn’t have, or it is a more uncommon game like Mancala, you’re sure to put a smile on the hostess’s face with this gift.

Coffee and Tea

Resist the temptation to bring your favorite if you know what the host and hostess drink. Here’s why. While they may very well plan on serving coffee and tea after the meal, it is an equally thoughtful gift to offer something they can enjoy the next morning. Local tea shops can recommend the perfect breakfast blend or gift some of their favorite java.


Whether homemade or store-bought, this affordable and unique gift scores big in the thoughtful column. With great parties come great cleaning responsibilities. When the host and hostess are tidying up the next day, breakfast is already taken care of with this gift. And scones aren’t the only option – whip up your famous banana bread or blueberry muffins. Swing by the bakery and peruse the case if you aren’t a baker. No matter what you bring, this gift is a perfect way to make their morning easier.
The next time you’re invited to a party and the host or hostess says they have everything covered, don’t panic. These affordable and unique gift ideas are perfect for every gift giver. From homemade or local options to convenient or traditional ideas, pick from this list and you’re all set for your next party.
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