For anyone who has ever hosted an event, you know the time, resources, and often stress required to pull off a gathering of family and friends. Hosts deserve thoughtful gifts that reflect just how much we appreciate them! I’ve curated a list of unique and creative gifts to give the consummate party-throwers in our lives.
Curated boxes are all the rage. They are all about creating a cohesive experience, with every item contributing to a larger theme. The themes can be as broad as treat yourself to as niche as Morrocan tea time. It’s a semi-DIY way to create a thoughtful gift, without the DIY hours.
Morrocan Tea Time
Few things warm the soul and body like tea. Sadia Khawaja Aboutalib, friend and career creative, curated and gifted these gorgeous tea-time boxes with custom art during Ramadan. She shared the list of items she curated, and they are all fabulous finds:
- Word Market supplied the glasses and baklava (hidden under the crinkle paper)
- Trader Joes provided the Moroccan Tea
- Candy Direct shipped her the sugar and honey sticks
- Dates packaged by Joolis Dates
- Her garden grew the mint leaves (so sweet!)
A Fruitful Gift
I love a good pun, so this “fruitful” themed gift box simply delighted me. The gifts inside included comfort items to keep friends healthy and a Mexican fruit cup (vasos de fruta, in Spanish) kit. The customized oven mitt and cutting board just took everything to the next level! Natasha Ahsan Baig a friend who is an amazing event designer created these fruitful boxes for Ramadan. She shared that the boxes were purchased at Ikea and the compartments were created with vented produce baskets. Nothing is more delightful than a simple concept beautifully presented.
In The Mood For Oud?
Scents are always a safe bet when it comes to gifts. But before you reach for your go-to candle brand, consider the unique gift of oud. Oud (agarwood, aloe wood, eagle wood, gaharu) is formed in a tropical evergreen tree called Agar tree (Aquilaria species) which is believed to have originated from South East Asia. It has a distinctly sweet, woody smell. Agarwood is highly revered in Hinduism, Chinese Folk Religion, and Islam. In Bengali, we call it agar gach. Below are two oud products I was gifted. I love supporting Muslim-owned small businesses with great products.
I recently stumbled upon Oudimentary. Their entire brand shouts: we are the connoisseur of oud! And they want you to up your oud competency, too. Check out their Oud 101 resources. What I learned? Burning actual wood and resin is a luxury experience. And how you burn it makes a difference. The charcoal method is the traditional method for burning oud. Lastly, I learned that people get as geeky about oud quality and varieties as they do coffee and wine. I repackaged the items I received into an oud starter kit. The luxe black box is from Amazon (link below).
Also in the gift box, Ambre D’hiver Oud Oil. Just a trace of oil goes a long way. The smell of oud oil is pure nostalgia for me, but can sometimes smell overpowering. But this mix is very subtle and mellows into a woodsy sweet scent. Below are all the items in this box:
Ambre D’hiver Oud Oil
Cambodiya Oud Wood
Black Gift Box from Amazon ($10)
Dukhni is another great brand to gift. Their variety pack can be purchased for under $20. As soon as I opened the box, a sweet floral smell filled the air. Bakhoor is a woodchip that has been submerged in perfumed oil and mixed with other natural ingredients such as resin, sandalwood essential oils among others. Warming bakhoor via tea light is a cost-effective and quick heating method. This kit came with 22 bakhoor wood chips and a lovely rainbow-themed burner.
Dukhni Oud Bakhoor Variety Box & Rainbow Exotic Burner
Wishing you a season of safe in-person events!
Peace & Salam,