Happy New Year!
The holiday season is the biggest gift-giving time of the year. Family, friends, and business associates give and receive gifts of love and appreciation. When they’re over, what should you do with the purple toe socks with snowflakes or the handmade vase you don’t want or need?
Last month I had the pleasure of appearing on our local ABC news channel's, "7 On Your Side," discussing "regifting." Is it OK or not OK to do? Here is a recap of what was discussed.
Once a person has given you a gift, it belongs to you to do with it as you please. You may keep it, exchange it, throw it away, or give it away. If you would like to re-gift, here are my guidelines fo
avoiding faux pas:
- Re-gift as though you would have chosen that exact same gift for the person in the first place.
- Keep track of your re-giftable items to avoid re-gifting to the same person. Before storage, attach a note to each that lists the full name of the gift-giver, the date, and occasion.
- Never re-gift to anyone who may be remotely connected to the original gift-giver. There’s nothing worse than to see the same gift you gave your friend Susie at Joan’s house.
- Keep all packaging intact as though it had never been opened before. If it looks beat up, don’t give it. Only if it is in reasonable condition, consider giving it to a charitable organization.
- When the gift has been stored for a long time, review its condition. Wipe and clean off any dust.
- Rewrap gift in new paper and ribbon. Do not reuse the old wrapping.
Now that you’ve read what works well, here’s what not to do:
- Do not re-gift partially used gift cards. Go to the store and ask for a new gift card in a whole number amount, not $28.32.
- If the item is hideous, don’t give it to someone else. It should not have been given to you in the first place.
- Do not re-gift handmade items, such as jams and other food items that were not made by you or items with a monogram that display the wrong initials.
- Be careful when re-gifting a box of chocolates, even if it still has its plastic wrapping. Chocolates begin to show signs of drying out within three months.
- Make the gift has no leftover gift cards or tags from the previous gift-giver.
- Only re-gift items from stores that are still in business.
CURIOUS: Do you have a re-gifting horror story to share? Send me yours at Info@AdvancedEtiquette.com I’m compiling them for next year’s holiday season newsletter. The best story will win a copy of my book “Etiquette in Minutes, ” a $12.95 value, and an extra surprise item for use at networking events.
Happy New Year! Here’s wishing you a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2009!
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