Over the weekend I went to our friends’ dinner party. I asked what they wanted us to bring to which they replied ‘just your lovely selves’. I took this as a massive compliment, obviously, but certainly didn’t want to go empty-handed. The thing was, we did not have the budget for a big gift, but I did want our host to know that we very much appreciated their invite – tricky, huh?
Tea towels have been family heirlooms and been passed down and given as gifts since the 18th century and, although we may think of it as being a humble gift, there is rarely anyone you couldn’t buy a tea towel for because, let’s face it, they are massively useful.
So I put together this - our first ever blog - to gather ideas about gifts for a host/hostess and how you could wrap them in a tea towel to make even the smallest of gifts look special.
If you create some ideas of your own and wrap them, we’d love to see - tag us on instagram @MollyMacLiving
We all love flowers and I like the fabulous ones from the upmarket florist up the road from my house. Honestly, they are gorgeous, but rarely can I stretch to that so I buy them from cheaper side-of-the-road stand or the garage or the supermarket where they are not packaged. We have a garden so I can add a bit of greenery from there and then, instead of using cellophane, I wrap them in a tea towel and tie with anything I happen to have lying around.
This works well if you are good at baking. Though you can always cheat and nip to the market and pretend you made it! Wrap up your newly-made bread or banana cake in a tea towel to keep it fresh and warm and give for your hosts to enjoy. All the better if you do actually have soda bread to hand.
If you fancy giving a book you have enjoyed, how about this wrapping? I used the blue-and-white fish tea towel and a little lavender to add as a trim. I wrapped it just like I would have wrapped any parcel and then tied with some spare ribbon. It looked so sweet. I’d love to get that gift myself as I always love having a book to read and those recommended by friends are often the best ones.
That old favourite: the bottle of wine. How thoughtful does this look? And it certainly makes that bottle of wine look much more of a gift than the obligatory bottle that - if you have any manners - you would take to any party. Even if it has been sitting in the wine rack for ages and you cannot quite remember where it came from, this really does make it look adorable. Actually – make sure it wasn’t given to you by them! Could be embarrassing!
I’m a big fan of plants and although I live in an old house which isn’t that light I do really try to keep as many plants alive as I can. Like many people, even if you are not very green-fingered, a few spider plants that give you babies with only the smallest amount of care can look really wonderful when wrapped up in a tea towel - even if this is quite a humble gift.
I used the Good Luck in your New Home tea towel which seemed to me absolutely perfect for a housewarming event or for new neighbours.
I wrapped a very ordinary candle which I bought on special offer at a local garden centre in a tea towel here as if it were a cracker, tying it at both ends. It looks really sweet. Even better if it is a scented one!
Last but not least, there is always the bundle. This bundle contains artisan breads which I picked up at a local market, but you could wrap lots of things this way – fruit from a roadside stand or vegetables from your allotment…I know we all want an allotment, but who seriously has the time? Haha! Well, maybe you grow beans or peas on your balcony and you could wrap them this way too?
If you create some ideas of your own and wrap them, we’d love to see - tag us on instagram or twitter @MollyMacLiving