Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hostess Gifts with a French Flair

Europeans love their color!  They're not afraid to accent their kitchens with bright colors and fun designs.  So for the next hostess gift you find yourself giving, look to the French for inspiration.  Here are my top five favorite hostess gift ideas.

1.  A Chic Apron - Our Cuistot Aprons are durable, well constructed cotton, and feel as good on as they look on the hook.  If your hostess loves to bake or cook, she'd love a poppy colored apron.  Shown above in green and black.  Also available in select other colors and prints.  $70 each.

2.  Pretty Dishtowels - We all have dishtowels in our kitchen, but think back to the last time you actually treated yourself to some new, pretty designed towels.  Chances are your hostess hasn't either.  Try the Cuistot Green Jacquard Dishcloth, $17 (Shown above left) in green, fuschia, or black.

3.  Fancy Soap - Treat your hostess to some gourmet, made in France dish soap.  This little Soap and Brush Block, $27, comes complete with the soap and built in bristles.  (Shown on the chair, above) Created by Aquamanile and made by Marius Fabre, one of the last savonneries de Marseille that still uses the coulee method, a traditional manufacturing technique that guarantees the soap's purity and quality. 

4. Candles - visiting your hostess for a very short time or don't know her very well?  Candles are an excellent gift.  They're simple, chic, and inexpensive.  If you don't know your host's candle scent preference opt for a fun color or design in a scentless candle.  These pretties above, clockwise from top center, Small Cylindrical Candle, $10 each, MMI Pink Bird Candle, $21, and Malibu Kiwi Candle, $7 each.

5.  If you're looking for a hostess gift that is personable and something to be used and treasured often, look to European breakfast cups.  These large coffee cups are perfect for sipping coffee with the morning paper or on the back porch during a summer evening.  Best yet?  They come in beautiful gift boxes so all you have to do is pick up and go.  One of my favorite breakfast cups are from the Tanganyika collection (shown above).  Breakfast Cup Gift Set of Two, $58. 

Regardless of what hostess gift you select, don't forget that it's the thought that counts and your hostess will be flattered that you thought of her.

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