How to Make a Thoughtful Thanksgiving Gift Basket

How to make a thoughtful Thanksgiving gift basket


Thanksgiving is the perfect time of year for giving a gift basket. There are so many things to be thankful for in our lives, and taking the time out of our day to acknowledge those thanks doesn’t take a whole lot of effort. Even the smallest gesture can go a long way.

Creating a thoughtful Thanksgiving gift basket starts with a colorful palette that showcases autumn colors. Choose items from the season, or even those that give a special meaning to this time of year in your own life. Sharing the emotion behind Thanksgiving can also be a way to help your children understand and appreciate what they’re thankful for.

Thanksgiving color palette

As much as the days around Thanksgiving can feel sad and dreary, with hot summer days gone and a cold winter ahead, many of the colors associated with this time of year help us focus on comfort and security.

Here’s a list of colors you can incorporate into your Thanksgiving gift basket to showcase this time of year, when thanks-giving and preparation for snow can bring us closer together:

  • Vibrant oranges remind us of pumpkin pie, sweet potatoes, and yummy carrots. They can also remind us of Halloween and the fun we have on holidays with family and friends.
  • Pale greens resemble the fields where crops are grown to feed us through the winter.
  • Golden yellows are the color of corn when it’s harvested, as well as wheat.
  • Soft browns mirror the dirt where we planted our crops, as well as the brown feathers on the turkey we’ll eat as part of Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Deep reds can be found in the leaves that fall with each passing day as we approach winter.

You aren’t limited to these colors when putting together a gift basket for Thanksgiving. Take them as inspiration instead.

Thanksgiving elements to incorporate

Along with the many rich colors we associate with Thanksgiving come the objects that characterize this time of year as well. Here are some unique Thanksgiving elements you can incorporate into your thoughtful Thanksgiving gift basket:

  • Turkey or pumpkin themed items
  • Stuffed vegetable plushies
  • Rain coat
  • Homemade sweater
  • Canning jars
  • Leaf cookie cutters
  • Herbs and spices

Remember that the idea of Thanksgiving is similar to Christmas: while we might have wealth at our fingertips, sometimes less is more. It’s the thought that will go further than any laundry list of Thanksgiving elements in your gift basket.

How will you approach Thanksgiving with your gift basket

The traditional approach to a Thanksgiving gift basket might require a turkey, some stuffing, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, and gravy. But how can you approach Thanksgiving to give your gift basket a more thoughtful touch?

Well, you might have friends and family who are food sensitive. This is a wonderful opportunity to find new recipes or ingredients for a vegan/vegetarian/gluten-free Thanksgiving meal that pleases the palate as much as the stomach.

Thanksgiving is all about being grateful. Perhaps you create a basket for a friend that includes objects that remind you both of a time when you were grateful for their presence. Even filling the gift basket with their favorite things could indicate how blessed you feel to have them in your life.

How to make a thoughtful Thanksgiving gift basket

This collection is pictured in a 9 in x 8 in x 3½ in wooden gift box by Carpenter Core.

How to make a thoughtful Thanksgiving gift basket with your kids

The concept of Thanksgiving is something many people choose to share with their children. You can easily teach your children about Thanksgiving with this exercise.

Choose someone in need

Gaining perspective on the lives of others can help your child be thankful for what they have. Choose a family in need to donate to, either by finding one yourself or asking your children to come up with someone who they think might be in need.

Get to know that person/family

Though it might seem tempting to go out and buy a bunch of things to simply donate to the family/individual, take the time to get to know them. Learn about what their lives look like. Spend some time understanding what they need to make their lives better.

Create a list of Thanksgiving wishes

As you get to know your chosen individual/family, make a list of items you think they would benefit from. Include your kids in brainstorming what would make a good Thanksgiving gift basket specifically for this cause.

Set a budget and shop

Shopping for your Thanksgiving wish list can teach your children to be giving, but also to be money savvy. Help them select options that fit the budget but also the needs of your chosen individual/family. Remember that you can focus on other objects besides food.


Giving thanks only takes a minute or two of your time. With these inspirational ideas for your Thanksgiving gift basket, you can easily show others your recognition of how they make a positive impact on your life.

This article was made possible by support from Carpenter Core. We make small customizable wooden crates and boxes used for gift baskets and product packaging.

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