Ideas about what to put in a gift basket

Ideas about what to put in a gift basket


Making a gift basket for a loved one is a perfect way to create a special memory and show how much you care. If you are new to the art of basket making, you may be looking for ideas about what to put in a gift basket. Follow these guidelines to create impressive gifts that will amaze your friends, family members, and coworkers.

Think about the recipient

When giving any gift, the first step is to brainstorm and think about the recipient. What is the occasion or reason for the gift? What are their likes, dislikes, hobbies, and interests? What feeling or emotion would you like them to experience when they receive your gift?

Considering all of these things will help you narrow down a theme and decide what to put in a gift basket.

Choose a theme

Choosing a theme is essential for making a gift basket stand out. When all of the individual elements are cohesive and come together to tell a story, the gift is much more impressive and memorable than a simple collection of unrelated items.

One of the best things about making and giving gift baskets is that they are completely customizable. Your theme can be just about anything! Use the details from your brainstorming session to guide you.

Select gift items

When selecting gift items, you may want to start with one or two primary gift items that represent the chosen theme. These may be a little larger in size or at a higher price point. Then, select coordinating items to complement them. These should help support the overall theme and also match the aesthetic.

Choose gift items that are special to make a lasting impression. Go for quality over quantity, choose local or specialty items when possible, and add a personal touch to your gift.

You may be wondering how many items should be in a gift basket. This depends on the size of your container and your budget. As a general rule, a small gift may include 4-5 items, a medium 7-8, or a large gift may include 10 or more items.

Popular themes and gift items

While gift basket themes can be virtually anything, some are used quite frequently. We’ve listed the most popular themes below along with gift items commonly found in each type. Use this as inspiration for creating unique gifts!

Ideas about what to put in a gift basket
This collection is pictured in a 9 in x 14 in x 3½ in wooden gift basket crate by Carpenter Core.

Food and drinks

One of the most common and well-liked gift basket themes are food and drink-related. These are easily customizable to match the recipient’s taste. Common variations include coffee, tea, wine, beer, fruit, chocolate, or pasta. In addition to primary gift items, coordinating items may include paired snacks, condiments or toppings, mugs or glasses, and utensils. Decorative elements such as unique coasters and pretty napkins also make great additions to food and drink baskets.

Holiday or seasonal

Gift baskets are frequently given during holidays, and it is appropriate to create a theme around any season or special day. Whether celebrating a favorite holiday such as New Year’s, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any one of the four seasons, there are always many gift items to choose from wherever you shop. Look for specialty seasonal confections and snacks and decorative home goods or office supplies to fill your basket.


If you are interested in creating a relaxing, luxurious, or cozy experience, a pampering gift is a great option. There are several theme variations you can take with this idea. For a spa basket, include relaxing bath and body products and accessories. A self-care basket may include items that promote relaxation, reduce stress, and nourish the mind and body. Or, include all their favorite items needed for a cozy, relaxing night in.

Hobbies and interests

Another popular gift basket theme relates to hobbies and interests. A few specific ideas include a movie night, game night, baking, cooking or barbecuing, sports teams, outdoor activities, crafting, car care, and home improvement. Gift items should relate to and support the theme. For example, a hiking enthusiast might like to receive a thoughtful collection of items such as a water bottle or canteen, portable snacks such as trail mix and jerky, a hiking journal, sunscreen, and bug spray.

In conclusion

When deciding what to put in a gift basket, first think about the recipient, what they would enjoy, and how you would like to make them feel. Then, choose a theme and gift items that fit their personality and the occasion. If you are looking for ideas, there are several popular theme categories you can use for inspiration. The best gift baskets are personalized, include quality items, and are based on a specific theme.

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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