- You don’t have a gift yet and desperately need ideas, OR
- You have a gift but want to figure out interesting ways to surprise someone with a gift
Unique Ways to Surprise Someone with a Gift: The Homemade Treasure HuntI basically have one absolute favorite way of giving a gift, that you can easily add your own flavor to. In four words: A homemade treasure hunt. Regardless of whether your gift recipient is a child, sibling, friend, or romantic partner, a treasure hunt never fails to delight. A treasure hunt basically starts with you giving your gift recipient their first “clue” (usually a little paper clue), and has them traveling from spot to spot, finding additional clues. The final location will be where you hide the gift. I list a couple ways to do it below.
Make a homemade treasure hunt through your own homeThis can be especially fun if the gift recipient is someone you live with. You can have the clues be references to things that happened in your house, or items that you own together.
Clue says: “You think I don’t know where you hide the chocolate….but I know.”
Clue says: “The mouse’s hiding spot.” This could refer to that one time there was a mouse in your house, and it was hiding behind the curtain while your partner was shrieking on a chair.
Clue says: “Fido’s favorite sunbathing corner.”
Use a treasure hunting kit to make it easierIf you’re too traumatized by the idea of creating a treasure hunt from scratch, Tiny Treasure Hunts actually makes a little kit that basically has a built-in treasure hunt. Works great for both kids and adults.
Make a treasure hunt through your shared memoriesThis is probably better as a treasure hunt for a romantic partner. This journey can be either on foot, bike or via car. Have the clues refer to places you have shared memories together. Since it’s a bit harder to hide paper clues in public places, it’s sometimes easier if you initially give them a sheet with all the “unfinished” clues on it. There will be gaps in the clues that you can have them fill in with answers from the locations you send them to. Examples:
Clue says: “Our first date spot. What number is the spaghetti marinara on the menu? Use that to dial this number: 424-312-5??3” Theoretically the missing numbers should fit into the phone number, which should be the business phone number for the next location.
Next Clue says: “Go to this location (from Clue 1). Order our favorite drink.” If you’re familiar with the staff, give them a clue beforehand to slip underneath your hunter’s drink.Overall, this type of treasure hunt is a lot more complex and work intensive to pull off. But it can really be a fun and romantic stroll through memory lane.
The Final GiftWhen your treasure hunt is wrapping up, it should point to the final location of the gift. If the gift is a physical object, we suggest you wrap it up in a really cute way (we have a tutorial on it here). Or if it’s a sillier treasure hunt, you could do the whole “box within a box within a box” gag. This works better if you’re not worried about your recipient being disappointed when the gift is smaller in size than originally expecting (might not be good for kids).
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Homemade Gift Wrapping IdeasWe usually recommend starting with either brown kraft paper (if you don’t have any, cut up any brown grocery bag or lunch bag and voila!). Or, if your box already looks nice, just start from there and add embellishments, like the ones below.
Use StampsIf you have any stamps around the house, adding one to the top of a plain kraft box can really add a lot. Hearts are a great stamp idea, as well as feathers. If you don’t have any stamps, we recommend cutting one out of a rubber eraser, and then using ballpoint pen ink (or lipstick) as your stamp ink.
Leaves or FlowersProbably our favorite type of homemade gift wrap embellishment, leaves and flowers can give a very organic feel to the gift. If you’re doing flowers, we recommend picking a test flower first and seeing how long it lasts before it starts to wilt. Make sure it will last long enough to get the gift to your recipient (lavender lasts a long long time). For leaves and twigs, sometimes dead or dried ones work best. But if you find eucalyptus leaves, those last a long time fresh, and smell really nice. Certain herbs work well too (fresh), like rosemary.
Ribbons, twine and laceOur favorite type of item to use to close it up is with gardeners twine. You can get it both at an arts and crafts store, and also at your local hardware or garden center. Additionally its available on Etsy.
“Wrapped with Love” TagTo give it that finishing touch, attach a little tag that says “Made with Love” or “Wrapped with Love”, or even just has a little heart drawn on it. It seals in that homemade touch.
SummarySummary: Keep it simple and cheap when you’re doing homemade gift wrapping. You should be able to find enough stuff around your house to fashion an adorable little gift.
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Why Are You Talking about Takl?Takl has been a really great way to keep both my home and my office space clean. They have wonderful cleaning people on the app, as well as handymen in case you have any other issues you need help with. A clear workspace is a productive workspace. Having things professionally tidied twice a month helps me keep my Fair Ivy ducks in a row. Visit Takl.com to try it out.
Takl App Promo CodeThe best time to do that really complex project you’ve been thinking of doing is perhaps the first time you use the Takl app. This is because you can get 10% off your first Takl booking—but only on your first order. And there isn’t a limit to the 10% off—so even if your booking costs $1000, you can still get 10% (or $100) off. Use the Takl App Promo Code 14F7B for 10% off your booking.
Takl App LocationsTakl is expanding super rapidly, so I’m sure as soon as I publish this post it will have opened somewhere new. But the best way to figure out where they service is to check their website. For now, I know the Takl app has providers that service the following areas:
- North Carolina
- Los Angeles
- San Francisco