A bunch of flowers, a box of chocolates, a gift voucher or movie tickets... what to buy as gift when you don't know what to buy? Well, what if you gave all of the above? Presented together as a hamper a collection of items can be just the right gift to impress. How to make one? EASY!! Of course wine, sweets and a gift card will work for everyone's taste without getting too personal But if personal is what you are trying to be, first of all, you have to choose a theme for the hamper, a story that relates to the person you are thinking about. Sporty? Arty? Romantic? Choosing the theme will help you greatly in selecting the right items that work with each other, as well as showing that you have put thought and care into it.
I want to show you how I made mine, this Valentine's Day, and it doesn't have to cost a fortune or take too much time to put it all together. I was asked to create these for Studio10 on network Ten, and the theme I chose is Pamper Hamper. I made two, one for he gals and one for the guys and I called them appropriately hampHER and hampHIM.
I went into a Spotlight Store where I quickly found quality Egyptian cotton towels, and I chose two matching in medium and large sizes. I grabbed a shopping basket upon entering the store; using its size as a guide helped me think about how many items I needed to choose to achieve a generous looking hamper. I walked around the store and there are so many items that I could have picked, but as this time I wanted to stick to the theme, I selected scented candles: perfect for what I'm aiming to achieve and chose them by their scent, one for her and one for him. I kept walking through the store while adding to my basket items that I know will match very well with the idea of a well deserved pampering. I must leave some room for the wine...
VERY IMPORTANT: Presentation! Any hamper, no matter what its value may be, must look the part, and to fully achieve that, good presentation is always needed. At Spotlight I found just what I needed: the perfect baskets. I didn't know what kind exactly, but the keen staff helped me quickly and efficiently to find items that could easily be loved after the hamper's contents have been taken out. I chose the masculine feel of a dark wooden box for him, which will soon become useful to collect loose items such as magazines and books, or to store belts or maybe shoes in the wardrobe. For her a picnic basket, instead... perfect for the many romantic or family outings in the future.
What I needed to make the hampHER and the hampHIM was easily gathered, and to add a finish touch I then visited Chemist Warehouse where I quickly found more quality and affordable items to add to my baskets: perfumes, soaps, facial masks, sponges and brushes...
At Dan Murphy I have chosen from their Valentine's suggestions and have chosen one Moscato and one Shiraz for him and a Rosé and a Prosecco for her.
Back at home I carefully placed all my items on the table and start adding them into the baskets as I would flowers to a vase: the large or tall items first, then the medium and finally the small ones. This way every item will be visible to achieve the finished effect of an impressive and luxurious hamper. BUT that doesn't men you have to spend a fortune, always consider quality and select more or less to achieve a large or small hamper, depending upon your budget. I finished the presentation by filling shredded bamboo, allowing me to lace items at the angle I wanted and to alter their height. Finally I topped it with a "love" decorative word that I also found at Spotlight.
I know, it didn't break my budget and what do you think? I reckon the final effect is superb. PLUS, for this Valentine's Day, the Pamper Hamper's will last much longer than any beautiful flowers you could have bought... and you will end up smelling and looking just as nice!
Remember, it's easy: Theme, Quality and Presentation.
Happy Valentine's Day.
James Treble is an ambassador for Planet Ark and firmly believes in sensible purchasing, recycling and creative re-purposing. James Treble has more than 25 years of experience in the Building Industry, Real Estate and Interior Design. His knowledge and experience in adding value to homes, through clever design & styling, is now published for all to learn and benefit from. Interior Design For Profit is now available online.