So let’s be honest. We’ve ALL had that awesome moment when we realized we forgot to buy something for that certain person (or whole family) when it comes to the uber commercialized aspect of the holiday season.

Sometimes it’s a last minute shindig you wind up attending and realize you need a hostess gift. Sometimes, it’s like….Christmas Day and you realize you forgot Cousin Suzy.

And no. I’m not pointing fingers. Have forgotten. Have been forgotten. It happens.

But most often, you realize you forgot something when it’s like 2 days before normal shipping is a viable option and going to the mall makes you want to poke your eyeballs out. And you are so stressed, you simply can’t bare the thought of actually coming up with a thoughtful gift (ahem…enter commercialization). And so you panic. And maybe drink, but I won’t judge. ‘Tis the season after all.

Dun da duh duuuun! Enter Miss Frugal Fancy Pants. The luck, right?

I am a bit of a weirdo so if you think some of my suggestions suck, sorry. I am what I am. But when I think of gift giving, I try to think of things I would personally love that also fit the recipient’s personality or lifestyle. And there are some things I consider minor luxuries that I don’t want to spend my own money on, but would LOVE to receive so I naturally assume others must feel this way on occasion, too. Right? The kind of stuff you can totally live without but would be over the moon if someone hooked you up. But to be fair, I’m also the kind of gal to get super excited over a steam cleaner. Or tweezers.

In keeping with my name, I’m showing you some super affordable and some luxe options depending on your budget, taste and/or recipient. (P.S. I’m totally cool with either version so if you’re one of my friends…or my husband… and feeling extra generous…ahem…)

Most of these are available in local stores or would at the very least, provide a token of the gift to come. Hope this helps if you get in a sticky last minute situation!


Note: Some of the links below are affiliate links.

1) Copper Moscow Mule Mugs

Uh, sign me up! I’ve always loved copper. Not sure why but it speaks to me. So this season’s hot ticket item won me over lickety split! I prefer hammered copper but would drink my vodka out of any of these beauties!

Fancy – Hammered Copper Moscow Mule Mugs from Wayfair

Frugal – Target sells them in stores for $15 each

2) Perfume Sampler

Ok, so this is a tad more personal and clearly a gift for a woman but if a woman happens to be the one you are in a quandary over, I love these samplers from Sephora. They include a gift certificate towards the full size bottle you love the most. And if she isn’t a giant fan of some (or even all) of the smells, chances are, she’ll pass them along to her friends so they won’t go to waste.

Fancy – Large Perfume Sampler from Sephora

Frugal – Small Perfume Sampler from Sephora

3) Wine

Does this really require an explanation? If so, you might be reading the wrong blog.

Fancy – Rombauer Chardonnay (okay, so this isn’t super fancy but it’s awesome wine in our upper range) $35 – $40

Frugal – Pomelo Sauvignon Blanc & Menage et Trois – both of these are under $10

4) Cashmere throw

Um, hello. Who doesn’t lounge on their couch? And who doesn’t use a throw (or a snuggie if that’s your thing)? Ever snuggied up to a cashmere throw? I dare you. Awesomesauce.

Fancy – Cashmere Throw from Williams-Sonoma Home

Frugal – I find them all the time in Home Goods, TJ Maxx and Kohls for well under $50

5) Nueske’s Bacon

Sorry. I only have one recommendation unless you want to go low and swing by your local grocer to grab their brand and stuff it in a gift bag on your way to a white elephant exchange. But while this “fancy” version sounds totally insane as a gift idea, I recently had the pleasure of inhaling trying this bacon at a work related holiday party and almost stole it all (and ran wee wee wee…all the way home).   While gushing about the flavor, my friend told me that she had received a pound or so as a gift and thought it was nutso until she ate it. So I pass this crazy gift idea along. We all love bacon (vegi friends, skip to the next section, please) and this is like the chateabriand of bacon. For realz. Getchur pig on.

6) Harry & David’s

Ok, I know some people are weird about giving food gifts but seriously, I just recommended bacon. And who hasn’t stolen the Harry & David office gift from a client, hidden in the supply closet and eaten all the moose munch? And bing cherries. Not this gal. Swear. If you don’t love the food from this company, you are not human. Or your tastebuds are beyond broken. Moose Munch. Pears. Chocolate Covered Bing Cherries. That is all. And you can give a single pear or a year’s worth. Pick your budget.

7) Tickets or Season Passes to Local Attractions

We live in the Tampa Bay area so we have quite a lot to choose from. The Zoo, the Aquarium, Busch Gardens, the plethora of Orlando theme parks, you name it. Buy a ticket for a kid or a few for the family or splurge on the season passes. Some parks offer passes for around $50 which is an affordable gift for many, yet goes a long way for a family on a budget.

There you have it. My random gift suggestions that I would love to give and/or receive which gives them all the Frugal and Fancy stamp of approval.

Happy Holidays!