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Housewarming Gifts

Housewarming Gifts

30.11.-0001 What better reason for throwing a party than moving into a new house? It’s a great excuse to share your transition in life with your old friends and to make new friends in your new neighbourhood. Even better, it doesn’t really matter if your new house gets a bit trashed as you’re probably planning to redecorate anyway.

However, the best thing about a housewarming party is all the presents you should receive to help you get established in your new home. If you don’t end up with at least three pot plants, a plethora of scented candles, a multitude of kitchen implements, several pictures and plaques to hang on your wall, a couple of cushions and a menu of delicious food items, you’ve clearly done something wrong.

Housewarming Origins

The tradition of a housewarming dates back to medieval times, long before the advent of central heating. Family and friends would literally help to warm the new house, bringing firewood as a gift and building a fire in every available fireplace. The fires and resulting warmth were also thought to protect the house by warding off evil spirits. So if a housewarming party guest brings a piece of firewood as a present they may be abiding by tradition rather than just being stingy!

Housewarming Presents Around the World

In the UK, housewarming gifts are usually items for the new house

In the UK, housewarming gifts are usually items for the new house such as a picture, a pot plant, a vase, a cushion or a bunch of flowers. Alternatively, guests may bring food or drink to be enjoyed during the party. You’ll always get the joker who brings a hair dryer to “warm the house”. Housewarming guests in Germany will often bring a gift certificate for an appropriate store such as a furniture shop. In Southern USA states housewarming guests can be invited to a “Food Pounder” party where they are expected to bring a gift of a pound of a food staple such as cheese, sugar or flour to help stock the cupboards of the new house. The tradition has been modernised to include tinned goods and fresh foodstuffs too.

Traditional Housewarming Gifts

In the same way that a horseshoe is a traditional wedding gift, there are many traditional housewarming gifts which have their origins in the past, long before High Street department stores or online shops encouraged us to spend more on extravagant household items. For example, bread was often given as a gift to protect the household from hunger and wine was supposed to protect from thirst. Salt was given to inspire flavour and luxury in life whilst the gift of sugar unsurprisingly, was supposed to keep life sweet. The same idea was behind giving honey as a housewarming present. The gift of a candle was supposed to keep light and happiness in the household; a coin as a present was said to keep the householders living in good fortune and a broom was supposed to keep the house clean and sweep away bad luck.

Lucky Housewarming Gifts

You may want to wish the new tenants or home owners good luck in their new home (if not, why are you going to their housewarming party?). There are many gifts you can give to surround the new householders in all the good luck vibes they will need to ensure a happy and prosperous time in their home.

Bluebirds as a gift

Housewarming guests in some countries give bluebirds as a gift as they are said to bless the new house with good luck and happiness. If you don’t think a live bird would be appreciated, you could give a bluebird-themed item such as a piece of china or porcelain. In parts of Scotland frogs are given as housewarming gifts, symbolising good luck and fertility. Again, you may prefer to go with something frog-themed instead of the real thing!

Everyone loves to give a pot plant as a housewarming gift. If you want to make it lucky, offer a money tree. Bamboo is also said to be lucky and can come in a variety of interesting and symbolic shapes. Other lucky charms include horseshoes, four-leafed clovers and Buddha statues.

Throwing a housewarming party is nothing new – householders all over the world have been celebrating their new abode for centuries. Traditions may differ over the centuries and in different parts of the world but the thought behind it is always the same: wishing the new resident the best of luck in their new home.

Housewarming present ideas (224)

blog: f-a-p's gift adviser

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