Delight friends and family with these something old, something new gifts

Teapot and cups and flowers
Teapot and cups and flowers

Delight friends and family with these something old, something new gifts

by Karen Bradbury
Stripes Japan

Are you the type of person who appreciates a unique gift from a flea market or a second-hand shop? If you can see the beauty in a pre-loved item with a backstory you can only dream of knowing, chances are your friends are the type of people who feel the same way. When it comes to gift-giving, a fun and clever approach can be to pair an old item with its perfect contemporary counterpart, rendering the gift useful immediately. Here are just a few suggestions for items that just seem to go together naturally.

Teacups and saucers: A pretty porcelain set is ready for use when you include quality tea bags or loose leaf tea alongside it. If your friend is a coffee lover, a mug and a bag of coffee beans will be just the right call.

Beer steins: A stein will be appreciated all the more when it comes with a bottle of the very same brand of beer it advertises.

Vase: stock up on pretty old vases whenever you see them. When the occasion arises, you will always have something in which to present bouquets or freshly cut flowers.

Champagne or wine glasses: A matched pair or set of stemmed glassware will be an even greater hit when it comes with a bottle of wine or sparkling beverage.

Bowls: Depending on the size and depth of the bowl, pair it with potpourri, a bar of round soap, floating candles or brightly wrapped candy.

Vintage tiles: A prettily patterned tile looks great on the table repurposed as a trivet, and combines well with cloth napkins, placemats or potholders in a similar style or color.

Jewelry: An old necklace, bracelet, earrings or pin can be matched with a brand-new scarf.

Postcards: Take an old card, glue it atop a larger, stiff piece of paper in a complementary color and place it in a pretty frame.

Candlesticks: A new set of tapered candles makes this gift immediately usable.

Lamps: If its base is in good working order, cover an old, fusty shade with new fabric or a new lampshade altogether.

Crockery: Pretty metal or ceramic pots make the perfect new home for healthy green plants.

Cake and cookie molds: present these alongside the spices and other ingredients necessary to bake up the typical goodie for which they are intended.

What was your best-ever flea market find? Did you pass it on, or keep it all for yourself?






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