I have clients who have whole walls in the basement dedicated to gifts they have bought. Some clients have designated shelves in a closet, but don't always get the gifts to those shelves. The gifts then end up in boxes or bags throughout the house. I have seen gifts hidden under the bed or tucked into the master closet or perhaps into a drawer. Some people don't appear to have any designated spot - hence the "Oh, I forgot I had this" syndrome.
Suggestions for advance gift buying:
- Don't buy anything unless you know who you plan to give it to and for what event. You can only store so many cute hostess gifts.
- Have a designated area for all gifts.
- As soon as you buy something - tag who is to receive it.
- Keep receipts and write on the receipts a description of the gift.
- Move the gifts along as soon as is appropriate.
- Don't stock up gifts for a few people, no matter how adorable the gifts.
- Never buy a gift for someone without first "shopping" at your home designated gift storage area.
- Know yourself - determine how much space you really do need and set aside that amount.
- Chose an area that is easy for you to access - otherwise you will suffer from the "I'll just leave it here for now." syndrome.
- Consider having the storage near the gift wrap area.
- Containerize small gifts into baskets or bins so that small items don't get hidden behind larger items.
- Clean out the area once a year. Donate those gifts that are no longer relevant.
Jonda S. Beattie