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recycle regift reuse
Written By: Brenda Howes

T’is the season of giving and receiving gifts. So in the interest of frugality – both in terms of money and sustainability – I have researched the ‘etiquette’ on re-gifting. While the practice of re-gifting has some practical applications, there are some generally accepted social guidelines.

My Top Five guides to this socially delicate practice:

  1. Sentimental, Handmade or Gifts With Lots of Love and/or Thought:  these are essentially off limits to the practice of re-gifting. It is important to consider the feelings of the one who initially gave you the gift and how important that person is to you.  
  2. If you didn’t like the gift, consider the probability that the new recipient won’t either. Some gifts are so questionable that they, as a kindness, should end their circulation with you. However, for those with patience, given enough time the item’s use and practicability might reveal itself.    
  3. Gifts with a Best Before Date. Ensure that the recipient has time to enjoy the gift. Spam, as an example, has an especially long shelf life and can be re-gifted well into the next decade and millennium.   
  4. Re-gifting is a way to save on costs, BUT the gift needs to fit the recipient. Just clearing it out of your space is only a gift to you. Years ago I received a set of trays as a housewarming gift that came with the gift card from the first ‘gifting’ still inside. Those trays were the BEST ever. How did she know?     
  5. Expanding on item four, make sure you know who originally gave you the gift so you don’t accidentally re-gift it to the original gifter. That could be uhm … #awkward. Unless it’s a boomerang which is then perfect!

Thank goodness we all like different things. One person’s junk is certainly another’s treasure and so regifting may be a perfect way for the gift to find its forever recipient. May this season of gifting bring you all the joy and simple pleasures – while both giving and receiving!

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