I am usually talking about how to plan your party, what to serve, all those fun details (lots of candles!).  But sometimes we need a little reminder about what to bring the hostess who has really knocked herself out!  (and if it’s a fellow, just bring him a lovely bottle of Scotch).

Since I have hosted a lot of parties, I have a bit of an opinion about this.  Keep this list handy, and you’ll always have just the right thing for your favorite hostess.

1.  Bring these adorable linen napkins from henhouselinens.com and they will be greatly appreciated. 

2.  Do bring flowers, but please make sure they are already in a vase or other vessel. Once the guests start arriving, the hostess really doesn’t have time to search for a vase for your lovely bouquet.

3.  Cheese knives – they are inexpensive, and always handy at the next party.  The only cheese knives I own and use are gifts I’ve received at my parties!

4.  Theme related gift – if it’s Christmas time, a small ornament would be lovely, or if it’s a cocktail party, how about those cute cocktail napkins by Anne Taintor with the retro lady and witty chatter.  http://www.amazon.com/Anne-Taintor-Paper-Beverage-Napkins/dp/B005H5L33G

5.  A bottle of wine is always welcome.

6. A potted plant or orchid is also lovely – it really shows you appreciate the efforts, and your hostess will enjoy it for a long time after the party.

7.  One of my favorite gifts to receive were some delightful small nesting bowls that fit olives, nuts, hummus, really anything…I use them at every party.

8.  Did you make jam, chutney or limoncello recently?  Put a bow around it and attach a little card.

9.  I would love to receive the advice from “Parisian Chic.”  www.rizzoliusa.com

10.  And really, the best gift a hostess can receive is a hand-written thank you note the next day.  It speaks well of the guest and the hostess.

May your parties be happy, fun, and memorable!