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Question about giving gifts

My girlfriend and I had this debate about gifts yesterday:


Crafted gifts VS Paid ones


My point was that if someone takes time and effort to do something for someone this has more value than other stuff.


For example, an artist decides to spend a month on a painting to give it as a birthday present for their couple.


For my this has huge a meaning because he committed for something and created something special and unique for that person using the their knowledge.


My girlfriend in the other side, thinks that's bull, she thinks that crafted gifts are only for kids to give to their mothers and a normal person should buy a gift.


For example, a person decides to go an buy something the other person really wants and gets it.


Which one you think has the more meaning or value?


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littlem

i think you're right. unless the work, itself doesn't mean much to you. but, if you put your heart into it, and you know that it would be special for the receiver, it's worth a million bucks!

celandinestern
celandinestern profile pic Alumni

I think it depends both on the giver and the receiver. I'm over the moon when a Threadlesser sends me a drawing, for me those are more valuable than any material thing I could get. But we have some artist friends and have received some paintings as gifts and hated them, and it's so difficult then because you're supposed to be impressed but you think the thing is butt ugly and now you have to put it up in your house and look at it every day so you don't offend the artist. So I guess it depends on whether the artist knows the recipient likes his work, or not. There are other artist friends whom I've begged to give me pieces, and I was over the moon when they did, because I really like their style.

I'd say if you're not sure they're gonna love it, best just buy something off a list of stuff they picked so you know they get what they want.

ivanrodero
1 design submitted -

That's my hole point littlem :^) if your heart is in it is the most special thing ever.

And that is an excellent point Lidija, in the end you are giving a present and you should be in touch with the likes of the receiver.

But does it changes something if you are doing it specially for that person and trying to create something that you like rather than something they can do?

For example one of your artist friends that go to your house and sees what kind of things you like and tries to do something on those lines, or your husband just trying to do something special and different, is that worth something? or they should just skip the hard labour and go to the nearest mall instead and just be safe?

celandinestern
celandinestern profile pic Alumni

I love to have things made for me, if the artist can come close to hitting the general feel of what I like. I'd rather have that than something I can buy for myself in the shop.

celandinestern
celandinestern profile pic Alumni

but I'm sure that people go both ways.

toopersent
toopersent profile pic Alumni

Every year for my wife's birthday and for valentines day I make a hand-made card out of construction paper. It usually revolved around Disney in some way, because she is a Disney freak, but she saves all of them in a special notebook.

Needless to say, she's lost several bits of jewelry and a watch or two that I've gotten her, but she has all the cards!

I'd rather have something that took effort. Its easy to go to a store a pick out some earrings, its harder to sit down and plan out an actually creative project.

soloyo
soloyo profile pic Alumni

one of each, can't go wrong.

ivanrodero
1 design submitted -

Yes Lidija at the end I think it's all about the person you are trying to give a gift so it might end up being trick but you are helping me tons getting to understand the other side of the coin.

That's a lovely story Ramsay and reflects perfectly how I feel, probably because I think more as a person who likes doing stuff the effort counts hugely for me, but that is just because I'm hardwired like that.

Nestor, you are right that seems to be the way to make everyone happy.

And I don't know if that's something I'm happy with it but I can live with it so, now I know...

toopersent
toopersent profile pic Alumni

Nestor is right though, I always have a gift to go along with the handmade card. I can just get away with a less expensive gift, because she really cares about the effort put into it. Every relationship is different though.

But if she isn't going to appreciate the work that goes into making a unique something-or-other, then why bother?

OwlsOnTheBrain

I'm a writer, and writing takes craft as much as painting, though obviously in a different way. I don't think I would ever have the guts to give someone my writing as a gift, but I think it would be the most personal, intimate gift I could give someone...

So I agree-- it depends on the gift giver and receiver. :)

celandinestern
celandinestern profile pic Alumni

I wrote a fairytale once and wrote it out in calligraphy on parchment and gave it to then boyfriend and now husband. He loved it, but I think at that point he would have loved it if I had given him a dead rat decorated with nail polish. He wrote me an SF story years later that dealt in a metaphorical way with some troubles we were having emotionally and to this day I think it's one of the most incredible gifts anyone's ever given or received.

jeffreyg
jeffreyg profile pic Staff

i will take meaning over material any day.

things get old and rusty, or stop working. but you'll always remember the feeling you had when your received a heartfelt gift.

jeffreyg
jeffreyg profile pic Staff

but receiving something like an iPad aint too shabby either ;D

Twiggyhall

I find it very touching to receive a hand-made gift. IMO, it takes more thought, time and effort than just grabbing an ipod gift card or a CD or something from the mall.

But really, anytime anyone gives me a gift of any kind, I am appreciative and grateful for their thoughtfulness.

toopersent
toopersent profile pic Alumni

CDs from the mall? Are you receiving gifts from time travelers from the past?

pyr4lis
pyr4lis profile pic Alumni

I love handmade gifts that obviously took time and thought to create. :) I think paintings are great gifts. I don't see how she thinks it could have "less value" than a store-bought piece of cheaply made junk. The materials to create the art cost money.. the artists time is valuable and isn't "free"...

Also... how is giving someone an amazing painting you created less valuable than if you were to go to an art gallery and buy the person a piece of art that way? Is she saying that art in itself is a bad gift?

ivanrodero
1 design submitted -

She is not very artsy... I might be her first real approach to a person that is art related in any way, so her approach is completely different than mine... I don't know actually.

Twiggyhall

toopersent on Sep 19 '12 at 12:55pm

CDs from the mall? Are you receiving gifts from time travelers from the past?

Sure! And vinyl would be even better

Sam Magee

Any gift, bought or made, requires thought. Buy something crappy from a shop that has no thought behind it and it's just another piece of rubbish someone has to store in their home, and that's not nice and kind of pointless. But at the same time, I think giving something handmade can be kind of arrogant and selfish unless you know the person really likes the things you make. It's arrogant to assume that someone would want something you made, that they would want to display it in their home. The point of a gift isn't to impose on the person who is receiving the gift, and I think handmade stuff can do that, particularly if it's something that is meant to be decorative and on display like a painting. Thought counts for something, but when a handmade gift comes from an adult, a higher, professional level of sophistication and skill is required. It's not from a child, effort in creation isn't everything. Don't forget that a well thought out store-bought gift can take an awful lot of effort to think up and find, too. And I'd much rather people who can't craft worth shit just straight up give me a gift card or money than saddle me with something butt ugly with lots of effort behind it. After all, earning the money to buy something took effort at their job, too. xD

celandinestern
celandinestern profile pic Alumni

some good points there! I guess it comes down to a) is the piece of art awesome and b) is it in the recipient's style/ taste. If yes to both, then it's a great gift. If no, then it's a burden they have to ponder how to get rid of without offending you. Mind you same can be said for store-bought stuff. I've absolutely forbidden my family from buying me anything apparel-related, they just can't hit upon anything I'd wear. They still try sometimes, with disastrous results. I've gone beyond the niceness and started telling them 'dude, I won't wear that. Srsly'.' It makes me feel bad to do so, but what can I do? I'm like, you don't know what to get me, bake me a cake or something. Something I don't have to deal with forever.

Sam Magee

Yeah, exactly, sometimes I despair at the amount of money that must be spent on unwanted gifts each year, which is why I am a supporter of gift cards and the like. Nothing worse than when somebody blatantly doesn't know what to get and just buys something for the sake of it. Feels like such a waste (and the same kind of imposition as a bad handmade gift) and I'd rather just straight up have the money, even if it was only ten bucks haha.

ivanrodero
1 design submitted -

I can get all of those things but that thing of only accepting the effort and meaning the other person put on it if it's cool makes noise to me.

I would love it even if it's crap looking, that person put it's heart on it just to give me a present, that thing has a story about a person who had enough love for me to stop doing things for his/her self and do something for me.

celandinestern
celandinestern profile pic Alumni

sure, I'd love the effort, but I'd hate the thing. I can't help it, I really need things around me to look pretty. It's a shallow thing I guess but I have a hard time getting over it.

ivanrodero
1 design submitted -

Hahaha point taken.

[+duracell-]

Seems like there should be room for both types of gifts. If your gf is all, "no crafted gifts ever!" then you should probably dump her. Just my opinion.

toopersent
toopersent profile pic Alumni

It sounds harsh, but I agree.

Sam Magee

Also, as a person who makes shit like jewellery and paintings, I do follow my own rules in regards to no handmade gifts unless somebody asks. So I get to be a picky bastard :'D

ivanrodero
1 design submitted -

Nah, she has many qualities on her to even thinking on ditch her for how she thinks on this and is nice to understand other points of view even if I have a hard time understanding them, she's a doll and I love her, we all have weird stuff in our closet.

There's enough room for different opinions :^)

And Sam, ;^)

"Para gustos los colores"

Sam Magee

Jeje no he oido eso antes (por estar fuera de España casi diez años y no hablar nunca por que soy ingles) pero se aprende algo nuevo cada dia :'D To each their own.

And omg I can still type in Spanish but fuck me if I try to have a conversation out loud anymore ff. AY ME MUERO

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