Not to brag, but I consider myself a pretty good gift-giver — mainly because I've been told as much by family and friends. But one holiday I always struggle with is Valentine's Day. Whether buying for girlfriends or my significant other, I don't want to go overboard, but I still want to show I care — isn't that the whole point of the holiday? So far, I've found Etsy to be a good place for unique, personalized gifts that don't break the bank. And this year, the online marketplace is pulling out all the stops to help inspire shoppers, including hiring a celebrity expert to offer advice on the best Valentine's Day gifts.
Actress, TV host and entrepreneur Drew Barrymore was recently named Etsy's chief gifting officer, and as her first order of business, she's rounding up some of her favorite Valentine's gift recommendations.
"I’m thrilled to show Etsy shoppers how easy and joyful it is to make the people in their lives feel special through the perfect gift. Think of me as your gifting fairy godmother!" she said in a press release.
Etsy is a one-stop shop for personalized, unique and vintage items — there's something there for everyone. Barrymore says it's her "go-to for the best gifts that truly say, 'I see you'." (House Beautiful reports that she shops there under an alias, and she's been a loyal customer for years.)
"The best gifts are something you want for yourself, the ones you secretly are struggling to give away," Barrymore said, according to Domino.
Etsy is also unveiling a new AI feature called Gift Mode that can help curate gift ideas based on a recipient's specific interests. I've tried it, and can confirm it's super helpful. It's easy to use: You explain who the recipient is, select the occasion and a choose a few of their interests. For my partner, who is obsessed with our dog (and that's an understatement), Gift Mode suggested a personalized portrait of our pup. It's actually the perfect gift, because he recently mentioned his office feels bare, and he could keep the portrait on his desk.
This Valentine's Day, whether you're shopping for a significant other, friend or family member, use Etsy's Gift Mode to help you shop, or take a look below at a few of Barrymore's recommendations.
Personalized gifts show someone you went the extra mile to make something special just for them. Barrymore shared in a conversation with Domino that this Valentine's Day, she got her daughters custom pencils.
"I got my daughters and myself pencils on Etsy that we were able to personally inscribe (I got some that say Frankie Foodle Noodle, because that’s [Frankie’s] nickname, and Olive Bear, because that’s [Olive’s] nickname). The art of writing is so important; you can write on anything, and it doesn’t have to be their name."
For the hostess with the mostess (or your favorite cheese lover), this handmade serving board will be very well received. It's carved from a single piece of walnut, and while the grooves are a pretty detail, they're also practical — they collect crumbs to keep messes off your floors.
When it comes to gifting art, Barrymore told House Beautiful, "You can find really fabulous pieces for $5 to $20 [on Etsy]. Art is not usually something we think to give people because it's so personal, but so much of the art I have has been gifted."
One piece she loves: This quirky print of a dinner party's full spread: wine, cheese, oysters, sardines and bread. Get it for the friend who's always sharing her favorite recipes or the foodie in your life who manages to nab the best reservations.
Barrymore has always had great fashion sense, so this gorgeous crochet bag from Turkey in a natural in her list of recommendations. The tote is handmade, with a cotton lining to keep any small belongings from slipping out. Gift this to your boho-chic friend or anyone with a fun beach vacation coming up (then, get one for yourself — you know you want to).
This mirrored acrylic nightlight with an intricate laser-cut design will add a lovely little glow wherever you put it. If this design, recommended by Barrymore, doesn't suit your fancy, the seller has a plethora of other options.
This ceramic vase is pretty enough to become a family heirloom. Any gardener or plant parent would love to add this piece to their home as a chic display for fresh trimmings. It comes in three different shapes, and the price varies based on the shape you choose.
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