Set A Budget
The first thing you should do is figure out how much you can afford to spend on gifts for family and friends. Look at what you spent last year and work from there. Be realistic. You don't want to get blindsided by a mountain of credit card bills after the first of the year.
Make A List
Write down the names of everyone you'd like to buy a gift for. Then think about what would make a great gift for that person. Consider their interests, hobbies and the ages of any children on the list. Come up with 2 or 3 ideas for each individual. Finally, combine your budget with your wish list to arrive at a dollar amount to spend for each person's gift.
In late summer, sales are plentiful and bargains can be had if you take along your list and keep your eyes open. Back-to-school sales offer a wonderful opportunity to pick up gifts of stationery or books for kids at rock bottom prices. Early fall sales are a fine time to purchase wardrobe-expanding gifts of shirts, sweaters and more. Every time you see a sale sign, think Christmas.
Consider shopping for unique gifts while also supporting a school, team or church. Most nonprofit organizations sponsor fundraising events several times a year to raise money for special projects, trips or tournaments. Think of these as opportune moments to shop for one-of-a-kind gifts. With everything from gift wrap and magazine subscriptions to gift cards and food gifts, you're bound to find the perfect gift for that special person on your list.
Shop Craft Shows
Summer is prime time for these weekend celebrations of creativity. You'll find paintings, figurines, jewelry, clothing and knickknacks of all kinds. What's more, you get to talk with the artisan who crafted it. Spend a few hours out in the sunshine and come home with one-of-a-kind gifts at reasonable prices.
Shop On Vacation
When you travel to a different part of the country, or if you're lucky enough to venture out of the country, you'll find items for sale that you won't see at the mall back home. Be alert! Pick up these treasures. They make fabulous holiday gifts that you'll be happy you bought when you saw them.
The holiday catalogs are just beginning to trickle in. Before that flow becomes a deluge, take a few minutes to flip through some of the kitchen accessories, kids' toys or home decor catalogs that have arrived in your mailbox. When you start early, you have time to look at all your options, compare prices and avoid rash, last minute decisions.
And when it comes to catalogs, LTD Commodities offers some of the best values for gifts that are sure to please family and friends. Follow these tips to start getting ready for the holidays today.