10 Cheap But Classy Gifts for the Holidays

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  • Gourmet Coffee If youre a big coffee drinker, maybe youve already discovered your favorite gourmet blend. Consider picking up a bag of the stuff for a pal and slap a bow on itcoffee beans make a classy, aromatic gift.
  • Baked Goods

    This ones a given. If you know your way around the kitchen, dont hesitate to whip up some delicious treats. Your friends will appreciate it. Consider a batch of cookies, a loaf of cranberry or pumpkin bread, or a plate of muffins. Be sure to check out our Healthy Recipes section for ideas.

  • Mix CDs

    Mix CDs come with unavoidable romantic connotations, so this may not be the best gift for a co-worker you don't know very well. For a good friend, though, a well-rounded compilation of songsespecially if you share musical preferencesis an inexpensive way to show you care. If youre artistically inclined, you can have fun with the cover art, too. An iTunes gift card is a good alternative if you dont feel like crafting a mix yourself.

  • Movie Theater Gift Certificates With the steep prices U.S. box offices are charging these days, a spare pair of movie tickets will come in handy for almost anyone.
  • Beauty Supplies A nice bar of soap, a bottle of moisturizer, scented bubble bath, bath salts, hand lotion, lip balm . . . the list goes on. All of these items wont run you too much individually, but they can still be quality products and make practical giftsfor both men and women.
  • Socks When we were kids, socks were the last thing we wanted to find under the Christmas tree. But now were old, and the house is freezing when we wake up and stumble over to the coffeemaker, and we take pleasure in simple joys like a thick pair of wool socks. Were pretty sure your friends will, too.If you can knit, even better. A handmade hat, scarf, or pair of mittens are all thoughtful, useful gifts.
  • Potted Plant A potted plant makes a good gift because the receiver will think of you every time she tends to it. (If she lets it wither and die, we wont get into what that symbolizes.)
  • Local Goods Do you live in wine country? Get an inexpensive tasting at a local winery and pick up a bottle for a friend afterward. Or go for a six-pack from a nearby microbrewery. A locally made jar of raw honey or bottle of steak sauce can also add a little flair to your gift-giving.