35 Hostess Gifts for Your Mother-in-Law
If you're spending the upcoming holidays with your future in-laws, you don't want to show up empty-handed—especially if this is one of your earliest meetings. A thoughtful hostess gift can set the tone for a happy visit. Plus, it's a surefire way to make you look pretty great in the eyes of your new family. But what do you gift a woman who you may not know that well just yet?
Instead of the traditional bottle of wine, take things one step further with one of these creative, useful, and downright cool gifts. We've scoured our favorite sites and sources for presents any hostess would love to receive, and we specifically selected that options that are sure to please even the pickiest of mothers-in-law. What did we find? Pampering presents like candles and lotions are always a hit, so you'll see everything from dinner party-worthy tapers to the most luxurious soaps on the market. Any frequent entertainer knows the value of unexpected housewares and décor items, so we included everything from a cool cocktail shaker to the chicest cheese tools out there. If you were thinking of giving her a present that actually help her out when guests are in the house, we've got you covered, too. Tasty candy, an elevated party bucket, and a breakfast kit are just some of the many options we found that will ensure you end up in her good graces.
Whether you're just stopping by for dinner, or spending the entire holiday weekend at their house, we've got plenty of ideas for hostess gifts your mother-in-law (or any hostess you're visiting!) will love.
Chocolate cordials filled with a sip of vodka? Count us in. Help your hostess step up her cocktail hour game with these tasty treats. After you've polished off the batch, you can mix up signature drinks in the copper shaker they're packed in.
Sugarfina Chocolate Vodka Shots, $26, sugarfina.com
Cozy Throw Blanket
After all the guests head home, she'll be able to unwind and watch a movie or read a book beneath this ultra-cozy Italian cashmere throw.
Riley Italian Cashmere Throw, $169, rileyhome.com
A Year of Wine
If there's one gift every frequent entertainer would love to receive, it's a consistent supply of wine. Ensure she's always ready for guests with this vino subscription, curated by Martha Stewart herself. Each shipment also comes with entertaining and food pairing ideas.
Martha Stewart Wine Co. Year of Wine, starting at $225, marthastewartwine.com
Conversational Party Game
Gain new perspectives and spark meaningful conversations across 30 compelling topics with this question-centric game. It's the perfect post-dinner activity she'll break out party after every party.
Convers(ate) Game, $35, amazon.com
Help her stock the guest bathroom (it's your benefit, after all!) by gifting your hostess a few luxurious bars of soaps. You can't go wrong with the combo of cocoa-mint, but there are other options, too.
Simper Goods Cocoa and Mint Soap Gem, $14, simpergoods.com
Elevated Taper Candles
Candles are an essential part of any table setting, and these dripless, smokeless, small-batch tapers are sure to please any hostess. Choose a few different colors to ensure she has a set to match any mood.
Trudon "Madeleine" Candles, $24, trudon.com
Lidded baskets are every hostesses secret weapon. Why? Where else do you throw the detritus of daily life when guests drop by unexpectedly? Trust us, this is gift is a home run.
Indego Africa Lidded Floor Basket, $300, onekingslane.com
Fondue parties may have fallen out of fashion, but any good hostess knows the value of one of these multi-tasking pots. Your mother-in-law will use it for everything from cheese to chocolate, guaranteed.
MoMA Choco Fondue Marie, $30, store.moma.org
If there are two gifts hostesses receive most often, they're candles and Champagne. Put those two ideas together by gifting her a bubbly-scented candle. This one looks as good as it smells.
Nest Fragrances "Sparkling Cassis" Candle, $42, saksfifthavenue.com
Whether she uses them to serve appetizers or as a catch-all for trinkets, we promise this adorable tray set will be put to good use in her home.
Slash Objects Ceramic Nesting Trays, $250, slashobjects.com
Plaid Casserole Dish
She'll use this festive cast iron casserole for everything from making soups to baking bread. And, thanks to its enameled interior, cleanup is a breeze.
Martha Stewart Collection 6-Qt. Red Plaid Enamel Cast Iron Casserole, $199, macys.com
Sure, you can turn up with a bottle of wine, but why would you when you can offer something so much more unexpected? Flavored with the peels of Sicilian pink grapefruits, this unique gin will earn a place of honor on her bar cart.
Malfy Gia Rosa, $34, reservebar.com
Upgraded Napkin Rings
Help your hostess set the ultimate table with these cool leather napkin rings. Who needs basic silver or acrylic rings when you can have something so much cooler?
Parachute Leather Napkin Rings, $19, parachutehome.com
Nothing starts a celebration faster than a bottle of sparkling wine. With notes of apple, pear, and citrus, know that this bubbly pairs well with a holiday feast.
Chandon x Bauble Bar Limited Edition Brut, $48, chandon.com
One of the nicest things you can do for a hostess is take some of the work off her plate. Arrive with these beautiful petit fours and we're certain you'll be in her good graces.
Bon Vivant New York Petit Fours, $53.50 for 16, bonvivantnewyork.com
Everyone loves displaying their holiday cards, but it always seems like there's no great way to do it. This real walnut wooden photo ledge (made in the USA!) will help your mother-in-law show off her favorite messages in a chic, clean way.
Wooden Photo Ledge, $49, artifactuprising.com
No unsightly plastic buckets at your mother-in-law's table! This antique brass party bucket will keep wine and beer ice cold without taking away from the overall aesthetics of her party.
Pottery Barn "Bleeker" Bar Party Bucket, $199, potterybarn.com
Slow Cooker Cookbook
For the MIL who doesn't have time to pour over holiday meals, gift her some free time in the form of a slow cooker cookbook. These foolproof recipes are as easy to make as they are delicious to eat.
Martha Stewart's Slow Cooker: 110 Recipes for Flavorful, Foolproof Dishes (Including Desserts!), Plus Test-Kitchen Tips and Strategies, $15.36, barnesandnoble.com
Cheese Knife Set
Is your future mother-in-law the ultimate hostess? Not without a set of beautiful cheese knives, she's not! Made from durable stainless steel and with cool rounded handles, her appetizer game just got a whole lot cooler.
Terrain Loop Handle Cheese Knife Set, $32, shopterrain.com
After entertaining guests at night, your hostess will be thrilled to have a relaxed morning. This luxe gift box packed with a cutting board, scented candle, organic coffee, and chocolate granola, means she'll be able to breakfast in style.
Simone LeBlanc "Joyful Morning Suite" Gift Box, $78, simoneleblanc.com
Short, sweet, and to the point, this trivet will tell your mother-in-law's future guests what they can expect to do in her home: Eat!
Martha Stewart Collection Copper "Eat" Trivet, $14, macys.com
No flower speaks to the holiday season quite like a poinsettia. But instead of bringing her an already bloomed red or white plant, let your hostess grow her own with this handy little kit.
Terrain Amaranthus Poinsettia Grow Kit, $16, shopterrain.com
Linen Cocktail Napkin Set
One surefire way to make sure everyone at the party feels special? A cocktail napkin that speaks uniquely to his or her personality. With "Gracious," "Skilled," "Daring," and "Charming" stitched into each of these linen rectangles, your hostess can dole out napkins that suit every attendee.
Sideshow Press Linen Cocktail Napkin Set, $25, sideshowpress.com
French Oven Cookbook
What speaks to the holiday season more than a timeless, filling French meal? With 80 incredible recipes, all dreamed up to be made in beloved Le Creuset cookware, your hostess will be a culinary master in no time.
Le Creuset Cookbook, $35, lecreuset.com
Help her set the table in style with one of these brass-finished trivets. The fun pineapple shape will lend a little whimsical charm to any kitchen or dining room.
Dear Keaton Gold Pineapple Trivet, $16, dearkeaton.com
Every hostess should have a stockpile of games for guests to play in between meals or events. Help your MIL upgrade hers with this super sleek take on a classic.
Restoration Hardware Marble Tic-Tac-Toe Game, $199, restorationhardware.com
Ruffled Pie Dish
Dessert just looks better when served in this beautiful pie dish. But it's not just great for aesthetic purposes. Made from Burgundian clay, expect this pie dish to heat evenly for uniform baking and browning. In laymen's terms: It'll help her make a picture-perfect dessert.
Emilie Henry Artisan Deep Ruffled Pie Dish, $29.95, williamssonoma.com
Whether it's for jotting down addresses, making recipe notes, or holiday to-do lists, your mother-in-law will love this beautiful little notebook, bound in gorgeous cross-grain lambskin.
Smythson "Gifted" Panama Notebook, $75, smythson.com
Hammered Cocktail Shaker
Help her shake (not stir) signature drinks in style with this sleek brass cocktail shaker.
Restoration Hardware Hammered Brass Cocktail Shaker, $80, restorationhardware.com
Cocktail Recipe Book
Every hostess knows that a signature cocktail is a dinner party must-have, but no one wants to stock their bar with countless spirits or be asked to whip up time-consuming drinks. Packed from cover to cover with cocktail recipes that require just one type of alcohol, it's basically required reading for any entertainer.
The One-Bottle Cocktail: More than 80 Recipes with Fresh Ingredients and a Single Spirit, $17.18, amazon.com
"Celebrate Everything" Book
Your MIL is obviously into entertaining if she's hosting Thanksgiving. Give her the ultimate guide to all-things party-related, from our very own Editor-at-Large and event-planning extraordinaire, Darcy Miller.
Celebrate Everything!: Fun Ideas to Bring Your Parties to Life, $16.50, amazon.com
Bringing a bottle of wine is nice, but gifting the hostess everything she needs to make a delicious cocktail (including the serving cups)? Now that's thoughtful.
Williams Sonoma Moscow Mule Gift Crate, $109.95, williamssonoma.com
Give her something fun and fresh for her holiday table. These mix-and-match linen napkin sets boast beautiful patterns made by independent designers.
Napkin sets, 6 for $48, minted.com
Cheery Recipe Box
Who doesn't love great penmanship? Encourage her to tap into her artistic side with this beginner calligraphy set. Better yet, get two and get started practicing for the wedding envelopes together!
Belle Calligraphy Kit: Materials and Instruction for Modern Script, $20.23, amazon.com