What's a White Elephant Exchange and What Should You Bring?

What's a White Elephant Exchange and What Should You Bring?

Are you attending a holiday party that’s having a white elephant gift exchange this year? A white elephant gift exchange is a great opportunity to have a lot of laughs and just be playful. Unlike conventional gift exchanges, the white elephant gift exchange (also known as Dirty Santa or the Yankee Swap) is all about giving and receiving humorous, impractical gifts. Essentially, the point of the gift exchange is not the gift itself but the laughs people will get from it. If you are in need of some inspiration when it comes to finding unique, comical gifts, look no further. Here are a few ideas that will help you find hilarious gifts for your white elephant exchange.

A Comical Book

The great thing about white elephant gift exchanges, aside from them being a humorous form of entertainment, is that you generally don’t have to spend too much money on the gift item. Check with the hosts to see if there is a price limit on gifts (usually, they are in the $20 range). Fortunately, there are many great gift ideas that are under the $20 gift expense limit, and books are no exception. Getting someone a funny toilet read or an unconventional book (like an unexpected person authoring a funny cookbook) can really put a smile on someone’s face. Plus, this kind of gift isn’t totally impractical; it’s something the recipient will actually get some use out of.

A Funny Scented Candle

There are so many gift items out there in the world that seem simple enough, but can actually be turned into something fun. A regular old coffee mug can become a funny coffee mug with the right print design or text. A regular doormat can be funny with a hilarious greeting on it. And a yummy scented candle can be downright hilarious if it’s labeled with a funny name. If you happen to know who you are getting the gift for and you know they are fans of candles, why not get them a funny candle instead of a plain one?

A Mini Bluetooth Speaker

Not every white elephant gift needs to be something comical; it could just be something that is purely entertaining. Fewer things are more entertaining than gift items that are actually designed to entertain. A mini Bluetooth speaker is a fabulous alternative to a higher-priced, larger Bluetooth speaker. Because they are smaller, they are also easier to transport; so the recipient will enjoy being able to carry it in their purse or their suitcase if they are heading off on vacation.

Cozy, Cute Loungewear

While getting a full-blown outfit for someone as a gift at a white elephant gift exchange would be too pricey and unexpected, you can get them small articles of clothing and accessories. Every adult appreciates a nice, new pair of fuzzy socks, slippers, or a cute fashion scarf to keep them warm during the cold winter season. Or, you could gift someone with a funny “ugly” Christmas sweater. If you aren’t too sure about buying clothing for someone when you don’t know their measurements, you could always get them a festive Christmas blanket. No one is ever going to turn down a warm, comfy blanket.

Niche Kitchen Supplies

Believe it or not, there are funny, niche kitchen supplies too. And plenty of them are affordable. If you want to get someone something novel that will put a smile on their face and even get a laugh out of them, look at unconventional items like a hot dog toaster, a waffle bowl maker, or a portable smores microwave. You could also get them food and drink “accessories” like a chic wine tote or cocktail cubes.

A Mini Gift Basket

Sometimes you don’t have to make a person laugh or attempt to entertain them in order to feel good. Sometimes you can simply present them with a gift that will help them feel great. While a full-sized gift basket will likely have you going over the price limit, you can downsize and get them a mini gift basket. Gift basket themes can be super creative and curated to fit a specific person’s tastes or, if you don’t know them well enough, stick to classic items like a coffee-themed gift basket or a chocolate-themed gift basket.

Fun Board Games

You don’t always have to rack your brain to come up with the most outlandish gift idea. Sometimes you can stick to classic gift items like a high-quality set of poker cards or iconic board games. Just because everyone’s grown-up doesn’t mean adults don’t love a good board game, a serious chess battle, or a hilarious attempt at Twister.

Heading to a holiday party with a white elephant gift exchange? Consider any one of these fun gift ideas or shop Lands’ End for more products!


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