Author Topic: useless gift ideas  (Read 6013 times)

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AylaM

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useless gift ideas
« on: November 24, 2012, 08:51:01 PM »
our family has started doing a white elephant gift exchange.  I have a hard time finding generic gift ideas.  I tried candy last year.  It was a no go.  In general few people ended up with gifts that they used.  I voted for a secret santa this year, but we are doing white elephant again.

This year instead of aiming for "something anyone would like" I am aiming for "something no one has any practical use for".

I want to put some fun things in a bag that really have no practical use, but I am having trouble thinking of things.  I expect that some of it they will be momentarily enjoyed and then probably never touched again.  But I don't want to give a bag full of junk that someone will open and enjoy nothing.

So I'm trying to balance "completely useless, but good for a laugh" and "not practical but I used it"

With that in mind I've already nixed a usb pet rock that I had seriously been considering.  It was too expensive to throw in for just a laugh, but not useful enough to consider otherwise.   :(

Some ideas I'm considering are:

Useless, but good for a laugh (mostly dollar store items):
Pink boa
Adhesive mustaches
Unicorn horn for a cat (the package tells me cats love them and we all have a cat)

not practical, kinda nifty:
smart mass ( a silly-putty like substance that looked really cool.  Frankly I wish I'd find some in my stocking this year)
dollar store toys
kinetic desk toy/sculpture  (one of those perpetual motion thingies)

I figure I'll keep buying stuff until I hit the limit If anyone has any ideas I'd appreciate them.

Jones

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2012, 08:54:19 PM »
Last year I was given a Justin Bieber fangirl book for my office's white elephant. Everyone had a good laugh.

Another employee found a card game actually called "White Elephant".

Tierrainney

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2012, 09:22:01 PM »
How about a calendar? One with Justin bieber or other boy band for the pictures? Or Twilight?

One year I was late looking for calendars and the only ones left in the store were Jonas Brothers.
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CakeBeret

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2012, 09:31:09 PM »
My dad once bought me a very anatomically detailed ceramic bull. About 12" long and 6" high. It's both hideous and hilarious. He bought it in all seriousness, having a warped gifting sense. It's perfect for a white elephant and we've been saving it for that purpose. So I say go to an antique store and find the most inappropriate, funny thing you can find.
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GreenHall

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2012, 09:32:45 PM »
My local Michael's has a fifteen pack of glow bracelets for $1.  I am easily amused.  It's either a great or a terrible combo...

Bijou

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2012, 09:38:12 PM »
I'd go for a smallish piece of rhinestone vintage costume jewelry pinned to a nice old necktie as a tie tack (so it can be generic for male or female) .  Seriously. 
I've never knitted anything I could recognize when it was finished.  Actually, I've never finished anything, much to my family's relief.

SiotehCat

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2012, 09:46:09 PM »
Pogo stick.

RegionMom

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2012, 09:46:52 PM »
A great years past white elephant gift was a pack of batteries, "game not included."
Fear is temporary...Regret is forever.

gramma dishes

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2012, 09:47:24 PM »
...

One year I was late looking for calendars and the only ones left in the store were Jonas Brothers.

How sad that must have been for the Jonas Brothers!   :-\

Melde

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2012, 09:50:00 PM »
A Peanut Pusher. That is what my family always told me they were getting me for Christmas when I asked. But they never did. So two years ago, I took some brass wire and bent it into a strange shape, put a fancy calligraphy label on it and gave it as a family gift! We put it out on display last year, and will continue to. :)

sevenday

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2012, 10:01:35 PM »
The local dollar store sells pairs of "fuzzy socks" for $1.  Except they are striped and in neon colors like yellow and green, pink and green, etc.  Nobody in their right mind would want to wear them because they're scratchy due to the little strip of "silver" on the ends of the fringed yarn.  They're also a bit too small for most adults, and a bit too large for most kids.  Perfect useless present.  :P 

Chinese finger traps.
A bag of paper shreds (you know, the paper stuff people put in packages as "dressing"? Just a bag of that, and nothing else)
You mentioned a pet rock.  Just go out, pick up a rock, paint a face on it, and "sell" it as a solar-powered, off-the-grid, ultra-green pet that never needs feeding, watering, walking,  etc.  (Although for a giggle, I've seen one packaged with a tiny folded-newspaper 'litter box' and care instructions)
I've seen "Fake chest hair"
small containers of pet treats, especially if you know nobody owns a cat/dog  (or fish food)
I've seen plastic gloves that were blown up, and then drawn on to create smiley faces, turkeys, reindeer, etc. 
A small sheet of bubble wrap
fly swatter
Toilet paper cozy (you know, the things you put over rolls of TP to "hide" them.  My grandmother made truly hideous ones in the 70s.)
corn removal pads
Snowman poop (bag of marshmallows)

Venus193

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2012, 10:59:13 PM »
Tiny hats (see photo) which have a hair clip on the underside:



or the flapper headband.

Didn't mention the fan because it's actually useful.

rain

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2012, 11:28:47 PM »
silly string
bubbles
novelty ice cube trays (I've seen silly shapes ... and naughty)
jelly bellies
playdough
silly putty
table games (like the ones they have at Cracker Barrel)
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Starr

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #13 on: November 25, 2012, 12:52:20 AM »
I saw some fake coal in the dollar store in a little sack that said "I've been naughty" (or something similar) - I thought it was funny!

Along the lines of a unicorn horn for the cats, I saw reindeer antlers and santa outfits for pets recently.  The cat might not like it, but amusing for the humans.


BatCity

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Re: useless gift ideas
« Reply #14 on: November 25, 2012, 01:04:53 AM »
Rubber chicken.