The Lost Art of Gifting – And Rediscovering It

“Some gifts are big. Others are small. But ones that come from the heart, are the best of all,” as a famous proverb goes. However, it seems as if we’ve almost forgotten what a gift stands for – and what it is meant to convey. This comes as an all the bigger surprise in a country such as India, a country whose very identity lies in its immense ranging diversity – India celebrates festivals of all kinds of cultures, ethnicities, and religions. This creates all the more occasions for gifting – from Diwali to Eid, from Christmas to Raksha Bandhan, to innumerable other festivals, as well as birthdays and anniversaries of loved ones. In recent years, Indians have also been warming up to international festivals –  such as Valentine’s Day, Halloween and Thanksgiving – which has made occasions for gifting ubiquitous, almost all year round.

With a continuous demand for gifts throughout the calendar, perhaps, somewhat ironically it is a consequence of that that the art of gifting is somehow getting lost in uncreativity and monotony. While on one hand, the number of different occasions should enhance the scope of gifting – gifts can tailor-made for that very occasion, bringing in more joy of the festive spirit. But what actually does happen in practice, is that people tend to become lazy, perhaps because of sheer gifting fatigue – and resort to generic gifts for all occasions, relationships and personalities – such as chocolates and cards – which are just about acceptable for all situations, but perhaps not quite the most appropriate.

In the hustle and bustle of today’s hectic lifestyles, thus, gifting is losing its very purpose. What is the meaning of gifts, after all? A gift is supposed to evoke reactions of joy. It is supposed to inspire awe, by being a means of how a person can show another person how much they care about them, and just how well they know them. It should make them smile ear-to-ear – at just the act of opening it. The perfect gift should befit the occasion, the recipient’s personality, hobbies and interests – generic gifts like chocolates and cards may be okay, but they can seldom create such a wide range of emotions amongst the recipient, which is what the ideal gifts are supposed to do. It’s high time we make an effort to reinject some life into the art of gifting, which is losing its way rapidly.

Our company, Bigsmall.in recognized this gap in the gifting industry – which was fast becoming monotonous, as gifts started deviating from their intended meaning. We believe that every gift should be unique in itself – it should capture the importance of one’s relationship with the recipient. It should remind them of the person at the mere act of looking at it. As a famous quote goes, “Those gifts are ever more precious, which the giver has made precious”. The perfect gift’s pure sentimental value always transcends its material value – it should be something the recipient treasures forever, regardless of its actual value. The item should have a surprise element to it too – a predictable gift is never an enjoyable one. It should also have some sort of functional utility.

The ideal gift sounds well and good in theory – but now that you think about it, how would you go about constantly knocking the socks off of different people with different personalities, with whom you share different relationships, on different occasions? At times, it’s the thought that there aren’t enough unique gifts out there – that makes us resort to the boring old gifts. In others, it’s the perceived lack of availability – which makes you go for cop-out gifts. Fortunately, in the information technology era, unique, quirky and personalized gifts are only a click away, from the cosy comforts of your home.

E-commerce websites such ours, now cater to this niche market, serving all the personalized gifting needs – for people with a variety of interests, likes, differing occasions, and relationships. Know a travel enthusiast? A travel essential to make their next journey more comfortable and memorable could be a thoughtful gift. Is your best friend a sports enthusiast? Then perhaps a unique piece of sporting merchandise or a sport-themed goodie could be ideal for their collection. A party animal? Gift them something which will make their next party much better than the previous ones. Superhero maniac? Superhero collectibles are never out of vogue. It’s about providing personalization through the gift itself – but also through the whole experience of gifting itself. Providing features such as customizable handmade notes, which add an extra dash of personalization – such small tidbits can go a long way in changing a person’s day upside down through a gift – after all, the manner of giving is just as important to the art of gifting.

The human race prides itself in being the most evolved life form on the Earth – a species that is constantly evolving every day, every minute, and every second. We constantly aspire to better our previous selves and advance our race as a whole. Yet, gifting, an extremely vital form of social interaction between humans, is becoming a forgotten art – de-evolving, so to say. “To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift”. It’s time we give it our best – bring gifting back with eclectic creativity and show just why we consider ourselves the most superior race on the planet.

Author Yatin Hans is the founder of the online creative gifting portal Bigsmall.in. A 27-year-old with a marketing background, his objective is to revolutionize the gifting industry in India with innovative and personalized gifts. His other interests include playing soccer and traveling.

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