Creative White Elephant Gifts You Can Actually Use

Creative White Elephant Gifts you can Actually Use

The same event happens every year. Someone decides to incorporate the white elephant gift exchange into a holiday party. The white elephant event is a great way to get people talking and laughing, especially when people don’t know each other well. The downside is that you often go home with a useless trinket to place on a hidden shelf somewhere. It is possible to keep it silly while still providing a useful gift. With a little thought, standard use items can become the hit of the party.


You are not going to be the life of the party if you show up with a box of crackers, but you can put a fun spin on a few favorites. Everyone eats lunch. Pack a lunch in a crazy kid’s lunch box. Include fun treats such as candies and specialty cheeses. The recipient will either sport the silly lunch box to lunch on Monday or hand it off to their child. Either way, it gets used.

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Pick one food item and buy it in bulk or in different varieties. Macaroni and cheese come in all kinds of silly shapes and a variety of flavors. As it is relatively inexpensive, you can fill a giant box with a ton of macaroni and cheese. Who wouldn’t want a three-month supply of this staple dinner food? The mom that steals it on her turn will be thanking you.


It is undeniable that socks like to disappear in the wash. Everyone needs socks. Feel free to buy the craziest socks out there for the gift exchange, as they are a clothing item rarely seen when worn. The winter months also call for fuzzy socks to be worn around the house. Fill a pair of tall rain boots with the stash and include some foot lotion to seal the deal. Or Pizza socks– yes, PIZZA Socks!

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Weird Kitchen Gadgets

There are a ton of kitchen items no one buys for themselves. These range from spoons with silly faces to elaborate sandwich makers. You can find all kinds of specialty waffle makers that imprint favorite characters on the food. One item that went over particularly well with our crowd was a wine puzzle box. One must solve the puzzle in order to access the bottle of wine inside!


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Pet Items

There is sure to be a few dog owners in your party crowd. Put together a collection of funny dog clothes along with some necessities. Dog owners always need new leashes and shampoo. Many pet owners skip the fun stuff as they provide the necessities for their pets.

Someone may enjoy the opportunity to have a little fun with their pets. Add some toys, as well. There are plenty of odd-looking chew toys at your local pet store. You might even find a squeaky elephant.

Skin and Face Items

The winter months bring dry skin and chapped lips. Tiny tubes of lip balm seem to always get lost in odd places. Make sure the guest that receives your gift will not run out this year. Head to the store and gather a variety of flavors.

Be sure to include some with fun holiday flavors. Fill a large glass jar with the lip balm and deliver it in a festive gift bag. The recipient will want to try a new flavor every day. The same concept can be applied to lotions, facial masks, and nail polish.


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White elephant parties often take the stress off of finding the perfect gift. The point is to have fun. If you choose a gift you would have fun with, it will be a hit.


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The trick is to find a way to make average items comical. With any luck, you will also receive a thoughtful gift.

About Liss 4069 Articles
Melissa Burnell, known to her friends and fans as "Liss," grew up in Southern Maine, now residing in sunny South Carolina. As a busy Wife, Mother of two sons, an avid photographer, and self-employed entrepreneur, Liss understands the value of both time and money.

1 Comment

  1. Great ideas, love the weird pizza socks. We do a filled sock exchange every year, we’ve had some real doozies over the years

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