by Stephanie Finkelstein, The Elegant Hostess, Contributing Writer

Here’s The Thing About Hostess Gifts

By now, you’ve probably been invited out to a clambake or a cocktail party or even to stay with friends at a Hamptons beach house for a weekend. Figuring out the etiquette of such an event can be difficult, if not downright impossible; everyone’s sense of decorum is different. But there *are* general guidelines to follow; here’s what you should do:

For starters, bring a hostess gift; It doesn’t have to be anything big, just something that shows your appreciation and says “thanks.” Try bringing something from a local winery or fresh fruit and veggies from a farm stand. Or maybe some jam and crackers and bread. If you’re staying the weekend, think about bringing coffee and fruit and bread and making breakfast one morning. Your hosts will appreciate the break!

A lot of people worry about finding a gift that their host doesn’t already have. That’s not unreasonable, but we’re in the Hamptons. There are a lot of people who already have everything! So try to find something that they can use or something that’s personal and shows that you put some thought into it. You’re not doing the job of their interior designer, so try to find something you like and they like.

(A little hint: there’s no one “right” gift, but if you’re creative and put some thought into it, you’ll hit on one that works. Trust me.)

Stephanie Finkelstein is a gift expert and owner of The Elegant Setting, the premier gift shop in the Hamptons. Read more at or follow her on Facebook!

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