7 gifts to keep on hand for surprise guests

Whether a surprise guest drops by your home or you just completely forgot a loved one’s birthday, keeping a stash of emergency gifts in your cupboard will make you look like the most organised and thoughtful person. But not all gifts are suitable to store in your cupboard for long periods. Consumables expire, fabrics absorb smells and moisture, and bulky items take up too much valuable space. So, what kind of gifts do you keep in your emergency gift box? Check out our suggestions below.

Gifts to keep on hand for surprise guests

Small homewares

When purchasing gifts for loved ones, sometimes it’s the most practical gifts that bring us the most joy. Small household items such as candles, mugs, cheese knives, and wine bottle stoppers are not only wonderful gifts that are guaranteed to be used and appreciated, but they’re perfect gifts to keep on hand as they won’t date or spoil, and they can be given to almost anyone!

Gifts to keep on hand for surprise guests

Gift of Seeds

Cards and gifts go hand in hand, but did you know there’s a gift that combines both? A Gift of Seeds is a greeting card and a packet of seeds in one. Each pack features beautiful botanical illustrations by Melbourne artist Daniella Germain and includes a greeting card, packet of seeds, tearaway plant label for marking where seeds have been planted and an envelope for gifting purposes. A Gift of Seeds is not only a suitable present for all ages, but it’s also flat and easy to store, and affordable to send in the mail. With various seeds and designs to choose from, there’s one suitable for every occasion, from birthdays to sympathy.

Coffee table books

Books make memorable gifts, but sometimes it can be challenging to pick one the recipient will enjoy reading. Everyone’s taste in books is different and can vary widely on subject matter and topics. However, coffee table books are an exception. Designed for casual reading, coffee table books are usually oversized books featuring elegant writing and vivid photography or art on a specific genre. From travel to food, fashion to architecture, you can find a coffee table book covering virtually any topic, and because the topics are general themes most people are interested in, it makes coffee table books a timeless gift for any occasion.

Gifts to keep on hand for surprise guests

Bottle of wine

Most of us have a few bottles of wine stored on a rack in our home, and while it can be tempting to drink them, they also make wonderful emergency gifts for people who love wine. But, rather than just giving the recipient a bottle it a gift bag, make it look more like a considered gift by wrapping the bottle, writing a special message on a gift tag and tying it to the neck of the bottle. Our favourite sustainable wines are Round Theory and Little Ripples.

Pop Up Pots

If you’re looking for a unique gift, that’s easy to store and affordable to send in the mail, you can’t go past Pop Up Pots – foldable origami-style plant pots that instantly assemble with a quick pop. They’re made in Australia from lightweight 100% recycled plastic and feature vibrant artworks from Australian artists. They’re a great gift for kids and adults of all ages!


7 gifts to keep on hand for surprise guestsPlants

A potted plant is a thoughtful choice for a long-lasting gift and a perfect present for almost everyone, even for the ‘hard to buy for’ people. While you can’t store plants in your cupboard, most of us have a variety of them growing in our homes and gardens from which you can turn into a quick gift by dividing up a plant, taking a cutting or pulling off a pup and repotting it into a Pop Up Pot.


Help your friends and family start their zero waste journey by giving them reusable products for their birthday. Reusable coffee cups, water bottles, shopping bags and cutlery sets are not only perfect gender-neutral and age-appropriate gifts to keep on hand for when surprise guests pop in, but they’re products that encourage recipients to reduce their waste which is great for the planet.

What to do with old greeting cards

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