Homecoming is a tradition that coincides with the journey from childhood to adulthood. On this memorable occasion, whether you are going with your sweetheart or a friend, a little gift for your date will start your night off right.
Celebrate the Individuality of Your Date
Thoughtful gestures are essential for keeping any friendship or romantic relationship happy and balanced. Of course, homecoming typically consists of an exchange of the corsage and boutonniere, but an unexpected gift beyond the usual accessories will keep you and your date from bumming at homecoming.
Thoughtful gifts require thought, hence the name. Chances are, you are going to homecoming with someone you know, which means you probably know what your date likes well enough to come up with some ideas.
If you happen to spontaneously decide to go to homecoming with someone you don’t know that well, observe your future date before the dance to try to come up with some ideas. Pay attention to any details like colors he or she might wear more often than other colors or patterns like animals or certain types of flowers they may have on clothing or school supplies. Your observations may clue you in on something your date likes.
Also, ask yourself what interests your date has including whether your date plays sports, writes for the school paper, takes pictures, enjoys scuba diving, etc. What traits, quirks and activities are unique to the individual you have decided to accompany to the homecoming dance? Every person is different, so getting a small gift to celebrate your date’s individuality will mean more than just giving the standard corsage and boutonniere.
Sometimes it takes a sleuth to find the truth. If you can’t come up with any ideas, you can always try to ask someone close to your date in a subtle way. Also, some research may be in order. You can always glance at your date’s social media to try to figure out his or her interests, and if your date has been attending the same school as you for previous years, you can peruse the yearbook to try to find some hints.
Let’s Get Personal
The best gifts are personal. Luckily, there are plenty of options for personalization. A gift for the homecoming honey who likes to look good could be a personalized compact. This is an inexpensive way to let your date know you were thinking of something useful, and it will be a practical keepsake.
There is an old tradition from France where sweethearts would get a padlock, inscribe their initials then lock it to the bridge and toss the key in the water to symbolize unbreakable love. The tradition is now frowned upon for the negative impact that this has on the environment. However, giving your date an engraved lock would make a very sincere memento if the relationship is serious. This is not a suitable gift for a friendship date or a new, budding romance.
Some other items that are great for making a more personal statement with your gift are a personalized snow globe, a jewelry box or a personalized picture frame with a photo of the two of you together. A personalized journal or even a quirky item like an engraved harmonica would be a cool keepsake. A piece of art or an illustration can be made of the two of you and is a sweet gesture.
There are many ways to personalize a gift. There are even unfertilized quail eggs that have a heart-shaped opening so personalized notes can be placed inside. The eggs come in a cute box that reads, “Crack me.”
A teddy bear, gift basket, plant or flowers with a sweet, personal note can let you express your gratitude and fondness for your date in a way that may be more comfortable and less awkward than speaking the words directly to your date.
If you think you may want to express your affection in a personal way with a beautiful bouquet or cuddly teddy bear, our florists at Conroy's Flowers in Garden Grove, CA would love to help you select the perfect, personal gift for your homecoming honey.
The great thing about jewelry is that it is versatile, so it is a gift that can be extremely personal or more of a token of friendship. Since homecoming is all about school spirit, flower necklaces can be made using blooms of your school colors. These can be delicate or grandiose depending on style and dress.
Bracelets offer options for personalization with engraving, and charms can show your date that you pay attention to his or her likes.
A cute and memorable option for homecoming is a wish bracelet, which has a small star charm on a cord that is available in many colors. The bracelet comes with a card that reads, “Tie this bracelet on your wrist, then close your eyes and make a wish. When the bracelet’s life is through, you’ll find your wish just might come true.”
As you tie the bracelet on, tell your date to make a wish and the knot seals it. Over time, the cord will naturally fray, and when it falls, the wish is released to hopefully come true.
Brooches and pendants are vintage items that are becoming popular again. These are great if you know of a favorite animal, shape or object that your date loves.
Hair’s to Your Date
You may not know your date’s homecoming hairstyle, but a hair accessory is a nice gift for someone who likes adornments. A gorgeous comb is a great statement piece if it coincides with the color and style of your date’s attire.
For something a little less extravagant, there are hairpins, hair bows and pearl barrettes. For the date who adores vintage, you can’t get much more vintage than a scarf. If you want to wow your date, give her a tiara and tell her she is your queen.
Lessons with Love
If your date isn’t into material items, consider giving a card with a coupon for paid lessons for an activity that would be of interest, whether it is tennis, painting, photography, surfing or even something like deep-sea fishing. Whatever your date likes, check and see if you can get him or her a lesson.
Another idea is to purchase tickets for an event your date would enjoy attending like a concert, show or comedian.
An elegant clutch or wristlet is a great accessory for formal events like homecoming. If you don’t know what your date is wearing, consider asking. Your date will probably just assume you are asking so you know what kind of corsage or boutonniere to buy, so this gift can remain a surprise. Your date will also likely be impressed that you care enough to show an interest.
Talk to your florist about making your date a floral hair clip. Designs can vary from ethereal and romantic with soft, pastel flowers to edgy and eclectic with succulents and berries. For a unique look, silver brunia berries have an antique silver appearance and can be striking on a floral hair accessory.
For a bohemian queen who secretly wants to be a fairy, celebrate her earthy sensibilities with a floral crown. If you are uncertain how to incorporate a floral crown, ask your date for a picture of the dress to give your florist an idea of what style will be the most appropriate for the dress.
Formal Homecoming Accessories for Menswear
Even though eveningwear for women gets more attention, formal menswear has potential for some interesting and personal accessories. Cuff links, tie pins and lapel pins come in a variety of designs including Star Wars themes, animals like raccoons, dogs, toucans and elephants along with science themes like atoms and microscopes, beloved characters like Calvin and Hobbes and many more options. To give the gift more meaning, consider placing it in an engraved gift box.
These are a few ideas. You can also give school apparel or items that incorporate school colors. Of course, your homecoming gift can be anything that would make your date feel special. Homecoming is a memorable occasion, so why not do what you can to make it more memorable?
There’s No Place Like Homecoming.
You may be wondering what all the fuss is about and if homecoming will live up to the hype. Every school has its homecoming traditions, and homecoming sometimes consists of an entire week of events and excitement.
It may seem silly, but events like homecoming have enough significance for sociologists to devote time to studying what they mean to participants. Researchers classify high school experiences as rites of passage, which deal with the individual or rites of intensification, which are about living among a group and ritualizing interdependence. Homecoming is the latter.
Learning to be part of a community is an important part of becoming an adult. As far as a rite of passage or a rite of intensification, homecoming is painless compared to some.
Beneath the excitement, the flurry of flowers, dresses and plans, homecoming is just another chance to have fun with your friends. When you have a date for homecoming, don’t show up empty-handed. Show up with gratitude and with a gift. If you are unsure about a gift or don’t have the funds for anything grandiose, the essayist and novelist Charles Dudley Warner wrote a helpful sentiment, “The excellence of a gift lies in its appropriateness rather than its value,” so your homecoming gift doesn’t require you to spend a fortune, it just requires some thought.