Yesterday I posed the question to my Facebook friends:
OK, let’s be honest, is re-gifting not cool or a form of recycling?
And the vast majority of people who responded said yes — but you have to do it responsibly.
My friend, Melinda, said it’s OK “only if done honestly.” For example, you should say, “Hey, I got this for Christmas but it doesn’t fit/not my color and I thought it would look great on you.”
Pal Titus agreed: “If you really don’t want it, and you give it to someone who really does, it’s a form of paying it forward.”
And my classmate, Brian, called re-gifting a form of recycling: “If you feel it’s a better fit for someone else then why not.”
Turns out, most Americans feel the same way — and they don’t even mind getting a recycled gift, either.
According to a recent survey, 83 percent of responders said they don’t mind receiving a re-gifted present. And half of them said they suspected they had received one in the past.
But get this: only 35 percent said they had, themselves, re-gifted something.
I’m not sure if I believe that.
My guess is we’ve all, in some way, have re-gifted something. Like that box of See’s Candies you decided to share with your favorite secretary. Or that third blender you handed off to your little sister who left for college. I feel like we’ve all done that.
But true re-gifting — the practice of passing on a present to someone else as a present — is a little trickier.
For starters, you can’t re-gift everything. Monogrammed towels, for example, aren’t appropriate to pass on. And you have to be careful you don’t give away something to someone who might have ties to the original giver. It would be entirely awkward seeing a gift from your boss on the desk of a co-worker.
So I’m throwing it out there: you think re-gifting is appropriate? And when is it not? I’d love to hear your stories!