Bridal Shower Gift Idea: International House of Picnics

Not the IHOP you're familiar with?  

This past weekend, Jamie and I went to our husbands' cousin Becky's bridal shower.  (got that?)  It was an Around the Clock shower:  a type of shower that neither of us had been to before.  Jamie was assigned "picnic time" and I was assigned "travel time."  I was totally stumped.  Aside from the suitcases that the bride and groom wanted (which, even with a coupon, were a little more than I wanted to spend), I couldn't think of what to get them for "travel time."  I debated going with a toiletry bag with her new monogram and some travel essentials, but that didn't seem right.  Jamie was struggling too. So we decided to get on our creative pants and do a combined gift.  We took a few liberties with our assigned times, but hey, a girl's got to do what she's got to do!

We ended up deciding to do an international food and wine picnic basket.  Not a real picnic basket ... but a cute lidded basket that the happy couple could use in their new home.  We reasoned that they'd get more use out of this than an actual picnic basket.   Here's the basket (found at Michael's and purchased when it was 50% off) and most of the loot:

Because Becky already had one shower prior to this one, her registry was pretty picked over, so we went off-registry.  We found a bunch of things at Crate & Barrel, including a cute plastic tray in a cheery stripe, a matching striped picnic tablecloth, some punchy floral napkins that coordinated with the stripes and two plastic stacking blue wine glasses.  Cute!  To tie in the "travel" time, we bought some great cookbooks from our favorite chefs (Ina Garten and Giada DeLaurentis) with an international focus: Barefoot in Paris and Everyday Italian.  We also loved these gorgeous glass dessert plates from Crate and Barrel with the pretty white floral.  They were so sweet, we picked up four.

And what's a picnic, or a meal for that matter, without wine?  We chose three bottles of wine to round out the basket, all with an international bent, to again tie in the whole "travel time."  Mmmmm ... vino.

So, once we had the supplies, it was time to put it all together.  I love this part!  In college, I worked at Crabtree & Evelyn and loved to put together the gift-baskets.  Fun fun.  The key is to take your time and play around with it. Just throw things in and then make it right.  I used some tissue paper that Crate & Barrel gave me with the plates to fill in empty spaces and sort of cushion around the breakable wine bottles and plates.  Here it is pretty much together:

Next up was to create a simple card that explained what was going on with the gift.  A few minutes on Adobe Illustrator and voila -- I whipped up this little number. I punched a hole in the corner so I could attach it to the basket. 

Then I took clear cellophane that I had on hand and wrapped up the basket.  I used a big white bow to tie it together and used a scrap of ribbon to hang the card.  Done!  Here it is.

I'm happy to report the bride loved the gift. Whew!  What about you guys? Stumped on a gift you need to give?  Let us know! 

See you swoon,


  1. Your basket looks so good! I like your solutions a lot.

  2. That is such a creative gift giving! And beautifully done too. Those dessert plates are truly gorgeoussss~~

  3. Thanks everyone! Jamie and I were really happy with the gift and kind of/totally wanted to steal it for ourselves :)

  4. love this! and i have those dessert plates : )

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