Re-gifting the gift bag

My friend sent my Christmas present in one of those gift bags last year. As it happens, what I’m sending her isn’t easily wrap-able. So I thought, why not use the bag? I asked my coworker her opinion as to whether a woman would be put put by that. She said she sees nothing wrong with it, and told me how she likes to recycle stuff. She thought it just makes sense to re-use a pretty bag, rather than to throw it away.

If you are a woman, would you be offended by receiving a gift in a bag you bought last year?

(I’ll just stop into Hallmark tomorrow and get a new one. But I’m curious.)

I thought the whole point of gift bags is that they would be reused. I just wouldn’t give it to the same person I received it ftom.

I’m not a woman, but my thoughts on the concept are this: It totally depends on the woman in question and your relationship with her.

My mother? She would be thrilled if our whole extended family and all circles of friends used one bag for the rest of our days. She not only re-gift-bags, but if you give my mother a wrapped gift, be fully prepared to see that paper around her gift to you the following year.

My girlfriend? She would likely dump me and immediately throw my gift in a toilet. On fire. I’ve never done it, but I have no doubt in my mind that she would view any type of regiftification as an expression of laziness, apathy and unimaginative ennui.

Generally, I would say that if you have to ask the question, 99% of the time, the answer is no.

Shoot, there are members of my family who get practically orgasmic at the sight of gifts in gift bags. There’s even a semi-standardized protocol for “regifting” gift bags: First use, write only on one half of the folded tag attached to the handle. Second use, carefully cut along the fold, and write on the remaining side. Third use, remove tag entirely and attach a new hang tag (the kind on a piece of cord.) Etc. Bags are lovingly folded away for use from one Christmas or birthday to the next.

Personally, I’d be neither surprised nor offended to see a recycled gift bag. Other women might be, but I find that weird. (Call it “earth-friendly gift-giving” or something if you’re afraid of offending. After all, how can someone be upset if you are making an effort to save the earth for our children and baby seals and stuff?)

Also not female here, but regifting a gift bag seems to me the most logical thing in the world. I’ve done it, and it’s been done to me. It’s a great thing.

Also, if some woman I was dating dumped me over having re-used a gift bag, I’d consider her to have done me a favor. I can’t imagine wanting to be involved with such a shallow individual.

Bah, my family keeps two separate bags in the living room on Christmas day: one for trash, and one for recycled wrapping material–that is, bows and bags.

Use the bag. Though do make sure it still looks nice and doesn’t have last year’s “to-from” tag on it. A crappy looking bag is pretty tacky.

Yeah, I think I’m in agreement with you here. If a woman judges you merely on how good your wrapping skills are, she’s not really worth having.

If my boyfriend’s gift to me was really rough-looking and worn, then I’d probably chuckle and shake my head (and possibly tease him a bit later). But that would be about the extent of my judging. :smiley:

I too thought the point of gift bags was to use them until they fell apart. I agree with being careful with the tag, though - it is tacky to not take the old tag off (and I probably wouldn’t send the same gift bag back to someone if I knew I got it from them). I have a stock of gift bags for re-gifting in my wrapping supplies, too.

Your girlfriend sounds a little high-maintenance, Katzwinkel. Aren’t we all supposed to be reducing, re-using, and recycling these days?

Merry Christmas!

My best friend and I are both female, and we’ve been passing the same gift bag back and forth for some years now. It’s finally bitten the dust, so I will have to buy a new gift bag this year.

I’ve also been known to sew simple drawstring fabric bags, and use them as gift bags. People love them, but they tend to use them for their own purposes, not for more gifting. I comb through the remnant bins at fabric and craft stores to find fabric at a very cheap price. I’ve also given a couple of gifts simply wrapped in fabric, if I know the recipient sews. For instance, one of my friends just adores frogs. I found several yards of a cheerful frog print in the clearance section of JoAnn’s, and wrapped one of her presents in it. She was delighted, and said that she made a couple of placemats, coasters, and potholders from this fabric.

This phrasing for some reason has made me think of gunny sacks. Which leads me to the question that always comes up on this board. Is it alright to give food for Christmas? Yes, but not in a gunny sack unless it’s your horse.

My bookclub did a bag sew party a few years ago. Everyone brought their sewing machines and ribbon and Christmas fabric remnants and contributed supplies to the pile. That way you had lots of material and ribbon (and wire and beads - if you were so inclined - to decorate with) - to choose from.

Personally, I think its a strange person to remember with BAG they gave you from year to year. I can’t remember what GIFT I gave someone.

I’m no granola-eating, Birkenstock-wearing, liberal-leftist tree-hugger; :smiley:
(Well, OK, I do wear Birkenstocks). But it seems incredibly wasteful, to me, to have such a nice sturdy pretty bag and not re-use it!

As others have said, make sure the old to/from tag isn’t on it. But by all means, re-use, re-use, re-use.

It is, however, a social faux pas to re-gift the same gift in the same bag, to the person who gave it to you in the first place! :wink:

A friend and I have been trading the same gift bag back to each other for years now. It’s kind of our thing.

Absolutely re-use the gift-bag, but I usually try not to give the bag back to the person who gave it to me, but pass it on to a third party. That said, if I got a gift bag back, I might have a little private giggle to myself thinking that they forgot that I was the one who gave them the bag in the first place (it’s a tiny social faux-pas, unless you have an understanding like some of the posters above), but in no way would I actually be offended. And anyone who would be needs to get the reindeer out of their butt.

Put me down as one of the people that re-uses with a vengeance - adopting the tag method and all that.

And my stepmum and I used to give each other gifts in the same bag every few months - that was our thing. Fill it with something they’ll use, put it in “our” gift bag, pass it on. . . birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, etc.

That’s the same greeting you gave me last year. Stingy bastard.

:: sniff ::

I don’t think I’d ever remember what a gift bag I gave last year looked like, unless it was totally unique. How do you people remember this trivial stuff?

We haven’t been engaged for almost four years, and there is no ‘relationship’. We’re back to being friends just like since high school. I don’t think I’d be judged, and she’s usually a pretty practical person. I don’t think she’d mind if she got the bag back; she’d probably laugh. (And she’d probably tease me about it.)

But as I said in the OP, I’m going to get a new one today.

What ELSE would you do with a pretty gift bag? Throw it away in the garbage? Of course you reuse it, if it isn’t all beat to hell and has someone’s name etched on with a black crayon. Use it as wrapping for someone else’s gift, and if it’s a little crumpled, so what? Give it to them at night, or mixed in with a bunch of other things. As for Katzwinkel’s high-maintenance gf who feels entitled to only the very very bestest of everything - I know and loathe that kind of entitled bitch. Prepare for a life of staring at paint samples for a minimum of three months, and if you bleed or puke, you are on your own.