NEW YORK (MainStreet) It's the thought that counts, but it's hard to fake a smile when you receive the same unwanted holiday gifts year after year. From snow globes from Aunt Polly to reindeer ties from Grandpa John, some common Christmas presents tend to elicit more eye rolls than excitement. Read on for our round-up of seven tacky Christmas gifts that keep finding their way under your tree, plus suggestions on fresher gift ideas for your friends and family.
Sure, they look kind of cool ... for about five seconds. After that, snow globes are simply mundane dust collectors that serve no useful function. O.K., we get it, they're a decoration, but how many do you really need? Too many snow globes scattered throughout your home can look like clutter, and these days there are better alternatives if you want to give your abode a cozy touch.
A better option:
"A fresh take on a snow globe would be mercury glass votives or ornaments," says Kathryn Drury Wagner, senior content manager for the gift recommendation site Gifts.com. "Mercury glass is very trendy right now and gives a festive glow." One option is this set of four jeweled mercury glass votive cups featuring grooved and hobnail textures from Pottery Barn ($22.99).
Made of candied or dried fruit, nuts and spices and sometimes soaked in spirits, fruitcake is arguably one of the most re-gifted presents each Christmas. In fact, Johnny Carson once joked that there is only one fruitcake in the world and people keep sending it to each other. While there are still some die-hard fruitcake fans, the younger generations in particular tend to see this classic cake as unappetizing and dated.
"I think fruitcake is just currently out of vogue," says Drury Wagner. "Who knows, it may make a reboundjust look at all the Brooklyn hipsters sporting 1890s-style facial hair right now."