6 Best Thoughtful Gift Ideas for Grandma That are Perfect for Every Occasion
Shopping for grandparents, and grandma specifically, can be a real struggle.
Much of the time, your grandparents home may look much like a flea market or antique shop—filled to the brim with mementos and sentimental items from a life well-lived. This collection of things can be good and bad, but in either case, can make it difficult for you to consider what sort of new gift you could purchase for them that they may not already have.
Shopping for grandma can also be difficult if your grandmother doesn’t have busy hobbies or activities that she may need supplies for. Much like with the reputation socks have during Christmas time, you don’t want to pick up a generic gift for who may be the matriarch of the family.
Whether it’s your grandmother’s birthday, anniversary, or you just want to give her a gift to remember you by, we’ve put together our top six best thoughtful gift ideas for grandma that are perfect for every occasion.
These gifts range widely in type and price, so even if you don’t like all of our suggestions, we’re confident that there’s something on this list that your grandmother would love to have.
And to help you confidently pick out her next gift, we’ve also put together what we think you need to look for in a gift for grandma, as well as how we’ve chosen our gifts and everything else you need to know in our Buyer’s Guide at the end of our list.
What to Look For in a Gift for Grandma
Shopping for grandma is going to make some work—as you’ll need to consider the things you already know about grandma, as well as her interests, hobbies, work, and other aspects of her life.
To help you get on the right track to finding the perfect gift for her, we recommend asking yourself the following questions:
What sorts of gifts did Grandma appreciate before?
- What does Grandma do for fun?
- What sorts of decorations does she keep around the house?
- What sorts of clothes does she wear?
- Does she take an interest in the lives of yourself/your children?
Before we get into our gift ideas, let’s break each of these down one by one.The biggest indication you’re going to get on whether or not your gift idea is going to be a winner with your grandmother is looking to your previous gift ideas—as well as gift ideas from others siblings, parents, and relatives—and seeing how those fared.
Often, you’ll find that anyone, grandmother or otherwise, will express immediate appreciation for a gift upon receiving it. However, the real tell is where that gift ends up if it ends up used, and how often it gets used.
For example, if you’ve purchased a decoration she appreciates, you may be able to see your gift on grandma’s walls for years to come. However, if your grandmother put your previous decoration gift in the closet and hasn’t touched it since, you may want to avoid the decorative gifts on our list.
Next up on things you should consider are the things your grandmother does for fun. For example, if you know your grandmother knits, you can easily pick up some supplies that she’ll use—may even to make you a gift right back.
Likewise, if you’ve seen your grandmother watch her favorite soap opera for hours a day, why not give her a set of DVDs or possibly some merchandising from the show?
You’ll also want to consider the types of decorations your grandmother keeps around in her home, as well as what sorts of clothes she wears.
Everyone’s perceptions of taste are subjective—and you’re going to be in an uphill battle trying to pick out a decorative gift or a new item of clothing that best matches your grandmother’s tastes if you don’t do your research.
Take a look around at her home. See if she tends to keep mementos or if her home is unified and generally free of nostalgic objects. And when it comes to clothing, we recommend talking to your mother, your grandfather, or others who may have more experience getting clothes for grandma.
Otherwise, you can stick with a few apparel staples that we think work best for most grandmothers—and are listed below.
Finally, one of the easiest gift ideas can come right from the people you are most familiar with. If you know that your grandmother greatly appreciates time with you, your children, or your family, you can pick her up something that you made, or a small prized object that you know has a lot of sentimental value.
As we grow other, objects can tend to lose their meaning over time. That means that you’ll need to find something that carries its weight—not just another useless trinket to keep around what may already be a messy house.
We don’t know your grandmother, but we know that you do. Which is exactly why we think knowing the answers to these questions are your best bet for picking out the gift that grandma is going to love.
How We’ve Chosen Our Gifts
Our gifts were chosen to represent the widest range of gifts that grandmothers tend to like. As we’ve said, we may not know your grandmother, but we know the types of gifts that grandmothers love.
That means we’ve curated a selection of gifts that range from apparel to decor to stationary and so much more. These gifts range in price, but are all generally on the lower end of the spectrum. And if you’re not too sure which gift may be right for your grandmother, you may want to consider picking up two or more to cover your bases.
If you find yourself at the end of our list without an idea as to what gift is best for your grandmother, don’t worry—because our Buyer’s Guide at the end of the list should point you to some safe options that are sure to please.
Top 6 Best Gifts for Grandma
Struggling to get a grandma a gift that doesn’t end up in the closet? Check out these six options that are sure to please your grandmother and show that you care no matter what the occasion:
burton+BURTON Grandma Teach Porcelain Coffee Mug
Much like with parents or distant relatives, purchasing a unique mug is sure to remind them of you each time they get their morning coffee. And if you live a considerable distance away from grandmother, a mug much like the one shown here can help you keep close to her heart even if you’re thousands of miles away.
This porcelain coffee mug from burton+BURTON comes with a simple teal and blue design with “Grandma” inscribed in bright, bold lettering. This mug is dishwasher safe and should be able to take quite a beating—all the while blending in with most kitchens and remaining easy to hold. The smaller size is perfect for smaller portioning that may be found in your grandmother’s morning coffee or tea.
This mug is very affordable and easy to purchase, but regardless, any mug with “Grandma” or other meaningful text written on it remains a great option to provide both a useful gift—as well as one that reminds your grandmother of you.
Amazon Essentials Woman’s Cardigan
Shopping for clothes for your grandmother can be a difficult experience.
Cardigans remain a counterpoint for most women’s fashion, and just about any woman of any age has one or more cardigans in their wardrobe. Much like with button-down shirts for men, this item of clothing goes with many different types of tops and can be used to create a variety of different looks.
It’s a versatile, comfortable item of clothing—and so popular, you may want to get one for grandpa as well!
This option from Amazon Essentials is affordable and easy to wash. It comes in a variety of sizes and colors and its basic texture matches with even the most unique of outfits your grandmother owns.
And if you live in a colder climate, a knitted cardigan could serve to keep your grandmother warm at home during those cold winter months.
Letters to Grandchildren
If you live far away from your grandmother and want a means to keep in touch with her, we strongly recommend a gift such as this.
While you may initially feel odd giving your grandmother a gift that’s used to give letters back to you, a “letters to grandchildren” book such as this can show your grandmother that you want to keep in touch and that you care about her.
In this letter to grandchildren book, you can expect twelve separate prompts that are designed to get the conversation started between you and your grandma. These cards also come with sealable envelopes, so if your grandmother wants you to wait until a certain date to open it, there’s an easy way for her to convey that message!
If you want to show your grandmother that you care, you can also find an equivalent “letters to grandma” booklet, or promise to write back and respond to every letter that she sends you. Communication is the building block of any relationship, and if you give your grandmother the gift of communication, we can’t see that being anything other than a great gift for her.
And as a silver lining, you’ll also be incentivized to ensure that your unique grandchild/grandmother relationship stays as strong as ever, no matter how far apart you two end up.
Sterling Silver Topaz Cross Earrings
This next item is also an article of clothing but remains a safe bet for the traditional and religious grandmother in your life.
Earrings, like the topaz cross options shown here, are generally much easier to match to a personality than shirts or tops. And if you’re not sure what types of earrings to purchase your grandmother, try asking your grandfather or mother about what she currently wears, and see if your prospective pick fits in with the rest.
As for these earrings, the combination of sterling silver and topaz crystals makes for an elegant option that’s not going to break the bank. And while the familiar “cross” shape makes these earrings more for the religious grandmother in your life, there are many other options in different shapes and sizes if you enjoy the idea of earrings.
Earrings are great for their wide range in price as well, so you can pick up a pair that best matches your grandma’s sensibilities as well as your wallet. In either case, almost every grandmother would love a pair of earrings from a grandchild that shows them that you care.
Sunbeam Heated Blanket
In the fall and winter months, just about everyone can feel a bit nippy inside their home. And since many grandmothers are retired and spend much of their time at home, it can be all the more important that you seek out a heated blanket to ensure your grandmother’s extremities stay warm and comfortable.
This heated blanket from Sunbeam comes with ten heat settings and uses a wired system underneath quilted fleece. This option would cover a twin-sized mattress, and is perfect for a throw blanket or a blanket near the reclining chair, but if you need an option that’s going to rest on the bed, then Sunbeam offers three other sizes and six other colors than the traditional blue.
This heated blanket is also machine washable and comes with a shutoff function that’ll prevent any unhappy accidents or accidental dozing off from causing too much trouble.
Plush, soft, and very warm, we think almost any grandmother would appreciate having a heated blanket around for extra warmth. And while you’re at it, you may want to purchase one for yourself as well!
Chesapeake Bay Candles
Our final pick is another safe option that you can pick out to ensure grandma’s home always smells fresh.
A good scented home is always a plus, and to help your grandmother keep her home smelling great, you can give her the useful gift of a candle. This option from the Chesapeake Bay offers affordable scents for mind and body, and mixed scents that should last up to 50 hours.
These candles are also designed with essential oils and use a soy wax blend to ensure a smooth burn and no need to cut the wick.
Plus, if you wanted to make sure grandma truly enjoyed your gift, talk to others in your family about her favorite scents, or visit her and take note of the scents you see in the home. You could also replace her favorite candle to show that you’ve taken note of the things that your grandmother likes.
Still not entirely sure which of these gift ideas for grandma best aligns with your grandmother? Here are a few extra tips to get you on the right track:
Gift ideas for grandma have to come from an honest place. We tried to make suggestions in each product description on our list for you to customize our picks to make the best match your grandmother. It may not be as easy as ordering a few items online, but a little bit of effort here goes a long way.
For example, if you’ve purchased gifts for your grandmother, why not include a card as well? Handwritten cards, even short ones, show that you took the time to write some encouraging and loving words to someone you care about.
Likewise, and as we’ve described already, talking to those closest to her should give you a better sense of her style and sensibilities. Your grandfather is the best option, but your parents may also know that she prefers and give you the peace of mind in knowing that you’ve picked out something she’s going to love.
So whether you enter into a Kirkland’s to pick up the latest piece of home decoration, or opt for a few candles and handwritten notes, ensure that your gift for grandma means something. And often, the thought counts far more the dollars spent or the time spent getting it.
So long as you can show your grandma you care, through gifts or other means, we think that your thoughtful gift is going to be one she remembers for a long, long time.
Tina Gray is a freelance journalist, theatre enthusiast and aspiring author. She has a passion for telling stories through various mediums and regularly writes for various online publications. Her short stories will soon be published in her first volume. Currently, she resides in the San Fernando Valley and is studying screenwriting.