How To Make The Perfect Mother's Day Gift Basket, Because One Present Isn't Enough

by Julia Guerra

I don't mean to brag, but I’m pretty much the queen of gift baskets. This probably stems from the fact that I can’t just buy a loved one a single gift and be satisfied (to my husband’s dismay); I have to make a whole production out of birthdays and Christmas gift-giving with a compilation of goodies that fall under the same theme. So if you’re wondering how to make a Mother’s Day gift basket for your mama this year, instead of summing up all that love and affection you have for her in one neatly packaged box, gift card, or bouquet of flowers, you’ve come to the right place.

The first, and probably the most fun step, is to set a theme. What makes your mom unique? A good starting point would be to make a list of her hobbies or interests. If she’s really into music, for example, take note of her favorite bands so you can scope out some memorabilia. If she’s a pro in the kitchen, sweep through her drawers and cabinets and jot down some cool gadgets she might be missing from her stash. Or, you can keep things really simple and stick with a general all-things-mom theme, where the only rule is, if you think she’d love it, you add it to the pile.

Next, set a practical budget. Trust me, I completely understand that, once you start adding things to your digital shopping cart, or strolling through the aisles of T.J. Maxx or HomeGoods, it can take every ounce of self-control to resist a good find. However, moms understand, better than anyone, the need to spend responsibly. So pop into your bank account, give yourself a spending limit, and shop accordingly, my friend.

Now the real fun begins. Browse online and in-store for the best trinkets and presents your mom will adore. To get you started, here are a few no-fail gifts any mom is sure to love.

The Right Basket To Put All Her Goodies In

Pillowfort Polka Dot Bin (Small) White & Gold, $7.99, Target

When I go hunting for the perfect gift basket, there are a few things I like to keep in mind: For instance, when it comes to a Mother's Day gift basket, you want to find one your mom will get some actual use out of after the gift-giving is over. Consider patterns she likes, or even color themes she uses throughout her house, so that whatever you purchase can perfectly match her decor.

From there, think about how big of a basket you want. This goes along with the first question of how your mom might be able to use it after Mother's Day, but it also raises another, slightly more obvious question: can you fill it, and how high can you fill it? What types of presents are you looking to get for your mom? Review your list, and be sure to base your bin size on that for clicking "purchase."

A Scent That Brings Back Good Memories
Uncommon Goods

Literary Candles, $16, Uncommon Goods

If your mama's anything like mine, she loves a good candle. Scents can be one of the easiest gifts to give a mom, but they can also be one of the most sentimental. After all, your memories are strongly linked to your sense of smell, right?

For instance, find an aroma inspired by vintage book-lining, if your mom always used to read to you to help you fall asleep as a kid. Or scope out some wax fragrances, like the signature double chocolate chip cookies she'd always make to cure a bad day, or a woodsy scent reminding her of her favorite hiking trail. I can guarantee you'll get bonus points, too, if you pair the scent with a sweet note letting her know what this gift means to both of you.

Something Sweet To Snack On

Happy Mother's Day Assorted Chocolate Gold Gift Box, $49, Godiva

Rumor has it diamonds are a girl's best friend, but if I were a mom, I'd take candy over jewelry any day.

Godiva, for instance, has a lovely selection of Mother's Day-inspired assortments, but if the special lady in your life isn't one for fancy chocolate boxes and, instead, likes to keep things casual with a bag of M&Ms, splurge a bit to buy her a variety of flavors. Trust me, she'll thank you for the extra thought you put into something so simple.

Something To Read When Her Favorite TV Show Is Over

The World Of Downton Abbey (Hardcover), $29.99, PBS

Moms are just as obsessed with streaming their favorite shows as you are, which means they feel just as lost as you do when their go-to TV show is over.

Fill that lonely void before it starts with a top-selling book in her favorite genre. For example, my mom's big into all things Downton Abbey, so I'd probably go for something like this, that would give her a cool, behind-the-scenes look at the show.

Something To Ease Her Stress

Women's Wellness Calming & Balancing Kit, $38.95, Saje

Being a mom takes hard work — especially these days, when most women are not only keeping their families happy and healthy, but are also juggling careers, a social life beyond PTA meetings, and squeezing in some (if any) time for themselves. Help your mama along by bringing her stress levels down a notch with a few vials of her favorite essential oils.

Once she has them, be sure to teach her how to use these bad boys. She might know a trick or two, like rubbing lavender on her temples for headaches, but show her how to operate a diffuser, rub them on her feet before bed, or add a few drops to a warm tub. She deserves a bit of pampering, after all.

Something To Help Her Indulge In Self-Care

Gift Card, from $50, SpaFinder

Spa treatments are perfect for any mother of any age because, seriously, who couldn't use a deep-tissue massage every once in a while? With SpaFinder, booking treatments has never been easier, especially if you and mom don't live in the same neighborhood.

Where I live, my spa of choice is called The Fountain, but there aren't any around my mom's area. Log on to SpaFinder, click the gift card amount you're willing to spend, and your lucky lady can browse through top-rated spas wherever she lives, and pick out any treatment she'd like.

Something Glamorous To Help Her Feel Like A Million Bucks
Anastasia Beverly Hills/Sephora

Anastasia Beverly Hills Soft Glam Eyeshadow Palette, $42, Sephora

Raise your hand if you used to raid your mother's makeup drawer to dabble in her eyeshadow collection or borrow a coat of mascara. Well, now's the time to return the favor.

Personally, I love picking out makeup for my mom — mostly because I'm infatuated with beauty products (I have about 15 palettes to my name, and more purple lipstick shades than I can count), but also because my mom loves to stick to her staples, and I consider it my duty to get her out of her comfort zone. If your mom's the same way, present her with an updated palette, and teach her how to mix and match the colors.