Image for blog - How to make the perfect Christmas hamper Image for blog - How to make the perfect Christmas hamper
Features // Blog

How to make the perfect Christmas hamper

Publisher - Great British Food Awards
published by


Dec 05, 2022
7 minutes to read

With lots of us looking for ways to cut costs and get value for money this Christmas, making your own carefully chosen food and drink hamper is a great way of creating a really special gift - at a fraction of the cost of a shop-bought one. Hamper and gifting expert Sarah Louise Fairburn, founder IMP & MAKER, shares her top tips for crafting the perfect hamper

Know the recipient:

Everyone loves to receive a hamper, especially if it has been thoughtfully put together with the recipient in mind, so sit down before you shop and write a list of the things you’d like to include based on what your chosen recipient loves best; their hobbies, favourite flavours, colours, types of cuisine, or anything else that springs to mind. Having a list will make it easier to plan when and where you need to shop.

What’s the theme?

If you’re theming your hamper, think about the occasion and what items would be good to include. Bubbly, chocolates and pampering treats are perfect for a girls’ night in, for a foodie loving friend a collection of cheese, charcuterie, crackers, fresh fruits and wine makes a great gift idea, or if there’s a mixologist bursting to get out, a cocktail-themed kit would hit the spot – think drinks, mixers, garnishes, glasses and drinks making accessories.

Think outside the basket:

There are many kinds of containers you can use for creating an eye-catching hamper. Wicker boxes and baskets are the most popular choice and can beautifully set off the contents inside, but also think about trays, boxes and large pots. Laundry baskets, storage baskets and vintage crates are all great to consider and for a cheaper option, a cardboard box covered in recyclable paper can also make a great base. All of these options are sustainable too, and can either recycled, used in another hamper or used around the home afterwards.

Build up the base: 

Image for blog - How to make the perfect Christmas hamper

There’s a wide choice of fillers you can use inside your box or basket, allowing you to form a good base and build up the items inside. Think about sustainable options and avoid single-use plastic where you can – many companies now sell recyclable shred or other fillers. Tissue paper and even scrunched up newspaper are also great choices.

 It’s a wrap: 

Not all hampers need to be wrapped but if you’re thinking of choosing cellophane, try to choose compostable bags and wrap which are much better for the planet. Think about the little embellishments and finishing touches that will set your hamper off to perfection. Ribbons, raffia, bows, tags and even dried fruits, herbs and spices can be colour matched to the contents inside, or themed for different occasions. Again, choose natural, recyclable or reusable options where you can.

A tall order: 

Give all of your items a chance to be seen by keeping smaller items in the front and taller items at the back. Place heavier items in the hamper first, as these will naturally want to sink into the shred or other filler (this helps with the element of surprise as the lucky recipient digs deep to see all of their goodies inside!). Once these are in position, add smaller and lighter items, and use extra shred or filler in any gaps. And try to position items at an angle so that everything, where possible, can be seen.

Keep your items secured:

Glue dots, sticky tape and even skewers can help keep lighter and smaller items in their place.

Image for blog - How to make the perfect Christmas hamper

Sarah Louise Fairburn is founder of IMP & MAKER, which specialises in luxury food & drink hamper and gift experiences

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