Around the world, people give housewarming gifts to wish new homeowners well in their new home. Some believe the tradition began in France. While others believe Russia to be the origin of the housewarming tradition.
The word itself, housewarming, dates back to the 16th century. So it’s safe to say housewarmings have been taking place for a very long time.
Different cultures may have celebrated housewarmings in their own unique ways throughout history. But one thing is the same:
Housewarmings involve various rituals and blessings to help others settle into their new home.
What Are Traditional Housewarming Gifts?
In the past, housewarming gifts were quite functional, such as a bag of groceries and firewood.
Besides being highly useful, traditional housewarming gifts were also ceremonial and symbolic. Their intentions were to clear the abode of “bad vibes” and evil spirits.
Here are 15 housewarming gifts and their symbolic meaning.
- Bread. Meaning: “May this house never know hunger.”
- Wine. Meaning: “May you always have joy and never go thirsty.”
- Wood. Meaning: “May your home have stability, harmony, and peace.”
- Broom. Meaning: “May your house always be clean and free of evil spirits.”
- Coal. Meaning: “May you always be warm.”
- Honey. Meaning: “May you always enjoy the sweetness of life.”
- Bluebird. Meaning: “May you have happiness and good luck.”
- Knives. Meaning: “May always be protected from intruders.”
- Sugar. Meaning: “May your life be filled with sweetness.”
- Rice. Meaning: “May the love in your home multiply.”
- Olive Oil. Meaning: “May you be blessed with health and well-being.”
- Plants. Meaning: “May your home always be filled with life.”
- Salt & Herbs. Meaning: “May there always be flavor and spice in your life.”
- Candle. Meaning: “May you always have light through the darkest times.”
- Coin. Meaning: “May you dwell in good fortune.”
Tap the highlighted gifts above to see a modern twist.
What do you give a new homeowner?
While we have many creative housewarming gift options today, we thought it would be fun to take inspiration from historical housewarming gift traditions and reinterpret them for modern-day.
Here are five traditional housewarming gifts (with a twist) and what they mean.
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1. Traditional: Bread
2. Traditional: Wine
Meaning: “May you always have joy and never go thirsty.”
Twist: Rescued Wine Candle
While it may not quench your thirst, the cabernet candle, packaged in a reclaimed wine bottle, evokes the exquisite flavors and aromas of dark chocolate and sweet cherries, with a rich finish of herbs.
Bonus tip: Candles are also a traditional housewarming gift. Meaning: “May you always have light through the darkest times.”
3. Traditional: Honey
Meaning: “May you always enjoy the sweetness of life.”
We’re keeping it classic on this one and elevating the traditional honey gift with raw honey. Packaged in a sustainable and handsome jar, raw honey is tastier because the natural bee pollen is kept in the jar instead of processed out.
4. Traditional: Olive Oil
Meaning: “May you be blessed with health and well-being.”
Twist: Olive Oil & Laurel Leaf Soap
Lifting, unpacking, and recycling corrugated moving boxes can be rough on your hands. A moisturizing organic shea butter soap with organic hydrating oils and essential oils is the perfect way to nourish and revitalize dried-out skin.
5. Traditional: Salt
Meaning: “May there always be flavor and spice in your life.”
Twist: Dead Sea Salts Bath Soak
A calming lavender bath soak is perfect for relaxation. A blend of pure essential oils and Dead Sea mineral salts is a wonderful way to de-stress after a big move.
Housewarming Gift Packaging
What are your favorite symbolic housewarming gifts? Share in the comments below.