In the spirit of Don't hate the playa, hate the game I'd like to propose Don't hate the giver, hate the gift. Post Christmas, I've been flooded with questions from clients which are variations on this theme:
"Sweet mother of mercy, Wardobe Whisperer, what do I do with [insert heinous gift here]?" (Followed by several photos of the offending item.)
There are a few ways to think about this. If, for instance, your great grandma knitted you a hat that is two sizes too small and in an unbecoming color, then you thank her graciously and add it to your Good Will pile. On the other hand, if your (wo)man bought you something expensive that doesn't quite represent your style, then you have to consider coming clean. Here is how:
First figure out if the gift is returnable/exchangable/refundable. If not, chalk it up to a lesson learned. Next year you will find a friend who will act as your conduit to feed your (wo)man desirable gift ideas. If it IS returnable, wait until it's just the two of you and then appeal to his/her investment. Perhaps, something along these lines:
"Thank you so much for the thoughtful [insert heinous gift here but don't use the word heinous] but I don't think I'll get as much use out of it as I'd like. I want to be mindful of your investment and get something I will be sure to use all the time. Would you mind if I made an exchange?" That should do it. In the end, even if hurt feelings occur, I'm sure the giver would ultimately prefer that you love your gift.
They say God only gives you what you can handle so I'm pretty sure that's why He gave me a husband with excellent taste. Witness my favorite gift, the above pictured double diamond cuff bracelet by Alexis Bittar. I am in love. Better yet, no confrontation required!
(PS: If I died and my remains were recycled into a bracelet, this would be me.)