When looking for a gift with a difference, a piece of art is a beautiful way to make someone feel special. Whether it’s to mark an anniversary, a milestone occasion or to show someone how much you care, there are few luxury gifts that are more memorable.
A piece of art is also one of the most personal and unique gifts you can give and will become a precious keepsake that lasts a lifetime. However, buying art as a gift can be a daunting prospect. So, if you are looking for inspiration, then read on as we’ve put together our essential guide to buying art as a gift.
Why art makes a wonderful gift?
Whether it’s a rare landscape or a stunning still life by a local artist, a personally chosen piece makes one of the best gifts for art lovers, as well as a truly unique present for someone special in your life. And unlike many other presents you can buy, art is a thoughtful gift that will keep on giving, as a source of pleasure as well as an investment.
But when it comes to buying gifts for the person who has everything or choosing the perfect piece of art for your loved one, friend or colleague, it’s important to start with a little preparation:
1. Set your budget
Having a pre-set budget in mind before you go shopping for art as a gift will help you know where to look and give you a limit, so you also know when to stop! Art as a personal gift is priceless, whatever the actual price-tag, and range from inexpensive prints of an artwork you know they will love, to investment pieces. So, if buying for art online, set the price range in the filter first so you have the best selection to choose from.
2. Think about their style
The most important thing to remember when buying art as a gift is that it’s not for you! It can be easy to choose a piece based on your own taste, and there’s no guarantee that it’s a taste your recipient shares. Before choosing art for someone, take a little time to think about their personal style, and any particular artists they may already collect or genres they have an interest in as this will give you a more informed starting point.
3. Consider their space
As you want them to proudly display your art gift, think about how it will look and fit in their home. Ceramics or sculptures may not be the most practical idea if there are small children or curious pets in their household. And too large a piece, if they have a smaller home or live in an apartment, is not the best option; smaller artwork can have just as good an impact – remember, sometimes less is more! Also think about their decor colours and the shapes of furniture they have, especially if you have a room in mind where the artwork could hang.
4. Don’t get too hung up on a theme
Unless you are sure that a certain piece is what your recipient is hoping for, try to avoid getting caught up in a theme, especially if it’s for a special occasion, such as a wedding or a specific hobby they may have. Narrowing your search to a theme limits your options, especially if you are on a budget. Thinking more creatively and choosing a piece which reflects an element of your recipient’s life without being too specific will be more likely to hit the mark and shows you have thought more personally about what the piece will mean to them.
5. If it’s for a child – think about them as an adult
A piece of art can be a delightful way to welcome a new baby into the world or celebrate a childhood special event or birthday. And a key tip to choosing art for a child that they will love for a lifetime is to choose a piece that will also work for them as an adult. This means either selecting an original nursery piece that will grow in value as they grow too, or a piece of art that they will also appreciate when they get older. This way, you have chosen art they can enjoy and treasure throughout their life, making it a truly special gift.
6. Be brave
With so many gifts for art lovers to choose from, it can be easy to over-think and get caught up in searching for the ‘perfect piece’. When it comes to selecting art, you also need to trust your gut instinct, especially if you know the recipient and what they would love. It may be a bit of a curveball piece, but sometimes it pays to be brave…just make sure you know the returns policy of the gallery or art shop and keep your receipt!
7. If in doubt, let them choose!
And finally, after all your research and browsing, you still can’t find the perfect piece of art that you would be happy to give as a gift, then it may be a good idea to let your loved one choose. This doesn’t mean the thought is lost, and with a gift certificate or voucher you can still give the gift of art your recipient will love. And if you make an occasion of it, visiting the gallery or art shop together or marking the hanging of the piece with a lovely meal, then it will be still be a beautiful gift they will always remember.