By Rachel Hoeing

The number one gift requested by most tweens and teens is definitely CASH! This is especially true for boys. Yes, it is boring for you, but fun for them. A prepaid VISA gift card works well, too. But, if you are like me and really love to shop and give a tangible item, I have gathered a list of ideas below to suit many different price ranges. I asked a few moms who have children ages 11-17, as well as some former students of mine in the same age range, and they gave me some terrific ideas!  Below are items that you can buy for your own children, or even distant relatives you may not know well! Some of these are perfect ideas for baby-sitters as well.

~Anything monogrammed was a big one mentioned by many girls – handbags, lunchbags, car decals, towels, bath wraps, belts, etc. Some of our favorite places to shop for these are Paper Sassy, Kim Taylor & Co, The Gilded Lily by Patra,Swoozies, and Invitations Only
~gift certificates to itunes
~ipod speakers
~apple laptop computers
~Eco-friendly water bottles
~For teens – Scene It: Twilight Deluxe Edition
~Tweens like Vera Bradley, teens say they are over it
~gift certificates to movie theaters
~Scarves – Delia’s was a favorite place to buy these

~North Face or Mountain Hardware jackets
~Movies like Footloose, Grease, Flashdance (By the way, I love that the teen who suggested these called them the “old” movies.)
~Picture Frames
~Hair straighteners
~Manicure and pedicure gift certificates

~Rainbow brand flip flops…I am told that they must have every color! tan, black, hemp and pink
~blackberry phones
~cameras… compact, slim designs
~Beta Fish in cool bowl
~Monogrammed fleece throw
~Bulletin board/memory board
~scrapbooking supplies / scrapbook
~electric scooters

~funky lamps for their rooms and other room accessories – Pier 1, Target, and Pottery Barn always have cute ones
~bright colored storage boxes and bins
~shoe and closet organizers
~mirrors, mirrors, mirrors for the girls!
~photo collage frames
~4×6 photo printer
~college tshirts
~retro design tshirts

~Starbucks gift certificates (they exchange these with friends all the time)
~Clothing stores they like best are Abercrombie, Gap, Old Navy, Delia’s, Forever 21, Charlotte Russe, Aeropostale,Hollister, American Eagle, Aerie, Justice/Limited Too or surf shops.
~Paintball guns
~Remote control airplanes

~Jewelry, especially silver – unique and affordable styles that teens like can be found at Rock Paper Scissors, Etc, The Jewel Box, Francesca’s, and American Eagle.

And straight from the tweens and teens mouths: they do not like to receive cheap drugstore makeup, socks, boardgames, or clothes (unless it is from your mom!) They also said they would always rather get a gift card for a clothing store rather than the actual clothes if you do not know them well.

Have fun shopping for the teens and tweens in your life, and hopefully with all the ideas from above, you can actually get a smile out of them instead of a grunt or arm folded stare. 🙂