Daughters and stepfathers have a unique relationship. He’s not your biological father, but depending on how long he’s been in your life, he may have helped raise you. As his stepchild, you walk a fine line between showing how much you love him and disrespecting your biological dad. Hallmark cards can serve to exacerbate this problem as you struggle to decide whether it’s better off to give him a card that feels personal but says “Dad” on it, or to give him a card that feels decidedly too generic for your relationship. Meanwhile, finding the perfect gift for him, whether for his birthday or as a thank-you gift at your wedding, can feel next to impossible. If you’re on the hunt for a gift that will show your stepdad how much he means to you in a way that’s personal to the relationship you share with him, I’m confident this gift guide will help.
A Personalized Wooden Watch
Wearing a watch is classy and masculine, and the combination of gorgeous wood and soft, supple leather on these watches can’t go wrong. But what really makes this the perfect gift for your stepdad is the fact that you can personalize it to say whatever you want it to. So whether your relationship is new and tentative or whether he’s the dad to you that he didn’t have to be, you can get the sentiment exactly right by using your own words.
A “Bonus Dad” Coffee Mug
If your stepfather has a good sense of humor—and a love for hot beverages—this coffee cup, with all the ingredients of a great bonus dad, could be equal parts fun and sentimental. I’m going to be honest; I also love the sentiment of “bonus dad,” which emphasizes the cool, unique role he plays in your life. After all, not everyone is lucky enough to have a bonus dad like yours!
A Wine Club Box
Of course, not every perfect gift for your stepdad needs to spell out his role in your life. Another option is to pamper him with the luxury he deserves. A subscription to a wine-of-the-month-club would be an over-the-top way to let him know that he deserves to treat himself.
A Personalized Pocket Knife
Remember how much we loved the term “bonus dad” earlier? If a coffee mug isn’t your style, consider having those sentimental words engraved on a beautiful rosewood and stainless-steel pocket knife. Personalized pocket knives are a great gift idea, with practicality and sentimentality rolled into one.
Wine Cork State
If your stepfather is a lover of wine, a wine cork state is a unique gift idea that he’s sure to love. To make this gift extra special to him, purchase the state in which the two of you first met. This is a perfect way to show him that you appreciate your shared history and remember how special it was when he came into your life. Pro tip: they also make beer cap states if that’s more your stepfather’s style.
If you’re a DIY-lover, a scrapbook outlining the best memories you have with your stepfather would make a memorable gift. You can even write down some of your favorite things that he taught you over the years and include those notes throughout the scrapbook. Your stepfather will be sure to love seeing how much of an impression he really made on your life.
A Meaningful Movie or Book
My stepfather was the one who introduced me to The Matrix. I remember because my mother thought it was a stupid movie, but he knew I’d love the mind-warping adventure, and afterward, he and I connected over the movie. He also brought Wizard of Oz into my life, telling me about how amazing it was to watch it back when he was a kid and color TVs were a new phenomenon. Either one of these movies, along with a note about my memory with him, would make a great gift now that I’m grown. If you have any special memories of particular movies or books that you associate with your stepfather, they’d make a great gift for him.
Your stepfather has a special place in your life and in your heart, so it’s only right that when you pick out a gift for him, it’s as uniquely special as he is. Like any parents, your stepdad will appreciate you telling him—in whatever way is natural for you—how much he impacted your life and how much you love his presence in it now.