Like lots of people, I use wish lists, so lots of my presents were from them, including a revealing number of gardening books (I hadn't realised just how much I had been coveting pretty much the whole output of the RHS). But also, I received some really lovely, thoughtful and personal presents.
Amongst these were a picture that was personally meaningful, in a frame that was meaningful to the giver, which made a wonderfully thoughtful present, which is already up on my wall, and will give me pleasure for years. One of the others was a second hand but carefully reconditioned tripod for my camera. Both of these gifts are both useful and (in my eyes) beautiful) and neither are what I would call clutter.
Other gifts included some lovely gourmet food, more books - which the givers are happy about me moving on when I have finished with them, and a beautifully knitted shawl, which again, I will undoubtedly use many times over the coming years, and every time it will remind me of the care and time the giver spent in creating it.
Of the gifts I gave, they were almost all of the edible variety. I was pretty sure that they would be welcome, as my efforts in these areas have been very happily received before, and they were supplemented by careful purchases of biscuits etc. I put into practice my first recommendation for making presents, and constructed cardboard hampers for them. Half the fun in the giving was making sure that they looked pretty!
One other type of gift I gave was made using one of the use-your-own photo websites. I had made a calendar from photos taken throughout the previous year, and gave them to close relatives. Not a present that's going to please everyone, but they were well received.
I came to the conclusion that you don't have to spend a lot on presents, and the most touching are almost always the ones you make yourself.
I hope you all had great Christmasses, and that your decluttering efforts helped - and didn't hinder - your present giving and getting!
thanks for reading,