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How to deal with unwanted Christmas gifts

NoNothingGuy

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Okay, so we celebrated Christmas with my in-laws yesterday. My father-in-law is a very well dressed man, but he tends to buy me things that are not really my style. He always buys quality things, but he has the habit of walking into a clothing store and saying something along the lines of: "Hello, I am here to buy something for my son-in-law. He likes quality clothing but is a younger fellow, so I need something a little more 'hip.'" That always ends with the owner of the store picking out something expensive and somewhat gaudy. Not over the top, mind you, but just bad enough to where I would not wear it. I have tried to explain to him that I like more traditional styles, but he doesn't really get it. I am thin and fit; I am a long-distance runner. He is rather portly. He equates thin with trendy, so when he sees me in tailored clothing, he just assumes it is different than his own. Anyway, I need to return about $1,500 worth of clothing/shoes that he purchased me, but I don't really know how to tell him. Does anyone have experience with this? What should I do? I just want to add that I love this man, he is the best. He is so generous and tries so hard, which is why this is difficult.
 

viator

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Return it, say nothing, and if asked about it respond that the items didn't fit you?
 

D Yizz

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Originally Posted by NoNothingGuy
Okay, so we celebrated Christmas with my in-laws yesterday. My father-in-law is a very well dressed man, but he tends to buy me things that are not really my style. He always buys quality things, but he has the habit of walking into a clothing store and saying something along the lines of:

"Hello, I am here to buy something for my son-in-law. He likes quality clothing but is a younger fellow, so I need something a little more 'hip.'"

That always ends with the owner of the store picking out something expensive and somewhat gaudy. Not over the top, mind you, but just bad enough to where I would not wear it.

I have tried to explain to him that I like more traditional styles, but he doesn't really get it. I am thin and fit; I am a long-distance runner. He is rather portly. He equates thin with trendy, so when he sees me in tailored clothing, he just assumes it is different than his own.

Anyway, I need to return about $1,500 worth of clothing/shoes that he purchased me, but I don't really know how to tell him. Does anyone have experience with this? What should I do?

I just want to add that I love this man, he is the best. He is so generous and tries so hard, which is why this is difficult.


That's what gift receipts are for. If he didn't include it in the box(es) tell him something didnt fit and request the gift receipt.
 

BlueHorseShoe

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Originally Posted by viator
Return it, say nothing, and if asked about it respond that the items didn't fit you?

Ahh, the sneaky maneuver? It's deceptive and the easy way out, but out of fear of offending him, I would recommend this as well.
 

in stitches

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Originally Posted by viator
Return it, say nothing, and if asked about it respond that the items didn't fit you?

+1
 

NoNothingGuy

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No, he did provide the gift receipts. I plan to exchange, and when you exchange one thing it really isn't a big deal but to exchange 2 shirts, a sweater and a pair of shoes, that is quite a lot. I just feel bad.


I guess it is just something that happens every Christmas and Birthday and I feel bad about it. Almost like I want to recommend picking things out with him prior to these gift-giving days.

I am looking for you guys to tell me that it is okay and he wont care.
 

Master Squirrel

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Return or donate it.

ETA: it is okay and if he finds out he will not be mad at you.
 

ter1413

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Originally Posted by BlueHorseShoe
Ahh, the sneaky maneuver? It's deceptive and the easy way out, but out of fear of offending him, I would recommend this as well.

+1. I mean, does he expect to see you wearing something thet he bought every time he/yu visit. Just return and say nada.
 

Sazerac

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Been in this position myself.

Here's the thing: keep one of the items, maybe the sweater, and wear it when he visits. My mother in law bought me an outrageously expensive sweater straight of the Cosby Show. Since I usually return everything else, I kept the sweater to wear when she's around. It was the tactful thing to do.

The thing is, he's probably never going to get your style, no matter how hard he tries. So indulge the old fellow with one item.
 

NoNothingGuy

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Hahaha, he lives about a half mile away.

I appreciate the help, thank you.

I will keep the sweater, it is the one thing I can wear from time to time. I will wear it when we go to their house for dinner.

It would be much easier if I didn't like the guy, but he is great. A father-in-law who lives down the street yet respects our space and never pops in uninvited!!!
 

viator

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Also, consider this: your father-in-law did not want you to essentially stuff $1500 into the back of your closet, never to be seen again. Any normal person who buys clothing as a gift understands that the item might not fit or appeal to the taste of the recipient. He wanted you to have some nice things and would much rather you exchange the gifts for things you will actually wear.
 

D Yizz

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You have exactly a year to "educate" him into what exactly do you like. If he's so good with you, and you have enough confidence, maybe you can invite him to shop with you in the summer.
 

Thrifter

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Maybe you can shop together. If he insists on buying you clothing, suggest that you pick something out together.
 

NoNothingGuy

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That is what I am going to try to do. I think this thread has helped me realize that taking him out there to see what i am buying is probably the best way to educate him on my preferences.
 

BlueHorseShoe

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Originally Posted by viator
Also, consider this: your father-in-law did not want you to essentially stuff $1500 into the back of your closet, never to be seen again. Any normal person who buys clothing as a gift understands that the item might not fit or appeal to the taste of the recipient. He wanted you to have some nice things and would much rather you exchange the gifts for things you will actually wear.
Originally Posted by D Yizz
You have exactly a year to "educate" him into what exactly do you like. If he's so good with you, and you have enough confidence, maybe you can invite him to shop with you in the summer.
Originally Posted by Thrifter
Maybe you can shop together. If he insists on buying you clothing, suggest that you pick something out together.
All point on. I think the course of action is keep something now, return the rest and get what you like. Thus fulfilling the intent of the gift. Then in a subtle manner, better inform him of your preferences. EDIT: Just saw you said this.
 

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