Oh boy, it's Valentine's Day and I want to make a REALLY good impression on my sweetheart so this year I decided to take the plunge and buy him a tool gift. Sheesh! if you have ever been 'asked' to go to the tool store for one, 'simple thing,' for your husband, friend, mate, pal, son, dad and come home to show them what you got only to be, 'sternly reminded, '(repeatedly through the years), that what you got is as close to what they wanted as a ladder is to a peacock then you know that this decision to actually buy a tool gift basket for men is not an easy one!
For this tool gift to be special enough that it meets with approval, and something that will not get thrown in the back seat to be returned, I had to enlist the help of a good friend (a finish contractor) to create these 5 simple tool buying tips for women to act as a tool gift guide for those of us who do not normally buy tools (or avoid buying tools) – Until NOW!
1 – Mention you have a project you 'd like your man to look at – build a shelf, fix an appliance, repair a floor, build a deck, whatever you think of to start a conversation with him that involves tools. Engage him in a dialogue about your project and take him out to breakfast and shove a newspaper in his hand. Watch him and what he talks about as he goes through the tool section. Listen for any clues like, "To do a good job on that deck, I really need a ___," or "I'll have to borrow Tom's special ___ drill to make it look right and do a good job on that!"
2 – Call 'Tom,' as soon as possible and ask him for advice about that specific tool, because maybe he wants that tool or maybe he wants something like that tool, but does more than just build a deck, or do one repair. Gets 'Tom's' advice first because it helps narrow your choices. Men do not take borrowing each other's tools lightly, so if he mentions the name of a friend, call that friend, because he will know. He and your guy have probably spent a lot of time talking about tool gift ideas between themselves!
3 – Go online and read different reviews from real people who have used that tool and rate their satisfaction with the tool. Look at consumer reviews AND product reviews / product ratings. Find out if it is a tool that has had a lot of warranty problems – Popular Mechanics has such a site. Their articles and information cover a mile of topics! Air Hammer versus Auto-Hammer, for instance, plus many more! This step is especially important if you are buying tools online for your gift basket for men.
4 – Go to a store that specializes in tools – not just one kind of tool – like a place that specializes in lawn mowers (unless he specifically asked for a lawnmower), but a store that carries lots of tools-different ones. Ask their salespeople who may (or may not) blubber some sales pitch at you for some thing that ends up sitting in the backseat to be returned. Then when the salesperson is finished talking look for someone who looks like a contractor roaming the aisles and ask them what they think about that specific tool. Tell them that you are looking for tool gift ideas for men for a tool gift basket for him. Gets lots of advice because a tool is like a good book – very personal to the one receiving it.
5 – Buy the darn thing and make sure you get a gift receipt – just in case he wanted the, 'bigger one.'
Now that you are armed and dangerous you may want to go ahead and try assembling your tool gift basket for him, or tool gift basket for dad – for instance, if you selected a string trimmer, you'll want to get some extra string to go with it, maybe gloves, a gift certificate for a tune-up or a winterization, oil, gas, extra cord if it is an electric string trimmer … with a little luck and a little diligence, you'll look like you knew EXACTLY what you were doing and your tool purchase will be a 'smashing' success! So, when it comes to heading for the tool section of the store – do not be a sissy! Go ahead, "Give 'er!"