For the past decade, my wife’s family has been hosting an annual White Elephant party and gift exchange event leading up to the holidays. The tradition is an event that everyone from kids to adults seem to look forward to, despite the complaints about how intentionally bad the gifts are sometimes.

Is this your first white elephant gift exchange? It’s basically an informal party game where people bring quirky, often humorous gifts to swap with others. Everyone takes turns choosing a gift from the pile or stealing one someone else has already opened, leading to fun and unpredictable exchanges.

Preparing to send out invites? Here are some ideas for invitation wording examples that are funny, yet appropriate for work and family. I even share the exact invitation wording I’ve used in past years.

White Elephant Invitation Wording Examples

Get ready for our annual White Elephant party, where the gifts are so ‘unique’ you’ll start questioning our family tree! Bring something so weird, it’ll make Aunt Edna’s hand-knitted toilet roll covers look normal!

white elephant gift exchange

Gather round for the gift exchange.

Join us for a White Elephant exchange that’s more unpredictable than Grandpa’s storytelling! Bring a gift so hilariously awful, it might just dethrone last year’s singing squirrel statue as the evening’s biggest conversation piece.

Our White Elephant party is back, and this year we’re aiming to outdo Uncle Bob’s infamous rubber duck collection! Bring a gift that’ll have everyone laughing and wondering if it’s too late to join a different family.

Remember last year’s White Elephant when you got the garden gnome with a missing beard? This year, let’s raise the bar on bizarre! Bring a gift that’s guaranteed to leave us all in stitches and questioning your shopping choices.

This White Elephant party, let’s make memories as unforgettable as the time Dad unwrapped the life-sized cardboard cutout of himself. Bring a gift so hilariously bad, we’ll be talking about it for years to come – or at least until next year’s party!

Funny White Elephant Invitation Examples

Here are some different invitation wording examples for different groups of people you might invite.

College Buddies Reunion: It’s time for our White Elephant party, where the gifts are as questionable as our college decisions! Bring something so bizarre, it reminds us of dorm life. Remember, if your gift gets stolen three times, it’s as popular as our old hangout spot.

Family with Kids: Family White Elephant Alert: Bring a gift so funny and kid-friendly, it makes bath time look boring. Parents, this is your chance to re-gift those ‘lovely’ macaroni art pieces. Kids, anything that makes the grown-ups say ‘What is that?’ is a winner!

white elephant party

Regift last years items at the white elephant party.

Teenage Friends: White Elephant Party Time! Bring the weirdest thing you can find (yes, weirder than your last TikTok post). If your gift is the last one left, you have to do a dare – nothing says fun like a little friendly embarrassment! Yes, I actually sent this one last year to encourage the teenagers to participate.

New Parents Group: New Parents White Elephant: Bring something that screams ‘I haven’t slept, but I still have a sense of humor’. If you end up with a gift that’s actually useful, consider it a parenting win!

Related Reading: 105+ Simple & Polite Ways to Say Thank You for a Party Invitation 

Neighborhood Block Party: Block Party White Elephant: Bring a gift that’s as unique as our neighborhood – the more outlandish, the better. Bonus points if it’s something you found during your last garage cleanout. Just remember, if no one steals your gift, you might just be the quirkiest neighbor!

Work Colleagues Get-Together: Office White Elephant: where ‘professional’ meets ‘hilariously inappropriate gifts’. Bring something that’ll have us laughing until the next team meeting. But remember, if you steal a gift, be prepared to explain why at the next coffee break!

White Elephant Invitation Examples for Work

Brace yourselves for the only office holiday party where awkward silences are replaced by awkward laughter! At our White Elephant gift exchange, you’ll find gifts weirder than your boss’s jokes and the perfect chance to bond over the shared confusion of ‘who in the world thought a bedazzled stapler was a good idea?’

gift exchange

I hope Carla from Accounting is happy with this gift.

Join us for a White Elephant extravaganza where the gifts are so unique, you’ll wonder if they were hand-picked by a monkey wearing a blindfold! Come ready to swap, steal, and try your hardest not to end up with last year’s ‘Best of Yodeling’ CD!

Ever wanted to re-gift that singing fish plaque? Now’s your chance at our White Elephant party! Bring your quirkiest gift and prepare for an evening of laughter, surprises, and the eternal question: ‘Who actually bought this?’

Our White Elephant gift exchange: where ‘What were they thinking?’ meets ‘Why am I taking this home?’ Bring a gift so bizarre, it’ll leave your coworkers speechless – except for the uncontrollable laughter, of course!

Warning: Our White Elephant party may cause sudden outbursts of laughter and mild gift envy. Come armed with the wackiest gift you can find, and let’s see who ends up with the three-legged ceramic frog or the cookbook for cooking with kale!

Get ready for the most awkwardly fun evening of the year with our White Elephant gift exchange! Bring a gift that’s as odd as your coworker’s Zoom backgrounds and prepare for a night of goofy grins, bizarre swaps, and the challenge of pretending you love that glow-in-the-dark toilet seat cover!

Gift Exchange Wording Examples

Here are some more formal invitation wording examples for a gift exchange if you’re looking for more traditional invites.

Elegant Evening of Gifts: You are cordially invited to join us for an evening of merriment and gift-giving. Let us gather to exchange presents and share in the joy of the season. Please bring a wrapped gift that speaks to the heart, as we indulge in an elegant and memorable night.

Festive Gift Exchange Soiree: We warmly invite you to our festive gift exchange soirée. As the holiday season approaches, let’s come together in the spirit of giving. Kindly bring a gift wrapped in your finest paper, to be part of our cherished exchange tradition.

holiday gift exchange

Nothing like a holiday gift exchange.

Holiday Cheer Gift Gathering: Join us for a delightful evening filled with holiday cheer and the joy of giving. We request the pleasure of your company for our annual gift exchange. Please bring a thoughtfully wrapped gift to share, as we toast to good company and festive spirits.

Season’s Greetings Exchange Gala: In the spirit of the season, we invite you to our Season’s Greetings Exchange Gala. Please grace us with your presence and a beautifully wrapped gift, as we celebrate the art of giving and receiving in an atmosphere filled with holiday elegance.

Winter Wonderland Gift Exchange: As snowflakes dance and the winter chill sets in, we invite you to a magical evening of warmth and gift exchange. Please join us in our Winter Wonderland, bringing a gift that sparkles with the joy of the season, as we share in laughter and good tidings.

Out White Elephant Rules & Gift Ideas

Here are the basic white elephant rules (as I understand them):

  1. Bring a Wrapped or Bagged Gift: Each participant brings one wrapped gift. The gift can be funny, quirky, or even something from around the house. At our annual exchange, we limit the value of each gift to around $25.
  2. Draw Numbers: Everyone draws a number to out of a hat or old grocery bag determine the order of choosing gifts. If you’re playing with kids, you could also go by age.
  3. Choose a Gift: The person with number one starts by picking and unwrapping a gift from the pile.
  4. Steal or Pick: After the first gift is opened, the following players can either choose a new gift to unwrap or steal an already opened one.
  5. Limit Stealing: A gift can only be stolen a certain number of times, usually three, after which it is ‘locked’ and cannot be stolen again.
  6. Keep It Moving: Once your turn ends, it’s the next person’s turn, going in numerical order.
  7. End of the Game: The game ends when everyone has had a turn. The person who drew number one can choose to swap their gift at the end, if they wish.

For a White Elephant party, the gifts usually combine humor, uniqueness, and sometimes utility. More often than not they are gifts people don’t want. But, my wife and I have found that bringing a really good gift like a gift card to a local restaurant or a coffee shop like Starbucks can also make for an entertaining gift since it gets the competitiveness up from party goers who want to “get the good gift.”

Related Reading: 201+ Catchy Party Invitation Messages for Your Next Get Together 

Here are some other gifting ideas:

  • Quirky Kitchen Gadgets: Think along the lines of a taco holder in the shape of a dinosaur or a singing pasta timer.
  • Funny Mugs or Glasses: Mugs with witty sayings or unique designs always make for a good laugh.
  • Novelty Socks: Socks with outrageous patterns or themes. I brought some Minnesota Vikings themed socks one time. I’m a big fan, but I’m not so sure about other people.
  • DIY Craft Kits: These can be as bizarre or as fun as you like, such as a make-your-own hot sauce kit.
  • Board or Card Games: A quirky or little-known game can spice up the party.
  • Books with a Twist: Think unusual cookbooks, funny self-help books, or a bizarre mystery novel.
  • Planters with Personality: Planters that have funny faces or unusual designs.
  • Unique Puzzles: Puzzles with an unusual image or perhaps in a unique shape.
  • Funky Home Decor: Like a lava lamp, a humorous doormat, or a quirky wall clock.
  • Tech Gadgets: Small, unusual tech gadgets like a mini USB vacuum cleaner or a quirky phone stand.

Remember, the goal is to bring something that’s fun and creates a bit of buzz, so the more creative and off-the-wall, the better! Happy holidays!

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