Gift Ideas for the Sentimentalist

The secret to great gifting is knowing — really knowing! – the giftees in your life. Let’s take a look at The Sentimentalist. Sentimentalists hold cherished people, memories and objects close to their hearts… as well as in their scrapbooks, closets, Smart TV slideshows —you get the picture (literally, in their annual holiday e-newsletter). The Sentimentalist is a collector of heirlooms, archiver of history, and a lover of tools that can help them organize, display and admire.

How to ID them:

The Sentimentalist is hard to miss. They get misty-eyed telling you about polishing their heirloom family silverware. They still have a childhood teddy bear. Their work cubicles are lined with personal photos. Some have been known to grab boarding passes from travel mates’ hands, lest they be misplaced before The Sentimentalist can washi-tape them into a vacation scrapbook!

Natural habitat:

Instagram, Staples’ photo centre, flea markets, “hiding” behind a ficus tree to snap candid photos at family events. Can be spotted in large numbers at self-storage rental sites.


A 2019 industry study pegs Canadian self-storage and mini-warehouse revenue at $921 million, with 1,670 businesses across the country, driven in part by Sentimental-ists’ need to store things rather than getting rid of them.


The Sentimentalist has a hard time letting go, which means storage, display and organization are key concerns. Helping The Sentimentalist keep their cherished collections in sight and in-mind – minus any clutter – will earn their undying gratitude. And they’ll show it with a box of homemade fudge (great-grandma’s recipe) or by taking you to their fave university-era pizza joint.

Great Gift Ideas:

Give gifts that promote decluttering, because – let’s face it – The Sentimental-ist isn’t downsizing! Here are five organizing and display solutions they’ll love:

  • Notebooks & journals: Handsome notebooks and hardbound journals encourage Sentimen-talists to stash notes, photos, tickets and other paper ephemera

  • Archival stationery: Acid-free, fade-proof pens are ideal for labeling, while easy-to-remove washi tape adds colourful flair to scrapbooks and shadow box displays

  • Picture frames: Bonus points if you mount a gallery wall for them, so they can get some of their photos off tables and countertops!

  • Storage boxes: Stackable boxes keep memorabilia organized and protected against dust and wear.

  • Photo scanning: Move a mountain of faded old photos to digital archiving. Staples Print & Marketing Services can scan and restore them so they can be stored, made into digital al-bums, or shared on social media.

And finally, for extra gift giving points, help The Sentimentalist live their history from their morning cup of tea, to their evening cozying up in front of the television. Visit the Staples Solutionshop where they whip up functional memorabilia like a personalized blanket, mug, canvas print, holiday card… basically anything that you can put a face on.

By Staples Canada

April 27, 2021