Birthday Present for a 12 Year Old Girl.

Updated on October 03, 2012
B.G. asks from Springfield, IL
8 answers

My niece will be turning 12 soon. She lives in the DC area, so we do not see her often at all. I know she loves reading - read the Harry Potter books, the Percy Jackson series, other fantasy. Wow, I feel like I don't know her at all, right now.

What are some good ideas for tween girls? I will probably order something from Target, because I know she could exchange it. I could get her a gift card, but I'd like to at least try to surprise her.

Any suggestions?

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So What Happened?

Oh my gosh! Thank you for the fabulous suggestions. I'm already feeling better about this.

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answers from Albuquerque on

I love to buy girls fashionplaytes certificates. It's a website where they design their own clothes and the company makes them and ships them.

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answers from Denver on

I have a 12 year old so I'm all over this! It's tough with readers, because it's so hard to know what all they've read. A Barnes and Noble g.c. is always good, or Amazon if she has a kindle. But if you are wanting to go the non-generic gc route, here's some ideas.

Picture frame (Target has cute ones that are 'tweeny' and have sayings about friends and girls on them) Kohls has even more
Hair accessories (if she's into hair stuff, girls love the big flowers)
Earrings (even if her ears aren't pierced, Claire's sells clip ons, so cute)
Clothes (if she plays sports, there are t-shirts dedicated to different sports with cool sayings)
Room accessories- pillows, throws
cute purses or tote bags

Look at for some ideas, or can order from there. Oh, this is a g.c., but if they have those self serve frozen yogurt places in their area, get a g.c. to there. Those places are very popular with the tween crowd.

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answers from Atlanta on

I too am always tempted to get my tween relatives something other than a gift card or just cold hard cash. It seems so uncreative and boring. But what's boring to me is what they want and like most. Sigh!

How about a compromise...could you get her a gift certificate to a local nail salon or spa and combine it with a few mani/pedi supplies (OPI has some great new colors this fall), a bottle of deliciously scented lotion, etc.? Or a gift card to a beauty store like Sephora along with one of the cute gift sets they offer - I think Philosophy makes one called Birthday Girl. Just depends on how much you want to spend.

Maybe you could check with her parents to see if there's a local class or activity that would interest her and pay the fee for it as a gift.

If you know her taste in jewelry, you could get her a beautiful, unique necklace or earrings. A scarf or nice handbag might be a hit too.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Many kids who liked Harry Potter and Percy Jackson also loved the Hunger Games series. (Geez, I sound like the Amazon website). I would check with her mom first, though, to make sure she is ok with these books.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Hartford on

My eldest daughter just turned 12 almost a month ago. My mom bought her a huge "bath caddy" and filled it with J's own name brand (matching) shampoo and conditioner, shower poof, body wash, facial cleanser, hair elastics, hair brush and comb, nail file, bath oil, and a couple of other girlie bath items. She included a bath towel in J's favorite color too.

Let me tell you, my daughter thought it was one of the best gifts she ever got. And this is a girl who used to think that bathing was optional. She loves having her own caddy and products, her own personal poof and towel. She feels pampered. I don't have to prompt her much to get her to bathe or take some pride in her hygiene any more.

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answers from Chicago on

Check to see if they have a Joann Fabrics nearby. They have great sewing classes and cake decorating classes reasonably priced. Also, a "time turner" necklace from Harry Potter is neat. I saw some on the etsy website.



answers from Chicago on

Does she have a Kindle? You can get those pretty inexpensively and there is a free library on Amazon that they can get a lot of the classic books, in addition to the stuff you order. My daughter (12) LOVES her kindle!!!!!!



answers from Chicago on

I have a 12 year old who is obviously friends of 12 year olds so we buy a lot of birthday presents. The difficulty with this age is that they often have very specific tastes. Why not check with her mother about what she's into or if she has specific requests?

What I usually end up doing is getting gift cards for some place that I know she wants them-Target, itunes, barnes & noble. I've even gone so far as to get my niece a Visa gift card so she could shop anywhere. That actually was a huge hit.

I know that my daughter loves gift cards, Vera Bradley and anything gymnastics related. The bath stuff is a great idea (but check to see if she's a bath or a shower girl, mine will only take showers so bubble bath is a waste). I got her a jewelry box for Christmas as she's starting to get some nice stuff. I also started her on a Pandora type bracelet that we can add beads to as she gets older. If your niece has pierced ears, small but genuine studs can be a hit, they don't have to be expensive.

It's hard at this age as my daughter wants nothing pink, purple or crafty. They are on the cusp of becoming young adults and nothing is exactly right.

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