Will You Exchange Gifts on Your Wedding Day?

Some people have shared with me that they are going to be giving their future husband or wife an amazing gift on their wedding day. Others seem to think that it’s unnecessary and that gift giving should be saved for anniversaries. Thoughts?

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How to Deal with Anonymous or Unlabeled Gifts

Two friends who recently got married received a package in the mail — something they were so excited to get and couldn’t wait to thank the gift giver. BUT there was no card and no indication of who sent it. What to do?

photo from marie claire

photo from marie claire

They also have the opposite problem that they didn’t receive gifts from some of their friends and they weren’t sure how to approach it — if at all. They now know that their guests have a full year to send the gift. They also know that times are tough economically and they’re very grateful that their friends joined in their special day.

Here’s my suggestion…. This works for both situations. Wait about 3-6 months (probably 6 months is better) and then send thank you notes to each person who either you haven’t received a gift from or you dont know (because of an unlabeled gift). Thank them SINCERELY for coming to the wedding — and say something personal so that it’s not a form thank you note.  It should come from your heart, a true “thank you so much for coming all the way from [insert place.] we loved having you with us and watching you bust a move on the dance floor!” (I know, I know, but you get the idea).

The thank you does a few things. First, it makes people realize that you really do appreciate that they were there. Second, it might make someone think “Oh yah, that reminds me, I sent that gift and never heard anything — I wonder if I forgot to put my name on it?” and perhaps contact you to say so (and then you know who gave you your new favorite toaster!). Third, it might be a subtle reminder to those who want to get you something that they haven’t done so. This is sensitive though, which is why I strongly emphasize that the thank you MUST be sincere and you should wait AT LEAST three months (and closer to six) before sending something. You dont want to seem like you’re asking for presents — because most of you aren’t!

Do you have another tactic? Good luck!

~ Natasha

Get the gift of all your wedding photos from all your friends in an online photo album!

What To Do About Wedding Gifts

Most couples are registered somewhere, some couples request money, and other couples say that your presence at the wedding is a present.  I’ve looked at registries and thought: 1) Wow, all the good stuff is taken! 2) I know the couple WAY too well to be giving them a fork.  3) I can’t believe they registered for gifts, after saying how much they hated registries.  But what alternatives are there?

If you are a bride and groom, you have a few options. 

  • You can do an alternative registry. One specific type of alternative registry is Wishpot which allows you to create a registry of anything you might want! You can also work with a bank or other business to have people make contributions to your downpayment on a house or a sofa. 
  • Register with a charity, so that your guests can give monetary gifts to a cause of your choice!
  • Ask people to contribute to a honeymoon fund.  If you do that, then set up a way so that people can easily contribute  and be assured that you will use the money for the trip and not for a trip to the grocery store.
  • Ask for money.  You might decide to ask for money because you have everything you need now or you aren’t sure what might be needed or you’re traveling to or from the wedding.  If you decide to ask for money, there are tactful ways to do so.
  • Ask for nothing and make it clear to guests that you’re serious about it.  You might have everything you need now and you don’t want to ask your guests to give you money for a future purchase.  If that’s the case and people insist on giving something (because they probably feel awkward giving nothing), then maybe look above & register with a charity.

If you are a guest, then you might want some ideas that don’t involve cash or a registry!

Giving wedding gifts does not have to be awkward, so long as you remember that you’re all friends or family.  No one wants anyone else to feel bad about asking for or giving a gift. After all, it’s a wedding celebration!

~Natasha