Gift Etiquette: Part Un

My friend and I went for gelato last weekend and she had some questions about gift-giving etiquette. I find that etiquette standards change by age and geographic location.  However there are still some fundamentals that everyone can abide by.  The cost of purchasing gifts can quickly add up and become a concern so there are a few things to consider:

Are you giving a gift(s) in addition to the wedding gift?
What is your budget?  Know how much you want to spend in total.

If you’re attending more than one pre-wedding event and want to give gifts for all of them, divvy your budget up to cover the amount of items you need.

  • Engagement Party:  It is perfectly acceptable to attend without a gift.  A bottle of wine or champagne is always a nice gesture of celebration though!
  • Bridal Shower:  It’s best to come with something.  It can be the actual wedding gift, or something small and personal for the Bride.  If you are purchasing a wedding present that’s being shipped from the registry, bring a card to let the bride know her gift is on the way!
    • Be conscious of the size of your gifts.  The Bride and her family will be transporting these, so large or heavy items should be shipped. Again, bring a card to let her know it's coming.
  • Bachelorette Party:  You don’t have to bring a gift to the bachelorette party. You can if you'd like, but since those usually in attendance cover a lot of the cost for the Bride, you are not obligated to bring one.
PERSONAL FAVORITE:  Hanky Panky's- $18.00 

Wedding Gift
  • Please give a wedding gift if you are invited to the wedding, even if you are not attending
  • You have one year after the wedding to purchase and send a gift. So there is really no excuse.
  • If you are budget conscious, some of the most popular registry’s (C&B, PotteryBarn, BedBath&Beyond, Target, etc.) all have very cost-effective items.
Destination Weddings
  • If you are attending a destination wedding you are not expected to bring a gift. You are the gift :) 
  • If you are not attending a destination wedding, you should give a small something.
Gift’s on a wedding registry are like Who’s from Whoville- "a gift is a gift, no matter how small".  Think of it this way, your gift is something the Bride and Groom didn't have, so every gift, no matter the size, is a thoughtful gesture.