When our parents got married, they received toasters, cutlery, linen, cut glass vases and a punch bowl set as wedding gifts. When our parents got married, the majority of couples were not cohabitating for five or ten years before deciding to tie the knot. When young grooms were coming straight from mother to wife and naïve brides were moving from their father’s house to their husband’s, a newlywed couple needed everything from tablecloths, Tupperware and towels to cutlery, china and cookware. Most modern couples, either together or separately, have been living on their own for several years and often times own their property. This also means they have settled in and are not in need of a toaster or a punch bowl. Searching for wonderful wedding gifts can be a fun experience if you go about it with the right mindset, especially if you take a few minutes to consider three important factors: relationship, lifestyle, and budget.
Your relationship to the bride and groom often dictates your obligation where wedding gifts are concerned. If you are the groom’s sister or the childhood best friend of the bride; obviously you are going to put careful thought into finding a very special wedding gift for the couple. Because you are so close to the couple, your gift will be more closely scrutinizes than a gift that comes from a very distant relative. On the other hand, if you are the sixth cousin twice removed on the bride’s side, or the groom happens to be an employee for whom you received a courtesy wedding invitation, you are fine purchasing a nice practical gift that won’t break the bank. In either case, the bride and groom will be pleased with your gift if you give careful consideration to their lifestyle.
Always take the lifestyle of the couple into consideration when thinking about suitable wedding gifts. For example, wine glasses are of little use to a couple that doesn’t drink. Similarly, travel coffee mugs would not be useful to a couple that runs a business from their home and doesn’t commute to work everyday. If the couple likes loves home décor and enjoys entertaining, then something like a beautiful silver picture frame, lovely cheese serving plates or modern fondue set would be ideal. Alternately, if the couple is whimsical and fun, give them a gift that matches their persona. A wedding time capsule would be a wedding gift that would be enjoyed, as would matching monogrammed bathrobes. For the romantics, think about a unique wedding gift such as a honeymoon memory book or a silver plated holder for their wedding certificate.
The most important factor should be budget. Once you have decided where you fit on the relationship ladder, and have pinpointed their lifestyle, you probably have a good idea of the type of wedding gift you want to purchase. Now set a budget and stick with it. If you can only afford $25.00, then find a gift that costs the same or less than your budget. Especially if you shop online, there are terrific gifts that can even be personalized for under $25.00. Remember that it should be the thought that counts, and your kind gesture to present a gift to the lucky couple.
Remember relationship, lifestyle and budget when you are shopping for wedding gifts and you cannot veer too far wrong. With a little imagination you will end up with the perfect gift for the engaged couple. Keep in mind that most modern couples own a toaster, don’t need a coffeepot, and probably have a full linen cupboard with towels, bed sheets and tablecloths. Of course, if your friends are the exception to the contemporary rule, and they are starting out fresh right from their parents house, then by all means get them towels – just put a fun twist on the gift by having them monogrammed with ‘Mr. and Mrs.’