Recently, I had a conversation with a bride-to-be about wedding gifts. This bride, well aware of the economic impact that planning — and attending — a wedding has, wanted to suggest that her friends, family, attendants and guests would not suffer financial burden by purchasing expensive gifts for her wedding. I thought it was very thoughtful of the bride to consider her friends and family members’ situations; this led me to research sweet and budget-friendly gift ideas that brides could suggest their wedding guests purchase for them as an alternative to traditional wedding gifts.
1. Framed pictures – Framed pictures are very personal and are often treasured for the special memories held within the images. This might be a great gift idea that your childhood, lifelong friend could provide for your wedding.
2. The Gift of Experiences – Tickets to a sporting event, gift certificates, or even a Netflix subscription for cozy time alone at home might be a suggestion that is cost-effective and enjoyable. The possibilities for this are endless and who knows you better than the friends and family you invite to your wedding?
3. Handmade/Do It Yourself Gifts – Nothing says ‘I love our relationship’ more than a gift from the heart. Maybe you have a relative that loves quilting, scrapbooking, or is an artist. Allow the creative loved ones in your life to embrace their talents and provide you with a gift to last a lifetime.
4. Books – If, like me, you love to read, maybe have members of your guest list buy you a book of wedding poetry to remember your special day or a new cookbook for your new life?
5. Gift Baskets – Whether pre-packaged or created by hand, gift baskets are one of my favorite gifts, because they can be personalized to the person for whom they are bought. Your guests could create a “Movie Night” basket for a relaxing evening or an Italian basket, allowing you to load up on carbs since you’ve been dieting to ensure your gown fits!
6. Plants or Trees – Plants and trees are gifts that keep on giving. They are good for the environment and serve as a constant reminder of the growth your relationship has known. As the plant grows, so does your love and the memories of why the gift was given. Years from now, you can tell your grandchildren how your neighbor gave your that “old” pine tree for your wedding when it was just a little sapling. The stories can be smile inducing.
7. Antiques – Think of decorative clocks, bookends, jewelry boxes, etc. These items come with a rich history of their own, so why not have your wedding party enrich your future by allowing these pieces to have a part of your special love story?
Traditional gifts are nice and are most often requested on bridal registries, but you are a unique bride. Your wedding is special; your love is yours! If you’re willing to go against the accepted norm and permit your friends, relatives and guests the opportunity to save money on your registry purchases and create beautiful memories for you and your spouse to be through thoughtfulness, you will treasure your wedding gifts for a lifetime.