Thrifty Little Tip... Wedding Gifts

>> 9.09.2009

Wedding season might be on the decline for the majority of the US, but it's in full swing here in Texas (let's just say that June is a little too warm for most). Attending the wedding of a good friend this past weekend really inspired me to share my thrifty thoughts on wedding gift giving...

1. If you are attending a wedding, you must give a gift.

2. Wedding gifts are expensive and there's no way out of this. You need to give a gift that is appropriately expensive based upon your relationship with the couple and your life status. If you are the third cousin and attending graduate school, the bride and groom will not expect the same level of gifting that might come from the lawyer/ life long friend. This is a time that you might need to cut back on your personal spending... not the time to penny pinch! Hey, I don't like spending large chunks of my money, but this is the type of situation that is warrents it!

3. When you're in position where money is tight, expensive can mean time expensive. Remember my guide to time expensive gifting? In this situation, your time expenses need to be valued at what you would like to gift. I would try to avoid time-expensive gifts unless the bride and groom would really benefit from them. Doing things like baking the cake, providing photography, or driving the couple home in your dad's vintage Mercedes would all classify as great time expensive gifts as long as they were on the level of service that the bride and groom would have actually paid for. Creating an oil painting that the couple feels guilted into hanging in the house would be a giant mistake (yes, this is an actual gift that my friend received)!

4. With the right gift choices, you can actually promote thriftyness (aka smart spending). My favorite wedding gift is the gift card. It's the perfect way to give the same amount to the couple, but allow room for them to get better deals. The sheet set they registered for may cost $75 now, but go on sale for $45 after the wedding. In this situation, the additional $30 could end up going towards a throw pillow or two.

Another bonus to the gift card is that it minimize the costs in shipping and gift wrap. This can come out to $10 or more and go straight back to the couple in the form of a larger gift card. *Remember, most of the fun in the shower is the gift opening so go out and grab something off of the registry for this one!

5. Put all of your money into the gift. Many people end up buying new dresses or shoes preparing for the wedding. Doing things like this can really eat away at the checking account and make a person feel sour about the experience. Wear an old dress then don't feel bad about shelling out some dough for such a special day.

My money? On average I spend $50-$75 for wedding gifts and $25-40ish for shower gifts. How much do you usually spend? Have you found any good ways to make the most of your money at a wedding?


change is a good thing September 9, 2009 at 5:29 PM  

I agree that for a shower you should give some thing off of the registry and for the wedding a gift card is perfect! At the shower everyone loves to watch the bride open the gift and to ooohhh and ahh over them, wedding gifts are rarely ever seen being opened. I'm getting married in 2 months and I certainly hope we get lots of gift cards, we're doing more renovating on the condo than we first thought, so Home Depot and Lowe's gift cards would be GREATLY appreciated! :)

thereddeer September 9, 2009 at 6:36 PM  

I generally spend from 50-100, and usually just get something from the gift registry or a gift certificate.

Room to Inspire September 10, 2009 at 5:24 PM  

This is a great reminder...I think it is so easy to get too sucked in or just overwhelmed with the event and you spend too much. These are some great wedding gift ideas. Thanks for the posting!


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