Author Topic: Wedding Gifts  (Read 18180 times)

m8547

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Wedding Gifts
« on: May 01, 2015, 08:42:19 AM »
Wedding gifting is ridiculous! I'm going to a wedding soon, so I wanted to read up on gift etiquette a bit. I found this article:
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/25/fashion/weddings/when-you-cant-forget-the-gifts-you-didnt-get.html

Halfway through I had to check to make sure it wasn't published on April 1. Seriously, people hold a lifelong grudge against "friends" that don't give them a gift at their wedding?  A gift should be something that you are thankful for, not something that's expected or required.

midweststache

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2015, 09:09:53 AM »
Yeah, the people in this article sound like giant tools.

mveill1

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2015, 10:04:56 AM »
Wedding gifting is ridiculous! I'm going to a wedding soon, so I wanted to read up on gift etiquette a bit. I found this article:
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/25/fashion/weddings/when-you-cant-forget-the-gifts-you-didnt-get.html

Halfway through I had to check to make sure it wasn't published on April 1. Seriously, people hold a lifelong grudge against "friends" that don't give them a gift at their wedding?  A gift should be something that you are thankful for, not something that's expected or required.

I guess it depends on the wedding; from the article "For that matter, Ms. Kaas Boyle can also recall, in elaborate detail, which guests relished the five-course dinner at the ornate Rex Il Ristorante (now shuttered), and still failed to give a present."

Maybe that's the bit that stings. Sure, they didn't have to throw a lavish wedding, but people didn't have to come either. It's a tough one sometimes...

4alpacas

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2015, 10:36:11 AM »
There are a few gems from this article:

But it’s not the husband who angers Ms. Kaufman; it’s the wife. “I don’t hold the man responsible,” she said. “He was out working, and she was a stay-at-home mom. I know it’s sexist, but she should know better. When I see her at events I want to blurt out: ‘You cheap jerk. How can you sit here and have a conversation with me?’

This comment is in response to a couple that was invited, but didn't attend the wedding. 

The way Ms. Smith sees it, it’s acceptable to confront those guests who have failed to send even a token. The best way to do so is with a delicate, in-person conversation. “You tell them that you’ve been writing your thank-you notes and realized that you haven’t written one to them: it’s an ‘I’ statement,” she said. “Then you let the other person talk. Either they’ll say: ‘What are you talking about? I gave you the serving platter off your registry.’ Computer glitches happen. You can then say, ‘I’m happy to follow up.’ If they look at you like deer in the headlights, count to the beat of three and move the conversation along to a totally different topic. Then you wait and see if the gift card shows up.”

Next step is to shame your friends and family into giving you a gift. 

Don't worry.  It's not just the bride and groom who feel entitled.  This woman has been holding a grudge for almost 60 years because she didn't receive a thank you note for a lavish gift.

Ms. Berrick, 92, who lives with her 91-year-old husband in a senior residence. “She must have known it wasn’t the gift she was supposed to get. She never sent us a thank-you note. We have never forgiven her for it.”

MgoSam

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2015, 11:47:41 AM »
I hate the concept of weddings....

lemanfan

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2015, 11:56:34 AM »
I was once invited to a friends wedding.  The ceremony in the church was nice and all, and instead of the dinner or party afterwards, it was a simpler reception with wedding cake and coffee.  No complaints there, I like coffee.

The thing that really bugged me out though, was that the whole reception was centered around the bride (and an embarrased groom) sitting on a stage, opening each present and all guests were supposed to "ooohhh" and "aaahhh" when she held it up....

For that bride, the gifts seemed to be the center of the wedding.   On the plus side, they are still married a decade later and have a couple of kids.  :)

mtn

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2015, 12:24:26 PM »
I hate the concept of weddings....

I love the concept of weddings. I hate the wedding industry.

I am partially funding a fully unmastachian wedding right now--about 30% of the total cost. If we could have done it my way, everybody would still have a great time, just as many people, just as convenient, and the entire thing would cost about what I am spending on it.

mtn

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2015, 12:36:07 PM »
FWIW, my general rule of thumb for a local wedding with friends that I believe are in decent shape financially, I give about what I am guessing the plate+drinks will cost, plus $10 to $50 depending on the situation--I usually try to make it about $100 total for my fiance and I.

It also depends on my situation, and if I had to travel or not. To get to my cousins wedding, I had to take 2 days off of work and pay $300 in hotel rooms. He didn't get a gift, and I don't want one from him if he is able to make it to mine (Fuck you, cancer).

Then I didn't give a gift to a friend of mine who's wedding I was in. He'll be in mine. I told him explicitly, DO NOT GIVE US A GIFT. Just don't want it.

I hope to someday be in the position to be able to give $500 or so to some young people getting married.

MgoSam

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2015, 01:01:05 PM »
I hate the concept of weddings....

I love the concept of weddings. I hate the wedding industry.

I am partially funding a fully unmastachian wedding right now--about 30% of the total cost. If we could have done it my way, everybody would still have a great time, just as many people, just as convenient, and the entire thing would cost about what I am spending on it.

You're right, I was unclear. I hate the concepts of the modern wedding, the one that has been advertised and ingrained in many people's minds. I believe that weddings is a public declaration of sharing your life with someone else, and that in additional to spiritual/religious reasons, it has a secular purpose (such as joint income, survivor benefits, ect). It is somewhat disturbing to see a couple getting married and then spending a bundle of cash that they may not have, to host 200 people, and then complain that they weren't getting enough value from their gifts. Or that families and friends may scoff at the notion of someone having a court wedding or a tiny ceremony. Last night a friend told me that her cousin was having a wedding in their backyard and will serve homemade cupcakes (not dinner) and that if the weather is bad, they will just postpone it for another week. No obligation for anyone to come, and my guess is that they are cool if people just gave cards. My friend was somewhat wary of the concept, and unsure if she wanted to go...though to her credit, it's a 5 hour drive for what seems like an hour long wedding/ceremony.

gimp

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2015, 06:51:42 PM »
WEDDING THREAD, WEDDING POLITICS INCOMING

TheThirstyStag

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2015, 11:48:40 AM »
FWIW, my general rule of thumb for a local wedding with friends that I believe are in decent shape financially, I give about what I am guessing the plate+drinks will cost, plus $10 to $50 depending on the situation--I usually try to make it about $100 total for my fiance and I.

It also depends on my situation, and if I had to travel or not. To get to my cousins wedding, I had to take 2 days off of work and pay $300 in hotel rooms. He didn't get a gift, and I don't want one from him if he is able to make it to mine (Fuck you, cancer).

Then I didn't give a gift to a friend of mine who's wedding I was in. He'll be in mine. I told him explicitly, DO NOT GIVE US A GIFT. Just don't want it.

I hope to someday be in the position to be able to give $500 or so to some young people getting married.

This sounds reasonable, and is very much what I usually do.  I always like to think about how much money they're spending on me being there to eat a nice meal, and I pick up that tab + a little extra for congratulations.

CommonCents

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2015, 12:15:47 PM »
I don't hold a grudge, but I certainly remember those who came, ate food, drank and danced, but didn't even bother giving us a card.  We still see them are friends and would never bring it up to them, but it's not something you forget.  [ETA: I also remember the three guests that told me day before or day of that they were no longer coming to the wedding.]

I wonder if they forgot, or gave a gift and it was lost or stolen.  (I wrote a check once for a friend that never made it to her.)  Have you seen the How I Met Your Mother episode on this?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRkuVe3ft5A
(another guest had switched in his card for Ted's gift)

I travel for almost all of the weddings I've ever attended, and it doesn't affect me giving a gift.

ETA: Just read the article.  The sexist blame attaching to the wife, I take umbrage at.  It pissed me off so badly when a friend thought I ought to write all of the thank you notes, when we both received the present (and actually, I was just trying to get my husband to help with only some of his side), we both would use the present, and we were both equally busy with work - arguably, me more so with volunteer commitments in addition to full-time work.  Let's move into the 21st century people.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2015, 12:22:21 PM by CommonCents »

Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2015, 12:42:35 PM »
Growing up, my Mom kept a notebook for this explicit purpose.  Every monetary gift, given to family for birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, etc, she kept in a log.  SHE expected the same thing back, same denomination, etc, when her turn came around.

When my cousins had birthdays, my parents would send the kid a $50 check.  When my birthday/sister's birthday came around, my aunt & uncle would send a $50 savings bond.  This pissed my mother off, b/c she couldn't immediately get the $50, had to wait the 20 years for it, and she knew they had only spent $25 on it.  FYI - my parents kept all the bonds as their money, since they had laid out the cash for my cousins.

I had a destination wedding (Vegas) to keep costs down and the event small.  My brother in law's best friend just so happened to be in Vegas visiting his sister when we got married, so of course we extended an invitation for him & his wife, as we were friendly with them.  A week before the wedding, they guilted us into letting the sister come along too, b/c they felt bad about leaving her home alone.  All three showed up to the wedding, had a great time, and the best friend handed my husband an empty card.  I thought it was in poor taste, and I was particularly surprised because my husband had gone to their wedding and given a nice gift, not to mention that the wife was the type to be very into etiquette.

A few months later, we all happened to be hanging out together, and his wife got a little tipsy and started telling me stories about several people who attended her wedding and didn't give a gift!  I told her that I had the same experience with a guest at my wedding, and all of a sudden, I figured out what happened.  She had put cash in the envelope, and her hubby swiped it!  He had married "up", and was having a hard time keeping up, so he knew we wouldn't say a word, and he took advantage of the situation.  FYI - they didn't stay married long.  I never told his ex-wife what happened, and I was so over it shortly after it happened.  I was more annoyed that the hubby would do something so selfish and take advantage, after bringing extra guests!  Rude...

Friar

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #13 on: May 12, 2015, 01:01:49 PM »
I don't like the feeling of obligation to buy someone a present just because you're attending their wedding. I get that the couple are generally footing the (large) bill and providing an evening of entertainment, but that is their prerogative and shouldn't bring with it the unwritten rule that you MUST get them a present.


To me, when it comes to my wedding I want to make it clear that presents are not expected. I realise that there will be family members and the like who will want to gift, so we might put out a list, but it's by no means a condition on attending.

FiguringItOut

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #14 on: May 12, 2015, 01:08:27 PM »
I know this post will get a lot of flame, but I think it will also entertain some of you.  So here it goes.

It was mentioned above to cover the cost your plate plus a bit extra.  Well, where I am, the cost of the plate for a wedding is between $150 and $200 per person for a fancy but not extravagant affair.  Kids don't get plate discounts.  And it is expected to get your plate covered in the envelope.  Now, to make this clear, for me, it is a much cultural custom as it is geographical.  The combination of my country of origin and my current location, makes weddings very expensive.

My wedding 16 years ago was $100 per plate just for hall and food and we got a deal on it.  My entire wedding was around $25K for 100 people RSVP's and 80 people showing up because of the snow blizzard that day.  The day after the wedding, my dad was asking who gave how much cash. 

Now days, considering my sad state of financial affairs, I would not go to a wedding if invited, but I would still be expected to give a gift, though not as big as covering a plate.

Years ago, we did not go a wedding because we couldn't afford dress and suite for my and husband.  We still gave a gift of couple hundred dollars.  Such is custom, it's not going to change. 

My sister recently attended two wedding, one in Disney and one in Europe.  She covered travel to both destinations, hotel, etc, and gave cash gifts as well.  I do find this to be over the top.

One of my cousins had a small wedding in a local restaurant.  20 people, $50/person, very unconventional for my culture.  I went by myself due to other things in my family.  I brought $150 with me. 

It is all absolutely ridiculous!

Edited to add:  When my sister got married, her gift bag completely covered her wedding costs of over $30K.  My BIL is from the same culture as us. 

When a close friend of mine married, she married an American, her gift bag did not even cover the reception since only "her" guests brought "expected" cash.

The funny thing was that some of her husband's guests brought actual gifts in boxes with bows.  They didn't know what to do with them.  There was no gift table as nobody was prepared for actual gifts. 

We've never had gifts at weddings, only envelopes.  My catering hall had a special person with hand held safe following me around so that I could drop envelopes in there as they were handed to me.  Then that safe went into a big safe in the owner's office. We picked it up after the reception was over.

I hope you all are amused and horrified now. :)




« Last Edit: May 12, 2015, 01:17:42 PM by FiguringItOut »

zephyr911

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #15 on: May 12, 2015, 01:46:38 PM »
I hope to someday be in the position to be able to give $500 or so to some young people getting married.
My wife's youngest brother got married pretty recently and we put in something near that. It was a good feeling.
I probably did $2K between my sisters' weddings, although given my state at the time it was probably more than I should have. But weddings do inspire generosity, especially when the couple are young and marrying for the first time. We want to do everything we can for them, to make them feel loved and support their efforts to build a new life together. Hell yeah.

Now, to make this clear, for me, it is a much cultural custom as it is geographical.  The combination of my country of origin and my current location, makes weddings very expensive.
Hmm... Armenian? Greek?

MgoSam

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #16 on: May 12, 2015, 01:53:44 PM »
Now, to make this clear, for me, it is a much cultural custom as it is geographical.  The combination of my country of origin and my current location, makes weddings very expensive.
Hmm... Armenian? Greek?

My first thought was Indian, but then I remembered that generally Indians aren't known for being generous with cash gifts.

gimp

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #17 on: May 12, 2015, 02:24:55 PM »
Growing up, my Mom kept a notebook for this explicit purpose.  Every monetary gift, given to family for birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, etc, she kept in a log.  SHE expected the same thing back, same denomination, etc, when her turn came around.

When my cousins had birthdays, my parents would send the kid a $50 check.  When my birthday/sister's birthday came around, my aunt & uncle would send a $50 savings bond.  This pissed my mother off, b/c she couldn't immediately get the $50, had to wait the 20 years for it, and she knew they had only spent $25 on it.  FYI - my parents kept all the bonds as their money, since they had laid out the cash for my cousins.

Remind me never to go to a social event with your parents.

Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #18 on: May 12, 2015, 03:29:15 PM »
Growing up, my Mom kept a notebook for this explicit purpose.  Every monetary gift, given to family for birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, etc, she kept in a log.  SHE expected the same thing back, same denomination, etc, when her turn came around.

When my cousins had birthdays, my parents would send the kid a $50 check.  When my birthday/sister's birthday came around, my aunt & uncle would send a $50 savings bond.  This pissed my mother off, b/c she couldn't immediately get the $50, had to wait the 20 years for it, and she knew they had only spent $25 on it.  FYI - my parents kept all the bonds as their money, since they had laid out the cash for my cousins.

Remind me never to go to a social event with your parents.

LOL!  Much like FiguringItOut, this is more of a cultural thing.  (Italian).  I was raised in the NYC area, so nothing written in his/her post was odd to me; we followed the same "rules".  An actual gift at a wedding is inconsiderate, that's what the engagement party and bridal shower are for.

I pretty much had it with my parents and their customs when my Mom received a wedding invitation from a friend.  It was the second wedding for this particular daughter, so my Mom told ME to cover the gift.  The way she saw it, my parents gave the gift for the first marriage, the friend had reciprocated the same dollar amount when I married, so all future weddings from that family became my responsibility.  To people I barely knew!  My Mom also decided that $250 was adequate, since it was the second marriage.  ($500 was the typical gift)  And no one was actually attending the wedding!  I think I eventually gave into her pressure and sent them a money order for $100 or $150, and told my Mom I gave the $250 she requested.  Mom got the thank you, she was satisfied and none the wiser.

Kris

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #19 on: May 12, 2015, 03:32:57 PM »
Wedding gifting is ridiculous! I'm going to a wedding soon, so I wanted to read up on gift etiquette a bit. I found this article:
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/25/fashion/weddings/when-you-cant-forget-the-gifts-you-didnt-get.html

Halfway through I had to check to make sure it wasn't published on April 1. Seriously, people hold a lifelong grudge against "friends" that don't give them a gift at their wedding?  A gift should be something that you are thankful for, not something that's expected or required.

I guess it depends on the wedding; from the article "For that matter, Ms. Kaas Boyle can also recall, in elaborate detail, which guests relished the five-course dinner at the ornate Rex Il Ristorante (now shuttered), and still failed to give a present."

Maybe that's the bit that stings. Sure, they didn't have to throw a lavish wedding, but people didn't have to come either. It's a tough one sometimes...

In theory, I sort of agree with you... In practice, though, I don't.  Those people chose to throw a lavish wedding.  A certain percentage (probably most) of the guests they invited love them and want to celebrate their day with them. Especially close friends and family.  They are not there to have a delicious five-course dinner. So why should they be held hostage financially by the couple's decision to have a ridiculously expensive dinner?  By that logic, if I'm supposed to "pay" for my dinner by bringing a present, then am I supposed to ring the restaurant and find out how much the meal cost, and then purchase a present of the same price?

People are nuts.  Makes me glad that we had a "no gifts, please" policy.

LiveLean

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #20 on: May 12, 2015, 03:33:17 PM »
I consider it a good year if I've made it through without attending a wedding or funeral. Sadly, I've had one of each all ready this year. At 45, I'm at the stage where friends are getting divorced rather than married. And my 38-year-old youngest sister finally got married and insisted on having a full-blown wedding even though Dad wasn't paying.

Wife and I have been married 17 years and I only remember two gifts. The first was a $100 Home Depot card, which I thought was pretty cool since gift cards were a pretty new concept at the time. The second came from an often tone deaf friend who visited us nearly a year later and presented us with a candle holder wedding gift that she probably picked up from TJ Maxx on the drive over for $12. The ironic thing is we didn't pay attention to who didn't give gifts and wouldn't have noticed had she given us nothing. But I'll remember that stupid candle holder forever, even though it's been 17 years since it went to Goodwill.

Kris

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #21 on: May 12, 2015, 03:40:14 PM »
I don't like the feeling of obligation to buy someone a present just because you're attending their wedding. I get that the couple are generally footing the (large) bill and providing an evening of entertainment, but that is their prerogative and shouldn't bring with it the unwritten rule that you MUST get them a present.


To me, when it comes to my wedding I want to make it clear that presents are not expected. I realise that there will be family members and the like who will want to gift, so we might put out a list, but it's by no means a condition on attending.

Exactly.  Jesus, are you inviting people because you want them to share your special day, or are you inviting them with an expectation that they pay you for the privilege?  I do not understand why people expect to get presents!!! 

Of course, I personally always give a gift when I'm invited, whether I go or not.  But that is my choice.  I choose whom I invite.  I choose how much to spend on each person at the reception.  I cannot fathom how that comes with the expectation that they compensate me. They have already give me a gift by making the effort to come and wish me well.  Any other expectation is just selfish.

mlipps

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #22 on: May 12, 2015, 03:43:21 PM »
I know this post will get a lot of flame, but I think it will also entertain some of you.  So here it goes.

It was mentioned above to cover the cost your plate plus a bit extra.  Well, where I am, the cost of the plate for a wedding is between $150 and $200 per person for a fancy but not extravagant affair.  Kids don't get plate discounts.  And it is expected to get your plate covered in the envelope.  Now, to make this clear, for me, it is a much cultural custom as it is geographical.  The combination of my country of origin and my current location, makes weddings very expensive.

My wedding 16 years ago was $100 per plate just for hall and food and we got a deal on it.  My entire wedding was around $25K for 100 people RSVP's and 80 people showing up because of the snow blizzard that day.  The day after the wedding, my dad was asking who gave how much cash. 

Now days, considering my sad state of financial affairs, I would not go to a wedding if invited, but I would still be expected to give a gift, though not as big as covering a plate.

Years ago, we did not go a wedding because we couldn't afford dress and suite for my and husband.  We still gave a gift of couple hundred dollars.  Such is custom, it's not going to change. 

My sister recently attended two wedding, one in Disney and one in Europe.  She covered travel to both destinations, hotel, etc, and gave cash gifts as well.  I do find this to be over the top.

One of my cousins had a small wedding in a local restaurant.  20 people, $50/person, very unconventional for my culture.  I went by myself due to other things in my family.  I brought $150 with me. 

It is all absolutely ridiculous!

Edited to add:  When my sister got married, her gift bag completely covered her wedding costs of over $30K.  My BIL is from the same culture as us. 

When a close friend of mine married, she married an American, her gift bag did not even cover the reception since only "her" guests brought "expected" cash.

The funny thing was that some of her husband's guests brought actual gifts in boxes with bows.  They didn't know what to do with them.  There was no gift table as nobody was prepared for actual gifts. 

We've never had gifts at weddings, only envelopes.  My catering hall had a special person with hand held safe following me around so that I could drop envelopes in there as they were handed to me.  Then that safe went into a big safe in the owner's office. We picked it up after the reception was over.

I hope you all are amused and horrified now. :)

As bizarre as this idea is to me, in some weird way, it's almost like an interest free wedding loan system if everyone is covering the full costs of their wedding with their gifts from the guests, who all presumably did the same thing.

Redstone5

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #23 on: May 12, 2015, 03:49:23 PM »
I thought the idea of a wedding was to be surrounded by your loved ones on your special day. Isn't the presence of your family and friends supposed to be the point, not the gifts they bring? What a shame that greed and expectation leads to so much bad feeling.

My first wedding was paid for (and organized by) by my parents. It wasn't a huge affair compared to many I've heard of since, but it was 75 guests and about 20k spent. I appreciated it (even though it was mostly my parent's friends, not mine as it was held in another part of the country), but the next time around my second husband and I just took our parents and our two kids to a nice dinner out and then had a great honeymoon on our budget.

However, I have to admit that I did get some nice gifts at my first wedding. I'm still using the microwave and dishwasher 15 years later! I was very grateful, but certainly didn't expect anything other than well wishes from everyone who came.

Edited to add: I think it is totally a cultural thing. Sort of like gift bags at children's parties. I hate the custom as it's usually wasteful of money and the environment and the kids through the stuff away in a day or two, but it's hard to be the only parent who doesn't hand them out. Let's all encourage each other not to go with the trend :)
« Last Edit: May 12, 2015, 03:54:42 PM by Redstone5 »

Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #24 on: May 12, 2015, 03:50:55 PM »
Wedding gifting is ridiculous! I'm going to a wedding soon, so I wanted to read up on gift etiquette a bit. I found this article:
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/25/fashion/weddings/when-you-cant-forget-the-gifts-you-didnt-get.html

Halfway through I had to check to make sure it wasn't published on April 1. Seriously, people hold a lifelong grudge against "friends" that don't give them a gift at their wedding?  A gift should be something that you are thankful for, not something that's expected or required.

I guess it depends on the wedding; from the article "For that matter, Ms. Kaas Boyle can also recall, in elaborate detail, which guests relished the five-course dinner at the ornate Rex Il Ristorante (now shuttered), and still failed to give a present."

Maybe that's the bit that stings. Sure, they didn't have to throw a lavish wedding, but people didn't have to come either. It's a tough one sometimes...

...By that logic, if I'm supposed to "pay" for my dinner by bringing a present, then am I supposed to ring the restaurant and find out how much the meal cost, and then purchase a present of the same price?


Yup, I've had to call and pretend to be a bride to figure out what the going rate for the plate was if we didn't already know the catering hall. 

And I totally agree, this is all madness!  At the time, I was young, stupid, and went with what I knew.  Now I wish we had moved to TX much earlier, b/c weddings out here are whatever you want them to be.  A BBQ joint on a Wednesday evening?  Sure!  In NYC, a Friday night or Sunday afternoon wedding is frowned upon, forget about trying to squeeze it in on a Wednesday night.

If I could do it over, it would be at a winery here that I like, and we'd be serving appetizers and bite size pizza.  The cost would be far less and the ambiance would be far better!

Goldielocks

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #25 on: May 12, 2015, 04:15:39 PM »
The thread is a hoot...

1)"How inconsiderate of you to bring me a wedding gift to my wedding!"    -- although I do agree that gifts should be sent to one's home rather than to the venue, or cash in cards only if you hand it over at the venue, this implied statement is funny.

2) The article does make one point -- If I give a friend or even an acquaintance a gift for wedding, then a first child, and such, then I would be upset too, if no gift was reciprocated for my life event.

3) The idea that you bring a gift (physical) to an engagement party -- gosh darn it,  I thought an engagement party was where you announced the engagement so everyone would not have a chance to bring gifts?   Equally, if you are the type of monied family to have an engagement party, around here, the gift is typically a cash promise commitment from the parents.

4) Bridal shower gifts are intended here, to help you set up a new home, such as tea towels, table cloths, maybe a small appliance from a rich aunt.   Not for the crystal vase...

5) Hunny156 -- and your story of mom's tracking of gifts and sending $100 gift to someone you don't actually know...  ah, the power of mothers.    And then having to call to calculate the approximate cost of a plate of food to determine your gift level?  hmm what happens if the wedding is too expensive for you?  not show?


Lastly,

On a former thread a new idea came out -- that we should give a nice, substantial "first home" house warming gift when a friend moves into their own place, and let them know it is in lieu of a generous wedding gift.  That way you can treat all your friends equally, once, and typically they tend to get their own places all around the same years, anyway.
Wedding gifts are limited to small cash amounts or useful things or something to wish them well, not big financial endeavors.

CommonCents

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #26 on: May 12, 2015, 07:11:15 PM »
And my 38-year-old youngest sister finally got married and insisted on having a full-blown wedding even though Dad wasn't paying.

Wife and I have been married 17 years and I only remember two gifts.

As long as she's paying, why can't your sister have the wedding she wants?  Weddings aren't just for the young.  It's not like you turn 30 and all of the sudden it's embarrassing for everyone else in the room that you are unmarried (although ask an older unmarried person, because it may seem that way at times...).  It took her 10 years longer than you to find the person she wants to spend her life with - consider that all the more reason to celebrate as she wants.  As someone getting married somewhat later myself, at age 32 (husband 36), I found attitudes like this pretty frustrating.

Megma

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #27 on: May 12, 2015, 10:22:04 PM »
Personally I think a gift, appropriate to your budget and or personal is polite, especially if you attend. You should at least give a card. Currently I am making a quilt for the wedding of a friend, it has become an onerous task...

However, I have a cousin who recently got married and registered at cabelas...I refuse to get sporting goods for a wedding, the idea is to help the couple set up their house and start their lives and fishing poles aren't required! Gift hunger or big weddings to get more stuff is tasteless and classless.

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #28 on: May 12, 2015, 11:53:19 PM »
Learning to crochet, make wine, and make preserved food (pickles, jams, jellies, etc.) has been a lifesaver for me.

For just a few dollars and several hours I was going to spend experiencing insomnia anyway, I can give a gift worth several hundred dollars.

Example: a wine kit, averaging $75 when you factor in corks, labels, and such, becomes 30 bottles of wine. With custom labels, those bottles of wine are worth $15+ apiece, easily. Result: a gift worth $450. Two such batches (generally a batch of red and a batch of white) provide 60 bottles or 300 servings of wine, which is enough for most receptions especially if they also have beer or a champagne toast.

Other examples include custom lace, a crocheted afghan blanket in their chosen colors, a gros point picture, etc. For fall weddings, I've had a lot of success with jam or jelly samplers, in which I just set aside a half-pint of everything I make one year and box up a dozen jars of something sweet and a dozen jars of pickles and preserves such as applesauce. It's tasty, it's consumable, the decorative jars are extremely cute and re-usable, the jellies can get pretty wild and exotic, and I've never had anyone do anything except ask for more of their favorites. The pickles are generally eaten quickly if there's a baby on the way.

This kind of gift can't be a surprise, though: you have to talk to the couple and find out what their tastes are. Some people simply won't use an afghan if the colors don't match what's in the bedroom or family room where they propose to use it. Or, you can wear yourself out making placemats for a kitchen, and they'll just be discarded if you haven't taken the time to find out what the couple wants. Communication is vital. It's not OK to simply create something and then see whether the people you give it to actually want it. A lot of stuff ends up re-gifted, if you do that, and it's a waste of labor and materials. Don't waste time stitching up (and then stretching and framing) a needlework rendition of a Monet for a Realist. There are people who genuinely believe that crocheted blankets or handmade quilts are lame. But the same people who'd turn up their noses at my yarn work really like my wine once they have a chance to taste it, and assuming they get to pick the type.

If I had to commit matrimony, that's the kind of gift I'd like to receive: art of some kind, by my friends, or else something useful.  I'd say "fuck the whole registry concept", except I see how it benefits people like my elderly great-aunts, who no longer have the eyesight or the time.

tavore

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #29 on: May 13, 2015, 12:32:19 AM »
This thread finally made me stop lurking and register.

I grew up seeing "Presents in Blessings Only" printed on wedding invitations. The idea of wedding gifts was alien to us. I'm planning my own wedding right now, and was a bit flummoxed when a friend asked me where we were registered. Having the people that are most important to us be there to celebrate a special day together is the best gift that I can think of. The trappings of the wedding are the least important things of the day. Folks need to stop listening to the wedding business sales talk!

Lyssa

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #30 on: May 13, 2015, 02:47:01 AM »
Personally I think a gift, appropriate to your budget and or personal is polite, especially if you attend. You should at least give a card. Currently I am making a quilt for the wedding of a friend, it has become an onerous task...

However, I have a cousin who recently got married and registered at cabelas...I refuse to get sporting goods for a wedding, the idea is to help the couple set up their house and start their lives and fishing poles aren't required! Gift hunger or big weddings to get more stuff is tasteless and classless.

This used to be the purpose of wedding gifts. However, if a couple lived together for years and then decides to marry they either get nothing or second sets of towels, dishes and sheets with no regard to their needs or wants? Does not sound reasonable to me. I'd be happy without gifts but I would certainly notice if someone asked what To get or where to get something and then bought towels anyways.

mtn

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #31 on: May 13, 2015, 07:41:30 AM »


Folks need to stop listening to the wedding business sales talk!

Please, go back in time and tell that to my future mother in law.

Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #32 on: May 13, 2015, 09:05:28 AM »
The thread is a hoot...

...
5) Hunny156 -- and your story of mom's tracking of gifts and sending $100 gift to someone you don't actually know...  ah, the power of mothers.    And then having to call to calculate the approximate cost of a plate of food to determine your gift level?  hmm what happens if the wedding is too expensive for you?  not show?


When I was getting married, all the NYC catering halls had a two year backlog to set a date, which generally gives people enough time to budget for the wedding affair.  But yes, some weddings were too expensive, or there were just too many that year, so my parents did pick and choose who was graced with their presence.  If you didn't show, $250 or so was the gift amount.  If you did, then it was $500 min, which usually worked out to $150/plate plus $100/person gift.  Of course, that's not including the dress, which my Mom searched far and wide for, and god forbid you wore the same dress twice!  The whole thing is ridiculous, and even though I received a fair amount of criticism for avoiding most of it and heading to Vegas instead, I'm soo glad I did that.  If it were me getting married now, the whole thing would have been done for far less, and I would listen to zero input from people trying to influence me to do the "customary" crap.

Which reminds me, another Mom story.  Wedding favors are a BIG deal, possibly the most important small detail.  I happened to be at the Mikasa warehouse sale, where they had crystal heart shaped boxes for $1.99 each!  I had literally gotten engaged a few days earlier, but I snagged a few cases and was relieved to score such a good deal.  My Mom did not care for my favor, so she actually went out and bought these onyx candy dishes (looked like a soup bowl to me), for something like $15 each.  She only bought enough to cover her side of the family, and handed those out as my wedding favors instead.  I still have one, in the box, never opened.

FiguringItOut

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #33 on: May 13, 2015, 09:10:04 AM »

When I was getting married, all the NYC catering halls had a two year backlog to set a date, which generally gives people enough time to budget for the wedding affair.  But yes, some weddings were too expensive, or there were just too many that year, so my parents did pick and choose who was graced with their presence.  If you didn't show, $250 or so was the gift amount.  If you did, then it was $500 min, which usually worked out to $150/plate plus $100/person gift.  Of course, that's not including the dress, which my Mom searched far and wide for, and god forbid you wore the same dress twice! 

I can so relate with every word you post.  My mom's dress at my wedding was a $700 dress that she wore that one time.  My wedding dress was $250. 


Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #34 on: May 13, 2015, 09:27:18 AM »

When I was getting married, all the NYC catering halls had a two year backlog to set a date, which generally gives people enough time to budget for the wedding affair.  But yes, some weddings were too expensive, or there were just too many that year, so my parents did pick and choose who was graced with their presence.  If you didn't show, $250 or so was the gift amount.  If you did, then it was $500 min, which usually worked out to $150/plate plus $100/person gift.  Of course, that's not including the dress, which my Mom searched far and wide for, and god forbid you wore the same dress twice! 

I can so relate with every word you post.  My mom's dress at my wedding was a $700 dress that she wore that one time.  My wedding dress was $250.

I have a feeling we also both know the insides of every catering hall inside and out!  And the standard wedding fare, ugh, the whole thing is so unoriginal.

My Mom managed to break her own mold for my wedding, she hates the color green, and yet, the perfect dress for her was found at Nordstrom for something like $350 before alterations.  She always dyed her hair auburn, so the combination was actually gorgeous, and I've already been informed that this is the dress she wants to be buried in.

$250 is a total steal!  I thought I did really well, I scored a silk Pronovias gown for $595, which is a far cry from the average $3K most of my friends spent.

JessEsq

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #35 on: May 13, 2015, 09:34:42 AM »
My husband and I got married for the price of the license and the wedding officiant. We eloped outside in the MetroPark in front of a well-known "signal tree." I think the total cost was $180. A couple was finishing the hiking trail nearby when we finished our "ceremony" and insisted on giving us $40 from their pockets. Total strangers. We refused several times before accepting the cash and giving half to the officiant as a tip. We went to dinner at a local place that night.

We wrote both our families and close friends to announce our wedding the next week. To this day, the only gift we have ever received for our wedding was $80 cash from my husband's grandfather. No one disliked our "choice" of mate - they just didn't send gifts. Maybe they felt slighted for not being in the wedding (no one was) or not getting a party (which neither of us wanted). Clearly, the gifts are not about celebrating the love and new life of a young couple - they are just a social requirement and your ticket to the party.

DH and I sometimes joke about hosting a five-year anniversary party in the style of a wedding reception just to see if people will give us gifts. His siblings received large weddings and gifts from the family (and one is on his 3rd wife). My brother similarly had his wedding paid for (including rehearsal dinner, alcohol, etc...) by my parents and received gifts. My family traveled from out of state to it! (They are now divorced - no family has come to see my and DH despite our nice house with plenty of room and invitations to the same).

We might throw the anniversary party - because we want our family to get together! It will be potluck style with cheap wine (DH is in the wine biz, so the wine purchases are at cost). We want to celebrate with the family. We don't need their gifts.

Although when we got married we were both unemployed and in extreme credit card and student loan debt we are now doing very well (by common standards - we are just some newbies by Mustachian standards). We make better salary than our family, live in a nicer house, and overall we enjoy giving to them, not taking from them.

I despise the obligation to buy gifts. And the whole "start a life & family" industry is ridiculous. I'm 30 years old. A week doesn't go by without an invite to one of the following (not always in this order!):

Engagement party
Wedding shower
Bachelorette Party
Wedding/Reception
House Warming
Baby Shower
Gender-Reveal Party
Baby's First Birthday

It's ridiculous. I politely refuse as often as possible when I know the invitation is really an invitation to give a gift and not an invitation to celebrate.

FiguringItOut

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #36 on: May 13, 2015, 09:41:55 AM »

When I was getting married, all the NYC catering halls had a two year backlog to set a date, which generally gives people enough time to budget for the wedding affair.  But yes, some weddings were too expensive, or there were just too many that year, so my parents did pick and choose who was graced with their presence.  If you didn't show, $250 or so was the gift amount.  If you did, then it was $500 min, which usually worked out to $150/plate plus $100/person gift.  Of course, that's not including the dress, which my Mom searched far and wide for, and god forbid you wore the same dress twice! 

I can so relate with every word you post.  My mom's dress at my wedding was a $700 dress that she wore that one time.  My wedding dress was $250.

I have a feeling we also both know the insides of every catering hall inside and out!  And the standard wedding fare, ugh, the whole thing is so unoriginal.

My Mom managed to break her own mold for my wedding, she hates the color green, and yet, the perfect dress for her was found at Nordstrom for something like $350 before alterations.  She always dyed her hair auburn, so the combination was actually gorgeous, and I've already been informed that this is the dress she wants to be buried in.

$250 is a total steal!  I thought I did really well, I scored a silk Pronovias gown for $595, which is a far cry from the average $3K most of my friends spent.

LOL this is interesting to meet someone who understands this wedding stuff on this board.

My hall search was a bit different since we were looking for the catering hall that served kosher food.  We ended up getting married in Brooklyn.  My sister went with Long Island. 

But Yes on standard wedding fare.  Table flowers are always the same type of bouquets though different colors and various flowers, but they are all the same in the end.  Same toasts, same traditions, same music because we use the same wedding band, very often same 1-2 photographers so we all end up with same photo albums lol. 

My $250 dress was just something I fell into.  I said from day one that I wanted a simple satin off white dress, no tulle, no lace, no flowers, no embellishments.  I found my dress at David's bridal by pure accident while I was there buying flower girl dresses.  I am also very hard to fit, so when I tried it on and it fit, I took it and walked out with it.  It really was very simple dress, but I liked it and felt comfortable in it.  Now the veil and tiara I was stressing over a long time.  Ended up having my veil made to order ($200 to saw 3 pieces of tulle) and got my tiara on clearance sale for $150.  LOL

Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #37 on: May 13, 2015, 09:58:05 AM »
I'm a Westchester girl, so the Bronx and the Shore Road properties were the typical catering halls.  Kosher wasn't a requirement, but yeah, everyone has the same two or three bands, DJ's were for poor people, etc.  I even worked in a gift shop during college, so the whole bridal industry thing is in my blood, and I always hated it.  Such a scam.

I got the veil and tiara combo for $150, also not worth what I paid for it.  When I left NY, I sold pretty much everything, from the never used china to the "preserved" wedding gown, which cost me $250 for the dry cleaner to pretend clean it and fold it into a sealed box.

I still have the tiara.  My goal is to one day wear it around the house while I vacuum!

FiguringItOut

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #38 on: May 13, 2015, 10:02:23 AM »
I'm keeping my china. It was a gift from my grandmother, the entire set, and now that she's gone this china is very important to me. 

Honestly, I was so into this whole affair years ago.  Didn't find my way away from materializm till fairly recently.  And now that I am going through divorce, one of the reason for which is my STBX's inability to have any control over spendings, the whole thing seems like such a waste.  I do have my tiara still.  My younger daughet likes to play with it, so I'm keeping it.

Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #39 on: May 13, 2015, 10:13:26 AM »
I'm keeping my china. It was a gift from my grandmother, the entire set, and now that she's gone this china is very important to me. 

Honestly, I was so into this whole affair years ago.  Didn't find my way away from materializm till fairly recently.  And now that I am going through divorce, one of the reason for which is my STBX's inability to have any control over spendings, the whole thing seems like such a waste.  I do have my tiara still.  My younger daughet likes to play with it, so I'm keeping it.

Sounds to me like you have the right idea.  Keep the stuff that matters to you, and move forward with the positive changes in your life.

Merrie

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #40 on: May 13, 2015, 12:30:44 PM »
I was so thrilled on my wedding day that my family and friends had traveled so far to celebrate with us. When I realized we got presents too on top of that it felt like an embarrassment of riches.

Cheryl

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #41 on: May 13, 2015, 02:30:40 PM »
This all sounds terrible!

When/If I get married, we're doing the paperwork, inviting everyone to a big backyard potluck, and announcing it over drinks.  DONE.

Gifts are too stressful!  No one needs more stuff!  I don't want more stuff I'm obligated to keep for at least a few years.  I'll buy someone a gift for Christmas or birthdays or whatnot IF I can think of something I really think they'll like, but otherwise I'm transitioning to giving edibles.  Batch of cookies, bag of cinnamon toasted almonds, canister of hot chocolate mix....  It's fun to get more gifts, but really, who needs more stuff?  ESPECIALLY if they're fully grown adults, presumably capable of buying their own wants!

Now that I've read this thread I think I'll just skip weddings.

Pooperman

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #42 on: May 13, 2015, 04:09:52 PM »
Getting married this year. Our parents are picking up the tab for the hall, catering, RJ, photographer, etc. Should fall under $15k for everything. We are paying for the rings, the suit, and some of the decorations. Shouldn't cost us about $2k for all we have to pay for. Our families have some wealthy people and some not wealthy people. We expect to get enough to pay for our honeymoon (about $3k) but don't really care either way. This is 100 people and it's a great deal at a beautiful venue.

If we were paying, it would have cost $1.5k give or take. Dress, rings, suit, officiant in a local park with close family.

Megma

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #43 on: May 13, 2015, 05:19:00 PM »
Personally I think a gift, appropriate to your budget and or personal is polite, especially if you attend. You should at least give a card. Currently I am making a quilt for the wedding of a friend, it has become an onerous task...

However, I have a cousin who recently got married and registered at cabelas...I refuse to get sporting goods for a wedding, the idea is to help the couple set up their house and start their lives and fishing poles aren't required! Gift hunger or big weddings to get more stuff is tasteless and classless.

This used to be the purpose of wedding gifts. However, if a couple lived together for years and then decides to marry they either get nothing or second sets of towels, dishes and sheets with no regard to their needs or wants? Does not sound reasonable to me. I'd be happy without gifts but I would certainly notice if someone asked what To get or where to get something and then bought towels anyways.

Touché. This couple happens to be young, but regardless I'm not buying them sporting goods even if that's what they want. I can give them money and they can buy their own sporting goods, haha!
« Last Edit: May 13, 2015, 09:24:19 PM by Megma »

MgoSam

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #44 on: May 14, 2015, 12:56:22 PM »
Personally I think a gift, appropriate to your budget and or personal is polite, especially if you attend. You should at least give a card. Currently I am making a quilt for the wedding of a friend, it has become an onerous task...

However, I have a cousin who recently got married and registered at cabelas...I refuse to get sporting goods for a wedding, the idea is to help the couple set up their house and start their lives and fishing poles aren't required! Gift hunger or big weddings to get more stuff is tasteless and classless.

This used to be the purpose of wedding gifts. However, if a couple lived together for years and then decides to marry they either get nothing or second sets of towels, dishes and sheets with no regard to their needs or wants? Does not sound reasonable to me. I'd be happy without gifts but I would certainly notice if someone asked what To get or where to get something and then bought towels anyways.

Touché. This couple happens to be young, but regardless I'm not buying them sporting goods even if that's what they want. I can give them money and they can buy their own sporting goods, haha!

I prefer to give a check to the couple or a gift card to somewhere I think they will like. I know that many of them have registries from places like Target, but if I can't find an item in the price range I want to contribute, I would rather just give them a gift card/check to there. That way they can spend it as they want. I used to hate getting clothes and other things when I was a kid, and would just exchange them.

4alpacas

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #45 on: May 14, 2015, 01:29:51 PM »
Personally I think a gift, appropriate to your budget and or personal is polite, especially if you attend. You should at least give a card. Currently I am making a quilt for the wedding of a friend, it has become an onerous task...

However, I have a cousin who recently got married and registered at cabelas...I refuse to get sporting goods for a wedding, the idea is to help the couple set up their house and start their lives and fishing poles aren't required! Gift hunger or big weddings to get more stuff is tasteless and classless.

This used to be the purpose of wedding gifts. However, if a couple lived together for years and then decides to marry they either get nothing or second sets of towels, dishes and sheets with no regard to their needs or wants? Does not sound reasonable to me. I'd be happy without gifts but I would certainly notice if someone asked what To get or where to get something and then bought towels anyways.

Touché. This couple happens to be young, but regardless I'm not buying them sporting goods even if that's what they want. I can give them money and they can buy their own sporting goods, haha!

I prefer to give a check to the couple or a gift card to somewhere I think they will like. I know that many of them have registries from places like Target, but if I can't find an item in the price range I want to contribute, I would rather just give them a gift card/check to there. That way they can spend it as they want. I used to hate getting clothes and other things when I was a kid, and would just exchange them.
I give a check because I'm lazy.  It saves me time.  I don't have to think about carrying anything, shipping anything, wrapping anything, etc.  I write a check and stick it in a card that I bought from Trader Joe's for $1. 

Kris

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #46 on: May 14, 2015, 01:55:35 PM »
One of the things I don't think I've seen mentioned yet in this thread yet is, if wedding gifts are expected to in some way "compensate" the couple for the money they are spending on, e.g., the food at the reception, then what about people who have to travel across the state, or across the country, to come?  I mean, should those people really be expected to buy plane tickets, hotel rooms, gas, etc. to get there, and then STILL buy a gift?  If the couple are going to be so incredibly crass and petty as to expect compensation for the amount of money I am "costing" as a guest, then can I submit them a bill for my lodging and travel expenses and expect them to reimburse me for the difference?!

LiveLean

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #47 on: May 15, 2015, 09:53:31 AM »
And my 38-year-old youngest sister finally got married and insisted on having a full-blown wedding even though Dad wasn't paying.

Wife and I have been married 17 years and I only remember two gifts.

As long as she's paying, why can't your sister have the wedding she wants?  Weddings aren't just for the young.  It's not like you turn 30 and all of the sudden it's embarrassing for everyone else in the room that you are unmarried (although ask an older unmarried person, because it may seem that way at times...).  It took her 10 years longer than you to find the person she wants to spend her life with - consider that all the more reason to celebrate as she wants.  As someone getting married somewhat later myself, at age 32 (husband 36), I found attitudes like this pretty frustrating.

Sorry, I didn't provide the context. My 38-year-old (mustachian) sister didn't want to have a wedding. Which worked out well since my Dad told all three of us when we were in college he wasn't paying for weddings or rehearsal dinners (in my case). He and my late mom paid for their wedding in 1968 when they were 28-29 and didn't see why working adults should expect their parents to pay for a wedding. (One of the many great lessons they taught us.)

Sister, unfortunately, seems to have married a non-mustachian whose parents wanted the full-blown NYC wedding. My sister wouldn't take a dime and footed the bill herself to appease her husband, who works for his family's business.

I hope it all works out.

Hunny156

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #48 on: May 15, 2015, 11:05:03 AM »
One of the things I don't think I've seen mentioned yet in this thread yet is, if wedding gifts are expected to in some way "compensate" the couple for the money they are spending on, e.g., the food at the reception, then what about people who have to travel across the state, or across the country, to come?  I mean, should those people really be expected to buy plane tickets, hotel rooms, gas, etc. to get there, and then STILL buy a gift?  If the couple are going to be so incredibly crass and petty as to expect compensation for the amount of money I am "costing" as a guest, then can I submit them a bill for my lodging and travel expenses and expect them to reimburse me for the difference?!

It largely depends on the situation.  For my destination wedding in Vegas, I kept the invite list super small, just immediate family and a few friends who were willing to come.  My parents had strongly suggested moving the wedding out of NY, mostly b/c they weren't thrilled that their Italian daughter was marrying a Latino guy, and didn't want that blasted out to everyone they knew, even though everyone knew and the only people who really had a problem with it was them.  Whatever, I had no interest in footing any portion of the big bill, neither sets of parents were interested in realistic guest lists, so it made sense to get out of town instead.

I didn't pay for my parents, I was kinda shocked they even showed up.  They bailed on me for other important events, so the bar was set quite low.  My sister, she needed a computer and hubby & I would have an extra one once we married, so I gave her mine as a form of compensation for the extra expense.  My brother in law & his family would have had to travel anyhow, since they lived in a different state, but hubby wanted to cover their costs, so we did.  My Maid of Honor told me up front that she had to cover the cost of her boyfriend attending too, so she wasn't going to be able to give a gift, and I was fine with that.  Everyone else paid their own way.  I did happen to locate a screaming good deal on hotel/airfare package for the weekend, something like $300/head, and almost everyone took advantage of that deal.  It was a small hotel with easy access to the strip, but not one of the "big" hotels - most people didn't care since it was clean and well maintained.  My in-laws, who are horrendous with money, they opted for a more opulent hotel package and paid well over double what we paid, since they viewed this as a "once in a lifetime" thing.  Hubby pointed out that if they were better w/money, it didn't have to be once in a lifetime, but the point is always lost on those two...

cripzychiken

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Re: Wedding Gifts
« Reply #49 on: May 18, 2015, 04:19:09 PM »
One of the things I don't think I've seen mentioned yet in this thread yet is, if wedding gifts are expected to in some way "compensate" the couple for the money they are spending on, e.g., the food at the reception, then what about people who have to travel across the state, or across the country, to come?  I mean, should those people really be expected to buy plane tickets, hotel rooms, gas, etc. to get there, and then STILL buy a gift?  If the couple are going to be so incredibly crass and petty as to expect compensation for the amount of money I am "costing" as a guest, then can I submit them a bill for my lodging and travel expenses and expect them to reimburse me for the difference?!


Story time! Once a distant relative (who I met twice in my life before her wedding) 'let slip' at breakfast the next day that my sister (who was 19, in college, paying everything herself, working 2 jobs, etc) only 'gave her $25'.  I called her out on it and asked if the $75 from my wife and I was enough then.  She got mad and started saying how much she paid for everything and if you couldn't afford a good gift then you shouldn't come.  So I asked her what the 'price she was worth being paid for the night' so that I wouldn't 'short her like a common whore'.  Reach in my back pocket, pulled out my credit card and asked her if I could charge the extra amount so she wouldn't feel cheated.  She turned bright red, and has never talked to me since - worth it to get rid of people that shallow.