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The future of wedding gifts


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12 hours ago, hippymamato3 said:

I think it's because a wedding invite is from the bridge & groom - so asking for gifts is inappropriate and rude. A shower is thrown by someone else, so they are making gift suggestions but it's less rude. This is just what I was taught. lol

The wedding invite is from whoever is throwing the wedding, which traditionally would have been the bride's parents in the states, so that reason wouldn't have worked back in the day. Although now that you mention it, once it's included in the shower invite, it doesn't really need to be included in the wedding invite (unless there is no shower). 

A funny aside: because my in-laws went with tradition rather than the bigger picture of what was needed and being planned, the result was a rehearsal dinner that was comically more fancy and expensive than the actual reception, lol. It was very sweet and generous of them, but pretty funny to go from the formal, sit-down dinner one day to my uncles serving drinks in the local fire house the next 😄 🚒

 

11 hours ago, Carol in Cal. said:

Oh, yes, absolutely, but a small one that is meaningful rather than substantial.

No, I would take them at their word if they say no gifts. Why not believe them? 

8 hours ago, J-rap said:

Yeah, I guess I just don't understanding the difference between knowing something but not talking about it to make it feel more polite even though the intent and the outcome is the same, or just being honest and talking about it to make it easier for some people.  

ETA:  Also, I believe most people who go to the wedding aren't invited to the shower as well?  At least, that's been my experience.

Agreed to the first part. 

Second part has never been my experience. What's the reasoning behind inviting someone to the shower but not the wedding? I've seen work colleagues throw a shower knowing they weren't invited to the wedding, but that's about it. 

6 hours ago, cjzimmer1 said:

 The only thing we've learned during quarantine is that there is only 1 meal my children all like and I (the cook) don't like that one.  

You have 6 kids, so you have to let us know what meall they all like. 

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My brother is getting married next month (YAY! First marriage, first love at age 39! It's so exiting!) They're moving overseas in the fall, she's in her thirties and has been living on her own for ove

I think some older folks on second or third weddings might really feel awkward about gifts and probably some really mean “no gifts”.    And while they might not get mad or return money, they mi

It doesn't have to be so hard. There aren't that many rules: The happy couple sets a date. They choose a location based on what they can afford. They invite family and friends. If they send written in

15 minutes ago, katilac said:

You have 6 kids, so you have to let us know what meall they all like. 

It's homemade pizza made with bbq sauce instead of pizza sauce and with a cheese stuffed crust .   It needs an extra thick crust so there is enough dough to encase the cheese. However, I can't eat much bread/dough products or I feel sick so this meal doesn't work for me.

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10 minutes ago, cjzimmer1 said:

It's homemade pizza made with bbq sauce instead of pizza sauce and with a cheese stuffed crust .   It needs an extra thick crust so there is enough dough to encase the cheese. However, I can't eat much bread/dough products or I feel sick so this meal doesn't work for me.

Homemade pizza with 6 kids? I hope you get some help! Or a medal, lol. 

That sounds amazing. I love BBQ chicken pizza and currently have the sads bc we did pickup pizza tonight, but from a place that doesn't do the BBQ sauce. I mean, I still ate pizza, don't get me wrong, I was just a little melancholy about it. 

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12 minutes ago, katilac said:

Homemade pizza with 6 kids? I hope you get some help! Or a medal, lol. 

That sounds amazing. I love BBQ chicken pizza and currently have the sads bc we did pickup pizza tonight, but from a place that doesn't do the BBQ sauce. I mean, I still ate pizza, don't get me wrong, I was just a little melancholy about it. 

Sometimes I might grab a kid to chop the olives or the peppers but really it's not too bad.  The crust is so thick and filling that I never make more than 2 pizzas (and even then we have most of the second one left).  The whole thing only takes about an hour.  Pizza is actually only a medium effort meal for me.

We discovered many many years ago that we BBQ sauce makes a much more flavorable pizza than pizza sauce does and it is by far the favorite.  I can't even remember the last time I made pizza with regular pizza sauce.

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I just looked up the marriage rate in Australia. Was 6 in 1,000 twenty years ago; it's 4 in 1,000 now. And that's all marriages, not just weddings. There are going to be far fewer of the traditional kinds of weddings + gifts in the future. As people have pointed out, most couples have already moved in, had the housewarming, got the things they need. The gifts they get at a wedding, therefore, aren't a 'need'. Putting out a registry of 'wants' doesn't sit well with me. It feels greedy. If I was to get married (which I wouldn't), I'd say 'no gifts, but if you feel like you need to, do a charitable donation'. 

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My friend's daughter got married a month ago.  The couple will be flying out to live overseas in a few week's time and planning to take only their suitcases with clothes.

It was a Covid wedding, so less than 50 people that the family knows well.

We were all asked to put cash into an anonymous envelope and into a box to donate towards their honeymoon.  They had cards with a list of the activities they were planning and the guest was asked to choose one that they were donating towards - the couple sent  a photograph of themselves doing the activity to the guest.

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8 hours ago, Hannah said:

My friend's daughter got married a month ago.  The couple will be flying out to live overseas in a few week's time and planning to take only their suitcases with clothes.

It was a Covid wedding, so less than 50 people that the family knows well.

We were all asked to put cash into an anonymous envelope and into a box to donate towards their honeymoon.  They had cards with a list of the activities they were planning and the guest was asked to choose one that they were donating towards - the couple sent  a photograph of themselves doing the activity to the guest.

I can understand cash being the most reasonable gift and if I knew that a couple was flying to live overseas, it is probably the gift I would choose to give. 

I do not understand the "we were all asked to.." part though.  Who is doing the asking?  The couple?  The couple's family?  And an anonymous envelope, but they are thanking the guest for the money?  I don't see how that works.  

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1 hour ago, Bootsie said:

I can understand cash being the most reasonable gift and if I knew that a couple was flying to live overseas, it is probably the gift I would choose to give. 

I do not understand the "we were all asked to.." part though.  Who is doing the asking?  The couple?  The couple's family?  And an anonymous envelope, but they are thanking the guest for the money?  I don't see how that works.  

The groom is from the USA and the wedding was in South Africa, the bride's country.  The couple will be moving to the US.   Because of Covid his family and friends from the US could not attend and the majority of the guests were close friends of many years of the bride's family.   We wanted to know what we could give them and the mother of the bride did the asking.

It worked like this.  They printed the experiences to choose from on a card.  The guests ticked the box for the experience they were contributing towards, wrote a message (if they wanted) and signed their name/s on the card.  This went into the 'donation' box separately from the envelopes with money, so that it wasn't an embarrassing thing about how much money anyone chose to contribute.  Obviously, more than one guest could choose the same experience, then they'd both receive a photograph of the couple doing that thing (they had ziplining, a trip up the cable car, dinner at a nice restaurant, a visit to a wildlife sanctuary, and a few more).

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Money in the form of cash was always a thing in Italian American weddings (and I suspect other European immigrant communities) but the money went along with a gift. Usually the bride carried a small purse at the reception as she greeted guests and those who wished to offer money could do so. It was actually kind of funny. The person discreetly hands money to the bride and she discreetly puts it in the purse. Like no one knows what's actually happening lol.

I to think it's going to lean towards money/gift cards only for all the reasons already mentioned. All of the young or single people in our lives are already married or a ways off from getting married so it's not something we've had to think about. However, if that's going to be the way of wedding gift giving then I have no problem with it. Just because I'm old doesn't mean I can't change to fit with what's currently considered conventional. I'd rather give money than some gift that's going to end up at a thrift shop. And by giving money as expected of me, I know the couple will be truly grateful rather than pretending to be grateful for the sake of good manners.

Edited by Lady Florida.
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18 hours ago, katilac said:

The wedding invite is from whoever is throwing the wedding, which traditionally would have been the bride's parents in the states, so that reason wouldn't have worked back in the day. Although now that you mention it, once it's included in the shower invite, it doesn't really need to be included in the wedding invite (unless there is no shower). 

A funny aside: because my in-laws went with tradition rather than the bigger picture of what was needed and being planned, the result was a rehearsal dinner that was comically more fancy and expensive than the actual reception, lol. It was very sweet and generous of them, but pretty funny to go from the formal, sit-down dinner one day to my uncles serving drinks in the local fire house the next 😄 🚒

 

No, I would take them at their word if they say no gifts. Why not believe them? 

Agreed to the first part. 

Second part has never been my experience. What's the reasoning behind inviting someone to the shower but not the wedding? I've seen work colleagues throw a shower knowing they weren't invited to the wedding, but that's about it. 

You have 6 kids, so you have to let us know what meall they all like. 

I think you misinterpreted what I said.  I'll try and word it differently.  In my experience, a smaller number of guests are invited to showers.  A larger number are invited to the actual wedding.  But, generally everyone who is invited to a shower is also invited to the wedding.  I was referring to when Bootsie (I think?) stated that she got wedding ideas at the showers, when she had a chance to talk with the bride's mother, etc.  So I was saying that most people who go to a wedding probably didn't go to one of the showers so didn't have that same opportunity.  

 

Edited by J-rap
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On 3/21/2021 at 7:07 PM, Quill said:

this seems to be very much in keeping with what young people now do. They have a wedding website and, somewhere on there, you find a tab for “registry” or whatever.

I haven't read all the responses.

But, to me, this seems very modern & extremely sensible. I love it. Everyone does everything online. It makes sense to me that there's a wedding website (easy, one location to find all needed info) & that there would be a registry tab. The registry tab can have links to actual registries for physical gifts &/or a donate money button.

I honestly think it's a great idea. If you say nothing, going the old school way of making others ask around to find out about a possible registry, I think it would get even harder or possibly more confusing to provide info on where to donate. (Especially as families are sometimes more fractured, some friends may have zero idea of who to contact to ask about a registry, etc....) Some people may send or bring cash, but most people really just want a "pay here" button & it's all done in less than 60 seconds.

There's a glut of stuff in the world. I think especially the younger generations know this. They seek less, have more access to finding things anyway, & do take into consideration how goods are made/fair trade/etc. Money, to me, makes the most sense, however the couple wants to use it -- groceries, rent, travel, frivolous things, donations to favorite places, whatever.

I say hooray for progress like this!

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18 hours ago, J-rap said:

Thanks for explaining, and I think you have a great attitude toward it.  My dd is on that same path.  Perhaps it's not a new trend for Christians (?), but it's a new experience for me.  And I'm very supportive of my dd and love her partner.  They're a great match, and I know they're both wise and very thoughtful people.   And, I don't want to get caught up in legalism.  

Still, inside, it feels slightly confusing to me!

Is it that having s*x before marriage part, or the living together part that is confusing? 

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45 minutes ago, hippymamato3 said:

Is it that having s*x before marriage part, or the living together part that is confusing? 

That's a good question...  So, this is from a Christian perspective, and I do believe that ideally sex is between a couple who has committed themselves to be together in a lifelong union.  Not for legalistic moral reasons, but for reasons a little too complex to explain here.

But, possibly the two are about the same in my particular question...  If a couple has already committed to being together for the duration but just hasn't gone through with the ceremony yet, then is sex before that ceremony, possibly including living together, okay?  I can't really think of a reason why it isn't okay (again, from a Christian perspective).  It's just... different than how it has been done in the past.  I like to be able to flush out legalism and tradition from what's a core idea or belief.

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Hannah said:

The groom is from the USA and the wedding was in South Africa, the bride's country.  The couple will be moving to the US.   Because of Covid his family and friends from the US could not attend and the majority of the guests were close friends of many years of the bride's family.   We wanted to know what we could give them and the mother of the bride did the asking.

It worked like this.  They printed the experiences to choose from on a card.  The guests ticked the box for the experience they were contributing towards, wrote a message (if they wanted) and signed their name/s on the card.  This went into the 'donation' box separately from the envelopes with money, so that it wasn't an embarrassing thing about how much money anyone chose to contribute.  Obviously, more than one guest could choose the same experience, then they'd both receive a photograph of the couple doing that thing (they had ziplining, a trip up the cable car, dinner at a nice restaurant, a visit to a wildlife sanctuary, and a few more).

Did the couple send a thank you note or simply a picture of themselves enjoying an activity?  

If my children ever get married I would be happy to share with anyone who was wanting to give a gift and ASKED me what the couple would like.  But, personally, I would not ask guests to provide a particular gift in a particular way for one of my children.  

Even the connatation of "donation" and "gift" to me are very different.  

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6 hours ago, J-rap said:

I think you misinterpreted what I said.  I'll try and word it differently.  In my experience, a smaller number of guests are invited to showers.  A larger number are invited to the actual wedding.  But, generally everyone who is invited to a shower is also invited to the wedding.  I was referring to when Bootsie (I think?) stated that she got wedding ideas at the showers, when she had a chance to talk with the bride's mother, etc.  So I was saying that most people who go to a wedding probably didn't go to one of the showers so didn't have that same opportunity.  

Oh, gotcha, the opposite of how I interpreted it. 

It also seems like people would want ideas before the shower, because . . . you bring a gift to the shower, lol. And that's where the 'wedding' gift is frequently given; most people in my world don't bring gifts to the actual wedding. If they went to the shower, they brought a gift then and will probably give a bit of money at the wedding. If they didn't go to the shower and didn't send a gift ahead, they're probably giving a larger amount of money at the wedding.  People aren't showing up to the reception with boxes of physical gifts. 

6 hours ago, Hannah said:

It worked like this.  They printed the experiences to choose from on a card.  The guests ticked the box for the experience they were contributing towards, wrote a message (if they wanted) and signed their name/s on the card.  This went into the 'donation' box separately from the envelopes with money, so that it wasn't an embarrassing thing about how much money anyone chose to contribute.  Obviously, more than one guest could choose the same experience, then they'd both receive a photograph of the couple doing that thing (they had ziplining, a trip up the cable car, dinner at a nice restaurant, a visit to a wildlife sanctuary, and a few more).

That's a cute idea in general, you could do it easily on a website as well (with buttons, printable cards, or both). People who like both gifts and registries should like it! 

I'm not sure why the amount would be anonymous; you generally know who gives your wedding gifts, whether physical or monetary, and you don't announce the amounts. 

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18 minutes ago, katilac said:

.  People aren't showing up to the reception with boxes of physical gifts. 

 

I know everyone says this but if you look on Pinterest or google gift table for wedding reception, there are tons of ideas.  Every wedding reception I’ve attended has at least had a box for cards, which I’m guessing have money or checks in them, and before the end there are physical gifts there, too.  I’m not talking fancy weddings, just typical small town weddings.

I mean,that’s just my experience. Which may be regional or something.

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4 minutes ago, Annie G said:

I know everyone says this but if you look on Pinterest or google gift table for wedding reception, there are tons of ideas.  Every wedding reception I’ve attended has at least had a box for cards, which I’m guessing have money or checks in them, and before the end there are physical gifts there, too.  I’m not talking fancy weddings, just typical small town weddings.

I mean,that’s just my experience. Which may be regional or something.

This is our experience too.  There's always a table for gifts in addition to a box for cards and it's all decorated very nicely.  

 

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45 minutes ago, Annie G said:

I know everyone says this but if you look on Pinterest or google gift table for wedding reception, there are tons of ideas.  Every wedding reception I’ve attended has at least had a box for cards, which I’m guessing have money or checks in them, and before the end there are physical gifts there, too.  I’m not talking fancy weddings, just typical small town weddings.

I mean,that’s just my experience. Which may be regional or something.

Oh, definitely a box for cards! That's what I meant when I said most people would give a gift first, then bring some money to the wedding. 

Yeah, probably most things are regional (geographically or social-circle-ly). And it would be much easier to handle gifts at a small wedding versus a larger one, so you'll probably see gifts much more often if you mostly attend small weddings. Even then, I feel for the person who's deputized to gather up and take home the gifts for the bride and groom! 

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6 minutes ago, katilac said:

Oh, definitely a box for cards! That's what I meant when I said most people would give a gift first, then bring some money to the wedding. 

Yeah, probably most things are regional (geographically or social-circle-ly). And it would be much easier to handle gifts at a small wedding versus a larger one, so you'll probably see gifts much more often if you mostly attend small weddings. Even then, I feel for the person who's deputized to gather up and take home the gifts for the bride and groom! 

I think (though I am not sure) this is the reason that people don't bring the gift to the wedding. In my own experience only, it's not because I give a gift at the shower - if I go to a shower, I bring a gift, and if I go to a wedding I send a gift - so yes, if I'm invited to a shower and a wedding, that's two gifts. 

To me, not not taking gifts to the actual wedding is purely a practical matter. Someone has to watch over the stuff (yes, I have heard of gifts/envelopes being taken at weddings). Someone has to haul them home.  Someone has to make sure that cards don't get detached from gifts so the proper person can be thanked. It's a hassle. Now, no one is going to complain because, ya know, they are gifts! But, it's a hassle for someone, that's for sure. 

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