Gifts & Favors

Setting up a wedding registry is very convenient for the bride/groom and the guests alike. There are many different companies that allow you to set up a gift registry. Guests can browse these registries, purchase a gift for you while making sure that it's not a duplicate gift. Couples can also make a wish list to ensure guests choose gifts the couple needs. It is good to set up registries at a variety of stores so you get a variety of gifts. Some good options would be a kitchen retailer, a department store, a sporting goods store, and a home-improvement store. You will want to visit the stores before you choose their registry so you can pick which gifts you want to list. It is a good idea to set up a registry that is 'male-friendly', so that everything that is purchased isn't only appealing to the bride.

Your registry needs to be monitored often.You want your guests to have a variety of gifts to choose from, and delete any gifts that have gone out of stock.

If you have already received a gift and don't want to get a duplicate, you should take that off the list too.

With out a doubt, you will need to return gifts. Keep all of your receipts and check the return policies. You will want to return/exchange these gifts as soon as possible!

When setting up registries for dinnerware, or thinking of gift ideas, keep in mind the type of materials used in the dish. There are many different kinds, some requiring extra care and hand washing, and others with more simple care. The same goes with glassware. Glasses break easily so it is good to order a few extras.

It is not good etiquette to list anything about the registry or gifts in the invitation. Members of the family or wedding party can answer questions about this. Setting up a wedding website will also help direct people to your gift registry. You should never ask for money.

Upon receiving a gift, you need to record in detail what it is and who sent it. Staying organized with the gifts will help you be efficient in sending out thank yous.

You may choose to do the traditional way as well and have guests bring gifts to the reception. The hard part is transporting all the gifts afterwards. If attempting to pick out a gift for the bride and groom, you can't really go wrong with the usual kitchen appliance. Other gift ideas range from living room decor, linens and gift cards.

Whichever way you chose, make-sure to get thank you cards in the mail with in the next month, or as soon as you start receiving the gifts. It is easier to order thank you cards with the invitations.

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Make sure to stay on top of sending them out and not to fall behind. Set a goal each day of how many to write. Again, it is a good idea to order the thank you cards in advance with the wedding invitations.

Within the thank you's, you need to address the guest, thank them for the gift (mention what it is), give an example of how you will use it, and thank them for attending. Double check the name spelling and that you are thanking the guest for the right gift. Send out thank you's to the bridal party as well, with in the week after. Address the envelope to each person who came. For more formal relationships with guests, you may use Mr. and Mrs.

In addition to sending out thank you's, it is a nice gesture to to give your wedding guests a favor, but if it is not in your budget, you do not need to. It is more important to give favors to the guests who are staying in a hotel from out of town, even if its just a cute bag of snacks/drinks for their stay. It is nice to have a little gift bag and note, thanking the out of towners for coming, awaiting them upon their arrival.

There are many do-it-yourself favors you can make for guests that will fall within your budget. Many couples make homemade pastries to save money. You can try to put your own special mark on it, such as a family recipe with the story behind it, or something that relates to the theme of the wedding. Another budget saver is giving the centerpieces and any other floral arrangements from your wedding, to your guests as favors.

Start thinking of gift ideas for your wedding party early on. Finding the right gift for these special people can take a while and you don't want to be stuck doing this last minute, do it a few months in advance to get it out of the way. These gifts are important because your bridesmaids/groomsmen have helped you through the whole journey of planning your wedding, so you really want to show them a token of your appreciation.

Some thoughtful bridesmaids gifts are monogrammed bags filled with goodies, a spa day, or jewelry to go with their bridesmaid dresses. For the groomsmen, cigars or any accessory to add to their wedding day attire, is a nice gesture.

The children in the wedding party, ring bearer and flower girl, should be given gifts as well. Make sure they are age-appropriate. This can be a hard task for someone who doesn't have kids, so don't be afraid to ask their parents for ideas. Another idea when it comes to children is to try to plan activities for the children during the wedding. Create a little bag of crafts, coloring, toys, etc. to keep the children entertained. Do not get anything that may stain the children's outfits, and nothing to sugary before the ceremony, you don't want them bouncing off the walls.

This may be a lot of work, but your guests will be thankful for your thoughtfulness.