Too often, I get wedding invitations that turn me off because before I can even read down to the part where the wedding date and location are set, I get inundated with “The happy couple are registered at…” and a huge list of wedding gift registrations are tossed out at me to stores I don’t even have in my area or are too darn expensive. If you don’t want to be one of those gift hogs that look just plain greedy, follow these steps for the proper way to request gifts for your wedding day.
If you’re going to register for gifts, register at a common place people can get to in their area, like Target or Wal-Mart, and keep your choices well under $100. Your cousin doesn’t want to buy you a $200 blender from some high-end store, and usually the cheap gifts are purchased first, leaving last-minute guests with the higher priced products that are a real turnoff.
Keep your registry in the smallest print at the bottom of your wedding invitation, and before potential guests even get to the registry (if you have one), have it printed that the gift of their presence at your wedding is gift enough, so they don’t feel obligated to bring something. Nothing is more annoying than feeling like you HAVE to buy the betrothed something in order to go to their wedding.
Most people love to supply a wedding gift, but hate to have to follow a registry. A lot of people (myself included) buy things in bulk just for impending weddings and wrap up a quick set of towels (I have about 10 rolling pins on hand for any weddings I get invited to) or a small, usable gift and call it good. Be prepared to receive a lot of the same essentials, and be grateful for them.
If you’d rather receive donations to your favorite charity or receive cash gifts in lieu of presents, say so nicely in your wedding invitation, but don’t expect your requests to be well-received. Many people just outright think asking for cash is rude, and may not agree with the charity of your choosing. It’s a fine line to walk if you go this route.
If you choose to register at a high-end store, expect a lot of gifts that don’t follow the registry. Not everyone is rich, and a lot of people don’t want to spend a lot of money on a gift for a wedding.
If you really want to be proper about asking for gifts for your wedding, don’t ask for gifts in the first place, and don’t register anywhere. You’ll get gifts for sure anyhow, even if you end up with a lot of soap dishes, and you won’t be crossing any lines. The best way to ask for gifts is to just not mention that you want them, as it’s a given that proper etiquette when going to a wedding is to supply the happy couple with a gift. Guests don’t need to be poked and prodded to give you something nice on your wedding day, and when you don’t give them any pushy guidelines, you’ll get a lot of gifts you can use, and you won’t get anyone’s hair up over it.
And as always, send out Thank You cards within a few days of receiving your gifts. It’s just the proper thing to do.