By Hayley Baddiley
There is so much to think about when organizing a wedding, and you might find yourselves feeling a bit overwhelmed by the time you get to the gifting list. In this guest post, Hayley Baddiley from the ceramics brand Denby, takes us through her top tips to make a memorable gifting list for your wedding.
After organizing the wedding venue, guest list, decorations, and outfits, you might feel like taking a break from planning. But having a gifting list at your wedding will ensure that no-one buys the same gift, and that you receive things that are useful. It will also make it easier for your guests to choose gifts, and will mean that no one is worried about doubling up or judging the amount they should be spending on the special occasion.
So, how can you decide what you should put on your gifting list, and how will you present the list to your guests? I’ve rounded up some top tips to make your wedding gifts memorable, sentimental and useful for your life together.
Choose gifts that will last a lifetime
When you are beginning married life, you will likely need certain homeware, tableware, and cookware pieces for your first home together. When choosing items for your gift registry, avoid fad, trend-led pieces and opt for more timeless styles, as these won’t go out of fashion. It’s also more economical and eco-friendly to go for pieces made from high-quality materials that will last. These might be kitchen items such as wooden or stainless steel cooking utensils, cast-iron frying pans, a coffee maker or stainless steel cutlery. Stoneware tableware is particularly timeless, and comes in a range of glazes and colors, allowing you and your partner to express your own unique style.
It’s easier to think of what you need right now than it is to imagine what will last throughout the years, but it’s worth looking into the future and thinking about what might be useful. This way, you will allow your wedding guests to contribute to your home and be a part of your lives. So, include items on your gifting list that will be durable and versatile, and which are not influenced by trends.
Choosing meaningful gifts
As well as practical items, you might want some gifts that are personal and meaningful. You can encourage this type of gift-giving by asking for personalized items, such as home decorations or jewelry. You could also find a brand you like that offers personalized gifts, or you could propose product ideas to your guests on the gifting list, and allow them to choose the brands themselves.
As well as personalized gifts, you could make the gifting more sentimental by asking for gifts that will be meaningful for you and your partner. This might be a photo book, or a memory box where you can keep tickets, photos, and trinkets from your wedding and honeymoon. Thinking of gifts that have a connection to you and your guests can make the whole wedding feel more personal, and will allow your guests to create memories with you.
How to make the gift registry
After you’ve thought of some timeless presents that you would like to receive, you’ll want to think about making the actual gifting registry. This can feel like a big administrative task, but there are lots of tools that can make it easier.
You can create your gift registry online as there are plenty of digital tools available.. Check out Peta’s favorite cruelty-free platforms! If you have guests who are less confident with online shopping, you can choose platforms that have an option to buy the item from a shop, rather than following a link.
If you don’t want to go with an online platform, you can also put the list together as a printout — this is more work, but it can be a good option if you want to include people who are less familiar with online shopping. However, this works best for smaller weddings where the guests know each other well, and so can coordinate to make sure they don’t double up on gifts.
If possible, have someone else monitor the gifting list — you can do this by asking for a helper from your bridesmaids or groomsmen. Not only will this add a fun element of surprise when you open the gifts, but it will also take away some of the stress and planning from the run-up to the wedding. And as you’ll be so busy during the run-up to your wedding, that can be a real time-saver!
How to politely ask guests for money contributions
When thinking about your gifting list, you might be wondering how you can politely ask your guests for contributions of money towards things you need to buy, rather than asking for presents. It can feel intimidating to find the right way to ask for money, but this is a common request at weddings, and there are plenty of ways to do it.
Many people choose to include this request in their wedding invitations. By including a phrase such as ‘no boxed gifts’ in your wedding invitations, you communicate to your guests that you would like them to gift money rather than buying anything. You might also include details of your planned honeymoon if you are asking for help towards that. You could even include a poem in your wedding invitations that asks for monetary contributions in a sentimental, fun way.
How to thank your guests in unique ways
After your wedding, you’ll want to thank your guests for all their generosity. Your wedding thank you gifts don’t have to be extravagant or expensive, they are simply a way to show your thanks and appreciation for your guests.
It’s usual to give gifts to the bridesmaids, and the parents of both the groom and the bride. Then, if you like, you can also give small favors to all the guests. This might be a small packet of sweets or chocolates left in each seating place at the table during your reception, or a gift bag containing skincare products, fragrance or other items. You can also have items personalized with the guests’ names, or the date of your special day. Check out The Kind Bride Favors and Gifting section on the blog for lots of vegan-friendly gift ideas.
Creating your wedding gifting list can seem like an overwhelming task, but with these top tips you can make it as fun, personal and practical as you like.
With a varied background in marketing, Hayley Baddiley started her career on the United Biscuits Graduate Training Programme in the late 90s and later progressed into a role at the Thorntons brand. Hayley first worked for Denby in 2005 and with a passion for food and hospitality, later set-up a few restaurants. Returning to Denby in 2014, Hayley is now Denby’s Global Marketing Director and is responsible for the brand’s marketing channels and campaigns across a number of markets.