Gift Lists (1) :-)

Ok so there are a million different things to plan for a wedding before you start thinking about gift lists, however as its one of the more enjoyable and stress free (hopefully) parts of the planning process I thought i’d share a little insight into Gift lists.

Years ago couples did not usually live together before they were married and so a gift list was the way in which couples could get all of the basic household goods they needed to set up home together. Nowadays however the vast majority of couples live together before embarking on the big to-do of marriage and so already have all of those household basics. It is becoming more and more popular to have ‘alternative’ gift lists because of this.

Here are a few different alternative gift lists for those in this situation.

Oxfam Unwrapped. Fancy helping out people in third world countries all over the world by asking guests to contribute gifts such as ‘clean water’ and ‘goats’ then this is the ideal gift list for you. The gift prices vary from just £5 to some over £100 so there would be something in everyone’s budget.

For those who aren’t feeling quite as charitable (not that theres anything wrong with that!) then a gift list where guests can contribute to the honeymoon or little honeymoon presents can be a great idea. Can’t afford that dream trip to Australia with what you have left from the wedding budget? Then try Honeymiles.net or one of the similiar websites available where guests can pay for your holiday! Plus if guests aren’t keen on just putting money towards your honeymoon as a whole they also have the option of buying you an activity such as a balloon flight, spa treatment, catamaran cruise, game drive or making a contribution specifically for your honeymoon suite.

The Bottom drawer is great for the indesicive amongst you as it combines the alternative gift list with options for contributing to honeymoons and charities with the traditional gift list. It is voucher based so rather than guests giving you a specific gift they could choose from options on your list such as: John Lewis, B&Q, Argos vouchers, Honeymoon contributions or money.

 Traditional gift lists are still popular – even with those couples who have been living together. Many couples would see this as a chance to upgrade from their ordinary household goods to something of better quality or brand. Most department stores offer their own gift list options – Debenhams, BHS, John Lewis and House of Fraser are all popular choices. Some of these are even joined with honeymoon gift list companies and so can offer you a similar service to The Bottom Drawer but without the voucher based gift options.

Some gift lists such as notonthehighstreet.com are solely online which can be good and convenient for those guests with computer access but not so convenient for those people who don’t know how to access the internet and make internet transactions (and yes those people do exist!) The great thing about this particular company is that there are so many different options – they specialise in more alternative gifts – you won’t find household appliances here but you will find unique art. cool household accessories and lots of handmade and ec0-friendly objects.

Another option popular with couples is to ask for cash donations, however be warned although this may be convenient for the couple it can upset some more traditional guests, and even some non-traditional guests would prefer not to give cash gifts. However for some cultures cash is the traditional gift so it really does depend on the couple and the wedding itself as to whether or not this is suitable.

For myself and Scott getting presents from our guests really isn’t a priority, in fact we weren’t even going to have a gift list until some helpful friends pointed out that if we didn’t people would still get us a gift and we could end up with a collection of crystal champagne flutes and four toasters… so yeah a gift list there will be – although we will be making it VERY clear to guests that a present is not expected. We have decided (for now) to have two gift lists – one with a department store such as John Lewis or M&S and the other with online shop notonthehighstreet.com. That way we hope everyone will find something they want to give to us and we won’t be alienating any of our guests.

I think the most important thing to consider when compiling your gift list, whichever option you choose, is to make sure there is a good price range of presents – it would make your guests feel horrible if they don’t have the budget to get you anything off of your gift list as it is all above the £50 mark and their budget is £10. You should always think about your guests when choosing your options, somehow I doubt even my crazy nan would want to buy us a willy shaped cotton candy maker! Not that I want one of those anyway but you get the point…

Here are a few John Lewis items i’d love to see on our guest list… although maybe the smeg fridge is a little bit dreamland!

xxx

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