As mentioned before, when my friends consult me for wedding-related advice, I in turn create posts out of them for your guys here on Triple B. It’s a win-win. Most recently, my girl T down in Maryland sent me an email with these questions:
1: If you give a bridal shower gift, actually something from the registry, do you have to give a wedding gift?
2: If you decide to give money as the wedding gift, how much should you give? I was taught that it should cover the plate of you and your guest. What’s the protocol?
I’m no Emily Post but here’s my take: After lots of digging and based on my own experience, it is not mandatory to give a tangible wedding gift if something from the registry has already been purchased for the couple and given to the bride at her shower. In other other words, purchasing two gifts from the couple’s registry isn’t expected. However what seems most common is a registry gift for the bridal shower and a monetary gift for the wedding. FYI – Registry gifts are what is “expected” for a bridal shower — not lingerie as many assume — and wedding gifts such as china, linen, etc. are “supposed” to be sent to the couple ahead of the wedding, not physically taken to the ceremony or reception. (But, do save the sexy lingerie and other colorful gifts for the bachelorette party!)
And just how much should that monetary gift be you’re wondering? Well, this is the question of the century. Like my girl T, most assume that it should reflect the cost of your plate at the reception and that of your guest if you have one. So, if you guesstimate the cost per plate is $75 and you’re attending the wedding with your boyfriend, your gift would be about $150. Seems like a fair rule of thumb to follow and one that I’ve honestly used most of my life. However I truly think you should use your discernment. (I have become a bit anti-establishment when it comes to following “rules and standards”.) I suggest you first and foremost live within your means — the couple above all else wants to feel loved and supported on their big day. In the above scenario, if you’re only able to afford a monetary gift of $100, the wedding gift police isn’t going to come looking for you to cough up the extra fifty bucks. In addition, I think one should consider their relationship with the couple. If your best friend is getting married and decides on a casual backyard wedding where the cost per plate is only $25 but you want to (and can afford to) give a pricier gift then you certainly should.
And one last point, remember that many couples are now opting for alternative registries. Make sure you are aware of all the registry options you’ve been given before deciding on a gift(s).
What’s your take on all this Triple B? Sound off!