Throughout history wedding guests have given gifts to brides and grooms as a way of helping the couple establish their new life together as husband and wife. What kind wedding gift is given differs culturally and may be a gift of cash, homewares, dinnerware, crystal or contributions to honeymoon and travel activities.

Whether you have a house full of dinnerware or if you are bringing few material possessions into your marriage then a wedding is a good time to acquire prized possessions and everyday necessities.

How to tell your guests you have a registry

How to notify your wedding guests that you have a bridal registry and where it is, is a personal decision. Some wedding guests will be expecting the regsitry card to fall out of the wedding invitation envelope, others will be horrified to see it there.

If you are uncomfortable with including a bridal registry card or you think your guests will be, then leave it up to your beloved bridal party and family members to discreetly spread the word.

In brief...Gift etiquette

  1. Never use any gifts from the registry until after the wedding.
  2. The only reason to return a gift to the gift-giver, is if the wedding is cancelled.
  3. Etiquette says guests have up to a year after the wedding to send a gift.
  4. Never request money as a wedding gift unless it is culturally and ethnically appropriate to your wedding. Never put your bank details on a wedding invitation, if you wish to receive the gift of cash then consider a money tree or wishing well.
  5. Keep all details of purchases from your bridal registry in case of return, breakage, errors or exchanges.
  6. Always write a thank-you note. As the bride you have up to a year to acknowledge the wedding gift although we recommend you write thank-you notes as soon as a gift is received even if it's before the weding. This is not only polite, but it will avoid you having to write 100 thank you notes in one sitting.
  7. For second marriages it is appropriate to request that money be donated to a charity in lieu of a gift.
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