Quirky and meaningful wedding gift
July 13, 2015 12:30 PM   Subscribe

My niece is getting married soon, and I need ideas for a wedding gift that fits her (and her fiance's) quirky sensibility that will also be meaningful to them.

They are in their mid-20s and have been together for a long time. They live together and aren't into home goods at all. They are into comics, the local music scene, Lord of the Rings, superheros, and live theater. They do not drink alcohol ever. They are kind, decent, earnest people working hard at their low wage jobs. I'm the favorite aunt. I plan on contributing to their honeymoon fund (which is the only thing they've registered for) plus giving them a substantial cash gift. I'd also like to give them a material gift of ~$50 that will be meaningful for them in the years to come. I'm looking for something that can convey the confidence I have in them to make the best lives possible for themselves while being the quirky, lovely people they are. I will also be conveying this in a card and in a toast I'll give at the wedding. But, I also really want an object to give them. Suggestions?

And, in case you missed it: I will be giving them cash and contributing to their honeymoon fund. So, that's all taken care of.
posted by Pineapplicious to Human Relations (15 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
So sweet!

I think something they would use every day, like a set of special mugs, or cool, artisan made silverware, (if that's in price range), or a cool, steampunky coat hook or something would be great, because it'll be a part of the life they're building together, on a meaningful and daily basis.
posted by latkes at 12:34 PM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

Glass Oil lamps are usually well received, people of all personalities like them.
posted by dragonbaby07 at 12:35 PM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

What about a plant? a fig tree or something similar that will grow year after year. seems symbolic as well as useful. if they have a house with a yard, a small tree could be cool too.
posted by monologish at 12:42 PM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

A bit out of your price range, but I had an Evenstar replica from WETA as my wedding jewelry, and pairing that with a Aragorn's Ring would get my nerd "aww" senses tingling. :)

posted by aggyface at 12:49 PM on July 13, 2015

superhero wall light? hobbit map of middle earth? if they like gaming with their friends, they might also like hobbit monopoly.
posted by koroshiya at 12:55 PM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

i know those don't seem particularly meaningful, but have someone get you a gift that shows that you know who they are and are proud to foster that pretty much just screams meaning to me.
posted by koroshiya at 12:56 PM on July 13, 2015

Buy a first issue of a comic which was published the year they got together? It will appreciate in value along with their relationship over time.
posted by dvrmmr at 1:26 PM on July 13, 2015 [6 favorites]

I have a friend who does cute, quirky caricature portraits, and just saw today that she draws couples.
posted by WesterbergHigh at 2:08 PM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]

For my sister's wedding gift (she has everything, is impossible to shop for but loves cooking) I had fabric for dishtowels printed at Spoonflower (instructions here).

I had to do a little photo manipulation (I used a recipe card on which our grandmother had written her pie crust recipe) and a little sewing, but it wasn't hard work. The fabric itself was about $25, it shipped in about a week.

You could absolutely choose an image or images that will resonate with your niece and her spouse, if some family heirloom recipe wouldn't work. I do believe you'd have to stick with public domain images though. Or you could use designs uploaded to Spoonflowers by other individuals, including a few different maps of Middle Earth.
posted by padraigin at 2:30 PM on July 13, 2015 [3 favorites]

Do you know what comics they like? A lot of small/independent comic artists have art for sale or will even do commissioned work. I think it would be really meaningful to have a piece of original art by an artist they like, plus you would be supporting the artist.
posted by The Elusive Architeuthis at 2:33 PM on July 13, 2015 [5 favorites]

Hi. It sounds like I might be your niece. I actually thought you might be my real aunt (as I recently got married to my long-time quirky partner) until I saw that the wedding hadn't actually happened yet.

One thing us low-paid, hardworking people can't often spend money on is original art to put up in the house. My (now!) husband and I love getting original art from comic artists we like, including commissioned work (as mentioned above) and high-quality prints. Art is super subjective, obviously, but if you find out what artists they like and what characters/franchises they're fans of, I bet you could come up with something really cool.

The limited edition Mondo posters are incredible and, if you have a good idea of what pop-culture-y things they're into, you might find one on ebay that's not too terribly expensive. These are all in your price range and would be welcome on my own walls: Mario, Adventure Time, Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof.

Many comic artists also take commissions, and especially with smaller indie artists, they can be really affordable! My husband is a cartoonist and we could recommend some people in his network based on what style you're looking for. MeMail me for recommendations if you're interested. You could ask for specific characters or even your niece and her fiance, like the person above mentioned!
posted by a.steele at 2:35 PM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]

I think something they would use every day

2nding this. Preferably relatively small so that it will always "fit" and is easy to move. Also, unbreakable (or, at least, repairable) so that it isn't too precious to use and/or display.

A word of caution about plants. The lovely ornamental plum friends gave my then 6 year old daughter in 1995 has been growing in someone else's backyard since we sold that house in 2001.
posted by she's not there at 2:36 PM on July 13, 2015

How about a custom map of their area in a Tolkien-esque style? This cartographer/artist has a ton of cities already laid out, and he does custom work as well. If you know what they are, you could even get their favorite hangouts added for an added bit of personal charm.
posted by Diagonalize at 4:41 PM on July 13, 2015 [7 favorites]

I've given customized cutting boards from AHeirloom as wedding and anniversary gifts, and they're always a big hit.
posted by neushoorn at 12:43 AM on July 14, 2015

Step One: Find out what comics they like.
Step Two: Gather the following Photographs:
a) A picture of the couple together and seperately, good shots of their faces.
b) Find out what they will be wearing on their wedding day (A photo of them in wedding outfits would be best, but you can get by with just pictures of the outfits)
c) Picture of the venue.

Step Three: Commission an artist (Look here, or google for other sites, there are lots) You can search in styles, but I would bet that classic silver age would be acceptable.
See Step One for more.

Step Four: Talk to a couple of artists, tell them what comics the couple like. Ask them to draw for you a comic book cover, featuring the two of them, in whatever they will be married in, in the venue. It's an Issue One of the comic book of their marriage.

I'm picturing the two of them leaping out of the venue door in wedding clothes with an explosion behind them.
With a banner title reading:
"[Pineapplicious Niece] and [Pineapplicious Partnername] explosive first issue!"
A little star somewhere saying "THE EPIC ADVENTURE BEGINS!"
The artist should be able to give you initial sketches and discuss ideas with you.
Get it framed.

I have commissioned a little three page book as a gift for a friend, it was well received.
If you have the budget go for full colour, if not it will look pretty great in just pencils.
posted by Just this guy, y'know at 4:00 AM on July 14, 2015 [2 favorites]

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