Bridesmaids Gifts
April 18, 2004 6:13 PM   Subscribe

Bridesmaid etiquette on gifts - What to do? (more inside)

I met the bride through work about 7 months ago, though we are better than just work-friends. I'll be attending her formal bridal shower, a workplace shower that a couple other gals are putting together, and the wedding (of course). How should I handle the gift situation?

Other info, which may or may not factor in: I spent $200 on a dress for the wedding, after she told me she liked it better than the $70 one we had originally picked out. I'd like to say that money isn't a factor, but I will be leaving work for grad school this fall and am trying to save every penny I can.
posted by ArsncHeart to Human Relations (6 answers total)
Go in with other people who can't afford to give extravagantly, and get something from their registry that costs about whatever total y'all arrive at.

Unless you've some cause to think that you might really really need this person as a reference or something, don't worry about how much or little you're spending. Even a little bit. Just figure out what you're comfortable-ish spending and spend that.

Only the most muttonheaded heel would ever think that any bridesmaid's (or guest's) gift should have been more expensive.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:51 PM on April 18, 2004

Or, to put it differently, if not giving an extravagant gift lowered her opinion of you, her opinion wasn't worth considering in the first place.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:52 PM on April 18, 2004

I've never been a bride, nor a bridesmaid but I'd go with the group gift idea. Here's a site that is sure to give you an answer and a few laughs:

posted by Juicylicious at 9:49 PM on April 18, 2004

Sorry about that.

Etiquette Hell
posted by Juicylicious at 9:50 PM on April 18, 2004

The group gift is always good, or you can give one largish gift (not huge, but perhaps the combined total of what three modest gifts might cost) from yourself to cover both showers and the wedding. You can present it to her privately and say how it was something meaningful you especially wanted to give her, etc. Most reasonable brides understand that you've already shelled out for a dress, shoes, hairdo, jewelry, etc. and wouldn't expect a large outlay on a gift as well. Note I said "most."
posted by boomchicka at 9:37 AM on April 19, 2004

it's honestly more than acceptable as a member of the wedding party who attends all overlapping showers not to keep giving shower gifts. if the bride is focused on what gifts she's getting, it's her problem, not yours.

IMO shower gifts should be small, personal things that reflect your relationship and the wedding gift should be the more extravagant gift that reflects the couple's tastes (i.e. something off the registry).

i like boomchicka's idea, but i personally would bring a small gift to the formal shower (i've given brides whose weddings i was in everything from a garden gnome to a tiffany vase with flowers in it) and send my wedding present along just before the wedding. at the work shower, i'd bring a refreshment, if it was that sort of shower but no gift.
posted by crush-onastick at 9:54 AM on April 19, 2004

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