Why Some Bridesmaid Gifts Aren't Really Gifts

Is the present for your friend, or is it for the wedding?

bad bridesmaid gifts, bridesmaid gifts that don't count as presents
Shopping for bridesmaid gifts can be difficult – you have a group of lovely ladies who you presumably are very close to, and you naturally want to show your appreciation for their support and participation in your big day. However, you are already spending a lot on the actual wedding, and no matter the size of your spending limit, it can be difficult to use a significant portion of it for items that won’t be part of the décor or guest experience. Not to mention that these are women who probably don’t share the exact same taste ­– finding a dress they all liked was tough enough, right? What may seem like an easy solution is to offer accessories for the purpose of the wedding day: on-trend robes for getting ready, earrings that match their dresses, a nail kit for matching wedding-day manicures, etc. But if these are the only gifts you give, it might not come off as generously as you hope.

It’s understandable to think that these items for the wedding are presents for your bridesmaids, but there are a few important things to remember: The robes are cute, but if your bridesmaids have been in any other bridal parties, they may have a whole collection by this point. Bridesmaids who are staying at their own homes may even accidentally leave the robe behind in the bridal suite during the chaos of the day.

But surely jewelry can be worn again, right? Well, is your purchase something that matches your friend’s style? Before you start shopping, be sure to observe the accessory habits of your bridal party to help inform your selections. Remember, you don’t have to get every bridesmaid the same thing, even if you are not partaking in the mismatched dress trend. Unless you give everyone a statement necklace, your guests are unlikely to pay too much attention to the jewelry of your bridesmaids, and this is a chance for them to express their individuality.

So how do you make sure that the gift you’re giving will be seen as the present it’s intended to be? Ask yourself why you chose it. Are the robes just so you’ll have cute getting-ready photos? Is the jewelry or nail polish so everyone will look how you want them to look? If the answer to either of these questions is yes, it’s not a gift for your bridesmaids, it’s a requirement for the wedding. You can still offer these tokens as appreciation – some of the women will really love the robes or a new pair of earrings! But it would also be a nice gesture to include something thoughtful, that’s really for the women who invested her time and money into making your wedding special.

Read more about what gifts not to give your bridesmaids as well as how to treat your bridal party. Gather ideas for your bridesmaids in our photo galleries, and be sure to follow Inside Weddings on Instagram and Pinterest for more inspiration! 

Opening photo by Feddersen Photography

Authored by: Emily Lasnier