Posts in the 'wedding gifts' Category

Get the Gifts (or Experiences) You Really Want with SimpleRegistry

So, here you are. Ready to dive deep into the world of wedding planning and frothy dresses and parties and cake tastings and registries!

While so many other parts of the whole wedding planning process can be stressful and frustrating and aggravating, the registry is (almost universally) the superfun part. If you are just starting to nest, the registry is where you can delightfully request all the fun kitchen and home gadgets you need. Or need. If you have your nest built and are looking more for experiences to share or nest eggs, the registry is where you can hint at that, too.

And so often you have to set up different registries — one (or more!) for the stuff, one for the dollaz, one for the experiences. That’s a lot of registries, yo!

BUT. SimpleRegistry takes all headache away and lets you keep it simple (schtoopid). Duh. You set up one site (fully customizable!), add images of things you want — or scan barcodes with the mobile app — and then you wait. Cackling is optional.

And it’s not just simple for you and your beloved: Your homies and family can split those big-ticket items (oh, hai awesome dinner experience). And if you’re more of a “I’m just going to ask for salt and pepper shakers” kinda gal because you don’t want anyone to go to any trouble, then your more assertive friends can pony up suggestions for your registry. SimpleRegistry also helps keep everything in check to make writing those “thank-you” notes uber easy, too, because trust me, after your wedding, you are going to have trouble remembering your name, much less who got you the tea set.

But the best part? It’s FREE to set up and there’s a teensy 5% fee at checkout that either you and yours pay (taken off the top of the gift) or your guest pays (added to their total).

So, ask yourself, what do you really want? Got it figured out? Now go ask for it!

*Brought to you by our friends at SimpleRegistry

{Partner Love} Awesome Guests Give Customized Wedding Art (Or Tree Swings) Instead of Toasters

Let’s face it, finding gifts for newlyweds can get kind of …ho hum. I mean, do they really need another glass vase or sheet set? Snooze. And stuff like that can really bust your already-precarious wedding guest budget.

So what do you get ‘em? How about something wildly unique, customizable and fun? LIKE A TREE SWING. For serious. Or how about some personalized wall art?

Whether you’re shopping for a super fun-loving married couple-to-be who would absolutely enjoy something as whimsical like a tree swing, or that obscure distant cousin whose tastes remain a mystery, RedEnvelope probably has something to pique your fancy.

And the cool part about getting a gift that isn’t par for the course in weddingland? That special couple is definitely going to remember you and and your thoughtfulness. Especially when they’re grilling up steaks at their first backyard barbeque in their personalized aprons!

 

{Ask Liz} Two Weddings Enter, Only One Leaves

Got a question for Liz? Go to the contact page and tell us what’s up!

Break it Down, figure it out.

Dear Liz,
My fiance and I are planning a wedding 2 years out so we have time to save and I can finish with my graduate degree.  However, when we got engaged, I never dreamed of how expensive everything would be.  I have had little to no emotional or financial support from my family and although we have time to save to pay for the wedding of our dreams ourselves, I’m at the point that I feel like it would be for everyone else–instead of us.

I would like a barn wedding with a big group of people (we’ve cut the guest list down to 200), but I’m considering changing the plans completely and doing a destination wedding in Mexico instead. Do you think I would regret it?  What type of hidden costs are associated with a destination wedding?

Signed, 
Donde  o Donde?
Dear Donde,
The only person who can determine if you’re going to regret having a destination wedding in Mexico is you. It is pretty much on the other end of the spectrum from what you say that you want,  but here’s the thing: You have a lot of time to figure out exactly what each one is going to look like in terms of cost. The choice doesn’t have to be made right now. The Destination wedding ostensibly has less moving pieces, so start there. How much per person? How much are your guests going to have to pay to get down there, including their hotel stay? Are they going to have to pay a resort fee to use the facilities? Make the resort break it down for you in one document, including any taxes or service charges. What are you paying out the door? I know, it’s a lot of questions, but, again, you have time.
The barn wedding. This is going to sound funny, but is there a barn in particular that you had in mind? The first step is to find one, and then find out what you have to bring in. If it’s everything – tables, chairs, silverware, dishes, then find out how much that’s going to be. And, we’re talking basics, none of that silk ruffled tablecloth type of thing. Basics. You can always upgrade later. For instance, in Los Angeles, best case scenario is that a table of ten, fully set with linens, plates, etc, is going to to cost about $40, each. You will have 20 of those. I just posted what I call “The Olive Garden Rule” on my blog, which will give you a perspective on catering costs. And there’s flowers and a photographer and a DJ, all the stuff that normally goes with weddings. Don’t get freaked out while you’re finding all this info out. Just find it out, and decide. You really do have time.
Dear Liz,
I’ve been reading that  your guests bringing gifts to the wedding is a bad idea. The gifts could be stolen, cards could get separated from their boxes. I’m also worried because we live almost an hour away, and what if the gifts won’t fit in the car?We have over 100 guests.
Is there a polite way to ask them to send the gifts to our house, rather than bring them to the wedding? Or not bring anything at all? We don’t even need anything, and I don’t want anyone to feel guilty if they can’t afford to bring something.
Signed,
Gifts Be Gone

Worst case scenario?

Dear Gone,

Guests are going to end up bringing gifts anyway. There is no way to deter everyone, even if you put it in 14-pt bold print at the bottom of your invitation. You can try that, though, along with putting it on your wedding website, if you have them, and generally spreading the word.

Even if you don’t register, some will bring cards with checks in them. If you do register, then the larger items can be shipped to you. But either way, folks are going to bring stuff.

Don’t worry about it too much, seriously. Designate a family member to hold onto the check cards. If there do end up being too many gifts for the car, ask a family or wedding party member who lives near you to take them, and you’ll pick them up later.

Are you stuck trying to decide between two venues? How did you figure out how to go “giftless?” Share below!

See you at the end of the aisle,

{Real Bride: Katie} April Showers Bring May Weddings!

This past weekend, my friends and family treated me to the most awesomest bridal shower ever! It’s a little bit hard to surprise a person that lives out of town, so my shower wasn’t a surprise, and I’m sooooo glad that it wasn’t. I’ve heard some real horror stories about girls showing up for their showers looking like a hot mess, and I wasn’t trying to make that happen. Plus, I appreciated that it gave me something really fun to look forward to……because let’s face it, anticipation of fun is half the fun. No matter how pumped I was for the shower though, it completely exceeded my expectations. It was one of those moments in life when you just sit back and think, “Wow I know some amazing people, that really care about me.” Seriously, I was touched.

Since Mr. Officer and I watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s during our first date, the shower was Tiffany’s themed. The bridesmaids thought of everything from handmade Tiffany box centerpieces, to adorable croissant favors. Amazingly, one of the bridesmaids even came down a night early, with three year old in tow, to make this amazing cake by hand:

Wow, these girls are talented! 

Check out the heaping pile of gifts………. 

And me making a weird face while explaining that I can now take covered dishes everywhere I go…. 

And posing with my cousin-in-law to be and the ribbon bouquet 

Unfortunately, I had to leave most of the gifts behind, but luckily that means that my parents have to come up to visit this weekend to bring my loot. All of the gifts were amazing, and here’s an abbreviated list of some creative, off the registry gifts:

  • An heirloom, engraved serving spoon from my Mother-in-law to be
  • A handmade scherenschnitte wedding piece from the maid-of-honor’s grandmother
  • Bride and groom rubber duckies from my cousin-in-law and Aunt-in-law to be
  • Chalkboard bar glasses from a family friend
  • Gourmet pasta set (complete with Olive Garden style cheese grater) from the maid-of-honor and her sister
  • Seasonal decorations, including a handmade wreath, from my Aunt

Now, to get started on all those thank you notes!  How about you, was anyone else blown away by their bridesmaids? Did you get any fun gifts that weren’t on your registry?

Oh, Mr. Postman!

What does this:
have in common with these:?

They’re the first gifts we received off our wedding registry!

Its really happening, and I can barely believe it! With my Chicago shower approaching next week, and our invitations going out at the same time, I have a feeling I’m going to look forward to Mr. Postman now more than ever!

What made you realize the wedding was just around the corner?

*images from Bed Bath & Beyond

Locals Only: Unique Los Angeles!

Need to get some holiday shopping done, but want to support indie designers and discover some underground gift ideas? Hie ye to the Unique Los Angeles Event this weekend! Perhaps you’ll find some unique wedding accessories there!
From their site: UNIQUE LOS ANGELES is an exciting two-day shopping event that showcases independent design talent at great prices. Just in time for the holiday shopping season, the event brings together 200 of the best designers, artists and merchants. We believe in supporting the community, we thrive on individualism, and we hope to introduce independent design to the masses. There are deals and discoveries a plenty! Whether you’re a hipster, a soccer mom or a tween, at UNIQUE LOS ANGELES there truly is something for everyone! Clothing & Accessories • Stationery • Jewelry • Housewares • Artwork • Ceramics Gourmet Edibles • Plush Toys • Books • Photography • Screenprints • Plus more!
It looks to be great fun, and a cool way to discover unique and special gift ideas… plus, I bet you savvy-brides can source some incredible wedding goods such as jewelry, bridal party gifts, decor ideas and more. Tickets are only $5 and half the proceeds benefit CREATE NOW, a local arts-based charity for high-risk youth.
Happy shopping!