Why Give Bridal Party GiftsBridesmaid and groomsmen gifts primarily serve the purpose of thanking the participants in your wedding for being involved. Wedding party members put in a lot of time helping to plan and prep for the wedding. They might help you DIY some of your wedding projects. They attend showers, bachelor or bachelorette parties, the rehearsal dinner and other wedding-related events. They invest their own money in the wedding clothes, matching shoes, accessories and hair and makeup sessions to be a part of your special day. A gift is a gesture of gratitude for all of those efforts and investments.
How Much to SpendThe amount you spend on bridal party gifts depends on several factors. Deciding how much to spend on the gifts ahead of time helps you make your selections. When establishing a budget for the gifts, consider these factors:
- Amount of money available in the budget: How much money do you have available to put toward the gifts? If you’re paying for the entire wedding yourself and have a limited budget, you likely have less to allocate toward the gifts. If you have plenty of room in the budget, though, you might spend a little more. While you don’t want to skimp and give your wedding party cheap gifts, it’s okay to limit what you spend to keep within your overall wedding budget.
- Money your party spends to participate: Being in a wedding party is an honor, but it also comes with financial obligations that add up quickly. Transportation costs, wedding attire, accessories and gifts for you come into play when calculating the amount your wedding party spends to be part of the wedding. If the bridal party has a lot of expenses, your gift should reflect that commitment with a higher value. You don’t have to match the dollar amount they spend, but if they spend hundreds of dollars and you give them a $5 trinket, they may feel a little unappreciated.
- Number of people in your party: If you have a small wedding party, you can spend more per gift. For a larger party, you may need to scale back the gift budget to cover everyone. Total up the number of people you are buying gifts for to divide your total gift budget for the per-gift amount.
- Roles within the party: Some couples spend a little more on the maid of honor and best man to account for the extra duties they put in to help you have your dream wedding. Some brides spend a little less on flower girls or junior bridesmaids. Decide if you want to spend the same across the board or spend a little more on those wedding party members who took on more responsibilities.
A general recommended price range is between $75 and $150, but you are perfectly fine to spend more or less depending on your situation.
When to Give the Gifts
Finding that perfect moment to present the bridal party with the gifts you select is sometimes challenging. You become busier every day as the wedding approaches, so it’s easy to forget all those little tasks like handing out the bridal party gifts. You want the presentation to be meaningful so your wedding party members know you sincerely appreciate their part in your special day. Schedule a time to present the gifts, so you can make it the meaningful experience you want it to be.
A common option is to present the gifts at the rehearsal dinner. The event is typically more laid back with a flexible schedule. Introduce each member of the party before giving the gift. You might talk about your relationship with each person, how you met or share a funny story about the person before presenting the gift. This option is also good if the gift is bulky or not something the recipient will use on the wedding day, as they can easily take the gifts home or back to the hotel after the dinner.
Some brides wait until the wedding day to give their attendants the gifts they choose. This option works well if the gift is something the recipient can use or wear at the wedding, such as cuff links for the groomsmen or a piece of jewelry for the bridesmaids. Another option is to host a special event for your bridal party the week of the wedding, such as a barbecue for the groomsmen or a spa day for the bridesmaids. While treating your wedding party to this special event, set aside time to share the gifts.
Tips for Selecting Bridal Party GiftsSelecting gifts for the wedding party doesn’t have to create more stress in your wedding planning process. Keep these tips for finding gifts for bridesmaids and groomsmen in mind to make the process easier:
- Shop early: You no doubt have a seemingly endless to-do list for your wedding preparation, but don’t wait until the last minute to secure the bridal party gifts. Waiting means you may grab anything without putting a lot of thought into the gift. Selecting gifts well in advance also allows for enough ordering and shipping time if you order custom gifts online. Start shopping at least one to two months before the wedding to give yourself a buffer.
- Make it useful: Bridal party gifts can be sentimental, but they should have some functional use as well. By choosing something the recipient will like and use, you keep your gift from ending up in the junk drawer.
- Choose the gift with the person in mind: You can go the route of choosing the same gift for each person in your bridal party, but a more meaningful option is to select a different gift that fits each person’s interest and personality. This shows that you put thought into the gift, and it makes each person feel special.
- Set a budget: Establishing a budget for your wedding party gifts helps you narrow down the gift options. This is also important if you hand-select a different gift for each person. Having a general per-gift budget helps you find items with a similar value.
- Choose wearable items the recipient can use again: Robes, shirts and jewelry are common gift options, especially for the bridesmaids. When gifting wearable items, choose something the recipient would want to wear after the wedding. For example, a shirt that says “Bridesmaid” is cute for wedding activities, but it won’t get much use after the fact. A robe monogrammed for each bridesmaid is something that works long after the wedding.
- Consider if you would want the gift: If you’re up in the air on what to give, put yourself in that recipient’s place. Would you want to receive the gift? Is it something you could use down the road?
- Add a hand-written note: The whole point of the gift is to express your appreciation. Instead of letting the gift do the talking, include a personalized, hand-written note with each gift. Express your gratitude with a personal touch that touches on your relationship with that recipient.
Gift Ideas for Bridesmaids
Bridesmaid jewelry reigns as one of the most popular gift options. With so many jewelry options available, you can get pieces that fit the style and personality of each girl. Some brides present coordinating jewelry for the bridesmaids to wear during the wedding. If you go this route, choose jewelry that also works for other occasions, so the girls in your bridal party can wear the pieces in the future.
Many other jewelry options offer a treasured gift for your bridesmaids. Try one of these options:
- Name jewelry: Order custom jewelry with each bridesmaid’s name on her piece. You can find necklaces, bracelets and jewelry with personalized name designs. Each gift is slightly different and custom to the recipient, yet it’s the same type of gift.
- Charm bracelet: The charm bracelet is a popular jewelry style perfect for bridesmaids’ gifts. Choose a charm for each bridesmaid to represent her personality or style.
- Fun themed jewelry: If you really want to hone in on the personalities of the recipients, find jewelry with a fun theme that relates to their interests. The Dog Fever jewelry line is the perfect option for any dog lovers in your wedding party. The line includes hug rings, pendants and earrings with stunning detail on different breeds of dogs.
- Engraved bracelet: Choose a simple cuff-style bracelet for each bridesmaid. Make them each a little different by engraving a special message along the inside. You might refer to a special memory, share a special quote about friendship or think of another sentiment to include.
- Silky robes: Give each bridesmaid a soft, silky robe as a thank you gift. Present the robe in time to wear while getting ready for the wedding. Don’t forget to have a few pictures taken with all the girls in their robes. This gift works well because your bridesmaids can use them over and over.
- Compact: Let the girls check out their wedding day makeup just before walking down the aisle with a high-end metal compact. Choose a gorgeous design with a gold frame or similar style that elevates the compact beyond the typical drugstore style. You can even engrave the compact with each recipient’s name, monogram or a thank you message.
- High-end beauty products: Treat your girls to high-end beauty products, such as quality makeup or specialty soap.
- Ballet flats: Who doesn’t love a cute ballet flat shoe? Gift each bridesmaid a pair of cute and comfy ballet flats to wear at the reception. It gives their feet a break from heels, and the shoes are something they can wear long after the wedding.
- Designer clutch: A small clutch handbag pulls double duty. It gives her a convenient place to hold necessities on the wedding day, and it serves as a functional gift she can use later. Other similar options include a camera bag, travel bag or similar bags. Make the bag extra special by filling it up with goodies, such as cosmetics or specialty candy.
- Spa treatment: Give your bridesmaids a way to unwind after the craziness of the wedding with gift certificates to a local spa. Turn it into a basket with candles, chocolates, slippers and other pampering items.
- Hobby related items: If you’re going for the custom gift feel, give each girl a gift related to a hobby or interest. Ideas include gardening tools, cookbooks, cooking essentials, crafting supplies or a gift certificate for classes related to the hobby.
Gift Ideas for Groomsmen
The men in the wedding party may not have quite as many tasks to do, but they still give the groom plenty of support throughout the process. Ideal groomsmen gifts are often less sappy and flowery than bridesmaid gifts. However, it’s still a good idea to keep the individual tastes and interests of the groomsmen in mind when choosing the gifts.
Check out these groomsmen gift ideas:
- Tickets: Men are often less sentimental than women, so instead of gifting the groomsmen a keepsake, consider tickets to a fun event. Ideas include tickets to movies, concerts, sporting events or other upcoming events the recipients might enjoy.
- Headphones: Wrap up a pair of high-end headphones for each groomsman. Make the gift even more personal by choosing headphones in each recipient’s favorite color.
- Small batch liquor: If the men in your wedding party enjoy a good whiskey, beer or other type of alcohol, make it special by giving them a bottle from a small-batch producer. Add a personal touch to it by choosing a bottle from a local brewery or distillery. Add a customized flask, beer glass or bottle opener to round out the gift.
- Subscription boxes: Monthly boxes are all the rage right now. Sign up your groomsmen for a certain number of months of a subscription box that fits their personalities. You can get monthly boxes for almost anything, including quirky socks, men’s grooming supplies, alcohol, men’s fragrances, clothing and coffee.
- Custom bobblehead: For a truly unique and personal gift, order a custom bobblehead designed to look like each groomsman.
While jewelry is most often associated with bridesmaids, there are plenty of options for the groomsmen when it comes to jewelry gifts. Many of the items work well for the wedding day and long after. Consider the following men’s jewelry options for your groomsmen:
- Cuff links: Gift each of your groomsmen a pair of matching cuff links to wear at the wedding. It’s the perfect way to finish off their wedding day looks, and they can wear them on future special occasions that call for a dress shirt.
- Tie bars: A similar option is the tie bar. This is ideal if your groomsmen are wearing neck ties instead of bow ties at the wedding.
- Watches: A watch is a classic accessory that your groomsmen can wear every day.
- Men’s bracelet: Bracelets aren’t just for women. If the men in your wedding party are the type to wear bracelets, consider getting them each one as a thank you for being a part of the wedding.