Part of the fun of a wedding is honoring traditions. You want to make your day unique and a reflection of you and your spouse, but throwing in some age-old customs can definitely add to your special day. While it is completely optional, having a gift exchange between bride and groom is a fun tradition that brings the focus back to the reasons for the wedding instead of being distracted by the chaos of the days surrounding the ceremony. Those who choose to exchange gifts generally choose sentimental presents instead of the most extravagant gifts possible. The gifts are symbolic of the feelings you share for one another and add to the special memories on your wedding day.
There are no set guidelines when it comes to swapping gifts. Many couples choose to do so before the actual wedding ceremony. Some use the rehearsal dinner as a perfect time to give their presents to one another. Others exchange gifts the morning of the wedding via messenger. While the bride is getting ready, she sends her bridesmaids to give a gift to the groom, and the groom sends one of his groomsmen to the bride. It forces each to take a moment out of the hustle and bustle of the busy morning and cherish a few quiet moments reading sentimental notes from the one closest to their heart. The gift exchange can also make for a very unique and romantic photo opportunity. Some couples choose to give their presents after the ceremony is done, when the stress of the day has passed.
If you choose to give your gifts before the wedding ceremony, it can be fun to give something to be worn during the wedding. Items like cufflinks, bracelets, necklaces, earrings, watches, and personalized handkerchiefs make for excellent options. A simple set of diamond stud earrings will pop in photos and sparkle with elegance during your first dance together.
Those who choose to swap gifts after the ceremony is said and done often choose gifts that can be used during the honeymoon. Find a present that will be useful while you two are away together. A pair of sunglasses that your fiancé has been eyeing but would never buy his or herself is a great option for tropical getaways. Or you can opt for a new camera to document your travels together. If you will be flying, consider a new MP3 player filled with favorite music and songs that bring back special memories. You can also buy a bottle of wine or other choice alcohol to drink together and celebrate.
Sentimental gifts make for some of the best presents, especially if they are created by hand. If you are the artsy type, draw or paint a meaningful picture. Or if writing poetry or music is more your thing, put your feelings and emotions down on paper to share with the love of your life. Gather pictures of your dating and engagement months and create a unique scrapbook or calendar. You know your fiancé better than others; find a gift that will be touching and nostalgic.
While it may seem counterproductive to add yet another item to your constantly growing wedding to-do list, the fond memories surrounding the gift exchange will be more than worth it. Finances do not need to be an issue; there are plenty of presents for any budget. Make sure you both agree on doing the swap and the time that it should take place, you dont want either of you to be caught off guard. Dont stress about what to get your spouse, simply go with your gut. But whatever you choose to give, be sure to include a sweet handwritten note. That is the best part of the whole exchange.
- Andrea Boley
Andrea Boley is a writer and blogger with Storkie. She has been writing articles and blogging for over 10 years and is always happy to share her passion for life and experiences through her work. Her educational backgrounds in psychology and journalism have given her a solid foundation from which to draw experience and expertise in an array of topics.
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