Pre-wedding Parties

Couples shower - need ideas in place of gifts

My fiance's sisters and brother-in-laws want to throw a couples shower for us.  I am already having a bridal shower that most of the girls on the invite list for the couples shower will be at.  We do not want people to have to buy gifts for two showers.
I am trying to think of some ideas to do in place of gifts.  (Even when people request no gifts, I still feel like I need to bring a card or at least something so I'm not showing up totally empty handed)  One idea I had was to have decorated note cards or something along those lines sent with the invites asking them to fill it out with advice for bride and groom.  Then they bring those and they go into a scrapbook or album of some sort.  Or maybe each couple brings a picture to put into an album.
Those are a few ideas I had but wanted to see if anyone else had some ideas that I can give to my future sister-in-laws for the shower.  (I have a feeling if I don't have an idea ready for them, they might still want to go the gifts route)

Thanks,
Katie
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Re: Couples shower - need ideas in place of gifts

  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_pre-wedding-parties_couples-shower-need-ideas-place-of-gifts?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:32Discussion:949dd4e7-fb3f-4274-ac28-4190d1843ee1Post:8a4c2b29-59f1-4470-8dfe-cc41fca39fd9">Couples shower - need ideas in place of gifts</a>:
    [QUOTE]My fiance's sisters and brother-in-laws want to throw a couples shower for us. <strong> I am already having a bridal shower that most of the girls on the invite list for the couples shower will be at.</strong>  <strong>We do not want people to have to buy gifts for two showers.</strong> I am trying to think of some ideas to do in place of gifts.  (Even when people request no gifts, I still feel like I need to bring a card or at least something so I'm not showing up totally empty handed)  One idea I had was to have decorated note cards or something along those lines sent with the invites asking them to fill it out with advice for bride and groom.  Then they bring those and they go into a scrapbook or album of some sort.  Or maybe each couple brings a picture to put into an album. Those are a few ideas I had but wanted to see if anyone else had some ideas that I can give to my future sister-in-laws for the shower.  (I have a feeling if I don't have an idea ready for them, they might still want to go the gifts route) Thanks, Katie
    Posted by KatP11[/QUOTE]

    What is the point of this shower if no gifts? Why not just call it something else?

    I see where you're going since you shouldn't have more than one shower with overlapping guest lists and you want to avoid people doubling up on the gifts.  But, I would ask FIs family to call this party something else if it's simply to have a party. 

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  • banana468banana468 member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    Honestly, there are a few things that are not really appropriate with this idea:

    1) The only overlapping guests for showers should be the bridal party, moms and grandparents  Beyond that, guests should not be invited to more than one shower.

    2) It's never appropriate to suggest what people should bring to a shower.  This is why ideas like 'assign a room' or 'round the clock' showers don't go over well.  Guests want to bring what they want to bring.  They don't want to be told what they should be buying/bringing.

    3) Some people just aren't crafty nor do they have time.  Right now, I have ZERO time to do a decorated note card.  I'm buying gifts while doing my weekly grocery shopping at Target or while I'm pumping and eating at lunch.  Getting out markers and glue to make a notecard is lovely but again, not what I want to do or have time to do.

    HOWEVER, a recipe shower could be a great idea.  Then the guest just brings in his/her favorite recipe on a notecard and those are assembled in a book for the couple.  That isn't a ton of effort (they could even photocopy) and it's a great opportunity to share tastes.  Plus, many men cook which means it isn't a 'ladies only' deal.
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    ditto HelloKatie. As soon as the word shower is printed on the invitations, it becomes a gift giving event. Requesting advice/recipe cards will not convince the guests that they should not bring gifts.

    Would it be possible to divide the shower guest list in half? You could have 2 smaller showers, so your fils will get to host some of those guests without overlapping the other shower.


                       
  • edited December 2011
    We could certainly call it something besides a couples shower, the name doesn't really matter I guess.  Maybe that will solve the whole problem!
     
    It's more just the point that his sisters wanted to do something where our friends can come as couples, just a way for our close friends to get together with us prior to the actual wedding.  The only overlapping people on the lists are his sisters and then the 'bridal party'. 

    And as far as the decorated advice card, the card would already be decorated and ready to go, the people would just have to write down the advice.

    Thanks everyone for the suggestions!
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  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    The wedding party, sisters, mothers should get courtesy invites to all showers anyway. They are not required to bring gifts to all events. So even if they call it a shower, it would be ok.
                       
  • edited December 2011

    I guess looking through everything what I was really looking for were some additional ideas for the couples 'get together' aside from bringing gifts.  We are fortunate enough to have a great group of friends and family who are very laid back and we don't follow traditional ettiquette so to speak.  So there really isn't the issue of what this get together is called and bringing gifts, (aside from that fact that we want to have his sisters feel like they gave us an actual 'shower' of some kind) we know that people will be fine with whatever is done, it's just trying to come up with a different/creative idea for something to do. 
    The guys in our group of friends are very very close, and have been since high school over 13 years ago so they're really like family and none of them would think twice over being asked to bring a certain item or write advice on a card for us.  (In fact sometimes they are overly full of advice!)

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  • edited December 2011
    Have a tasting party.  Pier 1 has a bunch of mini cocktail glass, mini plates, etc. that FIs sisters can serve the guests small appetizers or sweets with.  They can call it a tasting party or a cocktail party.  People are usually content with eating, drinking, and mingling.

    Honestly, this is for them to worry about since they so generously offered to do this.  Just explain to them that you don't want another shower per se because you don't want any gifts at all.  These couples might bring you a gift anyway since they're not invited to the shower.

    Planning Bio ~ Updated 9/23/11

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    D-Day is 11.5.11


    128 invited 102 Party People 23 Party Poopers 3 Wishy Washies
    The harassment begins on 10.15.11!


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