Registry and Gift Forum
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No gifts at wedding, but some shower would still be nice.

I apologize if this has been asked before...I did go back and read a lot before posting.My fiance and I both own our own homes, so the truth is we don't need much to furnish our house.  We are asking that people do not buy us gifts for the wedding, but are going to let people know that we'd love them to give to a charity that is very important to us.However, I have hosted and attended a ton of bridal showers, bachelorette parties, and baby showers of friends, and my closest group of girls want to do a shower for me.  The problem is, I am not planning to register for wedding gifts, so people won't know what to get (I do NOT want cash).  Here is the question...is it tacky to do a theme shower of "pamper the bride" so that I get some of the fun, sweet, treat gifts for myself that I can never justify spending the money on (gift cert for pedicure, or facial, cute clothes for the honeymoon, etc.)?  What can be included, and what crosses over into tacky?Another possible theme: Prepare the bride for Step-motherhood.  The thought there would be kid-appropriate sleep wear, GC for a massage (for a little me-time), kid focused cookbooks...Any thoughts welcome.

Re: No gifts at wedding, but some shower would still be nice.

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    You don't plan your own shower.  Someone else will plan it for you, meaning they choose the theme.Personally, I'd be annoyed if I had to buy someone else a massage, since I always want them and can't justify the cost myself.
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    As I said, some of my closest girlfriends are throwing me the shower.  They are super considerate friends and have asked me what I would like at a shower, and what theme, guest list, etc.
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    I would find it tacky.Why not just have a pre-wedding luncheon or something and skip the gifts?
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    I've been to a personal shower before - where the thought was to bring some thing nice just for the bride (she got pj's, soaps, etc). I've also heard of themes like stock the bar (bring wine, beer or alcohol - which some can be broken into at the shower, the rest go to stock your home bar) or games (bring a board or card game as a gift).
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    Don't listen to all of the negative feedback you're getting. First of all, you're not going to be telling any guests what to bring. Your girlfriends who are hosting the party (and were just fabulous enough to ask what you wanted) are going to be the only ones who know that it was what you requested.Second of all, any family or friends who are important enough to you to be invited to the wedding/shower are not going to want to give you an ice cream scooper just because that's the "proper" thing to do. The point of giving a gift at a wedding nowadays is less about "setting up" the couple, as most are already set up, and more about showing your good wishes for the happy union.That being said, can I make a suggestion if you decide to go for the "pamper the bride" theme? Your girlfriends can tell the guests that they want to make you feel fabulous before your big day, so the suggested gifts are things like massages and pedicures and the like. Just be sure that they mention the little things, too. A manicure can be done for all of $15. Sure, a full-body, hour-long massage will cost $60-$100, but a foot massage will run for $20. A little gift basket of facial masks and nail polish might set some one back $20. People do not have to feel resentful about spending a lot of money on pampering you when they wouldn't pamper themselves. And anyone who wants to can spend a bit of extra for the full-blown treatment. Or, as you said, mention that a new sundress for the honeymoon would be fabulous! You can also set up a honeymoon registry online where people can do things like book you a massage at your destination.Of course, we're talking shower theme, not gift theme, so make your guests feel pampered, too! Give out prize baskets for games that include similar items. Serve fresh fruits dipped in dark chocolate. Anything you fancy!Good luck and have fun. Remember, people that love you are just happy to celebrate with you.
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    If you aren't registering and you don't want presents, you don't get a shower.  Period.  Second, don't tell people how to spend their money.  If you don't register fine but your guests still get to decide if they want to give you a gift.  IMO, asking them to donate to charity instead of giving you a gift is dictating how YOU would prefer THEY spend their own money.
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    Generally it's tacky. But, it's easier to get away with if it's going to be a very small event with just your bridesmaids and closest friends/family. I'd keep it much smaller than your traditional shower.
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    I have been to a lot of pamper the bride bridal showers and find them to be much more fun then your regular shower. My favorite one was a get the bride ready for her honeymoon shower. You could call the host and go in on a big item purchase with other people or you could bring a gift that you purchased yourself. The bride got luggage, a luxury robe, lingerie, kama sutra book, gift certificate to her favorite clothing store, and a beach tote filled with all the essentials. I personlly do not find these type of showers tacky at all and I know when my mother got married, back in the day when all you could register for was china and crystal, she got alot of personal items at her showers from her guests.
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    I think you've found a great idea! I too am a step-mom-to-be and have let the word out that I wouldn't mind some 'kid appropriate' pj's as well when a friend asked to throw a lingerie-themed party. If your friends are super considerate, as I consider mine to be, I'll bet they'd love the ideas you've suggested here!Enjoy your pampering!
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