Wedding Customs & Traditions Forum

Wedding Gift Display?

My mom informed me last night that it is traditional for the bride to display all gifts from the shower and the wedding in her home/her parents home the weekend of the wedding so that any guest that stops by can view the gifts. She said that no gifts are to be used before the wedding. Has anyone else ever heard of this? Are you displaying your gifts?

Re: Wedding Gift Display?

  • You shouldn't use shower gifts prior to the wedding, but I've never heard of displaying them. That seems really bizarre to me.
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  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    That's a very old custom. As you mom said, the gifts would be displayed at the bride's family home, usually with the gift cards, face down or concealed, to avoid embarrassing anyone. The guests could stop by for coffee and view the gifts the day after the wedding. Do people still do that?

    We will have some kind of casual get together the day after the wedding. But we will not be doing a display because it focuses too much attention on the gifts. It would be very impractical, anyway, since my daughter has had her own home for many years.

    The reason you shouldn't use the wedding gifts before the wedding: You will have to return the gifts to the donors if the wedding doesn't take place.
  • WOW - I haven't seen anyone actually do that in about 35-40 years - seriously, I was a little kid the last time I saw that. The only other place I've seen wedding/shower gifts displayed in a home was in the movie Father of the Bride with Steve Martin.
  • Thanks ladies. I understand not using the gifts, the display was just a new one on me! I think I will suggest to my mom that we pass on the display.
  • I have never heard of the display thing either. It is tradition for the bride and groom to open gifts the next day at her parents house. With H and I we couldn't do that bc we left for the HM the next morning. So is what we did was open most of them after a lot of the extended family and what not had gone home. We had no time limit on our reception venue and the dj was playing until 10pm anyway, so we took advantage of being with both our familes and opening our gifts. We opened all of our cards after we got back from the HM.
  • Fi and I are using some of the shower gifts already...we already live together and don't have the patience/space to have boxes sitting around.

    We agreed that some items, like dishes, flatware, bedding, etc. we'll wait until we're married to start using.

    Traditionally you're not supposed to, but you're also not supposed to have sex or live together prior to marriage traditionally, whoops.
  • I've seen people bring gifts that they received prior to the wedding to the reception to place on the gift table, so that people know where the gifts go.  I think displaying the shower gifts is weird, though.
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  • Just watched Father of the Bride last night! and yep they do the gift display, although it may stem from the original film and they did carry over a lot of those elements.  If it is that important to your mother, I don't see the harm in it.
  • quotequeenquotequeen member
    edited August 2010
    I've only heard of this in an Emily Post book from like 1920.  I think your mom is going to be disappointed when nobody shows up to look at the gifts.
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  • We displayed our mainly because we live in a 1940's bungalow house and extra space is a luxury. All of our extra space was being used to store things for the wedding.   We put everything on a workspace table.  We did not invite people to come look at them, but when people came over for the Sunday BBQ, they took a peek.  Most people were interested in seeing their gifts in person since most of the things were sent via our registry.  It is an old, antiquated practice, but it is not unheard of.  Just make sure you take the gift tags off the gifts so people don't immediately know who gave what.
  • Very old school upper class!  A whole room would be set up with tables, linens, and flowers.  Of course, you also had maids to clean, and keep it spiffy.  I've only ever seen it once, and I was not yet a while back  Wink
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  • never heard of it.  i would be uncomfortable displaying gifts.  My FI and I are not very materialistic and I would feel like i was placing too much emphasis on gifts.
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