Wedding Etiquette Forum

Wedding gift thoughts- sorta Etiquette

BG: Bro and FSIL registered at Did not list anything to "purchase," merely included a spot to type in the amount you want to give and then select "Cash" (to be given in person) or "Check" (to send by mail). Copious etiquette-rage puking on my part ensued. Couple plans on taking a trip to an EU country. I have since squashed the desire to put in a 20 Euro note with the message "For cab fare" in the card. Go me! End BG

I'm now debating how to do this gift for Brother's wedding. Rather than give USD or write a check, I really want to give them Euros, as it's money, which is what they want, and can be used in Europe, should something happen, like credit cards being stolen, etc. FI is on board with this, but we're debating the amount. We're planning our own wedding, trying to save for a house, etc (plus FI needs to quit night shift work to focus completely on school, and night shift is also ruining his health, so belt tightening going on). Is 100 Euro (roughly 137 USD) on the cheap side? I thought I'd also throw in some Euros I still had from my own trip to Europe back in 07. It's all small bills, would be great for quick snacks, drinks, etc.

Thoughts ladies?

Edit: Additional info seems to be needed. Bro and FSIL have lived together for over 5 years, have a household set up, and do not need any physical things. They also live in a large city, where space for personal effects is at a premium.

Re: Wedding gift thoughts- sorta Etiquette

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    I think that's completely fine and probably more than I would spend on the tackiness. I think it would be kind of funny if they ended up not being able to go to Europe and never got to use it. But judging by that registry, they'll probably be mad at you.
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    Givng Euros is a great idea!

    Personally, I think you should give what you are comfortable giving.  FI and I have a set amount that we give for weddings, and the amount is based on our relationship with the couple (friends/coworkers get one amount, cousins get a bit more, and siblings get the most).  Really there is no set amount you should give, just what you can and want to.  
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    Well, if my brother was getting married, I'd get him a wedding gift - something that will last for years and years like I hope his marriage lasts for years and years.  Money, including Euros, is not a wedding gift - see below.  If you choose to give him money, that's your choice of course and that's a nice way to get rid of your leftover 2007 Euros.

    Wedding gifts are supposed to be wonderful and heartfelt and long-lasting, mirroring the giver's fervent hope that the couple's marriage be wonderful and heartfelt and long-lasting.

    By inviting these people to your wedding, you've asked your friends and family to be witnesses to your wedding ceremony, and as witnesses, those people are mentors for your marriage. Their gifts represent their acceptance of your request for their mentorship, and their gifts represent their presence in your lives and hearts forever.

    When you see/use these gifts, you are reminded that you have a circle of people around you as a couple, people who you can call on, people who have pledged their support of you two as a couple.
    The following ideas do not match with what a wedding gift is supposed to represent, and in fact, just demand that people give you money instead of a wedding gift:  a downpayment registry, a honeymoon registry, a “donation” to your fav charity, a money dance, a money tree, a greenback wedding or shower (where the guests bring cash), a plastic wedding or shower (where the guests bring gift cards), or an outright request for cash.
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    So nice of Kristin to pop-in.

    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
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    So Kristin, what do you suggest she get for her brother when the only thing they registered for is cash?
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    I would LOVE to give them a physical object. In my family, it is tradition to give fine crystal stemware. They have that already.

    THEY have specifically asked for cash and checks. No trinkets, knicknacks, or other items to clutter up their house when they have everything they need (please look at the edit I placed in my OP).

    I am merely trying to feel out whether giving Euros for a European trip is creative enough, and whether I'm being cheap due to my own budget in giving this amount to my only brother. As for "getting rid" of my own Euros, I would love to go back to Europe and use them myself, but that doesn't seem to be happening any time soon. Everything I've read on foreign travel urges you to carry the local currency in small denominations. Guess what? My Euros are in small denom and have been sitting in an envelope for 5 years gathering dust. Might as well give them away while they can be used in case the EU collapses before I can get back there!

    From your post, Kristen, I'm getting the impression you find it to be my fault the couple chose this route. As adults, they are able to make their own decisions without my input (as they have done, as they should). Far be it from me to foist on the happy couple something they do not want. As stated, while my stomach turns at their choice, it is their choice, and I am happy to give them something they will use with my best wishes.
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    I think the euros are a great idea; especially since at least then you know it will go towards their honeymoon.  The amount is more than I'd give a friend (usually $100 USD).  I would probably give my brother more (normally), but the honeyfund thing puts a bad taste in my mouth so I think it's more than generous.
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    I get giddy when I see Kristen responded to a question. 

    I'm not big on giving cash gifts either, but in this situation, I'd give them some Euros. Personally I'd get small bills- 5s & 10s because I have found the larger ones harder to use in a lot of places. It's amazing when you try to buy a magnet in a gift shop and they give you a hard time about using a 20 euro bill! 
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    I prefer to give gifts to money, but I have to tell you that one of our groomsmen gave us Euros. It was a spectacular surprise--thoughtful and useful, and even if it's not a crystal vase for us to look at for years to come, it was appreciated.

    I'm in the camp you should spend what you can afford, and I think 100 Euros is a very generous gift.
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    >>So Kristin, what do you suggest she get for her brother when the only thing they registered for is cash?

    Something for the kitchen, like an espresso maker or slow cooker or KitchenAid mixer with three recipes.

    Something for the bathroom or bedroom, like sheets or towels.

    Something electronic, like an external memory for computer files or a small size TV for the guest bedroom or kitchen.

    Something for a holiday:  like a Christmas set of tablecloth, napkins, glasses.

    Something personally created:  like an afgan or throw or painting or photobook from Shutterfly.

    Something practical but not necessarily pretty:  a new garbage disposal, a new washer or dryer, a gift card for the annual service on their air conditioning system.

    Something they already enjoy:  a basket of stuff from their favorite college or pro sports team, like T-shirts and a bottle-opener that plays the fight song - plus two tickets to a home game this coming fall.  Or two tickets to see Pentatonix or Jim Brickman or whoever.

    Something to get away from the big city where they live:  A basket with beach stuff or a basket with picnic stuff.  Two tickets to the planetarium show and a telescope for home use. 
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    I think Euro's are a great idea!  They set up the honeyfund becuase they're looking for honeymoon stuff. Since you guys went there recently maybe try to personalize it a little by doing something creative.  

    Here are a few ideas: 1) give them a travel guide with your favorite spots or travel tips written in the margins or on sticky notes, 2) put the money in different envelopes with designations on them such as 'For Macaroons from Lauduree," for taxi fare home at 6am while in Barcelona...; 3) Give them the money with something like a shutterfly gift certificate so they can make a photobook of their trip pictures; 4) make them an EU travel kit with the money that has small stuff they'll need when traveling such as a travel umbrella (London, Ireland), sunglasses (Greece), sunscreen, anti-bac soap, converter for plug-in items, back up camera batteries...5) give them the Euros with a self-made travel guide from Lonely Planet.  Put in spots or place you think they would enjoy.  

    Just a few ideas! 

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    Lol Kristin.  

    I tried formulating a response that would explain why those gifts wouldn't work for a couple like FI and I, but I'm too busy laughing.  I can't wait to put a telescope in the foyer of my 600 sq ft apartment.  
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    In Response to Re:Wedding gift thoughts sorta Etiquette:[QUOTE]In Response to Re:Wedding gift thoughts sorta Etiquette:A new washer and dryer? Now I KNOW Kristin is stuck in 1952. Who spends several THOUSAND dollars on a wedding gift?Posted by StageManager14... people I wish I had invited to our wedding ....My personal favorite of her suggestions is the garbage disposal. nbsp; Posted by TXKristan[/QUOTE]

    I really thought about getting my sister a garbage disposal for Christmas. They don't have one and she complains about it all the time.
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    I should have clarified- I have about 40 bucks in Euros, maybe. Want to add to that. The trip is also a done deal, just taking it a few months after the wedding rather than immediately after.

    As for Kristen's suggestions: 1) it's the city. They rent, so no appliances. 2) I don't know how to make this clearer.... THEY. HAVE. EVERYTHING. THEY. NEED.

    The only homemade type gift they are getting is another quilt from my mom that she started before they got engaged and is NOT a wedding present.

    I won't even touch the recipes- Brother is an excellent cook, and FSIL is an event planner for an upscale restaurant. For all the Foodie Knotties, I will try to take photos and post after this event, there are 4 (yes 4) caterers and it's an evening of tons of finger foods and hor devours and will essentially be a Foodie's dream.
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