May 2014 Weddings

Gifts for Parents

What's the etiquette on this?  Fi and I are paying for the wedding ourselves -- his parents contributed a very small amount (but their guests account for 1/3 of our guest list) and are paying for the RD.  Is it appropriate to give both of our parents gifts even though my parents are not paying for the wedding?  Also, I need ideas!  I hadn't thought about this until now.

Thanks :)

Re: Gifts for Parents

  • I'm giving all parents involved gifts, not because they've helped pay for anything but because they are our parents. And with that being said, it's just as big a day for them as it is for us.I'm the oldest baby and my mom and dad see this as the last thing before it's time to totally let go of their baby girl and  to give her away to someone else to take care of. It's like I'm saying, thank you for all that you've done, I love you both. Thank you for teaching me and allowing me to grow. I've learned all my wisdom from you and now it's time for me to turn around and do the same. Does any of that make sense??
    pumpkinsandturkeysArtTeacher23Tnt082013ohxhi
  • I think alll parents involved, even step, should get a gift...it shouldn't matter who paid or didn't pay.  It doesn't have to be anything big, just a token of appreciattion for all they have done for you.  We got my FMIL and my mom a bracelet they can wear to the wedding and anytime after.  I am still thining on the dads and stepmom. 
    pumpkinsandturkeys
  • tammym1001tammym1001 Akron, Ohio member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    Neither of our parents are contributing anything, but we are going to get them gifts. It will probably end up being picture frames or photo albums of the wedding or something, but we definitely want to get them something.
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    pumpkinsandturkeysArtTeacher23Tnt082013
  • i'm thinking of getting our parents albums.  neither are contributing much (a very small amount from my parents, RD from his) but I still want to give them gifts to show our appreciation
  • I am going to get my dad one of those "of all the walks we have walked together, this was my favorite" and a picture of him walking me down the isle. He will obviously get a "soon to be picture" in it. I am getting my mom a handkerchief and probably some jewelry. 

    I am not sure if I want to give my in-laws anything. I should, but not sure what to give them. I like the photo albums idea. That would be good.  
    Tnt082013
  • I think we've decided to give our parents gift cards to Ruths Chris or something like that.
  • I am probabbly gonna end up buying my dad a personalized cuff links set. For my mother I went with sentimental gift. The story goes...when I was in maybe kindergarten we went on a field trip to the museum I am having my wedding/reception at. My mom had given me maybe 10 dollars to buy something for myself. I ended up buying her a dragonfly brooch. She still has it 20 some years later. I thought it would be incredibly thoughtful and emotional for me to give her another dragonfly brooch, to symbolize that transition from little girl to woman. And do it in the same place I bought the first one so many years ago. I know she's gonna cry her face off, so i guess I should do it before she has her makeup on!

    awillcox14Kristen625ArtTeacher23
  • ohxhi said:
    I'm definitely planning on getting my parents gifts.  My mom and I are freakishly close (think Gilmore girls) so it's important to me to get her something just for being my mom - except, unfortunately, nothing is good enough.  

    My dad and I don't have the best relationship, but I told him when I got engaged that I see this next chapter of my life as a good starting point for us to try to make things better.  I found this gift that's kind of a nod to our "old issues" that I want to get as kind of a laugh but I also want to get him something nice.

    image

    Not sure that I want to get FI's parents any gifts - maybe that xanax rx @FutureMrsN3312 was talking about...  but I think I might leave their presents up to him. 

    My mum and I are like Lorelai and Rory, too! We actually used to watch GG together (in our pyjamas, in her bed -- lame haha), and FI bought me the complete DVD set for Christmas 2012 :)


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    ohxhi
  • I'm coming back to this thread because I'm really stressing about parent gifts. This is probably the only thing that is causing me grief out of the entire wedding.

    I want to start by saying that I love FI's family, including his dad and stepmom. We get along really well, and there having been many major issues with them over the years. FI's dad remarried when the kids were grown, so his stepmom didn't raise them or anything like that, and their mom passed away a very long time ago. His stepmom is a very nice, sweet lady, but she tends to defer to his dad, especially with family matters.

    My issue is that they have not been involved in the wedding process at all -- I mean, haven't contributed a thing. I'm not just talking financially (because we haven't expected anyone to help us pay for this); there has been no offer for emotional or physical help with anything or any kind of support. They don't stop by and see us; they don't call to ask how things are going; and they haven't offered their time or energy for anything.

    On the other hand, my parents have been fantastic. They take an interest in our plans; they invite us to come down there and visit every couple of weeks so we can touch base; my mum surprised me by paying for my dress and is coming to my first fitting; and we just found out a week or two ago that they're insisting on covering the cost of almost the entire wedding, which floored us! I'm still in shock, and eternally grateful that they're being so generous as their way of giving us a stable start to our marriage.

    Obviously, we want to show our extreme gratitude to my parents when we give them a gift for the wedding. I want to give them something at the rehearsal dinner and express our thanks in front of the rest of our immediate family, and then buy them a copy of a photo album when our pictures are edited. However, given the circumstances, I don't feel comfortable doing the same for FI's dad and stepmom. It's not because they're not investing financially in our day -- it's because they don't seem to care to participate or even take an interest in it, and haven't this whole time.

    I know that we have to give his parents something, but I'm having a hard time deciding what would be appropriate, because I really don't know what I'm showing them gratitude for. They're also the type who only like 'practical' gifts -- at Christmas, we were all told to give them cash to cover the cost of an item they had recently purchased for themselves. Huh?

    I need some help here, girls. Part of me wants to just forgo parent gifts at the reception dinner and let my parents know that they'll receive a gift later on, and another part of me knows that's in poor taste etiquette-wise. I also don't want to waste my money on something FFIL is just going to shove in a cupboard or closet. What do I do?


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  • @pumpkinsandturkeys I feel ya and am kinda in the same boat. FI's parents are contributing financially, but in comparision to what my parents are covering it's like nothing at all. We also have a it of a cultural/generational gap with them (the only wedding they ever paid/planned was FI's sisters wedding over in Yugoslavia in the last 80s, early 90s) so they don't really understand a lot of what we've been planning and talking about. Both of our parents will be getting a wedding photo album as it comes with the photo package we went with, so I do feel bad considering that as just FIs parents gift but honestly I'm stuck at what they could/would need or use. We usually buy them food gift baskets for Christmas cuz they always like that and always say that they don't need/want anything. I'm a lot closer to my FMIL s I'm thinking of getting her some type of separate gift (either one of those "mother of the groom" type of hankies, cuz God knows at her only son's wedding she'll have the waterworks flowing or some type of jewelry) but both me & FI have no idea what to do for his father. If you go the route of not getting your future in-laws a gift, then I wouldn't give your parents their gift at the rehearsal dinner or in front of all your families/wedding party to avoid any hurt feelings or misinterpretations. You could always just make a toast to both of your parents thanking them for their love & support during your relationship and how you hope your bonds grow stronger with them as your marriage grows, etc. etc. Then privately I would give your parents their gift. I'm sure if you explain the situation you're in to your parents, they will understand.
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    pumpkinsandturkeysKittyKaty20
  • My parents who are divorced nor FI parents paid for anything and they were not involved in the planning.:-( my mom still didn't purchase a dress! Tonight I purchased photo albums for them to keep our wedding pictures in. Even though I wasn't happy about it since they agreed to help before we signed contracts two wrongs don't make a right. Get your parents something or you"ll regret it later.
  • I won't be giving my parents their gifts until the day of the wedding-mostly because I want the photographer to be there.

    I'm undecided on gifts for FIs dad/stepmom (hosting the RD) and FIs mom/stepdad (LOVE her, he's a little...standoffish.)

    They will all get toasts at RD, but I just don't know about the gifts...seems super-weird, since there will be quite a few people who are SOs and won't be getting gifts.

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    pumpkinsandturkeys
  • We finally figured out gifts for our parents!!! We ended up going with a bit of a "family tree" theme but not on purpose lol. For FI's parents we found this great hanging photo family tree from Things Remembered; got it engraved with the family's last name (http://www.thingsremembered.com/product/Gift-Categories/Albums-Frames/Family-Friends-Frames-Albums/Satin-Silver-Heritage-Tree/pc/122/c/2567/sc/2640/168082.uts?refineByCategoryId=2640). For my parents we found a cute little family tree with hanging photos too at Hallmark (can't find a picture of it on Hallmark's site, but this image doing a Google search: http://shopord.com/product.php?productid=21077); it's smaller but we have a small family compared to FI & his 3 sisters lol. We also found a cute photo ornament for our wedding, which is perfect since the flower looks almost like a cherry blossom (we're getting married at a botanic garden that's known for their cherry blossoms): http://shop.hallmark.com/wedding/our-wedding-photo-holder-1495QGO1153.html
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  • tammym1001tammym1001 Akron, Ohio member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited April 2014
    Edited because I just realized that I already responded on this post. LOL
    image
    *elle.
  • We ended up buying gift cards to Ruths Chris for our parents and will also frame an engagement photo for them.
  • Ok, so I have no idea what to get my FI's parents. They are wonderful and all of that, but they are leaving the country (for a few years!) right after the wedding. So I really don't want to get the any stuff they have to pack or can't take. Also a gift card or that sort of thing won't be any good for them. I'm really really stumped. *sigh* Any idea?
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  • Jewelry,  watch. Photos? 
  • dluberts said:
    Jewelry,  watch. Photos? 
    Photos would be great if they didn't have to pack them. I may end up having to do jewelry/watch/etc, but I don't have a huge budget for it and I hate to buy them something cheap. 
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  • There are alot of really great options on etsy. I bought my fmil a necklace that says "thank you for raising the man of my dreams" it also came with a charm in emerald to signify the month in which were getting married. Were not doing anything for his stepdad(hes not a nice man) but I got my own dad personalized cuff links. Maybe something like that would work?
  • I am getting my FMIL a handkerchief with the "thank you for raising the man of my dreams" stuff on it and giving it to her at the bridal tea. I was hoping on something for the parents together at the rehearsal dinner, but I may have to change plans. I shouldn't have put this on off to the last minute! :-) 
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Ok, so I have no idea what to get my FI's parents. They are wonderful and all of that, but they are leaving the country (for a few years!) right after the wedding. So I really don't want to get the any stuff they have to pack or can't take. Also a gift card or that sort of thing won't be any good for them. I'm really really stumped. *sigh* Any idea?
    could you do something they can use while out of country or on their trip? i know its probably not as sentimental, but  maybe even something like luggage tags or a book on fun things to do in [what ever country they are going to] ? that way they know you were thinking of them, but also didn't want to hinder their trip? idk - just a thought
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