Proper wedding etiquette?
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  1. #1

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    Default Proper wedding etiquette?

    I may sound naive but what is the proper etiquette for a wedding?

    My hubby's cousin is getting married later this year and she is also having a bridal shower. Personally I have never been invitied to a bridal shower before and was somewhat considering going with my MIL and SIL's- for just a little time away. Then there is the wedding 1 months later. The time of year that the wedding will be is a tough month for us (and probably everyone else- December)- and since she does live out of state- we have the additional cost of gas and there is a possiblity that we will need to stay at the hotel overnight (yikes!).

    So my question is-if you go to a bridal shower- do you have to take the bride a present? I was kind of hoping that it would be okay for just the wedding present instead of a present for both (I kind of disagree with the idea that she is getting a present for the same thing 2 times!). Please help me! Thanks!

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    Registered User claimsgirl66's Avatar
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    Well, I think the bridal shower is supposed to be for gifts solely for the bride to enjoy ( in theory) or set up housekeeping. I am not sure how well you know the bride to be, but I would feel a little awkward showing up empty handed. (I know , another financial obligation!)

    That being said, you have some time to plan and I am sure you can get lots of ideas here for nice, personal, frugal gifts. You do not need to necessarily spend a lot of money. I have given lingerie when the bride was a very close friend. Another time I did not know the bride that well but knew what kind of wine she liked and got a small bottle of good wine and some Lindt chocolates and spent $15 for a thoughtful gift she could enjoy when planning the wedding. A photo album, basket of manicure stuff or travel toiletries to take on the honeymoon,a scrap book if you are crafty, are some other ideas.

    I would ask your MIL and SIL what the bride likes/needs and then put on your thinking cap. On the upside, you might have a wonderful time, meet some new friends, and have some tasty snacks!

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    Registered User Edna_E's Avatar
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    It is certainly ok to go to the shower even if you will not be attending the wedding.

    Attendance at a shower pretty much requires a gift - I always like the personal touch of something obviously collected or made for the individual - and it can be something like handwritten copies of your 10 favorite recipes using a specific herb/spice and a bottle of the herb/spice, so it does NOT have to cost a small fortune. Showers are changing, so it might be useful to find out more about it - like is it just girls or will the groom-to-be be there also (in which case more generic gifts are more appropriate) and is there a theme to it (lingerie or kitchen stuff for example).

    Wedding gifts are optional even if you DO attend the wedding (though I've always felt like there was a "right" option to choose, in my case).

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    Registered User PrairieRose's Avatar
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    It varies from region to region on bridal shower and wedding ettiquette but in my humble opinion 1 gift is all that is really required. The bridal shower is actually usually benefits both parties. So I'd take a gift to the shower as it would be obvious if you didn't but not so much in not taking one to the wedding.

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    Registered User Cricketlegs's Avatar
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    Here you bring a gift to the shower if you go and none to the wedding.

    If you just go to the wedding you bring a gift to the wedding.

    You don't do 2 presents.

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    Registered User sdrjeolsen's Avatar
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    I think it depends on what part of the country your from and how well you know the couple. In the midwest, we used to do 2 gifts for family or close friends, one for the shower, which was usally something for the home Kitchen/bath or something personal for the bride. The wedding gift was something more generic, money or giftcard or something off the registry. If you can olny do one gift, I would chose the shower as it is more obvious.

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    Registered User Neeley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdrjeolsen View Post
    We used to do 2 gifts for family or close friends, one for the shower, which was usally something for the home Kitchen/bath or something personal for the bride. The wedding gift was something more generic, money or giftcard or something off the registry. If you can olny do one gift, I would chose the shower as it is more obvious.
    I totally agree, this is how we have always done it as well.

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    Master Dollar Stretcher aka TraciBob baronmom's Avatar
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    Here, you take a gift for each one. The shower is for her. I know many people get the bride stuff for the honeymoon. Although some gifts are usually off the register, many are just for the bride. You can easily do a gift up for the bride for very little money. You can do a gift basket or I have also seem some really neat towel cakes. Be creative and you can keep your cost down.

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    Registered User bumplett's Avatar
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    this is how I would do it:
    one gift given at the shower -
    not going to the wedding for financial reasons - (unless you REALLY want to go?) - therefore, send a card -

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    Thank you everyone! We will be going to the wedding- I am not sure if I will be going to the bridal shower though. Not to sound cheap but it always seems as if we are celebrating events in her life (graduation party, baby shower, baby welcome to the world party,engagement party, her 21st birthday party and so on- every year we do something for her!) and after 12 years you get tired of celebrating one persons life without any recognition towards your own life (she came to our wedding without a gift, RSVP'd to our baby shower and never showed and etc). Sounds petty- but I am sure that other people would feel the same way after 12 years as well!

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    Registered User Laurie in Bradenton's Avatar
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    Gee sounds like this young lady could use a package of Thank you cards and an everyday etiquette book. I would also use this as a Regift time like an extra address book you've been given with your name and address already written in then suggest that it be passed around at the party and filled in by the other guests so its easier for her send thank you cards "Hint Hint". I'm not subtle about bad manners. As for the etiquette book I'd find one at a used book store and write some clever message in the front, like may you find this useful in the years to come.


    Laurie in Bradenton

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    Registered User baxjul's Avatar
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    I would take a shower gift, as it would be obvious if you went without one. I like Laurie's idea!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Laurie in Bradenton View Post
    Gee sounds like this young lady could use a package of Thank you cards and an everyday etiquette book. I would also use this as a Regift time like an extra address book you've been given with your name and address already written in then suggest that it be passed around at the party and filled in by the other guests so its easier for her send thank you cards "Hint Hint". I'm not subtle about bad manners. As for the etiquette book I'd find one at a used book store and write some clever message in the front, like may you find this useful in the years to come.


    Laurie in Bradenton
    That is so funny! I thought that I may of sounded mean when I was whining about it!

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    Registered User i.m.cheap's Avatar
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    I love Laurie's idea, too!

    I recommend a copy of the Complete Tightwad Gazette, or a good general cookbook, like Betty Crocker, or Better Homes and Gardens. Do new brides still cook? The "Dining on a Dime" cookbook by Tawra Kellam is good, too.

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    Registered User i.m.cheap's Avatar
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    I think this sounds like a GREAT gift for the bride - "Etiquette for DUMMIES"
    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Etiquette-Dummies-Psychology-Self-Help/dp/0470106727/ref=sr_1_5/103-7677806-6639822?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=118"]Amazon.com: Etiquette For Dummies (For Dummies (Psychology & Self Help)): Sue Fox: Books[/ame]

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