Love is in the air  and so are the wedding gifts theyll remember


Earlier this year, Chinese industrialist Wu Duanbiao gave his daughter and her new husband a wedding gift of $150 million, including four boxes of gold jewelry, cash, stock, two cars, a retail store, mansion and other properties. Were guessing the gift, while generous, would probably blow your own wedding gift budget this summer. So weve come up with some more affordable  and frankly, more creative  options.

Do-it-yourself gourmet gift basket: Were not suggesting one of those pre-packaged baskets of jams and crackers you find online. Instead, check out the couples bridal registry  if they have one  and put together items that complete some of their selections. For instance, if theyve picked out wine glasses, create a basket of red and white vintages, or monogrammed bottle stoppers. If theyve chosen a toaster, put together a bread making kit. The possibilities are virtually endless.

Future gifting: Speaking of vintages, why not buy the happy couple bottles of wine to help them celebrate their first, fifth and tenth anniversaries.

The honeymoon: These days it can be all but impossible to afford a wedding, honeymoon and down payment on a new home. Consider helping the couple out by organizing a dozen wedding guests and group-giving a honeymoon flight, hotel or his and hers suitcases.

A yearlong experience: Instead of helping out with the honeymoon, how about gifting a dual membership at their local art gallery, museum or theatre.

Family photos: The bride and groom will likely be going to great expense to create their own wedding album but how about linking their special day to special days past? Create a timeless photo book keepsake filled with wedding photos from their parents, grandparents and other family members. Websites like offer a variety of sizes and finishes.

Get personal: If overspending is a concern, consider an original gift, like a personalized cutting board, plate, doormat, notecard set, wine glasses, cake server set, bed sheets or family name sign.

For the sake? of art: Only if youre confident you know their taste in art, bestow a framed print or photograph by an up-and-coming artist. Its not just a gift, it could be a smart investment for the future.

Pick a card, any card: Granted money or gift certificates arent necessarily the most creative wedding presents. But if youre stumped, or you dont know the couple that well, a gift card offers them the freedom to choose something they really want.

Charitable giving: If the wedding couple is one that has everything they need, consider giving a gift in their name to someone who could really use it. Discreetly find out their favorite charity and present them with a framed certificate of the community, person or organization to whom youve donated. The fondue set will be quickly forgotten but this touching gift wont be.

What original wedding gifts have you given? Share your ideas with the Shop Talk Blog community. Plus, visit our Facebook page  for our latest Shop Talk live poll  we want to know what you think!


Did you know?

How good is your wedding gift trivia? 

  • $150: The average amount a guest spends on a couples wedding gift.
  • $194: The average cost to attend a wedding in North America.
  • $625: The average cost to attend for a close friend or family member.
  • 88% of couples set up a wedding registry  most set up 2 or 3.
  • 20% of gifts are honeymoon related.
  • 16% are cash or cash related.
  • 10% are kitchen stuff.
  • 6% are fun and recreation.
  • 5% are wine.

(Source: Wedding Republic)