Wedding 101: Wedding Party Gifts

Do you want to know what I really really really really REALLY love? Online shopping. It’s like one of my favorite pastimes. It’s just too bad that I have approximately zero dollars to spend. So I end up filling up my shopping carts and just letting it sit. Pretending I’m buying that super amazing new Chloe cross body that I’m kind of obsessed with.

So you’re probably wondering why the heck I’m telling you how much I love online shopping? Well it turns out, being a bride, you get to online shop A LOT. I was constantly online searching and shopping for everything that I needed. And gifts for our parents and bridal party were no exception.

I spent a lot of time deciding what to get each and every one of them. I wanted to give them all the world, because it meant so much to me that they were all supporting us and standing by our side as we set off on our newest adventure. But unfortunately, we had a budget, and giving them the most elaborate things just weren’t an option.

I searched for HOURS on Pinterest trying to find ideas that I loved, but nothing seemed quite right. It had to be special and nothing seemed quite special enough. Then, I decided to check Etsy.

You guys. This was my best idea ever. There are so many unique gifts on Etsy that I guarantee you’ll find something that you love for everyone. But there are still SO MANY choices. So how do you decide what to get all of these special people?

I followed these rules.

  • Sentimental is always a good idea.
  • Alcohol is too, as long as it is not the only gift. Don’t just hand your groomsmen a 6 pack.
  • Don’t give something specific to your wedding alone. Give them something that reminds them of the day, but that they can still use. (For example… your Best Man doesn’t need something with you and your groom’s name on it.)
  • Don’t go cheap. They’re spending a lot of money to be in your wedding.
  • Personalize. (Not just write their name on it. Give them something that represents them. Not everyone has to have the same gift!)
  • Take the “Would I Want It?” test. Think about the gift. Would you want it? Chances are, the people in your wedding have similar tastes and personalities to you. If it’s not something you’d like, chances are, they won’t like it either.

Using these helped narrow down A LOT of ideas. Before I tell you what we ordered, here a few tips to help you get organized!

  • Start early! Don’t wait until the last minute. And that means if one of you is a procrastinator in the gift giving department (*cough*Trevor*cough*) the other needs to keep on them!
  • Make a plan. Think about all the pieces to each gift. Including how you will wrap them. Make a list of everything you need to purchase, and everything you need to do. For example, the gifts for our guys were being “wrapped” in a wooden box, so we had to plan to get those and stain them early, so we could fill them later.
  • Set a budget. Decide how much you are comfortable spending on each person. This is honestly completely different for each couple. Some have more money to spend that others, and that’s okay. Just make sure you put effort into your gift, and it doesn’t look cheap.
  • Purchase NO LATER than a month before the wedding, two if it needs to be personalized. However, I would highly recommend doing this way in advance. These gifts can easily be forgotten as you get closer to your big day. “Wedding Brain” is real, and you don’t want to forget the gifts for the people standing by you on your day.
  • Wrap them up and set them aside before hand. The last thing you’re going to want to do the day of your rehearsal is get the gifts together. Have them ready to go at least a week in advance. It takes the pressure off you, and they are ready to be passed out at rehearsal dinner.

Now on to the fun part! From jewelry to wear at our wedding to personalized fish hooks, here is what we gave our loved ones on our big day.

Our Parents
For me, gifts for our parents were the easiest. I knew that I wanted to get them all a hankie from me. I’d seen them a billion times on Pinterest and absolutely loved the idea. I did a lot of research on them and ended up purchasing these ones on Etsy.  You guys, the quality was INCREDIBLE and I was thrilled with how they turned out. Plus our parents loved them, and all cried when they opened them. 🙂

Close up picture of my dad’s on our wedding day! 

Trev had a little more trouble deciding. He really wanted each gift to be perfect, and kept second guessing his choices. (He did this for all the gifts. I finally had to put my foot down and just make decisions for him, or he wouldn’t have had any gifts to give! He ended up loving each choice he made.) For his mom, he found this frame, for his dad he bought this hammer, for my mom he purchased this bookmark and for my dad this fishing lure. All of the gifts were beautiful. He had each engraved with a little message and they loved them all!


Maid of Honor
I wanted to get my MOH something really special. She is my best friend in the whole world, and I needed to convey that to her. After a lot of research, I settled on this BEAUTIFUL Kate Spade bangle. I mean you can’t go wrong with Kate Spade… right? I actually bought her The Bridesmaid Bangle instead of the Maid of Honor Bangle. I really loved the sayings on the bridesmaid one more, and they seemed more fitting. She loved it! I also gave her this AMAZING hankie. I mean, everyone needs a No Ugly Crying Hankie in their life.


I actually purchased these for my cousins too. They helped with the little girls hair and makeup so I wanted to get them something small to say Thank You. PS- Thanks Bekah, for letting me steal this photo!

Flower/ Garland Girls
I had a SLEW of little girls in my wedding, and I had no idea what to get them. I wanted to get them something sentimental, but they were little girls. And I knew they wouldn’t really understand it. I LOVE the ones that have the cute saying about saving it as their something old for their wedding day. But I wanted to get my girls something they would appreciate now too, not just later. So, after a lot of thought, I ended up getting a shirt made for each of them, and a necklace.

These shirts were SO PERFECT. If you’re anywhere near Northern Michigan, you have to go see Ashely at Anchored Designs in Onekama. Seriously. She did such a great job! I love how cute these shirts turned out.


I also ordered these initial necklaces for each of the girls.  They were so beautiful and even more perfect than I expected. They actually came pre wrapped too. I then typed up a small saying to put with each necklace like the ones I liked on the hankies. It of course kind of went over the girls heads, but their mom’s really appreciated the message and were all very touched.

The note I put with each necklace.


Best Man/ Ushers
Trev had the HARDEST time deciding what to get his ushers. (His two best friends from high school. I only wanted my MOH standing by me, but he wanted them included in his wedding somehow, so we asked them to be Ushers.) I kept encouraging him to stay away from anything with our wedding date on it, and with the words “best man” or “Trevor and Savannah” on it.

After a lot of thought, he ended up deciding on a basket that represented where our wedding took place. Each guy got a Michigan rocks glass, a set of personalized whiskey stones, and a bottle of Traverse City Whiskey Co. Cherry Whiskey.  I can’t believe this but I don’t have a picture of what the gift basket looked like! I promise though, they were super cute. Or should I say manly?


Ring Bearer
Well, our Ring Bearer just so happens to love Legos. So we bought him a big Lego set. It was probably the biggest “no brainer” when we thought about what to get him. It was simple, and he loved it.


Trev’s cousin officiated our wedding. She has an absolute heart of gold. So we knew she had to have the Kate Spade Heart of Gold bangle!


And of course, we couldn’t forget our Host and Hostess! My Aunt and Uncle were our Host and Hostess and have called Northern Michigan home for their entire lives. They LOVE Cherry Republic (who doesn’t?!) so we made a gift box of all the Cherry Republic breakfast goodies.


All of our gifts were a hit! We took a lot of time and put a lot of thought into each and every one. I think that’s why they were so perfect. They were tailored to each individual. Still not loving any of these ideas? Get to googling! There are so many great ideas out there! We definitely found it harder to shop for the guys. So in case you are too, we love Man CratesHuckberry and Cool Material when we’re looking for unique and fun gifts! As long as you put time and effort into choosing the gifts, it will show. And your wedding party will love them!

You guys. Tomorrow is going to be such a good post. You’re going to want to come back to check it out… Especially if you love Thanksgiving! And food 🙂

Happy Wednesday!


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