Kaitlin
Savvy March 2021

Bridal Shower Gifts Early

Kaitlin, on May 29, 2020 at 1:24 AM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 7
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I’ve been searching through google and here to get an answer on this odd question.


Backstory: Both my fiancé and I live in AZ, we have a few friends here but the majority of our invitees for my bridal shower will be from out of town (including the host, my mom) As invitations have gone out and people are being directed to our registry, we are starting to receive gifts and gifts specifically for the shower.
Question: should we wrap the presents from amazon and bring them to my shower? Bring them in just the amazon boxes? Or open it now and just leave them home? I want everyone to feel included in the shower (it’ll be small now, thanks COVID) and it feels wrong to not open the presents in front of the gift givers (who I know will be present in person or virtually) but with technology and Amazon running the show now, I’d like to get som advice on the etiquette.

7 Comments

Latest activity by Judith, on May 29, 2020 at 3:33 PM
  • Jana
    Master October 2022
    Jana ·
    • Flag
    Leave them at home. Send prompt thank you cards. Also, don't take anything out of the boxes to use before the wedding.
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  • Rebecca
    Master August 2019
    Rebecca ·
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    I wouldn't take them out of the boxes, and wrap. (Edited because I said unwrap when I meant wrap.)

    DO keep a list of who sent what and when. We certainly got some things sent straight to us, we did not haul them to the shower (but we don't have a car). Send thank yous now, or immediately after the shower.

    There are some people who say not to use things until after the wedding, but that's mostly superstition. If you want to use them, as long as you've sent the thank you note... go ahead. Boxes are a pain to have around the house.

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  • Hillary
    Expert October 2021
    Hillary ·
    • Flag
    Definitely leave them at home. But also make sure to take note of who gave you what. I did all my thank you notes after the shower even if I received the gift before. It was just easier for me to have them done all at once. Also, I’ve never heard of not taking things out of the boxes before the wedding. That seems strange.
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  • Lynnie
    WeddingWire Administrator October 2016
    Lynnie ·
    • Flag

    Hi Kaitlin! No matter where & when you decide to open the gifts, you should definitely let the gift-giver know it arrived right away!

    If it's a gift that's very clearly for your shower, you can also just ask! My aunt sent me a big shower gift early to my apartment so I sent her a text saying: "Came home to a big Williams Sonoma box from you!! ❤️ Should I open it now or wait for the shower?" That way if they do want you to open the gift at the shower while they watch virtually they can let you know!

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  • Melle
    Legend June 2019
    Melle ·
    • Flag

    I would open it and leave it at home too. i think that sounds too much hassle to bring it to the shower and open it then

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  • Hannah
    Master July 2019
    Hannah ·
    • Flag
    I got a few shower gifts sent to me, mostly heavy items. I imagine the people shipped them directly because they had no intention of lugging them around and wanted to save everyone the hassle, so I did not bring them with me to the shower. I sent a thank you card right away. Also, yeah, there is a bit of a rule to not use gifts you got for the wedding (or pre-wedding events) prior to the wedding, but....we have a 1 bedroom apartment. I didn't really have a place to store tons of boxes, so I put things away as I got them. The main reason for that rule is that if the wedding is called off and the couple ends the relationship, all the gifts need to be returned, unused.
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  • J
    Master 0000
    Judith ·
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    Not using gifts is not due to superstition. Shower or wedding gifts are conditional gifts. They are yours to keep if you get married. If for some reason you cancel the wedding, and either do not marry, or do not marry very soon, you have to give the gift back in a condition to be returned to the store. Anything you used, you owe the giver the cash value. Although shipping cartons need not be saved, boxes with the picture, and styrofoam inserts, must be kept too.
    If your wedding is postponed, it is up to the giver. They may say, hold on to it. They may say, please return it to me. And if and when you marry, I will send it to you again. Enough couples cancel weddings, and do not want to be in the position of of giving back $2000-$3000 or more to people whose gifts they used and cannot return, that it is customary not to use any gift you would not willingly pay for. When marriages do not happen, many people are out a fair amount of money, and just want all gifts to be ready to return if need be. Depends what it is. Hubby's brother bought us a big flat screen, with an employee discount, from 3 brothers. Then FI knew it would be far cheaper paying back that smaller sum, than returning the gift, ever, and buying one at full price. So using it was fine. He wanted that TV. But if you would never have wanted a $250 stand mixer if not married, you never want to pay a giver the cash and keep the mixer if the wedding is cancelled.
    Lots of engagements are broken in the last 4 months. Lots of postponed weddings never happen. Or happen smaller. And the giver who took back the gift may not be invited next time, or may be invited but not attend. And may not give the gift at all. So do what you want. But know that if you cancel or postpone, you have a responsibility to return unused gifts, or money .
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