Something for everyone-grandma, godparents and go-to girlfriends-on your pre-nuptials gift list
Whether you're shopping for the newlyweds, buying for your bridal party or picking out something special for your spouse-to-be, there's plenty of room for creativity with wedding gift-giving. Surprise your loved ones with fun, local gifts that come from the heart and are backed with a little personality and flair.
For the Couple
Gift registries-such as the ever-popular Macy's registry-are a safe bet when choosing a wedding gift for the happy couple, because you know what you purchase is guaranteed to please. But gifts straight from the registry aren't exactly original-or memorable.
"Are they really going to remember you when they use that toaster?" asks Michael Erwin, manager of Happy Go Lucky Home in the Short North. They certainly will when using a personalized platter or dinner plate, he says.
Happy Go Lucky Home carries the Jessica Rust Designs line of personalized porcelain dinnerware, including serving platters, dinner plates, bowls and mugs, all featuring a birch-tree design that can be customized with a couple's initials and anniversary date.
Hand-painted dinnerware sold at Caterina Ltd. also includes a couple's initials or names by request, says Catherine Adams, owner of the German Village shop. For an equally sentimental gift, Adams carries ceramic dipping trays stamped with phrases like, "My wife is always right," and "Don't talk, kiss me," in Italian.
A nice set of bed linens (Adams sells a French variety) is also a thoughtful gift for the registry-adverse wedding guest and can be ordered by Caterina Ltd. on request.
For Your Bridal Party
Jewelry is usually the go-to gift from a bride to her bridesmaids. But for something different than-or even in addition to-the status quo, try luxurious body-care products or stemware. Caterina Ltd. carries a line of lavender soaps and lotions as well as German-made wine glasses that aerate wine right in the glass.
Erwin recommends beer steins or flasks for groomsmen. Happy Go Lucky Home carries a few varieties that can be engraved. A line of Italian-made corkscrews with hand-finished buffalo horn handles sold at Caterina Ltd. are "very well received. Men love them," Adams adds.
And let's not forget about the guests. Instead of traditional favors like candles or bags of generic candy, try sending them off with wedding-themed confections. Candy buckeyes dunked in chocolate and decorated in tux-and-gown fashion are one of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory's more popular favors, manager Brian Hinebaugh says. They also transform chocolate-covered strawberries and caramel apples into miniature brides and grooms.
"This type of favor … it's something a little more personal from the bride and groom and a little more unique," Hinebaugh says. Couples could sub out the bride for another groom, too-or vice versa.
For Your Parents
As a token of gratitude from the betrothed to their parents, Adams suggests jewelry for mom. Hand-tooled Florentine leather jewelry boxes would be a "nice way to present a pair of earrings," she says. For dad, a similarly made cigar case with a few fine stogies "would make a lovely gift." Alternatively, "it would be nice to put photos of your wedding in a leather-bound photo album and present that to your parents," she says.
For Each Other
Of all the wedding gifts you'll give or receive, the one exchanged between spouses is the most personal.
Something simple like a ring dish can send a sweet message. Happy Go Lucky Home carries sets with phrases like, "To have and to hold," and "Mister and misses."
For an alternative spin on standard his-and-hers sets, Erwin suggests a piece of artwork: "We have these really cool human [shooting-range] targets. The picture of the woman is called 'Target His,' and the picture of the guy is called 'Target Hers.' Couples get them a lot."