Sooner or later the bride and groom must sit down and decide what to include on their list of wedding gifts. The general consensus of opinion is that this should be done around three months before the wedding day, to give them plenty of time to make up their minds and decide what items they will need. The bride and groom are certainly a well-matched pair if they can agree completely on the gift list. Most couples will have to reach a compromise, one choosing the crockery and the other the bed linen, for example. Don’t let the compiling of this list cause a major row before you are even married!
You need to think about your guests when you draw up your list. Make sure there are plenty of affordable items for guests on a low income, as well as higher-priced items for your more solvent friends. You might find that some people will pool their resources and buy a very costly item between them. Make sure there are too many gifts to choose from rather than too few, so that no-one is left out, and always ensure that it states on the invitations where the wedding list can be viewed, so that each guest has access to it.
Department stores and other retail outlets can help you draw up a store list so guests can choose a gift from among those selected by the bride and groom. For those planning their wedding, the walk around the store choosing the items to be included is probably one of the more enjoyable activities involved in organising the wedding and will only add to the excitement of visualising their new home and future life together.
The popularity of charity lists is now on the increase. Many couples want their happiness to benefit the world in some way and ask for donations to a specific charity, rather than gifts for themselves. In Britain we are shy of asking for anything, but a wedding list is different. Guests expect to have to contribute in some way, even though you should make it clear that gifts are welcome rather than obligatory.
Remember to ask your wedding photographer to take some shots of your wedding gifts on the day. Remember too the wisdom of specifying a general colour scheme when listing household items, or you might start married life with a blue kettle, yellow crockery, purple tea towels, a green tablecloth and orange place mats. Even so, like your wedding album, they will be a lasting reminder of your special day!