One of the blessings of aging beyond one’s twenties (and, er…even their thirties) is after these years, the volume of wedding “invites” starts to decline. Years ago, I remember going out and purchasing severals at a time, while more invitations kept popping up in my mailbox.
Very big business, this wedding thing.
If you are one of those who are fortunate (and young) enough to have many, many friends heading to the altar, you have a particularly creative challenge ahead. With prices going up and quality, in many cases, heading South, how does one honor the bride and groom with a great gift without breaking the bank?
Finding CheapGift Ideas is an Art.
Now, what do I mean by cheap? OK, not cheap. Inexpensive. It is, of course, a relative term. By today’s standards, finding a gift worth giving for under a hundred dollars is a challenge. So I am going to throw out ideas that range from 20 dollars to 150 dollars. From very cheap to moderately inexpensive.
First, consider the personalities of the couple. Are they traditional types, or are they from the loose and casual, “barefoot-is-better” league?
Traditionalists tend to enjoy keepsake gifts: silver, crystal, porcelain – items that last through the years and can even become heirlooms. These items tend to be costly, but can still be found at very agreeable prices.
In my search, I found silver-plated wine bottle stoppers that can have the couples’ initials put on the top, for under $20.00. I also found a monogrammed silver-plate notepad (handy and elegant on the desk) for about the same price. A silver and marble cheese serving tray is a gorgeousfor about $100.00, and one that they’ll use over and over. Or how about a beautifully designed wine decanter which comes with its own silver strainer, for $40.00? Add a couple of silver wine bottle stoppers, and you have a memorable gift, and a very idea. Cheap, but not cheesy. See what I mean?
More practical, every-day wedding gifts that every couple would love to receive might be among these ideas:
A powerful 9-speed mixer (about $70.00), or an electric fondue pot (also in the $70.00 range)…if the romantic couple has not yet enjoyed cheese fondue, they are missing out on one of life’s great treats. If they are lactose-intolerant, there are other types of fondue that they would love. How about dipping plump, fresh, strawberries into molten chocolate fondue? Some dairy, but way less. I’m lactose intolerant, and I can handle this. Fondues are also meat and vegetables cooked in hot oil.
Another idea: Everybody needs a Kitchen scale, but no one buys one for themselves. A great cheap gift idea: you can purchase a streamlined, cutting-edge glass Kitchen scale for about $50.00
One of my favorite cooking vessels was a gift from my sister. It’s an All-Clad asparagus pot, something I scoffed at as ridiculous and unnecessary, until I cooked my first asparagus in it…tender, green shoots, steamed to toothsome perfection. I became hooked on this wonderful pot and don’t steam asparagus without it. It’s only about $50.00. If your bride and groom are “foodies”, they will use and enjoy it forever.
Are they coffee lovers? How about an electric coffee bean grinder (about $30.00), a couple bags of premium espresso beans (another $20.00), and an espresso maker ($30-$50.00)? If you want to splurge just a little more, add six espresso cups and saucers (price variable, but about $45.00 should do it). For less than $150.00, you have put together a memorable, enjoyable gift that the special couple will enjoy for years to come. OK, that’s not really a, but it is one filled with thoughtfulness and value.
I hope theseideas have inspired you to go out and find some quality gifts that won’t cost a fortune. Moms and Dads and Aunties and Uncles and Godparents and Grandparents can spring for the big ticket items. Those of us who are wealthy in engaged friends, but not wealthy in the traditional sense, have to make up for it with imagination. The answer is to come up with ideas that are beautiful, well made, classy, and useful.
And, hopefully, so affordable you can pick up one for yourself!
~ Karen S