Thursday, June 7, 2012

Tie It Up With a Bow

One of the pleasures of working in an industry with a ton of women is that no occasion goes unnoticed. Whether current or former coworkers or professional (which often turn long-lasting and personal) acquaintances, we communicators know how to communicate joy! Birthdays always bring cards and tweets without reminder, engagements bring oohs and ahhs and Facebook messages galore, and in my gal-pal PR crowd, promotions are always celebrated with a drink and many hugs at the next get-together.

Last week, a fellow coworker left one evening and got a huge round of applause as he walked out the door - he was heading out on vacation and right towards the altar for his own wedding. I grinned ear to ear for him from my desk - what fun! Today, we are having a bridal shower for a gal coworker, and the office has been all a-Twitter (ha) with planning.

Wedding season sure is fun. You get to dress up and celebrate the ones you love. All you really have to do is show up with a gift in hand (or one in the mail on it's way). But imagine the issue when you arrive somewhere like here...

... ready to purchase a gift, and find that the registry item you had been eying for the happy couple has been since snatched up?

I know a lot of people are very religious about sticking to a wedding or baby registry. Sure, the couple has told you exactly what they want and need, and so you are definitely helping them out by selecting items that are within your budget range from that pre-vetted list.

But I think that's kind of boring. And you are talking to future-bride-herself, she who has been mentally lusting over registry lists since this ring went on her finger (ok, fine, before).

Don't get me wrong - I shop the registry. I pick out items from it that I would love to receive myself and see them using in their homes. But then I also shop for other items to match in and make it a complete gift from moi.

Example #1 -The Baker
This bride loves to bake, so has registered for some of the basics. A cupcake carrier and measuring cups. Awesome. I would snatch these up ...

And add to them a few more baking-related frivolities (all from the Martha Stewart Collection at Macy's). You know, those additional pieces that no one registers for because they aren't totally useful, but they really actually would love to have. Leave it to me to give you those super fun "extras." 
All-season cookie cutters. A must have for wives-to-be!

A cupcake tower. Because ... well, just because. A true housewife needs this.

A pastry decorating set. Frost those cookies and cupcakes like a champ!

A pastry mat. Cut that dough the perfect width for that pie plate.

These items would combine well with the cupcake carrier - I would roll up the mat and put it inside the carrier along with the pastry set. Tie it all up with an oversized bow and your gift is set!

Example #2 - The Entertainer

This person loves to cook and have people over. Their list is full of the necessesities of a newlywed kitchen. Wine glasses, bar tool sets, fancy placemats.

What if everything is almost purchased, though? Some of us may or may not (!) wait until the wedding weekend to buy a gift, so it's a strong possibility that this could happen. That's when I like to check to see if they have specialty stemware on their list. It always surprises me that people don't register for martini glasses, for example. Those things break easily, so why not gift the new couple an artsy set of two just for them, along with some appetizer plates, a cocktail book and fun cocktail napkins? Date night for two, ready to go! These items are all from Crate and Barrel ...
These martini glasses are more flashy than the usual set a couple might register for. Great gift instead!

I love these all-season napkins. They'd go with any decor theme.

These travel plates are so fun! Add some canapes and you are set.
No one can have too many cocktail bar books. You never know when one might get splashed on!

What about you? Do you straight-registry gift, or do you do your own thing? Or are you like me, do you combo gift?



Lisa said...

I am a religious registry shopper, except for the occasional bridal shower combo gift or if their registry items have already been fulfilled. I also always order online and have it shipped - much less time consuming for me, and much less of a hassle for the newlyweds! :)

Unknown said...

Lisa - I totally agree with the order online thing, SO much easier for all involved!