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Outside-the-Box Bridesmaid Gifts

  • An experience

    Pay for a group cooking class, wine tasting, private yoga class, dance class, flower arranging class, spa day, or sporting event. If your bridesmaids are far-flung, schedule it for the wedding weekend.

    Pros: Bonding time; something fun for you too.
    Con: Finding something both your new sister-in-law and old college roommate will enjoy could be a challenge.

  • Photo courtesy of Y'amal through Creative Commons

    Something old

    Scour flea markets, consignment shops, eBay, and Etsy for vintage handkerchiefs, glassware, jewelry, tablecloths, napkins, tea sets, records, first edition books, or knick knacks.

    Pros: Green; potentially cheap.
    Con: Finding enough of them (consider mixing and matching). 

  • Something handmade

    Put your talents to good use. If you can sew, make them aprons from cute fabric. If you’re a chef, compile a cookbook of you and your honey’s favorite recipes. Paint each bridesmaid a small picture. Knit scarves. Patchwork throw pillows.

    Pros: The personal touch; homemade gifts can be more affordable than store-bought.
    Con: Will you really have the time to knit eight scarves and handwrite all of your invitations?

  • Something good

    Make a donation in their names to the charity of their choice.

    Pro: You’re spreading the love.
    Con: It’s not something tangible.

  • Photo courtesy of Dave Goodman through Creative Commons

    Something local

    If you’re having a destination wedding, give your bridesmaids something they wouldn’t get anywhere else, for example, a colorful sarong, a bag of local gourmet goodies, a cowboy hat. Just remember to make it easily packable.

    Pro: One more way to hammer home your theme. 
    Con: If you’re planning from afar, it may have to be a last-minute thing. 

  • Photo courtesy of

    The [blank] of the month club

    Sign your ladies-in-waiting up for a magazine subscription or a wine, chocolate, cheese, cookie, fruit, or book of the month club.

    Pro: It’s the gift that keeps on giving. 
    Con: Many of these clubs are quite expensive.


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