what every couple gets but doesn't ask forAnyone who got married and had a gift registry knows that not all wedding gifts are welcome.  Sure, it’s nice to get a gift, but not when it’s a used decorative plate with a rooster on it that’s painted like a zebra.

True story.  I got that for a wedding gift…and the outside of the plate was painted like a snake.

The most puzzling thing to me about gift giving for wedding couples is they’ve done all of the work for you, so why not take advantage of that?

I love the wedding registry, especially when I can order a gift from the comfort of my couch.  I’m not required to wear a bra there.

photo credit: fensterbme via photopin cc

photo credit: fensterbme via photopin cc

Why every wedding guest doesn’t buy off the registry blows my mind.  The happy couple equips guests with everything they need to know to buy them exactly what they want.

From the exact store to the precise aisle to the actual SKU number, couples go to a lot of trouble to tell guests exactly what they want to see wrapped up in a bow on their special day.

Could it get any easier?  Apparently so.

I’m amazed how many people give gifts that aren’t included on the registry.  I can’t imagine why Great Aunt Nell would know what a 30-year-old woman she hasn’t seen in 25 years would want, but apparently it’s a cross-stitched pillow with her name spelled wrong.

photo credit: Katsunojiri via photopin cc

photo credit: Katsunojiri via photopin cc

I also can’t fathom why the groom’s boss thinks he needs a shaving kit instead of those gardening shears he asked for.

Because I’ve experienced these issues first hand, I’ve made a list of items I received that weren’t on my registry.  I have a feeling these items are universally received by couples everywhere.

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

1.  Vases

I’m not sure why newlyweds would need the amount of vases that come from gift-giving wedding guests.

Don’t they know that giving flowers occurs before the marriage and the wedding effectively stops that from occurring regularly in the future?

If my husband decides to give me flowers, and he really does, he  buys a bouquet at the grocery store when he’s picking up a gallon of milk.  It’s where financially prudent men purchase flowers.

Granted those don’t come with a vase; just rubber bands and plastic wrap.  However, when that happens I only need just one vase; not the 17 that I received as wedding gifts that are currently in my basement.

Those 17 vases will go unused, most likely until I can come up with an occasion to re-gift them.

MP9003416872.  Picnic baskets

Who goes on a picnic anymore?  They’re only done in romantic comedies, and even then Sandra Bullock seems reluctant.

What couple decides to prepare finger foods, package them up, gather silverware, cups, napkins, a blanket, sunscreen, bug spray and wine, and then trek across town to a park to sit on the same grass that’s in their backyard?

No one I know.

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

3. Candlesticks

Unless it’s the 1600s, there’s no reason the modern couple would need candlesticks.  If the power goes out, there’s these new things called flashlights.  They provide light without dripping wax on your carpet.

If a guest really wants to give a good gift, they should consider a flashlight with an extra set of batteries.

Even there is a time when the power goes out and the happy couple’s flashlight doesn’t work for some reason, there’s a good chance the bride has several scented candles in varying shapes, sizes and scents; all of which come in a glass jar.

If someone is dead set on giving the gift of light, might I suggest lightbulbs?

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc


4.  Picture frames

Although every couple needs picture frames to fill their house, sometimes that “house” is a studio apartment that barely fits a couch and a dirty recliner.

Fifty picture frames just aren’t necessary.

Granted, The Dollar Store has a wide array of picture frames for only a buck, but since those frames don’t come in a box and each one has a $1 sticker on the front of it, the couple is most likely going to figure out the guest spent $7.00 on their wedding gift….while the couple spent $27 on his food and at least $50 on beer for him at the reception.



5.  Champagne flutes

I don’t know many couples who regularly drink champagne.  Then again, I’m not that fancy.  In my experience, if a couple is entertaining guests, they’re usually serving PBR or whatever beer was on sale that week.

Although I like to think people are sophisticated, I suspect the only time most people drink champagne at home is when they have mimosas.  Even then, the champagne flutes are far too small.  They should drink out of plastic cups they got from the local pizza joint…just like the rest of us.

Hopefully this list will help those gift givers present the couple with things they actually want.

For any of you needing to buy a wedding gift, might I suggest sticking to the registry?

If you can’t do that, and you know if you go to the store  you’ll buy them the “perfect” item from the clearance bin, consider this: Do you know what makes newlyweds happier than getting a gift?


22 Thoughts on “The 5 wedding gifts every couple gets but never asks for

  1. Lisa, right on with this lineup of lame gifts. If you are going off-registry with a present, more important than anything else, include a gift receipt!
    John Bryson just rambled about…Piano ManMy Profile

  2. I’m going to have to plead guilty on giving candle sticks and vases in my gift giving history. But as I got a bit older and had more cash myself, I started giving the green stuff to couples. I sort of wish you included a picture of your platter!! We got quartz rock book ends and a sterling silver champagne bucket that I have never used. Shocked? Lol!
    Kathy Radigan just rambled about…A Mother’s Summer Bucket ListMy Profile

    • I’m not sure what anyone would do with quartz rock book ends. I had those in college because someone gave them to me and I hated them then!

      And I have no idea why I didn’t include a photo of that plate. I should. My family and I now treat it as a practical joke and give it to each other in random ways when they least expect it. I have it now.

      Come to think of it, I think it’s time to pass that along to another family member this July 4th!

  3. Judy Jenkins on June 30, 2014 at 1:26 am said:

    Candlesticks are used on a nicely set dining table. Nothing makes a meal feel fancy like lit taper candles in beautiful candlesticks. I love you Lisa but I have a feeling you and your family are the type to not use placemats as well? Give it a try, it makes a good meal even better.

  4. Okay, to be fair, I burn candles all the time and a picnic sounds lovely… but you’d probably find those things on my registry.
    Emelie just rambled about…I don’t think I’m doing this whole “sexting” thing correctly, you guys.My Profile

  5. I have to plead guilty on the champagne flutes it is a customery gift I have given several times but I always have the names and wedding date engraved on them! Guess I’ll know better now!
    Rena McDaniel-The Diary of an Alzheimer’s Caregiver just rambled about…CAREGIVING IS MORE THAN JUST A TITLEMy Profile

  6. Shannon Walker on June 30, 2014 at 1:42 pm said:

    My husband and I were just laughing at a couple with their picnic basket of fine cheese and wine at our local park concert. We kept saying “It’s so fancy over there” (said in swanky fancy voice) 🙂 That being said. I do own a picnic basket. Given to me (you guessed it) at my wedding! We are not picnic basket people – this is why I did NOT register for a picnic basket. HA! I also have champaigne flutes that I forgot I had (yes again from the wedding). I’m going to get them out and drink some Red’s Apple Ale right out of those suckers!

    • My husband and I also have the “they’re FANCY” voice and that’s how I read it when you wrote this.

      Oddly enough, we have a picinic basket (that we got for our wedding.) Maybe I’ll just make us have a picinic some night….at our dining room table.

      And yes, get those flutes out and toast yourselves with Red’s Apple Ale! It’s how the gift-givers would have wanted you to use them.

  7. So much yes! I don’t understand how/why people choose to go so far off script. I wanted champagne flutes (cheap bubbly is delicious and the same price as wine!), so I, wait for it, put them on my registry. We only got one vase, but it was a doozy. Thankfully we escaped the picture frames, but it is such a common one!
    My spouse bought me a picnic basket for our 3rd anniversary just recently, but picked one out that we would want. There’s a winery not too far from here that encourages picnics, it’s fun. BUT, we made the call to get one, not a random person!
    Anne @ Unique Gifter just rambled about…45 Bridesmaid Gift IdeasMy Profile

    • EXACTLY! You’re the one who decided you wanted a picinic basket…not your boss’s mom’s uncle. I’m glad you can use it to go to wineries. Talk about a great way to spend your day. You should totally take the champagne flutes with you in your picinic basket.

      And want to hear a confession? When I was in college I drank champagne all the time. I would buy that Andre stuff that was like $4.00 and drink the whole bottle because it was a cheap way to get a buzz!

  8. Judy Jenkins on July 1, 2014 at 2:44 am said:

    Geez, my comment about placemats was bitchy. Glad to hear you use them. It is a pet peave of mine. But seriously? What’s up with that comment? Thanks for not beating me up for it. You’re a sweetheart and my excuse is it was late and I have a bad cold. 😉

    • That’s awesome that you came back and reread your comment. I try not to let that kind of stuff get to me. There’s always haters that come to my blog and they make me laugh more than anything.

      I try to give people the benefit of the doubt and I didn’t think you were intentionally being difficult. No worries, but thanks for following up!

      I hope you get to feeling better!

  9. Now I want a throw pillow with my name spelled incorrectly in the worst way! Maybe for my next wedding.
    Amy – Funny Is Family just rambled about…My Writing ProcessMy Profile

    • If you’re good I’ll make you one of these pillows with your name spelled wrong. I’ll even make it smell like mothballs so you know it’s from an old person.

  10. Word on the cash, sista! You’re right on the vases too. The days of flowers are over – unless I buy them for myself. I love the picture frame bit. That is too funny. I also the cross-stitched pillow w/ the misspelled name. That’s awesome. We had a family member as in CLOSE family member as in my husband’s sister give us $100 for the Wedding gift. Their meal was more than that, & then the stole all our booze (we supplied the booze ourselves & had extra & they took it at the end of the night) so they actually made out on our wedding.
    One Funny Motha just rambled about…Childless and Loving ItMy Profile

    • I can’t believe your sister-in-law did that! The only way to get back at them is to continually raid their liquor cabinet whenever you visit….until the end of time. #karma

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