Bride-to-be expects designer label gifts worth R5 800 a piece – this and other reasons gift registries can be costly for wedding guests

A bride's bouquet surrounded by her bridesmaids holding theirs.  Vibrant colors.
A bride's bouquet surrounded by her bridesmaids holding theirs. Vibrant colors.

According to The Knot, having a wedding registry is essential and couples think of their registry as a version of their love story - a reflection of their unique relationship and the life they’re about to begin together.

A gift registry study that surveyed 6 600 engaged and recently married couples found that items on the gift registries vary from traditional homeware to electronics such as smart home devices, robotic cleaners and wireless speakers while 1 in 10 of couples include a charity component to their registry.

The research also notes the popularity of cash gift registries as this gives guests the opportunity to contribute to their loved ones’ life milestones such as IVF, or a deposit on a home.

READ MORE: Bride-to-be cancels wedding after guests refuse to donate R16 000 each to fund the event

For the would-be-guest preparing to attend a wedding can be stressful especially if you are working on a tight budget. The pressure of searching for the right outfit to match the theme and choosing the right gift all compound. 

However, gifts are a significant token of love to the bride and groom and should never cross over from gracious to burdensome. This is something that is verified in a study by Nerdwallet which found that guests often have to use their credit cards, borrow money from family or use their savings to cover the cost of attending a wedding.

The study also notes that for those who are attending multiple weddings, the cost escalates exponentially.

READ MORE: Bride-to-be gets a tiny diamond on her engagement ring and considers giving it back to her fiancé

One Reddit bride may have been oblivious to these facts when she put together her wedding registry. For her wedding in October she let potential guests know that to reserve their seats, they had to choose a gift they wished to buy for her from her gift registry – most of the gifts on the registry cost no less than $400 (R5 800).

She posted the note in a now deleted Facebook post.“To all those coming to my wedding, there is a list of gifts that you can bring, there are no exceptions,” said the bride-to-be. “There are a lot of things here. I am expecting everyone to spend at least $400 (R5800) on the wedding gifts, I’ll accept slightly lower amounts as long as you tell me first.” 

READ MORE: Here are 4 of our favourite wedding gowns from recent weddings

Here are some of the details of the gift registry:

  • Purses are every girl’s best friend so the bride expects Gucci or Louis Vuitton purses. The brands can cost from R14 000 to R60 000. “Other purses are allowed but consult with me first,” she says.
  • If guests are thinking of gifting her with clothing items over $400 (R5 800), they should only consider looking for brands like Calvin Klein, Nora’s or Moschino. 
  • The bride made it clear she does not want regular kitchen items such as aprons and spatulas. She will only accept stand mixers, blenders and any KitchenMaid appliances over $350 (R5100).
  • Seemingly the bride is planning to change her floor tiles, as she mentioned them on her list. “I know this one is a bit of a stretch, but I would gladly appreciate it,” says the bride.
  • Guests can also send her gift cards from selected high-end stores such as Whole Foods, Sprouts, Gucci, JCPenny, Nordstrom and Bloomingdales.
  • The bride is specific about which beauty products she uses. “Any high-class paintings and decorations totalling to $400 (R5800), or more including any Korean or Asian beauty products.”
  • Cash gifts of $400 (R5 800) or more are also welcome.

READ MORE: Pretoria couple gets surprise wedding – they had no idea it was their wedding day

The bride-to-be also provided a spreadsheet where guests can see which gifts have already been pledged to avoid a duplication. The bride was thoughtful enough to leave a note for guests who cannot afford the gifts: they may excuse themselves from attending the wedding.

Most Reddit users were shocked by the bride’s announcement. “Yeah right, that is not what the registry is for. Things for the house are needed, not clothes,” said one user.

READ MORE: Maid of honour’s hilarious response to bride’s instruction to wear ‘anything’ to wedding

Another user was more familiar with such requests and noted that they had encountered a similar request by a bride on Facebook several years earlier. “The gifts had to be worth around €200 IIRC (about R3 250). The bride also gave the option of sponsoring the couple's honeymoon and really didn't want to pay anything for the trip herself,” wrote the reader.

That particular bride was forced to revoke her request after guest declined invites to her wedding.Another user said, “I would sign up for multiple items then not deliver anything. That way they can go through the same excitement (and disappointment) everyone else felt when they got the wedding invite then the requirements.”

What are your thoughts on gift registries? How much do you usually spend on wedding gifts? Share your thoughts with us here.

Sources: Reddit, The Knot, Nerdwallet

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