If we go back to the days of the dowry, when a bride came to the marriage she did so with a few prized cows and some table linen thrown in.
These days when couples get married, over three-quarters of them already live together, or if not together, they at least have moved out from their childhood home. We no longer need dowries with our wedding vows because we come to married life already equipped with every household item we could possibly need.
Of course, guests still want to give a wedding gift, and a registry is an excellent idea if you have invited many guests or some people who don’t know you intimately.
But what if you are living together and you already have everything you need? What gift ideas can you put on your wedding registry then?
Many modern couples ask for money, and it is perfectly acceptable. If they have all the furniture and pots and pans they need, giving them money to save for a home deposit or a honeymoon is a wonderful idea, and very much appreciated.
Some more traditional wedding guests don’t like the wishing well request. In many cultures, it is not appropriate to ask for money as a gift. And guests can be made to feel self-conscious that you will know how much they have given.
In a few incredibly cheeky weddings, the bridal couple has contacted their guests to ask for more money, because they felt the gift was not generous enough. Nobody wants to be put through that kind of shame.
So registries are a safe idea, but what can you put on them if you are already happily cohabitating, and have bought all of your stuff?
What are the perfect wedding registry gift ideas for the couple already living together?
A living tree
On the surface, this idea may sound strange, and it certainly sounds hard to wrap, but buying a newly married couple a tree is actually quite thoughtful and romantic. Choose something really lovely that they wouldn’t get for themselves.
They can plant their wedding tree in their yard and watch it grow and bloom with their marriage. Great choices include apple, olive or avocado tree, or a beautiful Japanese maple or stunning weeping willow.
Buy the married couple a matching pair of luxurious satin pyjamas to sleep in next to each other for the rest of their lives. Choose something with lovely texture that looks fantastic, whether they are going to bed or lounging around the house. You could get them monogrammed as well for an extra touch.
Board games in recent years have come a long way, and are a bit more fun than the card games our parents used to play with their friends. Newer board games can be decidedly cheeky and adults only, and the married couple will love them. Think Marital Bliss or the legendary Cards Against Humanity.
Beer-brewing or cupcake decorating kit
Why not give a funky new hobby kit to the bridal couple as something they can do together?
Most couples will come to the marriage with their own separate interests and hobbies, but may not have something that they do together. You can give them this opportunity.
We’ve mentioned a beer-brewing kit or cupcake decorating, but you are really only limited by your imagination with this one because simply every DIY kit you could think of is available.
Fresh, new bed linen or a good quality throw rug
If the wedding couple has been living together for a while, it may have been some time since they splurged on new linen. This is another luxury that we all would love but don’t often fork out for ourselves, and a great new start to a new life together.
If you know that the couple doesn’t have live TV streaming, this could be a nice idea and a treat that keeps on giving. If they are planning a family soon then there are some children’s channels that they will definitely appreciate having!
Good quality knife block
A high-quality knife set is almost always a great idea because they need to be replaced every so often. Your bridal couple will love a new one, especially if it is one of the latest models that look like small works of art instead of simple blocks of wood.
Subscription boxes for wine or fresh meals
Subscription boxes are another gift that keeps on giving, and there is a wide variety to choose from. You could sign the newly wedded couple up to a wine or beer membership, boutique tea or coffee, fresh meals, herbs and spices and much more.
New turntable and several albums
We love this idea which is both trending and retro at the same time. Record turntables never completely went out of fashion, and have made a very welcome resurgence in popularity recently. You can buy a brand new turntable but then scrounge around some second-hand shops for unforgettable albums to go with it. This can be a really considerate and well thought out gift.
A unique piece of art or bespoke hand-carved furniture
Look for a piece of artwork or a handmade piece of furniture such as a table or ornate armchair, or a bench seat for the garden. For the couple’s home to be lucky and prosperous, they need to have items in it that represent love and that make them happy. You can find something that fits this description wonderfully.
A puppy or kitten
This one is a tiny bit subjective depending on the couple, and you DEFINITELY need to know them well to gift them a pet, but if you get this right it is an awesome gift. Many couples who might start having babies in the years following their wedding often start as parents to a fur baby. Look through charities such as the RSPCA to rescue dogs or cats that are very much in need of love, and ask about breed and gender preferences and ensure they legitimately want a pet before buying them one. But for the right couple… this is an amazing wedding gift.
Think along the ideas of something that they want, rather than something that they need, because if they needed it they would already have filled that need. Think outside of the box and go a bit more delightful, surprising and indulgent; the sort of things that they would never splurge on for themselves.