If you’re in the throes of planning your wedding, or even your hen do, you’ll know how invaluable the help and support of friends and family is during what can be, at times, a very stressful period. Your nearest and dearest have been there to lend a helping hand and a shoulder to cry on throughout your life – and you’ve likely noticed their unwavering moral support even more now you’re tasked with planning an event as momentous as your own wedding.
So, how do you say thank you meaningfully with more than just a card? Whether you’d like to ‘propose’ to your bridesmaids, celebrate your girlfriends at your chic hen do or find gifts for those who have been by your side throughout the wedding planning process, there are now plenty of luxurious tokens of gratitude on the market that will show how much you really care – but that wasn’t always the case.
“When I got engaged in 2008, bridesmaid proposals, as we know them today, weren’t really a thing,” says Danielle Kendall, founder of Team Hen which launched in 2014 to answer the call from brides for stylish gifts for their hens or bridesmaids. “As I delved into the market, I quickly realised everything on the high street was overwhelmingly tacky and garish. As a result, I designed some hen party favours more aligned with my taste and so Team Hen was born.”
Fast forward to 2023 and bridesmaid proposals and hen gifting are part and parcel of weddings – another thing brides willingly spend time, effort and money on in the lead-up to their big day. “Bridesmaids play a significant role in the wedding process, offering support, time, and often financial contributions. Gifting is a way for brides to express their appreciation for the dedication and assistance of their friends and loved ones,” explains Kendall. “It’s a way we can show love, make memories, and make the bridal party experience even more special. It’s a heartfelt tradition that lets us give thanks to our friends and family for the big part they play in our journey to saying ‘I do’.”
The dos and don’ts of bridesmaid gifting
Knowing what presents your friends and family will love (and actually use) is incredibly personal. To get you started, Kendall has created a simple checklist that we recommend you consult before embarking on a wedding party shopping spree.
“Be thoughtful. Take the time to consider each bridesmaid’s personality, interests and preferences so you can choose gifts that align with their individual tastes to show that you value their uniqueness,” she says. “Also think about what your bridesmaids can use and enjoy beyond the wedding or hen party.”
Heartfelt, handwritten notes or personalised touches always go down a treat, too. “Sharing your feelings and why you chose them as bridesmaid or hen will make the gift even more meaningful,” adds Kendall. However, her biggest tip is establishing a budget. “Ensure that it’s reasonable and considerate. It's important to choose gifts that are within your means. Remember, it’s the thought that counts, so you don’t have to spend a lot of money.”
Two things not to forget are time and presentation. “Give yourself plenty of time to choose and order the gifts, as rushing the process can lead to hasty decisions and less thoughtful presents. Also pay attention to the presentation; thoughtful wrapping or packaging can enhance the overall experience.”
Bridesmaid gifting ideas
So, now we know the basics, it’s time to start planning. To steer you in the right direction, we’ve put together an edit of luxurious gifts any chic bridesmaid or hen will love, from champagne to raise a glass with and sentimental presents they will cherish forever.
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