As the official 2012 wedding season comes to an end, it’s never too early to start thinking about the batch of weddings you plan on attending next year. But for those 2013 weddings, you now have a challenge: Bring the ultimate gift to the reception. Not the wine rack from Crate and Barrel or the set of glasses from Pottery Barn. This wedding gift challenge forces you to think outside the box and off the registry. Because just as wedding trends come and go, so do types of wedding gifts. Here are the top wedding gift trends for next year’s wedding season.
Food & Wine
I’m not talking about a fruit basket with a bottle of wine. Newlyweds want to enjoy experiences together, so buy them a private cooking class certificate and pair it with a lovely evening at a local winery for a tour and tasting. It’s the perfect follow up to a honeymoon.
Show Them the World From Up Above
Again, building off the idea of experiences and post-honeymoon activities, a hot air balloon tour of a picturesque town an hour or two outside of where they are living is a great gift. Throw in a gift certificate to dinner in the town they traveled to for that hot air balloon ride and there’s a good chance the newlywed couple will enjoy a mini, weekend vacation.
Frame the Memories
Wedding photographers deliver photos much differently than they did 20 years ago when you chose which size prints you wanted and received your physical photos a few weeks later. Today your photographer can mail you a thumb drive filled with hundreds of amazing wedding photos in less than a week.
The only downside to that is that more times than often, those photos live on that thumb drive and on your social networks and rarely get printed.
For 2013, change that notion. Buy a gift certificate to a local framing shop, which will force the newlywed couple to print their favorite photos and pick out the perfect frame to match their new home.
Music to Their Ears
This wedding gift trend could be a little tricky if you have a couple with contrasting music tastes, but tickets to their favorite band’s concert a few months down the road is a perfect gift. It gets the newlywed couple out of the house for the night and if you throw in a gift card for dinner, they will enjoy an amazing date night.
This could quite difficult to pull off, but if you can figure out what their “first dance” song is and that artist is on tour in the coming year, buying tickets can help rekindle the love of the wedding night.
Keep the Memories in the Mail
This gift requires some dedication, but is very touching. At the couple’s wedding, take 30 of the best candid photos of the couple that you can. You don’t have to be a professional photographer by any means, just make sure that you capture the chemistry between the newlyweds.
The next day, print off your photos and mail one each day of their first month of marriage. If you want, write a little message on the back of the photo to show them how much you care about them.
Make Their First Christmas Easier
Newlyweds have all sorts of first-year expenses, from furniture to appliances — maybe even initial house payments. One expense they’re not thinking about is Christmas decorations.
Buy a basic pack of ornaments, but also one personalized ornament with the couple’s name and marriage date painted on it. Throw in a tree skirt, a few packs of white Christmas lights (white is a safer choice over multi-colored) and a gift certificate to an online photo print shop that prints Christmas cards so the couple can pay for their first Christmas card as a married couple.
Enhance the Honeymoon
Of course, this requires having a little insider information on the honeymoon. But this can normally be obtained by phoning in some questions to the newlyweds’ parents.
Book a ritzy dinner night, twilight boat tour or a lavish spa treatment. The happy new couple will absolute love it.
Author Taylor Ritchie would like to challenge you to come up with interesting wedding gift ideas in 2013. Taylor works with NRMA Motoring & Services – for unique wedding gift ideas, check out myNRMA.com.au Wedding gift