When It Comes To Wedding Gifts, Stick To The Registry

You may be incredibly close with the bride and groom, but that doesn't mean you should stray from the registry in an attempt to give something more personal. Recent research suggests doing so sends the wrong signals. Photo by Blaise Alleyne.

Morgan Ward, marketing professor at Southern Methodist University, says close friends depart from the wedding registry for a few reasons. They want to show the couple, the world and themselves that they have a special relationship with them. But Ward's research suggests those signals actually get read differently by the recipients. NPR's social science correspondent Shankar Vedantam explains:

...close friends don't listen to our preferences because they want to signal to us that they are close friends. But doing that sends us exactly the wrong signal. We say, you of all people ought to respect who I am and what I say I want instead of signalling to me that you know what's best for me.

Fact is, soon-to-be-wed couples put a lot of thought into the things they need to get their new life started. Stepping outside of those boundaries shows you don't care how much time they spent planning things out, even if you have the best of intentions. If you want to do something personal, it's probably best to do it in addition to something your friends have kindly asked for. You can hear the whole story at the link below.

New Study Explores Psychology Of Giving Wedding Gifts [NPR]


    Guests really really hate buying $100 worth of pyres containers or baking trays as a wedding gift. Also don't make your registry too damned early, or half of it will be discontinued by the time your guests shop the week before.

    Why can't people just be thankful someone bought them a gift of any kind? Or that they even showed up to their wedding at all? How ungrateful of a person would you be if someone spent extra effort and time to gift you something they considered to be more personal, and you get annoyed because "its like.. not.. what we told you to buy us omg".

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now