Thoughtful, Fun, and Eco-Friendly Wedding Party Gift Ideas

by - Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Thoughtful, Fun, and Eco-Friendly Wedding Party Gift Ideas

You love your wedding party. They are some of your favorite people in the world, and they have really showed up for you to help with this wedding. So obviously, you want to give them amazing gifts.

This can also be a perfect opportunity to do a little bit of good for the Earth. Most shopping comes at an environmental cost- it creates waste (often plastic waste that lasts forever)and it uses fossil fuels by shipping long distances. So one of the easiest ways to make a positive difference is to really shift the way you shop. And you know, there are so many wedding details and purchases, so this is the perfect place to make a difference!

The most eco-friendly thing to do is to stop all shopping, but I get it, gifting is my love language too, so I get wanting to love on them. So here are some options that are loving, thoughtful, and good for the Earth.

What to Remember


- Think Reusable. Whatever they can keep using for a long time is a great gift. Anything that says "bride's tribe" or "groom's guys" or "Bob loves Zelda- 5-4-2020" on it is doomed to the back of a shelf.

- Think Experiences. Experience gifts, like meals out or new adventures, just underline how much you value and will continue to nurture that relationship in the future. It also tends to create a lot less waste.

- Think Classic. Personalized objects seem nice, but may not fit really limit the gift's actual use (this applies to cufflinks, jewelry, tie clips, etc) Minimalist has a higher chance to really get used more.

- Think Secondhand.  You think it is cheap, but if you have 6 people in your wedding party, that is six fewer objects in a landfill. Plus, if you are having a vintage wedding, you can really lean into the vintage thing.

- And just skip the glass for booze. I see a lot of personalized glasses out there, and they look so cute all together. But then teach person goes home, and this one sad glass on the shelf, as if they need a reminder of their name when they are drinking alone. This also counts for flasks. If you are the kind of person who uses a flask, I bet you have one.

As a side note, the wedding party isn't always split across clear gender lines, so I am going to skip that here too. Some of them probably land more on heteronormative lines than others, but I think however you organize your attendants is cool.

This blog has affiliate links for Amazon or Etsy. That being said, when you can skip Amazon and buy local, you always should. Better for your community, the Earth, and for you. 




Jewelry (They Can Use Again)


Most brides will gift things they want worn on the day- jewelry, robes or button ups (am I the only one who does not love this trend? Why would it be cute to be surrounded with a bunch of clones all day long?). I love the idea of gifting this, but I think the focus should be on choosing something that can be worn again. I did simple studs, which I think I got more use, but I also bought repurposed brooch bracelets, and I think they were too loud to really make sense at any other time.

How to do this? Keep it simple. Don't put all your colors in one piece. Do just one color or just one metal. There are nearly infinite choices on Etsy, so I am not going to point to anything. But as you look, just keep asking if they could also wear it on a date night or with a t-shirt and jeans.

cloth napkins wedding party gift
from cutebrightthings

Cloth Napkins


Ok, this seems weird, but cloth napkins are the BEST. You can get beautiful ones that your friends will want to use all the time, each unique to their style if you are feeling super thoughtful. Yeah, not the most common gift, but why be typical? And kudos to any gift that is actually useful. My favorites are from Clear Sky Home and Oh Little Rabbit. A new favorite might be Cute Bright Things.

Hair and Nails


If you are requiring your girls get their hair or nails done, write them a really loving card and pay for some of this stuff yourself. Being in a wedding is freaking expensive, so think of a cost you can take off their hands. If you want to add a little more, maybe a massage? But seriously, taking something off their plate might be the best you can do.


A Night Out


Instead of buying physical things, why not give each attendant a gift card for a restaurant you know they love or that means a lot to the two of you? People need to eat and this is actually thoughtful to something they would like.

from LuckyDogAccess

Make Something



This could be anything, from a Christmas ornament to a piece of jewelry to a meal for you to share. It doesn't have to be fussy, but something with thought could really show how much you care.

A Little Herb Garden


If you want to give a gift that will keep on giving, how about planting each of your loved ones a small herb garden? They can still keep it up without too much fuss, and they don't even need a yard to enjoy it. And every life needs more basil in it.

tote bag wedding party gift
from YayForFriends

Tote Bags


A simple tote bag can have so many uses and it is so simple. No need to get your wedding date on it, instead, think about the things they love and  make it fun for them. If you have a sporty set, a gym bag could be perfect. And I don't think it compromises anybody's masculinity- dudes grocery shop too. Some of my favorite etsy shops to browse for this? PCBHome, Linen Pearls, and StrangewayStudios (love them).

bar soap wedding party gift

Soap


There are about a million really beautiful soaps from independent makers out there. Everything from sweet and flowery to butch lumberjack charcoal. Why not get them something to treat themselves without causing any environmental harm? My advice would be to put soap in the search on Etsy, then narrow the results to shops in your state. You can get something cool, useful, AND local!



Pictures


I love photos and I love photo books. My favorite place for books and prints is Artifact Uprising. Their books are beautiful, minimalist, and made of all recycled paper. You could make each bridesmaid a little book or a print with a love note. Straight to the point. If you think they would rather have pictures of the wedding, you could get a gift card as well.

cast iron pan wedding party gift
Lodge Pans

A Cast Iron Pan


Ridiculous... or genius? Every grown up can use a cast iron pan. And it's one gift they will use their whole life. Give them a pan and a promise to come cook a meal with them? If you have time, you could get them all secondhand and fix them up yourself. If you don't, Lodge sells pans that are still made here in the US. If you love the kitchen idea, but you aren't sure about cast iron, Epicurean makes turners and cutting boards in the US, both of which are amazing.

movie posters wedding party gift
from CONCEPCIONSTUDIOS

Movie Tickets


Everyone likes going to the movies. Get them each gift cards for a nearby movie theater and call it a day. If you really want to step it up, you could get a cool movie poster for movies they loved from stores like CONCEPCIONSTUDIOS or MonsterGallery (they even sell them in big sets so you could save money).

Something to Eat


Short on cash? Why not skip the cheapo stuff and give each of your attendants a lasagna instead? I guarantee you, people will remember it.

If you have more of a budget, you could sign everyone up for Blue Apron or one of those cheese of the month type things (the downside being a lot of packaging). Still, at least it would be a gift they really used!

lego groomsmen gift

Kid Stuff


We gave the groomsmen at our wedding specifically chosen lego sets. It was a really fun gift, and I think it was true to the spirit of our wedding. If I could do it again, I would see if I could find sets secondhand on Ebay (there are 169,000 pre-owned sets on there), or do some other nostalgic item. I see 800 used Lite Brites, for example.

What did you give as gifts for your wedding party? What is the best gift you ever received?

Thoughtful, Fun, and Eco-Friendly Wedding Party Gift Ideas


Want an environmentally responsible registry? Be sure to read The Eco- Friendly Wedding Registry. Want more Green Wedding goodness? We have SO MANY ideas here of how to make your special day kinder to the environment and that much more original. Check out the Green Wedding Page for more ideas.

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