Friday, October 15, 2010

Gifting and Receiving

So many times I am asked “do you think it seems greedy if we register at three different stores?” or “what should I put on the invitation regarding gifts?”. After all, when it comes to special events, whether we are the gift-er or the gift-ee, we want to make sure we follow etiquette. Here are some BCE guidelines on how to play your role, with class and style.

Gift-er: A person that is giving a (fabulous) gift.

Be sure that you are equally as extravagant as the invitation itself. If you received an email, the chances that you need to spend mega-bucks are unlikely. If you opened a gorgeously packaged invite, put some extra thought into your gift. Be logical and pay attention to the details leading up to the party – they will always pave the way for the type of gifts that should be given.

Repeat after me: “it is not all about me. it is not all about me.” The gift should not be something you love. Continually keep the recipient in mind. That isn’t to say you can’t love it too, though!

Follow directions. If the gift-ee registered or has let you know what they need or would like…get that! If you want to add your special “touch” to the gift – then simply add a complimenting item. They will appreciate the gesture and the fact that they got something they requested.

Gift-ee: A person that is receiving a (fabulous) gift.

Don’t hesitate to make it known what you need and would like as a gift. In a subtle, low-key way. Registering for gifts for a new baby or wedding is an accepted way to do this. Writing a list and handing it to your relatives before your 40th birthday party….well, not so much.

The above holds true if you want the opposite – no gifts. Just let it be known in a tactful manner. Phrases like “Your presence is the only gift requested” can be used on the invitation to inform guests of your desire.

Accept with grace. Smile with happiness. Always say thank you.

Acknowledge the recipient if you open the gift in front of a crowd. Something as simple as “thank you, that means a lot, Jill” will go a long way.

The old saying rings true – it is the thought that counts. Keep that in mind.

Follow-up afterwards with a beautifully written note, telling the gift-er how you have used or will use their thoughtful present. I don’t consider myself old-fashioned in the slightest, but still believe in this tradition.

This all seems so logical, but I still hear concerning questions from brides, clients, friends and family. Gifting is tough – no matter what role you are playing. Think simply & consciously and I bet you will find it is much easier than it seems.

Boldly Yours,

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