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When it comes to shower gifting (or wedding gifting, for that matter) we’d certainly never advise against purchasing something from the guest/couple of honor’s registry. After all, registries exist for a reason. That being said, going off-registry in favor of something completely personal can also be a surprise, and feels particularly appropriate at a bridal shower. This event is an opportunity to gift something special that's just for the bride. A custom bridal shower gift is also a great way to show thanks to the hostess, maid of honor, or other members of the wedding party who are helping on the big day.
Katie Brownstein, a wedding expert at Joy, says that personalized items are the exception to the buy 'off the registry’ rule. “They offer a unique touch and shows the thought and care behind the gift,” she says. And if you've already chosen something off their registry, it's still possible to add a small, personalized gift to go with your larger gift.
Meet the Expert
Katie Brownstein is the Director of Marketing and Communications at Joy, where she's also their resident wedding expert. Her knowledge of the wedding industry has enabled her to lend her expertise on wedding planning, staying under budget, creating a unique wedding website, hosting virtual celebrations, guest etiquette, and ongoing wedding trends.
With so many options out there, how do you choose the perfect thing? To help, we've found personalized presents that are sure to make any bride smile, (plus some that double as great ideas for shower hostess and/or bridesmaid gifts).
Read on for the best personalized bridesmaid gifts.
Minted Ashley DeMeyere Happy Little Hello Personalized Stationery
Celebrating the bride to be? Gift her a set of personalized correspondence that she can use throughout the wedding planning process. She'll love this set for sending thank you notes to everyone from bridal shower guests to the tailor making alterations to her dress. As part of of the Minted + BRIDES Gifts Collection, this design features metallic foil accents (choose from 10 different hues!) and a range of soft pastel paper options as the base.
Symbolic Imports Custom Bride Jean Jacket
This adorable denim jacket is embellished with plenty of pearls, giving the timeless style an effortlessly bridal feel. Choose to add her new name on the back, or, for a more subtle touch, on the inside of the back of the collar. You can add the wedding date, too.
Johnson Craft Studio Bridal Hanger
Make sure the requisite wedding day, wedding dress photo opp is ready to go with this bridal hanger. Pick both your hanger and wire color preference, and choose from either a floral or bow embellishment.
Promised Pottery Personalized Ring Holder
Trust us, a bride-to-be can never have too many ring holders. You need one for your nightstand, one for the bathroom, one for next to the kitchen sink…you get the picture. This is a perfect pick for minimalists, boasting a simple design and lowercase initials. Also nice: You can opt to have it shipped gift wrapped, so it's one less thing for you to do.
Silver Oak Custom Wine Bottle
One easy way to make an already very special bottle of wine all the more special? Adding a custom touch to the label. While this renowned vineyard offers a nice array of pre-etched options, if none of those strike your fancy, you can commission them to create exactly what you want, be that just with text or even a special photo inlay. It will make for a truly memorable bottle that the couple can share during any one of their first special occasions post-wedding.
YETI Rambler 14 oz. Mug
We firmly believe that travel mugs make for one of the most practical gifts of all time, especially when they’re from this high-quality brand. They’ll keep any beverage of your choosing cold or hot for hours on end. Per the personalization part, the mug can be custom engraved with pretty much anything: the bride’s new initials, the wedding date, the couple’s monogram, you name it. (To that point, these make a fun gift for your bridal party as well.) Plus, there are 10 different colors to choose from.
Taniri Designs Softest Bridesmaid Pajamas
If you’re a bride searching for a great gift to give your bridesmaids or shower hosts, these pajamas can’t be beaten. Practical? Check. Super comfy? Check. Adorable? Check. Perfect for that getting ready photo session the morning of the big day? You bet.
Birthdate Co. The Birthdate Candle
Not only do each of these candles (yes, there are 365 of them) feature an individual date, each one also has a unique scent profile tailored to that date, along with an astrological reading on the packaging. You could pick the bride’s birthday, obviously, but choosing the wedding date, engagement date, or even the date of the bridal shower is a fun idea, too.
Bayshore Babe Small Custom Acrylic Clutch
Equally great for both the bride and the bridal party, the options are pretty much endless when it comes to customizing this chic, acrylic clutch. You can choose from 20 clutch colors and 20 text colors—so you can keep them the same for all of your bridesmaids, or mix it up based on personal preferences. It has a chain (gold or silver), too, as well as a mirrored lining. And while it’s definitely on the more compact size—it is a clutch, after all—it’s still large enough to hold an iPhone.
Gorjana Wilder Alphabet Bracelet
Another great choice that works equally well as a gift for the bride as it does for bridesmaids and/or the shower hosts, this modern initial bracelet is universally flattering and wearable. If you are purchasing for the bride-to-be, consider getting two so that she can sport her new initials on her wrist.
Mark & Graham Small Travel Jewelry Case
The perfect place for her to stash all of her new wedding bling, this convenient case comes with plenty of compartments for earrings, bracelets, and of course rings. We also appreciate the addition of a built-in mirror (perfect to use when putting on said jewelry) and the fact that it comes in 21 colors and prints, all of which can be monogrammed.
AA Creative Designs Co. Personalized Leather Luggage Tag
If the bride has registered for new luggage, we strongly suggest pairing it with this monogrammed luggage tag. And, even if she hasn’t, how fun would it be to use this on any other gift instead of a standard gift tag? There are plenty of font and color choices available, and the leather is shockingly high-quality, especially considering the price point.
Ring Concierge Zodiac Medallion Necklace
If you’re searching for a splurge-worthy piece of jewelry that she’ll undoubtedly have forever, this is it. It’s an investment, yes, but the stunning piece (which comes in all of the astrological signs) is made of 14 karat gold and surrounded by 50—yes, as in five, zero—diamonds. It’s also a nice way to do something that’s personalized, but not initialized or monogrammed. Not to mention that it also would make a great group gift from all of the bridesmaids to give the bride.
WAFT Custom Fragrance
Fragrance is admittedly one of the most personal things you can buy–which is why it’s always challenging to buy it as a gift. Enter this alternative, where you can give someone a custom fragrance that they’ll create for themselves. Not only will they choose from the scent profile they want, they’ll also be able to pick the packaging and even the labeling on the bottle. How perfect would this be for a wedding day scent?
Uncommon Goods Custom Map Serving Tray
Another fun alternative to going the traditional initial or monogram route, these trays are made with a map of a three-mile area surrounding the address of your choosing. It’s made from mango wood, has a water-resistant top, and touts table-protecting felt on the back. A few customization ideas: The couple’s first home, their wedding venue, the engagement spot, the first date spot…the options are endless.
Mod Party Floppy Beach Hat
We especially like this as a shower gift when the bachelorette party is going to be at a tropical destination. The beach hat is both practical (no sunburned bride here, thank you very much) and super adorable. Get ones for the entire bridal party and you'll have the perfect group photo to treasure forever.
Bite Beauty Lip Lab Gift Certificate
Gifting lipstick? Meh. Gifting a way to make a custom lipstick? Oh yes. Your recipient can either visit one of the brick-and-mortar locations of Bite Beauty’s Lip Labs or do the process virtually. Either way, she’ll get to create the perfect shade, choose her preferred finish, add her favorite flavor, and last but not least, engrave the tube with the name of her choosing.
Function of Beauty Gift Card
Help a stressed-out bride-to-be chill out with some high-end body products ideal for any self-care moment…all of which are tailored to fit the exact specific needs of her skin. While this brand may be best known for its custom hair products (which are great, too), their body care offerings are just as noteworthy. Namely, a body wash and body lotion that are formulated exactly how you want them, even down to the color and fragrance.
What to look for in a personalized bridal shower gift
The correct details
Make sure you’re clear on all of the details you’re incorporating, including any dates, locations, or the monogram the couple prefers, says Brownstein. “Personalized items cannot be returned in the majority of cases, so you want to ensure you have all the right information,” she cautions.
In related news, Brownstein suggests always checking with the bride as to what style she prefers. “Historically, the bride’s initials were used on any linens or towels, but a more modern approach is incorporating both partner’s initials into the monogram,” she explains.
What are some other unique bridal shower gift ideas?
Personalized items incorporating the couple’s names, wedding date, location, and home decor items that are personalized are always a good option, says Brownstein, who suggests looking at Etsy for inspiration for these types of gifts.
Do I need to bring a gift for the bridal shower hostess?
“The short answer is yes! It’s always polite to bring a gift to the person, or people, hosting your shower. This is a nice gesture that shows your thanks and appreciation for their time and effort spent planning your celebration,” says Brownstein.
How much should I spend on a bridal shower gift?
It kind of depends. “Some people prefer to give a gift at the shower rather than at the wedding, while others prefer to give gifts on both occasions. Decide how much you want to spend on a gift for the bride overall, then decide if you want to split that amount between wedding and shower gifts, or dedicate all of the funds to a gift she’ll open at her shower,” suggests Brownstein. As far as guest favors go, she says $5 to $20 per person is a good range.
Why Trust Brides
Brides contributor Melanie Rud has nearly 15 years of journalism experience covering the beauty and lifestyle space for some of the biggest magazines and websites out there. She’s also a recent newlywed—who both gave and was gifted many of the items on this list at her recent bridal shower.