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Unique Wedding Gift Ideas: Go Beyond the Registry with Unusual Creative Presents

Rose is a full-time freelance writer who frequently writes about education, special education, DIY projects, food, Milwaukee, and more.


I got inspired to write this article because I enjoy making creative personalized presents for people. I don't have anything against wedding registries. My husband and I created two registries for our wedding and were grateful that we got lots of gifts from both of them. But if you enjoy making presents and are looking for something unique or simply are tired of picking out yet another appliance from a registry, check this out. I love photos and a wide variety of photo items so this list has a handful of photo related items.


1) A Favorite Cookbook

One of my favorite wedding presents was the second cookbook linked to the right. If you're pretty serious about cooking, you should own this book. I also like to give the linked Rachael Ray cookbook, which is a little less intimidating for a lot of people. Three of my favorite recipes are in that book, one of which I make at least once a month. I like to mark these recipes when I give the book as a present. If the couple enjoys a specific aspect of cooking (i.e. grilling, baking), consider a cookbook that caters to this specialty.

Copyright 2011, Rose Clearfield

Copyright 2011, Rose Clearfield

2) Music Mix

I know that most people don't make mix CDs these days, let alone mix tapes, but I couldn't resist including a photo of some of my old mix tapes. Typically I make mixes for people for birthdays or Christmas, but I have made few mixes for couples. I don't give this as a sole wedding gift, especially for good friends, but it's a fun item to include in a larger package. Make sure to include a play list with it. Even though many people don't play their CDs all that often, they can still rip mix CD music and transfer it to their phones or MP3 players.

Kegel's Inn, Milwaukee, WI

Kegel's Inn, Milwaukee, WI

3) Gift Card of Certificate for a Local Restaurant

My husband and I appreciate gift cards as Christmas or birthday presents for any restaurants. I think that giving a local restaurant gift certificate for a wedding present is a little more personal than a gift card that you can purchase at Wal-Mart. I linked one of our favorite restaurants in the Iowa City area that we got a gift certificate for on one of our wedding anniversaries. This is a wonderful gift for couples who are moving or have just moved to a new area and thus, are looking for new restaurants.


4) Photo Coasters

I made cork board photo coasters, which were very well received, for family Christmas presents in 2010. I also make a number of tile photo coasters for various gifts. I make use of existing digital photos in my personal collection for my coasters, but there are numerous ways to customize your coasters. If you were friends with the couple in high school or college, create a set of coasters of events or activities that you were involved in together. If the couple is family, create a set of family photo coasters. Does the couple have a favorite city or vacation destination spot? Create a set of coasters with photos from this place. The possibilities are endless.

How to make a Cereal Box Coaster by EcoHeidi Borchers


5) Blank or Filled Scrapbook

If the couple enjoys crafty projects, a blank personalized scrapbook can be a wonderful gift. If they would not be thrilled with this prospect, you can make the entire book yourself or simply finish a personalized book that you have ordered. I have linked one of my favorite Etsy scrapbook shops on the right. If you're having trouble locating enough photos of the couple, recruit friends or family members to supply photos. Also consider giving a couple a blank scrapbook for their honeymoon photos.

Scrapbooking for Beginners : How to Make a 6x6 Scrapbooking Album Cover


6) Personalized Photo Frame or Photo Gift

There is no limit to the possibilities for this gift. Again, consider the couple's preferences and styles when designing a photo item.

7) Special Interest Gift

If the couple isn't into cooking but loves camping, don't feel like you need to get them a new set of pans. Consider options that will fit their interests. If they've had their eyes on a more expensive item for a while, see if others will go in on the gift.

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8) Something Fun

Practical gifts are awesome wedding presents, but fun gifts can be just as meaningful and may get used just as much if not more. Are you more likely to use a waffle maker or a DVD set of a new favorite show? I have absolutely nothing against waffle makers and do use mine occasionally, but we watch our favorite DVD sets all the time.

9) Personalized Name Item

My husband and I got a crocheted, framed last name piece for our wedding from one of our grandparents. While lots of personalized name items in a home can be tacky, a few that are tastefully done can be perfect. Consider color themes in their home or color themes and general styles in their registries when you purchase a framed piece like the one linked to the right so that it will fit into their decor.

10) Wedding or Love Print (With or Without Personalization)

We received a couple personalized prints for our wedding with love or wedding quotes or other personalized details. This is a wonderful gift for a couple who has just purchased their first home and is looking for a few prints to put up on the walls. If you don't want a personalized print, there are many other wedding and love prints out there. Both of the prints that we have do not need frames, which significantly reduces the cost.


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Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on March 26, 2013:

Thanks, Cyndi! Yes, you do need to make photo coasters!

K9keystrokes, I appreciate the link! I'm glad that you enjoyed this article so much.

prairieprincess, it's great to hear that! Thanks.

Sharilee Swaity from Canada on March 24, 2013:

I love these ideas because they are definitely a change from the usual toasters and cookware we have come to associate with wedding gifts. So personal and creative! Thanks for writing this. Shared and voted up!

India Arnold from Northern, California on March 24, 2013:

What a great resource! Hope you don't mind, but I am linking to this on a wedding hub I recently put together. As always, you give great ideas, where to get products, and unique information! Another good one, ma'am! Happy Hub-love!!


Cynthia Calhoun from Western NC on March 24, 2013:

What wonderful ideas! I still need to make photo coasters. I love all your creative ideas here. The music and going in on a specialized gift are particularly awesome. Thanks for sharing these ideas. :)

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on March 22, 2013:

Thanks, Vicki! I really enjoy looking through cookbooks, too. The Rachael Ray book has a handful of recipes that I make all the time, and I love the How to Cook Everything book for basic reference.

Victoria Lynn from Arkansas, USA on March 22, 2013:

I love these ideas! So personalized! I like the cookbooks, too. I love looking through cookbooks. These you chose would make great gifts, but I may have to get them for myself, too! Great hub! :-)

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 09, 2011:

Thank you!

jamiesweeney from Philadelphia, PA on May 09, 2011:

Great Idea. Nice hub.

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 07, 2011:

You're welcome and thank you in return!

Lonestar Accessories on May 07, 2011:

Thank you for the inclusion. Truly a wonderful list if ideas!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 07, 2011:

I definitely agree!

Terry Retter on May 07, 2011:

I sell cookware so of course I think everyone should give lots of quality cookware and wedding gifts : ) But to make these gifts both memorable and different, I would go with your suggesting to personalize the gifts. Such as if you give quality knives, complement this with a session on how to properly use them given by one of the local chefs. Or a cooking class the fits the couple along with some good pots and pan. Personalizing things with just a bit more effort and thought makes a big difference.


Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 06, 2011:

You're welcome, Gisele!

I can imagine, Edi! You have more possibilities that ever with your laser.

Memories for Life Scrapbooks on May 06, 2011:

You can bet everyone on my gift list will be getting personalized items this year :)

Great list of ideas for gift-giving!

Gisele on May 06, 2011:

Thank you for adding my print to your Wedding gift ideas. So lovely!

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