bride handing mother red envelope on wedding day

Wedding Gift Ideas for Parents: 20 They'll Love

Dec 30, 2019
By Wedding Spot

Looking for some great wedding gift ideas for your parents? We’ve got you covered with this list of perfect options!

We’ve broken down this list into 4 sections: gifts you can buy, gifts you can make, gifts for women, and gifts for men. There are a variety of options for different budgets so you have plenty to choose from. We also made sure to cover traditional wedding gift ideas for parents as well as some more unique or creative ideas. Also, none of the links or products are sponsored, we just think they’re that good. Now let’s dive in! 

5 shoppable wedding gift ideas for parents

1. Gourmet Gift Baskets

Perfect for parents who have a sweet tooth or simply love to snack. These Harry & David options (ranging from whole cheesecakes to artisanal appetizers) are especially nice. 

2. Ours and Yours Photo Frame

This rustic picture frame has a beautiful quote and yarn heart sandwiched between a space for a photo of you and your spouse and your parents together. It’s attractive, symbolic, and heartfelt, all in one. 

3. Matching Handkerchiefs 

Chances are a few tears of joy will be shed at your wedding, which makes this gift for parents as practical as it is beautiful. Add your own message or choose from a variety of lovely sayings. We like this option on Etsy

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4. Quotable Cutting Board

This customizable gift has a long-lasting thank you note right on the front and can be personalized with you and your spouse’s name and wedding date. 

5. Monthly Subscription Box

Chances are your parents were there for you during the entire wedding planning process. Why not choose a wedding gift for them that lasts just as long? While there are tons of high-end subscription boxes to choose from, we recommend going with an option that they’ll enjoy together as a couple. Some examples of this include wine clubs, date night packages, and even monthly flower deliveries

5 DIY wedding gift ideas for parents

1. Family Tree

Use photos or words to create a family tree with their names at the roots. Canva has a few great templates but there are lots of beautiful premade ones for sale all over. 

2. Wedding Photo Album 

Combine their wedding photos with your engagement ones before the wedding or wait until after to share your day-of ones as well. Sites like Shutterfly and Vistaprint have digital tools available. 

3. Canvas Photo Print

Is there a special photo they absolutely love? Print that memory on a quality canvas so they can enjoy it in their home forever. 

4. Sew-In Wedding Day Patches

Write a sentence or two then sign and date these small cloth patches using a fabric marker and some string. Write them a special message, thank them for their love, or include a quote. There are lots of sellers offering custom embroidery and messaging for patches like these on Etsy

5. A Year of Dates

This extremely thoughtful gift will bring them joy for an entire year following your wedding. It takes a while to prepare though, so get started on this one a few months out. Here’s a tutorial on how to do it. 

5 wedding gift ideas for moms and mother-in-laws

1. Timeless Pearl Necklace

We especially love this David Yurman necklace but a quality pair of earrings will also do. 

2. Funny Wine Glass

The “I Survived My (Daughter’s/Son’s) Wedding” saying is always a hit. 

3. Personalized Hanger

Give her a special Mother of the Bride or Groom hanger made from hand-twisted wire to hang her wedding garments from as she’s getting ready. It’s a sweet gift and it’ll look great in photos. Here’s a customizable set for both

4. Photo Clutch

Add a childhood or engagement photo to the inside of one of these stylish bags. She can use it for the wedding and for special occasions after! This pearl version is gorgeous and comes in three classic colors. 

5. Keepsake Quote Box

Choose something as elaborate as this wedding keepsake library from Uncommon Goods or as simple as this ring dish for her momentos. 

5 wedding gift ideas for dads and father-in-laws

1. Embroidered Wedding Socks

Here are some you can personalize with your own message, name, and date. 

2. Personalized Cigar Box

You can even personalize the cigar wrapper itself and include a premium one with this site

3. Quote Cufflinks

This option says “I loved you first” and gives you a choice between different metals and shapes. 

4. A “Why I Love You” Book 

If you’re gifted with words and have a father figure who loves sentimental gifts, this book is filled with prompts that will help you write entire essays about how much he means to you. 

5. Engraved Flask 

This popular groomsman gift is also great for dads. Pair it with their favorite bottle of liquor to elevate the present. 

Now that you have some ideas, let’s take a closer look at why giving wedding gifts to your parents is so important in the first place, as well as how you can ace the exchange with flying colors. 

Wedding gifts for parents: Tradition

Do you give gifts to parents for your wedding? The short answer is yes. 

If your parents contributed towards hosting or paying for your wedding (and any of the events surrounding it), it makes sense why wedding gifts for parents is a tradition. Not only is gift-giving a great way to say thank you, it provides the opportunity for you and your future spouse to connect deeper as a new family. It will also be your first formal ritual together as a couple in the eyes of your parents - gifts are now from you both as a unit, not separately. 

Wedding gifts for parents: Etiquette

Like most wedding related traditions, wedding gifts for parents should be kept classy. You want to choose something that has a deeper meaning. And while you may have lots of great inside jokes together, save the gag gifts for their birthdays. Instead, focus on your love for them. Then, choose your gift according to how they like to receive. Is a practical appliance that makes their day-to-day easier of high value to them? Or do they prefer something luxurious and sentimental? Whatever it is, make sure it’s something that makes sense from their perspective. 

When it comes to actually giving them the gift, the timing is up to you. Wedding day nerves might make you forget about it, so plan to hand it over before that. The rehearsal dinner is a nice time to thank them publicly with a toast or speech as well as their gift. But really any event or get together as far out as 2-3 weeks before the big day will do. 

Wedding gifts for parents: Budget

You might be wondering how much to spend on your parents’ wedding gift. The answer is really up to you. If they spent a ton on your wedding, a bigger gift is more appropriate. But if they didn’t, you can still treat them to something small yet sentimental. Just stay within your budget. 

Show your family how much you appreciate them with these wedding gift ideas for parents! 

Thoughtful gifts and happy faces are more than enough to please your parents and future In-Laws on your wedding day. No matter what you give them, the most important thing is that your gesture comes from the heart. While you’re here, be sure to read up on our advice for discussing the wedding budget with your parents, which will help you lead the conversation in a loving and open way. 

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Wedding Spot

The Wedding Spot blog is designed to help couples navigate every step of the wedding planning journey. From before the engagement to after you say “I do,” our goal is to give you the tips, ideas, and inspiration to prepare for your big day — and all that comes with it.