Home Patchwork Perspective What do couples really want as wedding gifts in 2021?

What do couples really want as wedding gifts in 2021?

by Rosie Hurwitz
group of friends making a toast over a shared lunch

Want to take a peek at what real life couples are including on their Patchwork wedding registry in 2021? With most couples living together before marriage, pots and pans and towels are usually already sorted. In more ‘normal’ times, money towards an exotic or adventurous honeymoon is most UK couples’ no.1 choice of wedding gift, but with travel still looking uncertain for many destinations well in to next year, couples are getting creative about what to add to their wedding registries and the experience of the last year is clear in the gift choices they are making.

three people making a toast with red wine glasses with black man out of focus behind

Wedding gifts of time together

After more than a year of not being able to see friends and family for celebrations and get togethers, couples are making sure they make up for lost time by adding ‘time with friends’ as an item on their wedding registries. 

So rather than asking for crockery sets or saucepans, couples are listing “invite us for dinner” as a gift option on their wedding registries. No money is exchanged, no gifts are wrapped, but instead the couple gets invited round for a home cooked meal and time spent with friends. The same goes for coffee dates and pub lunches… couples are adding “buy us a round at the pub” to their cash gift list. It’s a nice way of catching up with friends and family post-wedding and supporting their local businesses at the same time.

It’s been tough for those with relatives spread across the country or even the globe.. we’ve seen couples asking for money towards train fares or flights instead of traditional wedding gifts so that they can visit family and friends not seen for a year or more. 

old brass tap on stand by orange outside wall

Pay for the plumber

With engaged couples spending so much time at home together over the last year, they – like most of us – have had more than enough time to pay close attention to their walls, floors, and dodgy pipes. We’ve seen a huge increase in couples asking for cash towards home improvements – money to pay a plumber and an electrician featuring heavily. Whilst most couples can easily afford the smaller things like buying their own pots and pans and cutlery, it’s the bigger things like new kitchen units, or even a new boiler that they really want help with.

Other lockdown inspired items we’re seeing on Patchwork gift registries include contributions towards a puppy (are Jack Russells about to replace the Cockapoo?) We’ve also seen a rise in couples asking for cash contributions so they can expand their board game collection – (for pandemic-proofing date nights at home obviously.)

woman's hand planting seeds in pots in a garden

Green fingered wedding gifts

An appreciation for outdoor space has also meant a rise in couples asking for money towards garden furniture, plants and bulbs, and even contributions towards a hedgehog house. For those with a larger than average garden there’s always the option to add a tractor to your wedding gift registry. Or a flock of sheep. Yes this really happened.

Non-monetary wedding gifts include asking green-fingered friends to spend an afternoon gardening as their gift. Then couples get the added bonus of spending time with their nearest and dearest as well as receiving a present.

view across boats in harbour of Cornish fishing town

Date nights and local minimoons

Whilst travel is uncertain, couples still want adventure, even if that’s a bit closer to home for now.

Our “Year of Date Nights” wedding registry has been really popular, with couples adding experiences in their local area to be funded by friends and enjoyed over the first year of marriage. That might be trying out the posh new restaurant on the high street, visiting a local theatre or gallery, a hot-stone massage, a cookery course, or micro brewery tour. Couples get to treat themselves to new experiences and a bit of luxury in their first year as a couple; and also feel good about supporting local and independent businesses, who have struggled so much in the last 15 months.

We’ve seen a surge in couples inviting guests to chip in towards their minimoons to UK destinations, especially the Lake District, Scotland and Cornwall. Asking for money towards getting a campervan on the road (no airports or Covid tests to worry about) has also been popular with couples tying the knot this year. Expect a huge sales boom in walking boots and Kendal mint cake this summer.

Table set for breakfast on beach, overlooking turquoise ocean, The Maldives
Image courtesy of Turquoise Holidays

Honeymoon dreaming

For some couples though, the white sand and turquoise sea combination are still the ultimate honeymoon dream. A cash fund for a “beautiful island of somewhere” honeymoon is still one of our most popular options, with guests treating couples to cocktails by the pool, lunch on the beach, or a hotel upgrade for that “one day” dream honeymoon to no-one quite knows where yet…

However uncertain times are still, couples using Patchwork can feel secure that whatever happens and however plans have to change, their wedding gift money is safe and secure as it’s all sent direct to them to spend as and when they like. And with such organised and resourceful couples, we’re sure they’ll be ready to go as soon as restrictions allow… especially those super-organised couples who have thought of everything and even added quick covid tests to their registries.

Toilet rolls were so last year.

What would you add to your dream wedding gift list? With the Patchwork ‘dream machine’ you really can add anything and everything. Click here to get yours started.

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