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6 Surprising Bridesmaid Gift Upgrades

Jul 12, 2018

by Jackie Buddie

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Buttercream or fondant? Ivory or ecru? Chiffon or crepe? When you’re planning a wedding, it can quickly start to feel like every little decision carries a tremendous weight. Luckily, you’ve got a trusted network of bridesmaids who’ve always encouraged you to do things your own way. Never mind what your great-aunt Bernice thinks—your bride squad will be the first to remind you it’s your day, and if you want to wear pink and serve key lime pie then, girlfriend, you should go for it!

Of course, that leaves you with one more important choice to make: bridesmaid gifts. How can you personally thank each of those irreplaceable women for supporting you through all of life’s major moments? To show them your appreciation is boundless, think beyond the wedding weekend and give each bridesmaid a timeless gift that’s personalized to match her signature style. From elevated clutches to playful earrings that pop, here are fresh takes on classic gifts that go the extra mile—just like they always have.

An uncommon clutch

An eye-catching evening bag has the power to take any ensemble to the next level. And whether she’s hitting the dance floor at your reception or attending an art gallery opening six months later, your fashion-forward friend will surely make the most of a well-designed clutch that can be dressed up or down. Make her swoon with a supple leather zipper pouch in a mod metallic hue or mix things up with a trendy knot-style wristlet or a floral needlepoint number straight out of the ’60s.

A custom token of sisterhood

You and your childhood besties may have come a long way since you rocked matching BFF necklaces, but that doesn’t mean you’ve outgrown the appeal of personalized accessories. For a custom gift with contemporary staying power, try a colorful acrylic keychain adorned with her name or a dainty birthstone ring embellished with her initial—and if you want to show your girl you really see her, you can even have your bridal party’s portraits made in miniature magnet form. Then, no matter how far apart you are, she’ll have a cheeky reminder that friends like you stick together forever.

One-of-a-kind statement earrings

They might all be clothed head to toe in taffeta, but your bridesmaids can still make a unique statement on your big day (and beyond) with unexpected accessories chosen just for them. One foolproof option? Notice-me earrings as bold as their personalities. Sculptured gold hoops exude modern elegance, while half moons crafted from vintage lace and brass add a touch of bohemian flair. Throw in a festive pom-pom and a dash of sparkle and she’ll have a look she can easily take from bridal party to after party. Post-wedding bash, you won’t be surprised to see any of these beauties crop up in her regular rotation matched with a fun, flirty jumpsuit or jeans and velvet mules.

A stylish kimono

With a little savvy planning, the go-to garment for your girls’ getting-ready photos can also be a gift they’ll use for years—as a chic spring jacket, travel-friendly layering piece, or breezy beach coverup. Our recs: Go for printed silks in ornate patterns that make even the most down-to-earth lady feel like royalty, menswear-inspired pinstripes for a borrowed-from-the-boys vibe, or an eco-friendly linen style to suit the sophisticated minimalist in your crew. Whatever the fabric, the relaxed cut drapes effortlessly and flatters every shape.

Frame-worthy wall art

Much in the way you might frame your wedding invitation as a marital keepsake, gifting your bridesmaid with a personal piece of art is a touching way to commemorate a specific moment in the life of your friendship. Choose a work that speaks to your unique history—say, a vintage map of the town you both grew up in or a colorful collage that celebrates your shared love of pop art. Or honor the beauty of your differences with a hand-drawn print that honors the many shapes sisterhood can take.

Personalized pampering

Nothing says “thank you” better than the gift of TLC, and after months of carrying out her bridesmaid duties, she’ll welcome a little hard-earned me-time. But self care looks different for everyone, so make sure each of your ladies is prepped to decompress with her own custom stress-relief kit. That might mean a small bottle of botanical perfume that she can slip in her purse for an anytime pick-me-up, a sandalwood scented bar of “happy soap” to scrub away the evidence of an all-night barefoot dance fest, or a double-wicked champagne candle to burn next to the tub—a visual toast to the comfort of genuine friendship.

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