The days of going to a department store and scanning items to add to your wedding gift list are long gone. There are now a handful of companies which offer a totally unique experience when it comes to building your wedding gift list. Whether you’re looking for homeware and would like to discover the brands brands or adding more experimental presents. Travel experiences, art funds, charity donations are all becoming the norm. We have interviewed six couples who share their personal experience of building their gift list, the process, their most cherished items and what they loved most, to help you decide which gift list company is best for you.
Best for: a boutique gift list experience, a curated portfolio of brands and the luxurious Chelsea showroom.
Rosalyn & Ollie
Registered with The Wedding Present Co. Rosalyn is the travel editor-at-large at The Wedding Edition and had a classic winter wedding in Westminster.
The process: We emailed The Wedding Present Co requesting a meeting, which was promptly set up. This was pre-Covid so we met at their showroom to confirm the format our list would take (for example we chose to not have a money option and wanted to add in a charity). Once this was sorted, we then came back to peruse their Chelsea showroom for homewares that suited our style.
Favourite three items: I loved everything and was overwhelmed by our guests’ generosity. Three standouts for me, perhaps because we use them every day, are two tortoiseshell lampshades, a wishbone chair and heavy Soho Home whisky glasses, which we quite indulgently use for water (why not)!
What you loved most about having a gift list with WPC? I loved the fact that there was someone at the end of the phone, it wasn’t all just automated. The manner in which messages are sent through from guests to your phone as an item is bought is a lovely touch. Obviously there is also the broad curation available – I felt there was enough variety for us to carve out a list that best suited our design style, and also for those with different budgets. I find wedding lists with eye-watering entry levels presumptuous at best.
Favourite features/add ons: I’d definitely say the charity aspect made it for me. We didn’t feel comfortable asking family or friends for money towards a trip or furniture (though I totally see why people would), so giving guests the opportunity to donate to a charity felt necessary amid all the excitement and, let’s face it, excess.
Isabella & Tom
Registered with The Wedding Present Co. Isabella is the co-founder and editor of The Wedding Edition and had a colourful, farm wedding in Northern Ireland.
The process: For us, it all started in the gorgeous Chelsea showroom, I feel like visiting here is a right of passage for anyone who is engaged. We were introduced to our personal wedding advisor, who kept our Champagne flutes filled to the brim as we danced around the showroom with excitement. We started our list, selecting gifts we both loved and then continued this at home. The process is so seamless and personal.
Favourite three items: We received so many beautiful gifts. We enjoy hosting (and I love a tablescape!) so I have to mention our Klimchi bobble jug in green and matching glasses and our Sarah K green mini scallop napkins. I also adore our Soho Home Champagne and cocktail shaker, as well as our Le Creuset pans in the classic volcano colour. I could go on… but have already mentioned more than four.
What you loved most about having a gift list with The Wedding Present Co? The delivery day! There is no more spoiling experience than when the Wedding Present Co van pulls up outside your home and the boxes arrive. We spent an evening opening everything together, finding new homes for all our items that we will treasure forever.
Favourite features/add ons: We loved being able to add “custom gifts”, a few antiques and also the honeymoon fund.
Best for: great for stylish home additions and known for its fun Fulham Townhouse showroom experience.
Abbie & Will
Registered with The Wedding Shop. They got married at Longworth Manor in Oxfordshire. Abbie is the founder of wine brand Amie, so the rosé was free-flowing in their gorgeous marquee setting.
The process: The Wedding Shop was so easy and straightforward to use! We created an account online, and then set up our registry list.
Favourite three items: We actually veered towards the non-traditional with our wedding list. We live in a 450 sq ft flat, so don’t really have space for ‘things’ at the moment. We decided to create a Honeymoon Fund, and we’re so happy that we did. We were able to really enjoy the hotels and places we wanted to see when we went to Sri Lanka, and most importantly, we were able to create special memories.
I will say – our wine brand, amie – is available on The Wedding Shop and is a WONDERFUL gift or add-on for someone. A case of 4, 6 or 12 is a great gift, especially if the couple enjoys hosting.
What you loved most about having a gift list with The Wedding Shop? I chose The Wedding Shop because it seemed to be the most simple and straightforward. Plus – we loved their branding, which made me trust them more than other platforms!
Kendra & Joshua
Registered with The Wedding Shop. Kendra is the co-founder and editor of The Wedding Edition and married RN Lieutenant Joshua Rylah with a traditional summer wedding in Rye, East Sussex.
The process: The idea of choosing our gift list in a townhouse setting seemed really fun and unique so we wanted to start our process by going in-store, meeting the team and having a real tangible experience.
Favourite three items: We wanted to ramp up our home entertaining style and impress on special occasions, so listing items which enabled this was incredibly important to us. Firstly; our Sonos Smart Speakers have seen us through many post-wedding celebrations and were an essential item on the list while no alfresco dinner has complete without Georg Jenson Large Hurricane tea lights to make an evening totally magical, while our Georg Jenson Champagne Bowl makes a statement (and give yet another excuse to pop open the Champagne and keep the celebrations rolling)!
What you loved most about having a gift with The Wedding Shop? The experience we had as a couple was so memorable. Choosing items that we knew would feature in our next chapter was not only incredibly exciting but something we really cherished as a couple – an absolute highlight for us both.
Best features/add ons: Being able to pop into the townhouse to update and amend our list. There were a few add ons we were really keen to explore and could do easily by browsing the homeware section in the townhouse (such a fun experience). It was then that we found those final items we really wanted for our first home.
Best for: adventurous couples, gifts, subscriptions, honeymoons – you can add it all.
Hema & Ajai
Registered with Prezola. You may well recognise Hema and Ajai who met on the Channel 4 dating show, First Dates. They tied the knot in Mallorca – a stunning Indian wedding under the Mediterranean sun.
The process: You simply sign up online with your details and start adding items to your gift list. It was all very straightforward and easy to manage. We opted for the honeymoon gift list, this meant that our family and friends could add money to our fund and feel like they have contributed to some meaningful, for example a massage at the beach or breakfast in bed.
Favourite three items: Flights to Thailand, a watersports day and massage at the beach.
What you loved most about having a gift list with Prezola? How easy it was for our guests to use. As we had a destination wedding, our fear was that guests may add money to cards which could go missing on the day. We opted for the honeymoon gift list as we didn’t own our own property at the time and therefore having a beautiful honeymoon was our priority.
Carl & Marc
Registered with Prezola. They had a quirky and fun barn wedding at Gaynes Park surrounded by friends and family.
The process: It was really quick and easy to sign up and start our gift list on the Prezola site. The site was really intuitive, including activating the gift list and linking it from our Getting Married wedding website.
Favourite three items: We created a completely bespoke collection of cash fund listings for our honeymoon in Japan. We already had everything we needed for our home and wanted our guests to be able to contribute to a specific element of our honeymoon to make things more personal. We listed lots of accommodation, travel, excursions, experiences and special meals.
What you loved most about having a gift list with Prezola? The cash fund feature on Prezola was exactly what we needed. We were able to present our guests with a great range of items to choose from and when we closed the list after the wedding, the cash transfer was quick.
Best features/add ons: The site provided a clear summary of who had bought what so we were able to thank them personally during our travels. We were surprised to receive a delivery in the post including personalised gift cards with messages our guests had sent whilst completing their gift purchases. It was a really lovely touch and special to have an extra memento of their generosity.
Related article: 9 Must-Have Gifts From The Wedding Present Company