Lots of guys have been asking for help with groomsmen gifts because they're surprisingly tricky to check off the list, and there's no straight-forward manual when it comes to answering some tough questions. What are the best groomsmen gifts? How much should I spend on groomsmen gifts? When is the appropriate time to give them? We've found that the answers lie in the good old fashion W's:
Check out the below for pretty much everything you need to get groomsmen gifts covered:
1. The Who
If you haven't already done so, a solid first step toward crushing groomsmen gifts is selecting your groomsmen. Sounds simple enough, but choosing who makes the cut is actually a high-stress decision for lots of grooms (and even more so, brides) out there. The most common source of anxiety is not wanting to insult any of your buddies, but at the same time, keeping your groomsmen group tight and exclusive. The four best suggestions we have in this area are:
- Ask your partner how many they've got, and match it
- Figure out how much room you've got up at the altar, and work backwards from there (probably 6-8 people)
- Go with your closest friends and family you've got now, as opposed to an old friend from high school who you might not keep in touch with
- Group dynamic matters. Go with a group who knows each other well
Don't forget to include your best man! He's typically your closest brother, cousin or friend who you trust to be responsible, energetic and organized. He'll be the one keeping your other groomsmen in line and helping you keep your head on straight during this crazy process—so choose your man wisely.
2. The What
How much should I spend on groomsmen gifts? What should I get my groomsmen? Simple questions, tough answers. Of course, it largely depends on your wedding budget. For the sake of having an anchor price, about $50 per groomsman is the average spend. There are a few other factors to take into account before setting your budget, though:
- Have you already been a groomsman at one of their weddings? If so, that makes life easy. Gift them about the same amount that they gifted you :)
- How much are they spending on you? Keep in mind any travel or attire expenses (for example, asking them to wear a navy bowtie down your aisle will cost them a couple of bucks). You've got to spend at least the same amount on them
The Basics: Looking for rock solid groomsmen gifts that can't lose? Go with one of these best selling gifts that have been staples for years and will never go out of style:
Shinola Leather-Wrapped Hip Flask ($125)
We know, flasks have been there and done that - but this one's actually cool. We do wish it was customizable so that you can engrave each groomsman's name or initials, but Shinola's leather flask is just a really solid gift. That leather color will wear nicely over time, too.
Tumi Split Travel Kit ($95)
Just an awesome, useful gift - the Tumi toiletry bag holds all the essentials, whether taking a vacation or heading to the gym. Free monogramming, too.
Williams Sonoma Estate Barware Decanter ($50)
A welcome addition to anyone's bar at home, we like this one because it's got a subtle initial (or two) engraved up at the top. Good price too, so might suggest throwing in something smooth to fill it up with.
O’Harrow’s single letter monogrammed square ($26)
We like these because they're simple enough to not clash with any dark suit or tux out there. Plus, your groomsmen can wear them on the actual day of your wedding, which is pretty special.
Montblanc Cufflinks ($260)
On the pricey side as well, but we couldn't resist. These are super sharp and will go with anything from now till forever.
Wet Bar Custom Engraved Wooden Gift Box ($40)
This classic wood liquor box comes engraved with your groomsmen’s names and holds a standard 750ml bottle of fine tequila (which has been blowing up, btw), or whatever. We like it because they can save the wooden box to store keys, change, cufflinks, belts, ties, or whatever else for years to come.
Out of the Box: Trying to find something unique that will be memorable but still useful? Check out these gems:
Don Julio 1942 Engravable Tequila Bottle ($160)
'42 has blown up over the last few years. Gifting each of your guys with a bottle with your personal message engraved is at the very top of our list. And hey, don't worry - it's not like the Kardashians did it first, or anything.
Soho House Home Robe, Grey ($112)
Soho House is one of the best places to hang out. What most don't know is that they've got a pretty cozy home collection that you don't need an annual membership to buy from. Bathrobes all around will come in clutch over the long wedding weekend.
Timex “Waterbury” Date 40 ($130)
Pretty cool to gift your boys a freaking watch. Thanks to its sharp midcentury looks and rich leather strap, this is an everyday watch that looks and feels a whole lot pricier. You can inscribe a custom message on the back of the face, too.
Randolph Aviators ($130)
Nobody on television is better-dressed than Don Draper. His suiting game is unmatched, but you can take it a step up and gift his literal shades, too.
Paravel Fold Up Bag ($65)
We like because it's a perfect extra bag. They can use it daily for the gym, throw it in or on a carry-on, or even stow away some props for your bachelor party.
3. The When & Where:
We know who made the cut, and what to get them. When is the proper time to actually present your groomsmen gifts, though? We like a few options:
- At the rehearsal dinner: probably the most popular place to dish them out, since by that time the hype for your wedding is at it's highest. It's also a good opportunity to pair the gifts with a speech, if you plan on giving one.
- On your bachelor party: it's cool to give the gifts on your BP since there (hopefully) aren't any others around, but don't forget that they have to pack them up and schlep back home. Skip this option if your gifts are big or heavy.
- On your wedding day: not highly recommended, but we've attended a few weddings where the groom likes the idea of a last-minute gift to get the pep sky high. Great for energy and morale, bad for convenience.
Bottom line, the best time and place to dish out your gifts really depends on what type of gifts you got and your wedding schedule. Pick something that works best for you, but don't wait till the last minute. You've got enough to stress about at crunch time.
4. The Why:
Keeping sight of the big picture, let's not forget why we give our groomsmen gifts in the first place. It's the best way to thank them for being key players in your wedding—and in life.