The Etiquette to Know on How Much to Spend on Bridesmaids Gifts

Here's the 411.
Bridesmaid gift box with jewelry, candy, pashmina and personalized travel mug
Elaine K Garland Photography
emily rumsey the knot editor
by
Emily Rumsey
emily rumsey the knot editor
Emily Rumsey
Assistant Commerce Updates Editor
  • Emily helps maintain and update e-commerce content for The Knot
  • Before joining The Knot Worldwide, Emily worked as a website editor and manager for The Paleo Diet®
  • Emily holds two bachelor's degrees in Journalism and International Affairs with a Chinese minor
Updated Jul 13, 2023
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Your wedding party is there to cheer you on every step of the way—and it's important to acknowledge their contributions (read: time, money and emotional support). As such, couples often buy wedding party thank-you gifts. If you're shopping for your support system, you may be wondering how much to spend on bridesmaid gifts. And once you know your budget, what do you buy and when do you give bridesmaids their gifts? We're answering all your burning maid-of-honor and bridesmaid gift etiquette questions and even sharing the best places to find meaningful presents.

Do you have to get your bridesmaids gifts?

No, you don't need to get your maid of honor and bridesmaids wedding thank-you gifts, but it's highly recommended. Picking out something small (or big, it's your choice) for each wedding attendant will let them know just how special they are to you and how much you appreciate everything they've done to support your wedding. Plus, it can serve as a memento for the occasion they can cherish for years. Gifts aren't the only way to express your gratitude, though. You should certainly tell them "thank you, thank you, thank you" after every errand, late-night planning phone call and prewedding event they attend or even host. Additionally, a handwritten thank-you card is a must. Instead of buying presents, you could also opt to pay for some or all of their wedding costs like their dresses, accessories, makeup and hair or housing accommodations at or near the venue. Whatever you choose, just remember: It's important to acknowledge all the support your friends and family give you as part of your wedding party.

How many gifts should you give your bridesmaids?

If you've decided to buy gifts for your bridesmaids, that's great! Know though, you don't need to go over the top to show your besties gratitude. Like most gifting occasions, it's really the thought that counts. There's no hard and fast rule that you have to give a certain number of gifts to your bridal party. It'll actually come down to your budget (more on that later) and what you want to give. Are you looking for bridesmaid proposal gifts and bridesmaid thank-you gifts? If so, you'll need to take the cost of each into account. Remember, while popular, neither are required. If you have a limited budget, we'd recommend thank-you gifts over wedding party proposal gifts. A sweet card or heart-to-heart conversation is more than enough to ask: "Will you be my bridesmaid?"

Regardless of what kind of bridesmaid gift you're purchasing—or what you've seen on social media—how many gifts you give each person is up to you. All we recommend is keeping things pretty even from attendant to attendant. Think about what your crew would like and use. One luxury bridesmaid gift is just as good as a few smaller, less expensive items.

How much should you spend on bridesmaid gifts?

Just like deciding if you should get your wedding party gifts and how many gifts you should give your wedding party, how much you spend on bridesmaid gifts is totally up to you too. (Sensing a theme?) Think about your wedding budget and decide with your fiancé how much you can spend. A good rule of thumb when budgeting for your own wedding party is to spend around what you'd spend on each person's birthday or holiday gift. That said, our research indicates couples spend an average of $80 per person in the wedding party.* This is just an average, though. If you can only spend $50 per person, that's okay. Just ensure your gift(s) accurately reflects the following sentiment: "I appreciate the time, effort and money you've put into this wedding." This could mean spending a bit more on your maid of honor's gift since it's likely they were a bit more hands-on than other bridesmaids.

Where can you buy good bridesmaid gifts?

Wondering where to buy bridesmaid gifts? You're in the right place. There are lots of great places to shop for wedding party presents online (listed below), including our very own The Knot Shop. You'll find lots of budget-friendly gifts like drinkware, totes, clutches, makeup bags, apparel and jewelry—almost all of which can be personalized.

  • Etsy: Etsy is a go-to retailer for all wedding guest gifts, from favors to premade proposal boxes to sentimental keepsakes. It's a hub for small businesses and independent creators, so you're bound to find MOH and bridesmaid gifts in a wide range of styles and prices. Just be sure to check product reviews before purchasing.
  • Anthropologie: For practical (but still cute) and high-end gifts, check out Anthropologie's Gifts & Candles section. They even have navigation specifically for bridesmaid gifts. Favorites include monogrammed coffee mugs, mini perfume bottles and astrology books.
  • Made By Mary: One of our top retailers for personalized jewelry is Made By Mary. Shop custom-stamped necklaces and bracelets as well as birth flower or birthstone rings and earrings. You'll definitely find a pretty bauble for your crew on their site.
  • Mark & Graham: When it comes to personalized wedding party gifts, Mark & Graham is a trusted place to shop. While they can be a bit more expensive, you're ensured the best quality pieces. Browse monogrammed bags, drinkware, travel accessories and more.
  • Uncommon Goods: If you're looking for one-of-a-kind bridesmaid gift ideas, Uncommon Goods has you covered. They support independent artists that create everything from jewelry to wellness gifts to mixology essentials to custom artwork—and it's all vetted by their buying team to ensure quality products. It won't be hard finding a great gift for every member of your wedding party, it'll just be hard choosing one.

    When do you give your bridesmaids their gifts?

    If you're wondering when to give your wedding party gifts, there isn't just one answer. There are a number of different times you can present them. For proposal presents, the earlier in the wedding planning process the better. The Knot's recent wedding party gifts survey showed that most couples asked their wedding party within two months of getting engaged. You want to give your crew lots of leeway to budget money and vacation time, so they can partake in your big day with limited stress.

    As for thank-you gifts, we recommend delivering them shortly before or after the wedding, like at the rehearsal dinner or the farewell brunch, if you're having one. You could also give your MOH and bridesmaids gifts on the wedding day itself, but keep in mind, you all already have a lot to keep track of that day and finding a time and place to safely hand out and stow the gifts might be tricky.

    When you decide to give your bridesmaid gifts might also depend on what you give them. If it's something they can wear during the wedding day—like jewelry, cuff links or customized sneakers to slip into at the party—present the gifts at the rehearsal dinner. If it's not something they're meant to have at the wedding—such as a gift card, self-care goodies, a picture frame or wine paraphernalia—feel free to hand it out a few days after the nuptials.

    *Based on The Knot Wedding Party Gifts Research

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