Here's What to Do if Someone Gives You a Gift You Didn't Ask For

Did one of your guests go rogue and buy something that wasn't on the registry? Here's what to do.
sophie ross the knot bridal fashion and beauty expert
Sophie Ross
sophie ross the knot bridal fashion and beauty expert
Sophie Ross
Bridal Fashion and Beauty Expert
  • Sophie Ross is a Senior Copywriter at Adore Me.
  • Sophie is an experienced style and beauty writer.
  • Sophie worked as an Associate Editor for The Knot from 2017 to 2019.
Updated Jul 30, 2018

You have a registry for a reason, but odds are, you'll have a guest (or two) go rogue—instead of gifting you cash or something you personally picked, they'll buy you a fancy set of wine glasses you don't need or a cutting board that's just not your style.

Of course, if you had room in your home for every single gift, you'd keep them. But your registry exists for a reason, and you don't want your newlywed nest looking more like an episode of Hoarders. Here's what to do if you need to get some unwanted—but still appreciated!—gifts off your hands.

Return it if you can.

It's proper gifting etiquette to include any return information—whether it's a gift receipt or return instructions. Of course, sometimes things aren't returnable, or the return date has passed by the time you get around to opening your gifts (say, if you go on a little vacation called your honeymoon). Double-check the return policy for the store or retailer, or give them a call and explain your situation to see if anything can be done. If that doesn't work, you have other options.


Donate it.

Goodwill, Salvation Army, your local thrift shop—the opportunities are endless. Whether it's a salad bowl or picture frame, odds are, there's someone in need who will get way more use out of it than you ever will, and you can write it off on your taxes.

Sell it.

If you feel like making an extra buck or two—or just need motivation to finally get all of the unwanted tchotchkes out of your storage room—you can use websites like Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist to see who's in the market for a pastel toaster or fancy pair of tongs.

Regift it (carefully).

Emphasis on the word "carefully." We don't doubt you'll tediously keep track of whom your gifts are from (for your thank-you notes, of course), but you can't forget the importance of social circles. If you get a cheese platter from your sorority sister, don't regift it to your other mutual friend from college—you know, just in case they're together one night for some brie and wine and the truth comes out.

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