(Closed) cover your plate.

posted 4 years ago in Gifts and Registries
Post # 61
Member
5789 posts
Bee Keeper

Here’s another way to look at this silly ‘rule’. Say you are invited as a couple and you’re giving a gift from both of you. If something unforeseen comes up and one of you is unable to attend, do you then split your gift and only give half now? Sign the card from just one of you? No. Who would do that?

Give your gift based on how close you are to the couple and how much you can afford to give. That’s why so many people have never heard of this…because it isn’t a real thing.

Post # 62
Member
104 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: Laurel Hall

HoorayLouLou:  I am from the midwest, lived in the South and my Fiance is from the South. I agree with previous posters about “gifting what you can afford” My Fiance and I have our own wedding, student loans, etc. and we give what we can afford. I’ve been in half a dozen weddings in the last few years and I have friends who are literally a bridesmaid in one per month. I have always given what I can afford, be that a $150 keurig, a fancy cutting board or $50 cash; it depends on how well I know what the couple is needing/wanting most. In turn, for our wedding, we don’t expect elaborate gifts/checks, just the company of our friends/family. I’m sure some family members will give $100-250 and others will simply give us $20 or something handmade- like others said, we aren’t here to make a profit/break even. I have heard from some friends/cousins from big Italian families (I’m Italian/German) that they wouldn’t consider going to a wedding without at least $150/pp and wouldn’t ever throw a wedding without an open bar so I feel like it’s interesting other people of Italian heritage have mentioned this as well. 

Post # 63
Member
1992 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

ItWasntMe:  If you’ve RSVP’d yes for 2 people, then you still cover both plates.

 

I’m from the South and didn’t grow up with cover your plate.  I only heard of it when I joined the bee.  I fully agree with the concept.  If I can’t afford to attend someone’s wedding properly (part of that to me is covering your plate), then I will not attend at all. And if its someone close to me getting married, then chances are that I’ve known about the wedding for long enough to save up for a decent gift.

Post # 64
Member
1977 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016 - Sussex, UK

chaibella:  No one should have to save up to buy a gift for a wedding. That’s crazy. Surely the bride and groom would rather you be there with a small gift than not attend.

Post # 65
Member
252 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

Personally, I think it’s appropriate to give the gift that you can afford. 

Post # 66
Member
1992 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

EllyAnne:  It depends on whose wedding I’m attending to be honest.  If its an acquaintenance, I’d rather at least cover my plate, because I feel that is polite.  If I can’t afford to cover my plate, I’d likely send my regrets with a small gift.  If we’re just acquaintenaces, then I doubt they would be heartbroken by getting my regrets.  I’d rather them save their money on my plate, and I’m sure they’d rather the same.

If its someone I’m really close to, then the idea of CYP goes out the window.  For instance, my sister showered me with over $1000.00 in gifts, during the week of my wedding.  Of course I’m going to get her a nice ass gift! I won’t even be worrying about CYP, and I don’t mind saving to do it.  The night before my rehearsal dinner, my sister bought me $500.00 worth of spa treatments and paid for a $400.00/night hotel for us to stay in.  On top of that she also got me a very nice set of hand painted wine glasses as a wedding gift.  When it’s time for her to get married, you best believe I’ll be returning the favor, and yes that means I’ll have to save. I don’t just have an extra $1000.00 in my bank account to use on wedding related gifts.

My sister is a special case though.  For a typical close family member or friend I’m likely going to find out about their wedding long before the invitations go out, and I’ll start making arrangements to attend once the date is set & venue is selected. Of course I won’t book a hotel or buy a plane ticket until I get the invite, but I will start putting the money aside to do those things.  This also means that I’ll calculate the cost of the gift into my budget for attending their wedding. I can get an idea on how much the plates will cost simply by knowing the venue, and talking with family/friends/the couple, about the time of the wedding, themes, menu, or whatever (keep in mind this is general conversation, not weird nosey questions like; “will you be serving lobster and the finest liquors or will we have BBQ and beer”).  It’s not like I’ll be saving to buy just the gift, but I’ll be saving to cover the full cost of attendance. Since most of my family is states away, this always includes hotel and flight.  I’ll figure out how much it will all cost and then sock away “x” amount of money each paycheck.

 I typically manage all of my expenses with a very strict/detailed budget anyway, so I don’t see the issue with saving to attend a wedding, or to buy a gift, just as I would save for anything else I wanted to spend my money on, that wasn’t a typical line item in my budget.  It’s just how I manage my money.  I don’t know why you think its so crazy.

Post # 67
Member
1977 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016 - Sussex, UK

chaibella:  I didn’t realise you were including travel etc in your decision to attend a wedding. I totally get that. I thought you meant you wouldn’t attend if you couldn’t gift enough to CYP and that’s what I thought was crazy. 

We are all different. My sister had a Destination Wedding so I wouldn’t have been able to afford such a lavish gift on top of the flights, accommodation etc. 

Post # 68
Member
2805 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I’m from Western New York. Covering your plate is something that my parents always taught me was proper when I was younger. I think the idea was much more prominent here in the 70’s and 80’s, as it is not common to adhere to strictly anymore. It is much more common here to give $50-$100 per guest depending on the relationship to the bride and groom. A difference here that I have noticed from wedding bee is that in addition to the monetary gift given at the wedding reception, we also give a bridal shower gift ($50-$100) and a bachelorette/stag party gift ($25-$50), which it seems is not common in all places.

I think that when the “covering your plate” concept was popular, weddings were not the overly elaborate affairs that they are now. It is not uncommon these days to see people spending $150+ per plate, which is simply quite a bit of money to expect “guests” to pay you back for. Also, I think that it is difficult for guests to even gauge the costs at some weddings. My brothers wedding was $125/plate and I don’t think I would have ever guessed even close to that had I not been told the amount.

Post # 69
Member
648 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

West coast Canada. I had never heard of this before wb. I give what we can afford and based on the closeness of us to the couple. 

Post # 70
Member
625 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

It seems tasteless and something I only encountered when I moved from the south to the north east. A gift by its very nature is not a demand. If a gift is required then it’s a tax, not a gift. Guest shouldn’t be there to fund your wedding, they should be there to celebrate with you. You’d be surprised how many people don’t attend weddings, not because they don’t want to show their love and support the bride and groom but because they can’t “cover the plate” in addition to all the other expenses that pop up to attend a wedding like traveling, babysitters, time off from work, hotel expenses.  If it came down to it I’d be devastated if one of my loveones didn’t attend because they couldn’t meet my gift demands. Seems so selfish.

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 3 months ago by  Ambi D.

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