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Not every wedding is all about traditions, but there are some things you just can't skip. For instance, making sure the members of the wedding party know you appreciate all the work they've put in.
When it comes to your groomsmen, things can get tricky. The market for gifts for groomsmen is tough to navigate; it's almost as tough as finding the right gift for your groomsman. Don't stress; this guide will take you through everything you need to know about the roles and etiquette surrounding groomsmen, and give you some great groomsman gift ideas too!
For other gift ideas see our other popular articles:
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27 Best Gifts for Groomsmen
One of the best ways to show your groomsmen how much you appreciate them is giving them an upgrade on their regular go to items. This card holder does exactly that. They'll be proud to use (and show off) this leather card holder, made in classic brown with the highest quality leather. It's classy, works for everyone, and affordable.
With reclaimed wood and uniquely masculine design, this watch is a head turner. He'll love knowing it's made of oak whiskey barrels. Even the detailed dial is a surprisingly cool feature.
Make it easy on yourself and get your groomsman this customized set. It's got everything he needs to sip and celebrate in style. Of course, the bow tie is the cherry on top.
Give a tie that your groomsman would never expect, with some special touches that make all the difference. It isn't the typical navy you're thinking of; it's a special denim navy, and stands out just the right amount. A little texture goes a long way in making this tie perfect.
Find more ties here.
Make it easy for your groomsmen to stay looking sharp with this metallic tie clip. They'll be using these clips long after the wedding is over, and you might even want one for yourself. They even come in their own special pouches.
Sometimes a laid back groom crew needs laid back accessories to match. These groomsmen sunglasses are fun, with white 'role' labeling on the side. Make sure everybody brings theirs for the photos!
Help your groomsmen get ready for any event with this high quality leather belt. It's a decidedly upscale take on your regular belt. He'll love getting this bit of subtle style.
Beard kits are a big thing in men's personal care, and this kit shows your bearded bros how much you appreciate them. It comes with everything they need to feel their best. It even includes a special brush and scissors.
This is a great way to give your groomsman a gift he'll use everyday. These wood Mach 3 razors are a huge upgrade to his regular razor. They fit with regular razor heads, and each is unique.
You know the old sports mug he won't get rid of? Give him a reason to ditch it for this upgrade. This mug is a sturdy glass that you can personalize just for him.
Invite celebration anywhere with a classic flask, and get it monogrammed so he'll always get it passed back. It's curved for discreet carrying, although he's definitely going to want to show it off! Two tones add the perfect amount of detail.
Help your groomsmen get ready with a dress shirt unlike any other. They might have white dress shirts, but none with the precise tailoring and elegant details that this one does. It's useful, but also something he'll feel great wearing to any occasion. Find our favorite dress shirts here or our popular spread collar shirts here.
Pocket watches are a coveted men's accessory. These modern pocket watches feature standout white on black design. Give it a little extra something by personalizing it with his name or a message.
You don't have to be a craftsman to appreciate these engraved pocket knives. They look as good as they work; and who doesn't want to give (and get) a gift that's also useful?
These leather wallets are even better with the personalized money clip. It adds plenty of class to your groomsman's gear. They even come as a set, with one for each groomsman.
Let your appreciation show in the details. Stamped with their role, everybody will know who's on the groom crew. Even better, they're super easy to put on.
These decanters are an ideal gift for guys that like to sip in style. The etched glass adds the perfect accent, while thick glass ensures it's as sturdy as any out there. A set of five guarantees a gift for each of your guys.
These tumblers hold even super sized drinks, at the perfect temperature too. The matte black finish is perfect for any groomsman, and you can add his name for an extra touch. With a set of five, your to do list just got shorter.
Everybody knows what a pain it is to get stuck without a bottle opener. This handy credit card bottle opener goes everywhere his wallet does. They can be personalized, and as a bonus, they come in a pack of five.
Every guy needs a go to scarf,whether or not he realizes it. This wool scarf keeps the details in the quality. As a bonus, it'll go with anything.
Give your groomsman a chance to treat himself with a brand new dopp kit. The leather is quality that will last for years to come. It even comes with a name stamp, so he'll know you put some thought into it.
Really great lighters can turn into heirlooms, and this engraved lighter fits the bill perfectly. It's a thoughtful and budget friendly way to show your groomsmen how much you appreciate their work. You can choose from a variety of designs to make sure it's just right.
Everybody needs a docking station, but nobody will have bragging rights like the groomsman that gets this classy wood station. It has just the right amount of rugged feel to it, and all the storage areas and utility that any guy needs. For extra points, get it personalized with his name.
A good pocket knife is a staple in any guy's kit. This personalized wood pocket knife is a tool they'll treasure for years to come. Of course, you can expect it'll hold a special place wherever your groomsman goes.
25. Groomsmen Cooler
You've never seen a cooler like this, and your groomsmen will love getting a huge upgrade on their old cooler. This is a 'take anywhere' cooler, and it's so brag worthy they'll be looking for any excuse to break it out. Even better, it comes with a bottle opener to match!
This is a great way to keep any groomsman traveling in classic style. If you're having a destination wedding, or you have a groomsman coming from out of town for the wedding, these luggage tabs are an absolute must.
This classy shot glass is sleek, and invites some after the ceremony celebration. Choose between four different medallion styles to fit your groomsman's style, and get it personalized for free to add that extra touch. It's a gift that he'll always use, and a memory you'll never forget.
Groomsmen Gifts Etiquette
How much should you spend?
This can be a touchy subject. On one hand you don't want to spend too little and minimize the work your groomsmen have done. On the other hand, you don't want to break the bank, or give gifts that are awkwardly expensive.
While the amount you spend on groomsmen gifts will vary depending on your circumstances, there are some rules of thumb you can use to guide your gifts. In general, you can expect to spend at least $50 for each groomsman, but try not to go above $150.
When should you give your groomsmen their gifts?
There are plenty of options here, and you can choose how and when to give groomsman gifts to suit your wedding party. Some grooms prefer to give their gifts during typical 'groom crew' bonding activities; who wouldn't like getting a gift at a bachelor party or pre wedding barbecue? A casual approach is great for a lot of groups, and it allows plenty of time to address each groomsman and show your appreciation.
The traditional time that many couples choose to give gifts to the wedding party is at a rehearsal dinner. It's less formal than many other events surrounding the wedding, not to mention much smaller. Rehearsal dinners also allow plenty of time for you to thank everyone involved, and it makes giving a gift more special than at a more hectic time.
When should you start buying groomsman gifts?
This is another thing that will vary from person to person. Depending on how far out your wedding is, you may have up to a year or only a couple months to get things in order. It's always better to err on the side of caution and order earlier.
If you wait until a couple weeks before the wedding, you might find that your 'perfect groomsman gift' is sold out (or takes longer to arrive). This is especially true since many groomsmen gifts are personalized, and can take longer to create.
When in doubt, try to order the gifts between two and three months before the wedding. If anything should happen with your order, you'll still have time to make other arrangements.
What are the reasons to give groomsmen gifts?
First and foremost, it's a way to show how much you appreciate them. Remember, being a groomsman is much more than simply standing at your side while you make your vows.
They drive back and forth from rehearsals, coordinate on your behalf, lend their support when you need it, prepare speeches, buy or rent special attire, and so much more. A thoughtful gift or personal note is a way to acknowledge all they do.
Also consider that you're passing a huge milestone in your life, and your best buds are right there with you. A special gift is a token of the distance your friendship has gone. It doesn't have to be huge, but it's good to show people that they matter.
What makes a good groomsman gift?
First off, something that's appropriate to each groomsman. You wouldn't get a camping kit for an indoorsy bookworm, and you wouldn't get a decanter for a friend that's sober. That doesn't mean you can't get those things for other groomsmen, of course.
Use common sense and get gifts that are actually appropriate for each guy in your wedding crew. With that said, there are gifts that pretty much any groomsman will be happy to get (and that are more traditional gifts, too).
Dress clothing and accessories are great choices; cufflinks, dress socks or a shirt, ties, and watches are classics. Tools and practical gifts are another solid option; a personalized lighter or pocket knife are useful and thoughtful. Shaving kits and men's care products are ways to show you care, and let them pamper themselves. Custom tumblers, hip flasks, and other bar accessories are also a classic choice, and you can have them personalized for an extra special touch.
In the end, the most important thing is that the gift you give is something you've thought about, and that your groomsman can enjoy.
Who takes care of buying groomsman gifts?
With so many people pitching in to make the wedding a success, there's a lot of gift giving involved. Of course, you want to show each member of your wedding party you appreciate them.
Who exactly takes care of buying the groomsmen gifts though? Nobody knows your best friends like you do, and they're part of the wedding party to support you. That means it's up to you to buy their gifts. Of course, you wouldn't want somebody else to pick out their gifts, since you'll be able to find the best choice for each of your groomsmen.
Roles of a Groomsmen
It can be difficult to pin down exactly what groomsmen are responsible for. After all, they end up taking on a lot of work that people outside the wedding party don't realize. So what exactly are the roles of a groomsman?
Organizing pre wedding events for the groom
While a lot of events before the wedding get planned by the couple or other members of the wedding party, most events for the groom are organized by the groomsmen. Of course, they help plan and coordinate the bachelor party.
They also help get other pre wedding events together, like a groom crew cookout, round of golf, and more. You might even take part in the planning, but your groomsmen are still helping figure out who brings the burgers, who brings the buns and beer, or even who's responsible for driving or calling a cab after a night out.
Groomsmen do a lot of work for the bachelor party especially. It's often custom for the groomsmen to all pitch in to cover the costs of the bachelor party and everything involved.
Attending all wedding party events
Even if they're not planning them, groomsmen still have to attend all the events for the wedding party. They're at every rehearsal, formal dinner, engagement party, rehearsal dinner, and anything else that requires their presence.
That takes a real commitment, since these events happen over an extended period of time, at different times of day, and different locations.
Keeping attire in line
Often, groomsmen are there by your side as you decide what the groom party will be wearing. From the type of suit or tux, to the colors, to who wears what, they can help you through these choices.
Not only do they often help coordinate the attire, they also have to take care of getting their own outfits together. That means they have to take special trips to the tailor for fittings, ensure their clothing matches the scheme, and buy or rent a suit or tuxedo for the occasion. Groomsmen often also help with making sure the tailor gets the measurements, and pick up the groom party attire if needed.
Helping with gift duty
Groomsmen get the couple a gift, or even take part in coordinating a group gift for the couple. Groomsmen may even opt to purchase a smaller gift for the engagement celebrations. As wedding gifts accumulate after the ceremony, groomsmen help (if needed) to carry them to the car or deliver them to the most convenient location for the couple.
Keeping the party going
Aside from walking the bridesmaids down the aisle, groomsmen play a big part in the social aspect of the wedding. They help guests stay informed and find their spots (an usher may do this for the actual ceremony however).
After the wedding is over, they continue this role during the reception. They mingle with guests from each side of the couple, and there's plenty of dancing too. That may not seem like a big role, but it keeps the guests comfortable, and keeps everyone celebrating.
Groomsmen dance with guests and wedding party members, especially the bridesmaids and female guests that show up without a 'plus one.'
Supporting the groom
This is one of the most recognizable roles of a groomsman. However, it entails more than a lot of people realize. Of course, they're there to listen whether you're getting pre wedding jitters, or can't figure out why place cards are such a big deal.
They're your go to guys for solid advice and support, especially as the wedding approaches. They help ease your mind about any concerns, and ultimately help you de-stress and chill out when you need it most.
They go through the whole process with you, from your engagement announcement to the end up the reception and clean up.
Keeping track of the ring
Of course, not all the groomsmen are responsible for keeping track of the ring after the ring bearer brings it. If you only have one groomsman, he'll naturally take over the responsibility.
Otherwise, the best man takes the job, and will hold onto the ring during the ceremony until you're finished making your vows. Then, he hands the ring over so you and your partner can complete the wedding ceremony.
Covering costs of being a groomsman
One or two things at a time won't seem like a huge expense. That said, everything that goes into being a member of the wedding party can get very costly when you add it up. They'll be paying to cover their own transportation and any travel costs (and there's a lot of going to and from other wedding related events).
They also take care of the costs for purchasing or renting their wedding attire, and any accessories required. Then, consider the costs they incur on purchasing gifts for you, and making events for the groom extra special.
As we discussed earlier, they often pay for the bachelor party, and at least pitch in on other groom party events. Groomsmen can choose to individually buy a gift, or go in on a gift as a group. Either way, it's another expense to make your wedding special.
How Many Groomsmen Should You Have?
It can be hard enough to choose just which guys you’re going to ask to be your groomsmen. Of course, you’re most likely going to ask your best buds, close male family members, and the guys that have always been there for you. While you know who’s really stood beside you throughout the years, it can also be tough to decide who gets to stand beside you at the wedding.
Unfortunately, it’s just not practical to ask every guy you’ve ever bonded with to be a groomsman. That leaves you to decide; but it’s even harder to narrow down your choices if you’re not quite sure how many groomsmen you should have. Of course, not every wedding has the same number of groomsmen either.
Here’s what you need to think about when you’re choosing how many groomsmen you’ll have:
First, take a moment to ask about the bridesmaids. It sounds a little strange, right?
While your partner is also going to have to choose how many people to have at their side, it’s important to maintain balance. As you both stand up to take your vows, it’ll be a peculiar sight to see ten bridesmaids and three groomsmen (or vise versa). Try to have the same number of bridesmaids and groomsmen, or at least try and keep the numbers close.
Next, think about the wedding budget. Naturally, the more guests you have, the more it’s going to cost you. It works the same way with the wedding party. Your groomsmen need to be outfitted, included in special celebrations outside of the wedding, and everything else that comes along with it. It’s also custom to give your groomsmen gifts to show your appreciation.
Basically, don’t get yourself in a bind by adding too many people to the wedding party if you haven’t considered the added expenses.
Another thing to think about when you’re choosing how many groomsmen you have, is how many guests you’re expecting to attend the wedding. Groomsmen play an important part in helping guests from the time they arrive, as the ceremony begins, and all the way through to the end of the reception.
If you don’t have separate members of the wedding party acting as ushers, your groomsmen will help take over that responsibility too. They’ll even dance with unpaired guests and bridesmaids at the reception.
If you’re still struggling to pin down how many groomsmen you should have, there’s a good rule of thumb you can use to guide your choice:
If you’re having a formal wedding, expect to have more groomsmen. With around 200 or more guests, six to ten groomsmen is fairly standard. If you’re having a more intimate, less formal wedding, you won’t need as many groomsmen. In that case, feel free to choose between three and five groomsmen. Of course, if your budget allows (and the number of bridesmaids is on par) and you’d like to have more groomsmen, go ahead; it’s your special day after all.
Weddings are notoriously hectic, and your groomsmen are there to help you through it. With so much going on, getting gifts for groomsmen can seem like yet another task you can't seem to cross off your list.
Remember how much they're doing for your wedding, and choose a gift that shows how much their work means to you. The wedding will be over after the ceremony, but the memories will last, as will a special token of your appreciation for them.