Gransnet forums


Did anyone here have a " show of presents"? Maybe only in Scotland?

(63 Posts)
Daddima Tue 11-Jul-17 13:06:06

The Baby Shower thread reminded me of this " ladies only" practice. They don't seem to happen nowadays, as there is often a hen night/weekend/week, and fewer people give " wee mindings", as the happy couple have probably lived together.
The form was that the bride invited all gift givers to afternoon or evening when the gifts were on display, and followed by tea & cake ( usually in the afternoon), and there was usually strong drink on offer in the evening, with much singing and general hilarity.

tanith Tue 11-Jul-17 13:33:42

Never heard of it here in England. Would this be after the wedding ? As most gifts are given on the day.

annsixty Tue 11-Jul-17 13:38:29

This was the custom when I married but not the evening bit.
In those days though wedding presents were given and unwrapped in advance of the day and were displayed in a spare bedroom all over the furniture and the neighbours and friends would come in to see them.Now it seems they are all taken to the wedding and piled up on tables still wrapped and the parents have the job of getting them home and storing them until the couple get back from honeymoon.

annsixty Tue 11-Jul-17 13:39:57

I was talking England tanith but 59 years ago!!

paddyann Tue 11-Jul-17 13:49:49

yes we had 2 as we lived 45 miles apart,one at MIL 's house for their relatives and friends and one at my mums,we also had what is locally called a bottling,dress the bride up and parade her round the streets with L plates and a veil bang pots and pans and sell kisses ,I made a fair amount of cash at we finished up with lit candle in salt inside a potty which we had to jump over and the mumber of times you jumped without the candle going out was the number of children you'd have .A lot of fun,singing and a much cheaper way than the week at a Spa or abroad mmost brides have now.I've been married 42 years next week

Maggiemaybe Tue 11-Jul-17 14:18:42

I'd forgotten about wedding presents being on show. Yes, we got them all in advance (this was Yorkshire, in the 70s). We were married at 1 at the local church, had our reception at the hotel round the corner, then went to our house down the road where anyone who wanted to could come and see the gifts, on display in the bedroom. Loads did! I can remember there was some kerfuffle over a suitcase a cousin had bought which simply had to be collected from miles away by DH just before the wedding so that it could be out there with the rest. smile

M0nica Tue 11-Jul-17 14:22:24

Way back in the 1960s I went to the wedding of the daughter of a Scottish farmer, who farmed in Kent. On the day, before the wedding, I was invited to a show of presents in the farm dairy. It was for everyone, regardless of gender. It is the only time I have come across this custom.

There were plenty of presents on display as most people had sent their gifts in advance of the event. I have always understood that wedding presents should be sent ahead of the wedding because of the inconvenience of dealing with the packages as the event moves from church/registry office (as it was then) to the reception and getting them home after the event.

hildajenniJ Tue 11-Jul-17 14:39:11

We had one, and asked all gift givers to view the presents. All my DH's relatives did too. I thought it was something that happened in the farming community! At ours I remember my aunt commenting on the lovely view from the windows of our house rather than the wedding presents.

paddyann Tue 11-Jul-17 14:55:31

everybody had show of presents hildajenniJ presents were always handed in to the parents homes just as the invitations were sent out,usually about 6 weeks before the wedding.Presents came from people we'd never met ,family who lived in different countries ,cousins of grannies and assorted friends from the dim and distant past.I remember my MIL tutoring me on who everyone was,as you had to announce where each gift had come from,at the SOP at MIL 's I diiligently went through the list of Step and Half relations of my FIL only to be told that they didn't really DO that,they were all just brothers and sisters....well my FIL and MIL obviously thought differently otherwise why was I coached .I was also taken aside by one of MIL's oldest friends and warned if I didn't look after her precious boy ( she had no children of her own and thought of my OH as hers ) what she would do to

paddyann Tue 11-Jul-17 14:58:19

my mothers neighbour gave us the cash to buy a fridge freezer...the latest "thing " everyone wanted.We spent it on a chess set instead.42 years down the line we still have and treasure that chess set ,we've gone through half a dozen fridge freezers

varian Tue 11-Jul-17 15:37:56

We had a show of presentsat my parents house in Scotland a week or two before the wedding in the sixties. All present givers were knvited but only ladies came. The presdnts were displayed with the gifg cards. They included several "wee mindings" shich were small presents from pdople not knvited to the wedding.

I did not have a hen night. I'd never been to one or even heard of it and the stag do was just an evening in the pub, not a week in Las Vegas!

varian Tue 11-Jul-17 15:39:27

Sorry about the typos.

Jane10 Tue 11-Jul-17 16:16:38

Gosh. We didn't have a show of presents. Didn't have a hen night either as I had important exams right up until the day of the wedding. I look a bit pale in the photos!

M0nica Tue 11-Jul-17 17:01:17

We had a quiet wedding with minimal fuss so few wedding presents, which quite suited us, as we were moving into a small rented flat and would be saving for a house, we didn't want ltos of things for the flat that might not suit the house we bought later.

Anyway, DF's family would have deeply disapproved of the 'showing off' involved in a display of presents.

Auntieflo Tue 11-Jul-17 17:35:05

Daddima, yes, but I had completely forgotten about it. Our presents were unwrapped and put on display in my parent's front room. As I'm nearly the same vintage as Annsixty, this will be 56 years ago this September.
Annsixty, I apologise for missing your birthday recently, flowers wine ?

shysal Tue 11-Jul-17 18:07:37

At our smallish wedding our presents were given to us at the reception where we displayed them. However, one couple of guests came in to the church service with an ironing board, having travelled by train and taxi!

Maggiemaybe Tue 11-Jul-17 19:03:28

Not much "showing off" involved with our display of presents, M0nica. grin Our highlights were the traditional two toasters and several toast racks, more than one set of nylon sheets, a plastic clothes airer, a pottery bowl with a crying onion on it, and a shocking pink and orange flowered plastic laundry basket instead of the wicker one we hoped for "because you won't want everybody to be able to see your dirty smalls through the gaps". confused

annodomini Tue 11-Jul-17 19:14:10

In my youth I helped out at several friends' and relatives' shows of presents. This was always a couple of weeks before the wedding, in the 'front room' of the bride's parents' house. After a few of these dos, I escaped left the country and when I came back for my sister's wedding, there was no question of a show of presents, so the custom must have died out in those few years.

M0nica Tue 11-Jul-17 20:05:39

You didn't have to have anything to show off in DF's family to be accused of showing off. I can remember excitedly telling my D(?)GM that I had passed a music exam. She looked at me and without smiling said: 'Your trumpeter will not die of overwork.'

I wonder how a modern 'show' would look. All cheques or the tickets for the honeymoon paid for by the guests?

Katek Tue 11-Jul-17 20:30:20

Still have the show of presents here in NE Scotland......dd2 had one in 2001. It's a big thing -best china, the works. sometimes individual sugar cubes have been decorated with tiny icing flowers in the wedding colour! I've also seen the wedding dress on display in a glass case with a red rope barrier around it at one of these do's.

rosesarered Tue 11-Jul-17 20:30:20

No, never heard of this 'showing' thing.

We had wedding presents on the day itself....modest stuff by todays standards.

SueDonim Wed 12-Jul-17 01:03:50

I haven't heard of anyone having a show of presents in recent times. A row of gift vouchers from John Lewis wouldn't be very exciting!

The tradition I recall of my childhood was that the wedding presents would be displayed on a table at the wedding reception for people to view.

mimiro Wed 12-Jul-17 02:34:11

usa> gifts were sent in the weeks before the wedding and put on show either at the reception or the parents home before the wedding and after(usually a smaller reception a day or two after the honeymoon.)
sister was married in 1999 and they had them on show at the reception.
we eloped and went to norway.smilesmilegrin

BlueBelle Wed 12-Jul-17 06:12:53

Never heard of this I wonder if it's regional I married in the 60 s and again in the 80 s and didn't have any pre show.
I do remember people having a table at the wedding reception as SueDonin has described

annsixty Wed 12-Jul-17 06:53:59

Auntieflo Thank you for your good wishes and no apology needed as my Birthday is today,