A man’s life and the lives of those he calls his best friends come in distinct stages. There’s the late elementary school stage when a boy and his friends all realize that girls aren’t really cootie-ridden after all. This is immediately followed by the middle school stage when they all lose their boyish voices simultaneously and start speaking like real men and not little girls. The high school stage is marked by the beginnings and endings of young blossoming romance, hand holding, and of course…kissing. In the college stage, there are more serious relationships, some fantastic, others troubling. Then it’s on into the 20s (and sometimes even the 30s) when it seems all of the guy friends start getting engaged and married. Invitations start popping out right and left, there’s a new bachelor party every other weekend, best men are chosen, tuxedos are fitted, and some of history’s best toasts are crafted.
As a chosen man about to embark on the journey of marriage, you are luckily exempt from many of the stresses of wedding planning; sure you may have to go with your bride to test various wedding cake options (easy enough) and pick out the china (just go with the flow on this one), but you might be one of the lucky guys whose bride leaves a lot of the details and planning up to herself and her bridesmaids and mother.
One tradition you might get roped into, however, is the selection of the wedding party gifts. Now, you might be thinking, wait, what? Aren’t I the one who is meant to receive gifts? It is, after all, MY wedding. True, but you and your bride have likely asked a few select close friends to be part of your wedding party; they’ll shell out a couple hundred bucks for dresses/suits/tuxes they will never wear again; transportation costs and hotel stays (for the duration of your wedding events) they will likely get to enjoy. The least you could do is acknowledge their participation and friendship with a small token of appreciation. Traditionally, the bride will select the gifts for her bridesmaids leaving you flying solo to choose the gifts for your best guy friends.
If you happen to have large sums of money burning a hole in your pocket you could spring for the latest High Def plasma screen television or round trip tickets to anywhere in the world, but, really, what groom has any type of money after shelling out a small fortune for an upscale wedding? A great groomsmen gift that not only speaks “class” but is equally useful for the wedding is a great set of cufflinks (just a note: gifts for the wedding party are often handed out at the rehearsal dinner the night before). Depending on the theme or tone of your wedding, there are cufflinks to meet your specific occasion. Here are just a few cufflinks ideas for different wedding themes:
* If you and your groomsmen all happen to work in the same industry (for example, accounting or high tech) a set of business or career-related cufflinks could definitely be a possibility. Maybe you and your best buds work volunteer for the local firehouse or are all policemen. There are several cufflink options available for those lines of work as well.
* Should the wedding be a bit more upscale and formal (maybe you’re one of the lucky dogs getting married at the Plaza in New York City…we all hate and envy you by the way), the more traditional solid colored cufflinks might be the best route to go. Colored cufflinks can be matched to the color of the bridesmaid’s dresses which will make your bride swoon in your attempts to participate and coordinate.
* So you and your buddies are those diehard football fans who look forward to the fantasy football drafts in August? That’s easy. Pick each of your buddy’s favorite NFL teams and get them the corresponding cufflinks to individually represent themselves at the wedding. Sure, you might hate the Patriots, but your buddy doesn’t; remember, he’s doing you a huge honor by standing by your side on one of the biggest days of your life.
* You could take the personalization of your groomsmen a step further and give them initial letter cufflinks. Your best man, Doug Henderson for example, could have a set of cufflinks with the letter ‘D’ or ‘H’, or one of each.. There are also engravable cufflinks that you could have scribed with the date of the wedding or the nicknames of your groomsmen.
A set of cufflinks are a great gift for the groomsmen in your wedding party. Not only are they tasteful and classy, they can also be used for many future upscale occasions. They are also a versatile gift as there are cufflinks to fit just about any occasion. If your buddies are Star Wars fanatics who plan to hold light sabers up for you and your bride to walk under down the aisle (with the Star Wars theme gently playing in the background), there are even Star-Wars-inspired cufflinks. In fact, I just Googled “Darth Vader cufflinks” and got almost 200 hits, so that should tell you a little something right there. Simply have your bride or another competent wrapper gift wrap these presents for your groomsmen, write a personalized note to each (please put something a bit more personalized than “Thanks!” with a stamped signature) and watch the man-tears flow at the rehearsal dinner.