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Top 10 Gifts for the Bride

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Friends and loved ones of the bride have it tough. Not only do you have to find great engagement, shower, and wedding gifts, but usually birthday and holiday gifts as well. When a bride is getting hundreds of presents from her registry, it can be hard to figure out other things she wants. Yet never fear, your trusty guide is here to give you ten great things that every bride needs.

1. A Slim Digital Camera

When planning a wedding, a bride visits tons of vendors, sites and stores that she'll want to remember. With a slim digital camera in her bag, she'll be able to snap away and remember her options later. The bride planning her wedding with a fiance or mother far away will doubly appreciate the easy ability to digitally share pictures for consideration.

2. A spa gift certificate

Every bride I've known was STRESSED out. An inexpensive manicure or pedicure will help her look great at pre-wedding events, tense muscles will love a massage, and a facial will help her skin look fantastic for wedding pictures. Or splurge and get her a full-day of beauty that will allow for maximum relaxation time. I recommend buying a gift certificate from spafinder.com, where the recipient can choose from a variety of spas and treatments.

3. A Book That Will Make Her Laugh

Along those same lines, the stressed-out bride needs to laugh. Why not give her a book such as "Diary of a Mad Bride" a comedic tale told in diary format. After pooh poohing her friends engaged mania, suddenly the protaginist finds herself being THAT crazy bride. If that's not her taste, try a wedding comedy movie or tickets to see some stand-up - laughter is, after all, the best medicine.

4. Monogramed Goodies

If a bride is changing her name, she'll appreciate getting towels, slippers, or keepsake boxes with her new initials on it. If she's not changing her name, similar items featuring the two initials for her and her fiance's last names will give hints of the new life she'll soon lead. She most likely won't have registered for monogrammed items - most registries that I know of don't have this option - so your gift will be unique.

5. Confirmation of Youth

Remind her that getting married doesn't have to mean changing who she is, with a bottle of her favorite whiskey, a gift certificate for sex toys, or a coupon for a girls night out. If she's not a wild girl, give her the same kind of present that you would have given her if she wasn't getting married - she'll still love the sappy movie, or the funky t-shirt.

6. Honeymoon Gift

If you know where she's planning on honeymooning, she'll love a helpful guidebook on the spot, or appropriate accessories. (beach blanket for a Carribean honeymoon, cashmere scarf for a ski-resort getaway, etc.) She won't have registered for it, but it will be tremendously helpful.

7. Lingerie

Every bride can use some reminders of her beauty and sexiness. Give her some gorgeous lingerie that will help keep the spark alive after the wedding night. Those of you who are conservative can give a beautiful pegnoir set, while adventurous types can opt for skimpy or crotchless panties, latex bras, or, well, you get the picture! Get some ideas from my top picks for wedding night lingerie.

8. Holiday Decorations

Today's brides register for furniture, electronics, and camping equipment, as well as the traditional kitchen and entertaining gear. Yet very few brides have the holiday decorations they'll need to start new traditions and recreate old traditions. Whether you give a holiday ornament with both of their names engraved on it, a beautiful menorah, or a cornucopia to create a Thanksgiving centerpiece, your gift will be put to use for years to come.

9. Engagement Memories

A newly married couple will have lots of documentation of the wedding day itself, yet few have documentation of planning the wedding. A bride will love a beautiful album with pictures of her shower, a journal for recording her thoughts during the process, or a scrapbook you've put together. Grooms, why not put together a scrapbook of your dating memories? To make it extra special, add tickets or gift certificates so that you can revisit one of the places that made such great memories.

10. A History of Her Fiance's Family

She's gaining a whole new set of family members, but she probably doesn't have ANY idea of who they are! A thoughtful gift would be a labeled photo album with all of the new people in her family, or a beautiful groom's family tree (make sure you include the bride!).

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