Minimalistic Wedding and Christmas Gifting

by | Dec 3, 2020

Did you also go through a Covid-cleansing process? A throw-it-out, pair-it-down exercise? For some reason, lockdown brought the Marie Kondo out in all of us and we were holding items up, asking ourselves if it sparks joy or not. If it didn’t, it went to the charity bin and got paid forward to someone who may use it.

With less than 25 days to Christmas, we are in the season of Christmas gifting.  December is a popular month for weddings, so it is a double whammy in the gifting department. How do we maintain the trajectory we are on, of gifting useful gifts, on the minimalistic side?



  1. Honeymoon Fund.
  2. Netflix subscription.
  3. “Of the Month” Club Membership.
  4. Gift Cards.
  5. Experience Gifts.
  6. Dinner in a Basket.
  7. Household Supplies.
  8. Cleaning Service.
  9. Car Maintenance Gifts.
  10. Gift Vouchers for Airlines and Hotels.
  11. Pay for a Pet/House Sitter.
  12. Outdoor Supplies

While first-time marriages often have a list of much-needed items, those who are going around the block a second time may already have a house set up. For the first-timers, it is essential to have a well thought out list of items needed. Don’t be shy to ask exactly what you need –  if you don’t, it’s only going to end in a kitchen already filled with toasters.

The meteoric rise of Omni-channels like Takealot broadens your shopping experience and all it needs is a bit of management from a willing relative. As a couple, you may need a tent for hiking or a garden gazebo more than a kettle, and with a few wedding guests clubbing together, the possibilities of meeting an actual need become that much more.

Your wedding website or Facebook page

“What the heck do you buy someone who doesn’t like “stuff”?”  – an important question to ask before delving into the gift buying process. Ashley from Meldrum Design ponders on the fact that many engaged couples are Tiny Homeowners. “We live in RV’s, urban apartments, trailers, and converted garages. We choose to live with less. It’s not because we can’t afford more, our priorities are just a little unique.”

Sometimes it helps to tell people a bit more about your life, lifestyle, and dreams. Spend a bit of time and thought to tell people what you spend your time doing, your hobbies and passions.  This will help them choose gifts that are unique to your needs and lifestyle choices.

Marie Kondo- photo courtesy of Kondo Media

Let’s get back to Marie Kondo for a moment, called “the picture-perfect Japanese woman who’s transformed tidying up into a full-blown lifestyle”, according to

We handpick a few of our favourite minimalist gifts from her list of clutter-free wedding gifts:


A Day at the Spa


A day of self-care and pampering for the bride and groom is high on the list of favourite clutter-free gifts. It leaves no traces or packaging behind – just a feel-good factor and much needed stress release after organising a wedding.


Workshop or Masterclass


Maybe the newlyweds have a passion for cooking? Or a keen interest in photography. Arrange for the couple to learn a new skill by attending a workshop or Masterclass. This clutter-free gift will stand the test of time and will strengthen their bond as they spend time together while practicing their new skill.


Self-Driving Adventure


Who doesn’t love the excitement of a scenic drive in a little sports car, or being the passenger in an old-fashioned sidecar? This gift can be combined with a stop-over picnic or even an exciting sleepover destination.



We compiled an imaginative list of wedding gift ideas that will not clutter up the newlyweds’ space and leave them smiling for a long time to come.


1.      Honeymoon Fund


Although this may feel a bit awkward at first, don’t shy away from asking for a contribution to your honeymoon instead of a gift. People still love the idea of giving, and contributing to a honeymoon experience feels good, you may even send each person who contributes to the fund a special honeymoon photo, thanking them personally for making this experience possible.


2.    Netflix subscription 

Staying in is totally on-trend and what better clutter-free gift to give than a Netflix subscription. Hours and hours of fun and entertainment are guaranteed.


3.    “Of the Month” Club Membership


We are spoilt for choice when it comes to gift memberships – it just takes a quick Google search to present a host of options. If the couple is wine lovers we recommend website where you can tell them exactly what you like and get personalised wine choices delivered on your doorstep every month. If they are more coffee kind of people, is a lot of fun. Beanbox is really good at sourcing the best coffee from local roasters and making it available to you.


4.    Gift Cards

This may seem like old news, but gift cards are never to be scoffed at. Cover household expenses, food, and interests with gift cards from your favourite outlets. And if you get too many gift cards (which we doubt), you can always re-gift it when money or inspiration is tight. We love the idea of a nursery gift card to kick start your new little garden or balcony with fresh herbs.


5.    Experience Gifts

Photo courtesy of Air-Ventures

A friend recently proposed after paragliding with his girlfriend – it was sensational and I thought a brilliant idea. For those into adrenalin sport the gift of skydiving, parachute jumping, and swimming with the sharks come to mind. For the more laid-back couple, you may want to arrange an experience gift of visiting an art gallery, attending a wine tasting, or a hot-air balloon ride.


6.    Dinner in a Basket

Create a basket with a lovely recipe, perhaps even some crockery and fabulous glasses, and all the items needed to make the recipe. You could also just add a grocery gift card for the grocery items if you wish.


7.    Household Supplies

The subject of recipe ingredients takes us to one of the simple necessities in life – household supplies – not only cleaning material but also brooms, toilet brushes, and the likes. Let’s not forget toilet paper and dishwashing liquid! When was the last time you had to buy all your household supplies at once? It adds up to a pretty penny!  A gift card from your local hypermarket is a wonderful wedding gift, not considered often.


8.    Cleaning Service

Ever thought of giving a cleaning service voucher? For newlyweds who may be moving out of their own independent apartments into a new joint love nest, this will come as a lovely gift. Anyone who has been through this back-breaking exercise that leaves you with no nails to speak of, will love this. Professional cleaning services are plentiful or you may even go a step further and assign your own housekeeper to clean the newly-weds apartment once a week and pay for it. Nobody has ever said no to the gift of an angel cleaning and ironing once a week!


9.    Car Maintenance Gifts

Wouldn’t life be that much nicer when you don’t have to use your hard-earned cash for tire replacements, petrol, and car maintenance issues? Gift a petrol card, a gift voucher from Tiger Wheel & Tyres, or even a booklet of car wash vouchers as a wedding gift. A roadside assist membership is also a fantastic gift – AA membership is not only a clutter-free gift but also bring tremendous peace of mind that your loved ones are always safe.


10. Gift Vouchers for Airlines and Hotels

Umthunzi Hotel & Conference

Traveling is always an amazing gift.  Offer to buy that flight home to the parents, or a honeymoon destination. Gift vouchers for weekends away are wonderful gifts and double up as date nights. Be a bargain hunter and look for specials online, but make sure to tell the recipients of the gift of any Terms and Conditions. The Dalai Lama once said: “Once a year, go someplace you have never been before.” Who are we to argue with such wisdom?


11. Pay for a Pet/House Sitter

Photo Credit: N Badenhorst

Although there has been an upsurge in pet-friendly establishments, newlyweds may need a pet sitter for when they leave for their honeymoon or enjoy any of the other weekend breaks received as gift vouchers. Contact a reliable and well-referenced pet sitter in the area and arrange a voucher from them. Or create a small business opportunity for a family member or friend who loves animals and are responsible house sitters.


12. Outdoor Supplies

Is the wedding couple into outdoor activities? Perhaps they are hikers or campers, or love biking over weekends? Quality supplies for these activities can be costly and a voucher from a camping supplier makes a wonderful gift.

Specialised hiking equipment seems to be priced according to weight – the lighter the items, the bigger the hole in your pocket. An Outdoor Warehouse. Cape Union Mart or Camp Master gift cards will bring smiles to their faces every time they head off into the wilds. As an aspiring minimalist, our household often uses camping gear as everyday items – the traveling coffee mug and, light-weight sleeping bags often do double duty in our everyday lives.

Globenewswire reports: “It is estimated that online retail sales grew by around 40% during the lockdown. International forecasts suggest that year-on-year growth may be in the region of 100%.” This bodes well for easing the shopping experience and brides are not necessarily limited to online bridal registries any longer.

Let’s do our bit for a clutter-free society where the value of gifts is not measured by the space it consumes, but by the experience it renders.  Here’s to responsible wedding gifting all year round and especially for this Festive Season.



She knows her Merlot from her Mojito, her hotel from her motel. From craft food to caviar, her innate curiosity about life and wanderlust provide inspiration for her blogs, articles and press releases about the travel, wedding and Spa industry. Over twenty years in the hotel marketing & PR arena with impressive hotel groups, from Dubai to Durbanville, has evolved into the pure enjoyment of freelance projects under the banner of About Branding.


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