Wedding showers are great. You register for a bunch of things you think you’ll probably need, and all your friends and family head to the store and stock your house with all the goodies you need to start your new life together.
And then they forget about you. You’re on your own. Your nice new linens start to become threadbare. Your towels start to unravel. Your dish towels start to smell like a decade of forgotten dinners. Your beautiful 8-setting dinnerware is down to eight scuffed-up cereal bowls, six chipped dinner plates, and you’re not sure what happened to the smaller plates; maybe one’s under the plant in the living room? Your glassware is a mishmash of shattered bits, and your mugs that match your dinnerware are all but forgotten behind half a decade of cheesy birthday gift mugs and a “#1 Dad” oversized coffee mug that puts most beer steins to shame.
And to top it all off, you’ve updated your decor, so none of it matches anything. In rare moments of desperation — or a deeply satisfying white sale — you’ve added new pieces that match nothing else. The whole thing looks like chaos run amuck. Plus, with a growing number of second marriages happening in people’s 30s and 40s, they’re also bringing with them two houses full of stuff that was clearly not planned as a couple.
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We were talking about this the other day. It’s expensive throwing out or donating these old items and completely replacing them. For the most part, they seem to have a useful life of about five years. Wouldn’t it be great if we, as a society, got together and started a new tradition of helping our friends and families replace some of these items?
Think about it: for a family of four, replacing a set of bath towels could run close to $100 or more. But for a friend to buy a single, celebratory set (“Congratulations! You stayed together for five years! Dry yourself properly!”), it would only be a quarter of that price. The same goes for bed sheets.
Old dinner plates don’t match the new dining room? No problem!
Mismatched and misplaced cutlery? Handled!
Fitted sheets look more like mosquito netting? Put down the duct tape!
It’s not enough to just ask for these things, of course. It could be easily flipped on the giving side as well. It’s far less costly to give a gift of towels they want than it is to keep their old stuff until it all needs to be replaced.
The five-year-versary shower would be a great way to replenish these supplies! If you think it’s weird asking your friends to buy you stuff (but…you’re OK with it for your wedding?), just make the first move. Think of couple you know who is approaching their five-year (or ten-year) anniversary, and offer to throw them a shower!
All you need to do is help them set up a registry for things they know they’ll want to replace. Just use their anniversary date as their wedding date. Invite their friends and family as if you were their Maid of Honour, and make it happen for them. It’s like crowdfunding for linens — and they can get what they actually want!
If you’re not into throwing a full-blown shower, you can also throw a “virtual shower.” If you’re like us, you know that in the span of five years your friends and family can be spread far and wide. They might have had no problem making the trip for your wedding, but when it comes to replacing worn out items, they might not be so enthusiastic about a plane ticket. No problem. Simply sign up for Amazon’s wedding registry (and use the Universal Registry plugin for Chrome so you can add items from any store), and share the link!
The beauty of this deal is you not only get to shop the looks and products you want, but you can score that sweet completion discount as well (you can purchase items after your “wedding” that weren’t purchased from your registry at a discount).
Just think about it. The five-year-versary. It’ll be a thing.