Two giant Macy’s boxes arrived on the front porch today! We opened them before consulting Emily Post.
Turns out, it’s ok! According to Emily Post’s great-great-granddaughter:
It’s not only fine to open your gifts before the wedding, it’s a good idea. It gives you a head start on handwriting your thank-you notes, which should be sent within three months of receiving the gift — not the mythic year from the wedding date. And you need to unwrap the gift so that you know what exactly you are thanking the guest for. In your case, simply thank the giver for the gift, rather than identifying it as a “shower gift” or “wedding gift.”
If you know you won’t be able to write a thank-you note within a few days of a gift’s arrival, it’s thoughtful to make a quick call or send an email to let the giver know that the item has arrived: “Just got home and your gift was on my doorstep. Note to follow, but wanted to thank you right away!” Regardless of whether or not you thank the person verbally, every wedding gift must be acknowledged with a handwritten personal thank-you note.
Note that while any engagement, shower or wedding gifts you receive are fine to open, they traditionally aren’t used before the wedding itself. This is born of practicality: If the wedding is canceled, any engagement, shower or wedding gift must be returned to the person who gave it to you.
Our first wedding gifts! 5 (5!!!) sets of our beautiful china. Yay!
With 59 days until the wedding, I hadn’t even thought about thank you notes! I’m going to have to add that to the list…quick!