I saw an invitation to a vow renewal that had a cute little poem, oh it had all of the ear marks of a classic, poorly phrased, condescending, and sugar sweet.
I love how people think that if they are planning a formal occasion little poems prevent things from sounding like anything other than “Gimme’ money.” Please learn vow renewal etiquette people!
I would think a gift is appropriate. Just like a formal dinner, you bring a bottle of wine, a marble rye (elegant, tastey, and easy to bake), cookies, potted flowers.. something so you aren’t empty handed.
Not ya know, stuff.
Nothing over $15 (unless someone doesn’t like wine with cartoon characters), and obviously no money. Wtf were these people thinking?
While in most formal gathering a gift is appropriate. I would definitely think to bring something, not hundreds of dollars worth, but definitely something (bottle of wine probably). It’s pretty standard and polite to bring something to show your appreciation for someone going to the effort of putting together a gathering you’re attending.
I think what these folks were doing was trying to ask people for a small cash donation instead of receiving 50 small nick nacks and random bottles of wine, which seems completely reasonable to me. I think they then realized it might sound tacky to ask for cash, and tried to use a funny poem to reduce the awkwardness. But unfortunately, they missed the landing and ending up making it way more awkward.
I wouldn’t read too much into it. Bring a small contribution ($20?) as a show of appreciation, nothing more.
Asking for a small cash donation instead of a gift is only reasonable if you are asking that the donation go to a particular charity.
The only times it would be acceptable to mention gifts in party invitations is when they ask for none because “your presence is present enough” or when they ask that you donate to a particular charity instead of a gift. Asking for cash for the couple to keep is absolutely crass.