Q: Your mom’s wedding dress. A ring that belonged to your partner’s grandma. They’re beautiful but not your style. How do you politely decline family heirlooms for your wedding?
You want to consider your family’s feelings, but you should be able to choose what makes you happy for your wedding day.
Is there a way to modify the heirloom to suit you better? Perhaps your grandmother’s engagement ring features a stunning vintage diamond, but the ring setting itself is too old fashioned for your tastes. You can have that diamond reset in a new ring.
Or make the family heirloom a part of your ceremony without having to wear it.
For example, you could display heirloom china as a decoration or take influences from a piece of vintage jewelry as part of your decor. If the heirloom was a wedding dress worn by your partner’s grandmother or by your own mother, it could be special to display photographs of your parents or partner’s grandparents on their wedding day.
If these ideas fail, the best option is to be honest. You can say, “I love the history and thought behind this piece. At the same time, it’s important for me to choose a new ring that’s truly my own and that expresses my style.”
— Kathryn Edison Money, vice president of strategy and merchandising at Brilliant Earth, a company that specializes in lab-grown and ethically sourced jewelry
Before declining, keep in mind that there are powerful memories and emotions attached to the heirloom. The person offering it expects you to love the idea.
Don’t prolong the agony if you have no intention of wearing the item, and don’t give an elaborate excuse. Be honest, but be gentle in your words.
If your partner offers you his grandmother’s ring, you could say something like, “That’s a lovely ring, and I appreciate the offer, but I have something else in mind. I was hoping we could go together to choose one.”
If your mother asks you to wear her wedding dress, you could say, “Mom, I know it would mean a lot for you to see me walk down the aisle in your wedding dress, but I believe every bride should have her own special dress — one that she feels beautiful in. I hope you will go with me to help me choose mine.”Read more at:queenieau.com