Weddings, from frugal to lavish, always have one element in common: gifts. Fathers often wish to give their daughters a special gift on her wedding day. There are many options, but the best gifts are those tailored to the bride's specific interests and preferences.
Daughters who love family traditions and cherish their family history will treasure a passed-down gift from father to daughter. If you have an heirloom piece of jewelry, such a grandmother's ring, pearl necklace or bracelet, hold onto it until your daughter's wedding day and present it to her as she is beginning her own family. She may someday want to pass it down to her own children.
Enclose the piece in a box with a short, personal note. If you don't have such family keepsakes, you can take a photograph (or a whole collection of them) of you with your daughter and your family during her childhood. Either frame a single picture or create a simple photo album, writing notes next to each of the pictures to explain why you chose each one.
If your daughter has a more modern sense of style, you can still choose a piece of jewelry as a gift. Perhaps have a necklace custom made to complement her engagement ring. Alternatively, you can choose a picture frame with two openings that suits her sense of style and place a photo of the two of you together when she was a child. In the other blank opening, write a note explaining that this side is for a photo of the father-daughter dance at the wedding. This is a highly personalized gift that she will treasure.
She may already have a token "blue" item to wear as tradition suggests, but if she does not, you can give her a sapphire bracelet, earrings or brooch to wear. Even if she does already have her "blue" item, you can give her a blue gift or a sentimental gift that will bring tears (albeit happy ones) to her eyes.
Some ideas include a one-of-a-kind vase or teapot suited to her style in blue; or a (possibly) non-blue gift such as jewelry that includes both your birthstone and hers, her mother's and her new husband's. Whatever you choose, the most important detail is that it should be personal and unique.
Anne Stockdell-Giesler has been a professor, writer, and editor since 1997. Her publications include a book, "Agency in the Margins: Stories of Outsider Rhetoric" as well as articles in the journal "Inventio" and the magazine "Academe." She earned her doctorate in English in 1997 from Georgia State University.