Alan Dee: Reverse wedding list? It’s just a car boot by another name

The reverse wedding list is the new big thing, I’m told. That could be a bit confusing for anyone who has no idea what a reverse wedding list is, but worry not – I’m about to tell you all about it.

Wednesday, 21st August 2013, 7:58 am
Opinion - Alan Dee

It’s a bright idea that allows couples just about to tie the knot to have a good clearout and raise a bit of cash at the same time.

The thinking is that these days most people who are walking down the aisle have already been shacked up together for some time, have already had their own homes for a good while too, and frankly have no need of traditional wedding gifts such as a toaster, a fondue set or a bale of fluffy towels.

The default option for wedding presents these days, it seems – and don’t ask me, I’ve not been to one for a couple of years – is money.

It’s as if you’re trying to tick a sulky teenager off your Christmas list, realise that nothing you choose will fit the bill, and take the easy option. Not a book voucher, mind, or anything else that might force the recipient in a particular direction. Just a cheque, please, or some folding stuff.

But standing at the head of the reception line with your hand out is a tad embarrassing for some happy couples, apparently, and so the reverse wedding list was born.

Here’s how it works – you and your intended put your heads together and decide to say ‘I do’ to a bit of de-cluttering and pile up everything you have got two of, no longer need for one reason or another or no longer want.

The items can be as basic as old DVDs or as big and bulky as the motorbike you won’t be allowed to ride any more, you just want to get shot of them.

Up they go on the website, and you ask your guests to buy them, achieving that pre-wedding win win of getting shot of a load of stuff without having to go to the dump, and increasing your bank balance just at a time it is taking a real caning.

The beauty of it is that you can put a ridiculous price tag on that horrible vase her late aunty gave her, and someone might well shell out for it.

If you tried that at a car boot, you’d be lucky to get a couple of quid for any of your old tut, and individually posting every item on some other online auction site is probably too much like hard work at a busy time.

If you are so minded, you can find out more at

Having given the matter careful consideration, I think the only response if I am ever invited to dip into a reverse wedding list would be to find the single most awful item in the marriage manifest, pay over the odds for it, and then carefully gift-wrap it before handing it back to the happy couple at the reception. That way I get some pleasure out of my purchase, because I don’t want their cast-offs.