Towel Cake By Any Other Name Is Still Made Up Of Towels

by admin on June 18, 2013

A friend of mine went to a wedding a few weeks ago to a coworker of her husband. The groom, who works with my friend’s husband, comes from a wealthy family and so does the bride. The wedding was extravagant and everything involved was pricey. For their gift to the couple, my crafty friend bought pricey towels from the gift registry and constructed a towel cake. It looked fantastic in the pictures she took of the final project.

This past week, the groom brings in the towel cake to work and gives it to my friend’s husband saying that they don’t do crafty decorations in their home and could they (friend and husband) return it for something more useful. My friend’s husband proceeded to tell the groom that the gift was towels from the registry and that they only had to take out the pins and decorations to use them. The explanation was lost on the groom and he left the gift on the desk and said he would be back for the new gift later.

My friend and her husband are upset but have no idea what to do. Keep the towels? Disassemble the ‘cake’ and repackage the towel in a box? Give them something else? We all have our opinions here at work but no idea what is a proper response. 0617-13

I would undo the towel cake and fold the towels into a stack.   When the groom came to retrieve the “new gift”, he can choose to take the towels home with him or reject the towels.   If he does the latter, there is no second “new” gift to replace the one he has rejected.

How to make a towel cake…I prefer to use rubber bands to hold the “layer” rolled together and then cover with a 2-3″ ribbon.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Dutchie81 June 29, 2013 at 8:14 am

Is it just me or has the groom already gone past a point of no return.

Refusing a gift, which is what he has done, is in my view absolutely unforgivable. It would make me feel that he no longer values a continued relationship and whatever kind of relationship I had with that person would have come to an end.

He refused your gift, you can take it back and do with it as you please. That is simply the end of it. Over my dead body would I go through the trouble of unpinning and refolding the towels to present it to him again and by doing so validating his actions.

You mentioned he came from a wealthy family which just shows you manners can’t be bought…


DanaJ July 4, 2013 at 5:34 pm

I think the correct response would be:

“Dear, Jack and Jill,

I am sorry the towels we got from your gift registry did not meet your expectations. Rest assured your registry gift will be put to good use: they have been donated in your name to a homeless shelter where there is always a great need for towels and other linens.”

If applicable you can add that they will be the recipients of the tax receipt.


DanaJ July 5, 2013 at 10:22 am

The correct response sould be as follows:

“Dear, Jack and Jill,

I am sorry if the towels we bought from your gift registry did not meet your expectations. However, you can rest assured that your registry gift will still be used and go to a good cause: the towels have been donated in your name to the ______ Homeless Shelter where there is always a great need.

Than you for allowing us to join you on your special day. ”

If applicable, you can add that the tax receipt will be issued to them.


Wendy Kaufman May 8, 2014 at 1:39 pm

OMG. No hon, you take the towels, return them, and buy something nice for yourself. Then you mentally kick that groom in the ass, and breathe a sigh of relief that you did not marry him.


whoop June 7, 2014 at 3:35 pm

A Story of Caution about Towel Cakes:

A childhood friend of mine was getting married, but we had to decline the invite as we already had vacation plans on that date. Fast forward to a month before the wedding, and the Bride-to-Be politely asks us whether we would be attending. Whoops? Looks like the reply card got lost in the mail! I apologized profusely once I figured out what had happened, but told her that we would not be able to make it. Fast forward to two weeks before the wedding – our vacation had to be canceled (long story). The topic comes up in casual conversation with the Bride-to-Be, who graciously re-extends her original invitation. I swear that I had no intention of fishing for an invite, but I wonder now if the Bride-to-Be may have felt pressured to re-invite me? I am not sure. Anyhow, at the time I am ecstatic and my husband and I accept on the spot.

The wedding is several states away in a small, but popular beachfront city in the height of vacation season. My husband and I have a tricky time getting a hotel room this late in the game, and the one that we do get is in a major city about thirty miles away. Most of our available money to attend is gone by that point, so when I take a look at the gift registry and note most of the items are over $100, I am quite forlorn. The only semi-affordable thing that they had left on the registry were a host of assorted towels. I decided to make a cake!

Fast forward to the day of the wedding. I assembled the cake in our hotel room the night before, but we end up spending an unexpected amount of time wrestling it into the back of our tiny two-door car. I eventually have to partially disassemble it. We drive to the wedding, but get stuck in traffic and semi-lost leaving the big, unfamiliar city. By the time we get to the ceremony venue, we are late and the ceremony has already started! We pile into the back as discretely as we can.

There is some time between the reception and ceremony, so we decide to get to the reception early in order to have enough time to reassemble what we have now termed “Gift-zilla”. We do so in the restaurant parking lot, then enter the restaurant about twenty minutes before it is set to start. As we enter, there is an immediate reaction from the staff and family that were apparently still setting up – clapping and whoops and cheers from a dozen people that I have never met. Ends up that they were waiting on the baker, and apparently I did a really good job with our cake, because they thought that our cake was THE cake! This confusion continues as the night goes on…

Part of the problem is that the gift table is on the same end of the room as the cake table. Just about everyone else gave the couple cash, so our gift basically has a table to itself. Worst of all, though, the REAL cake is quite small and understated, so our cake positively DOMINATES it. For most of the room, you cannot see the real cake – only ours! I felt horrible, because the real cake did look very expensive for what it was. However, we overheard several people comment to the bride about her beautiful cake, then point to our Gift-zilla!

I wonder now whether we ended up being THE guests at this wedding -i.e., the two people that drove the wedding couple nuts – but sometimes there is just nothing one can do. The bride never mentioned anything and was extremely gracious overall, so I gave up and just relaxed and enjoyed what ended up being a very pleasant reception!

Still, never again with the towel cake!


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