Keeping Up With the Kardashian Wedding Fiasco

Kim Kardashian wedding etiquette

You might have heard that Kim Kardashian’s marriage to Kris Humphries lasted 72 days before Kim filed for divorce. Many of the items in my refrigerator last longer than those two did. The looming question (besides: Was this marriage for real?) is: What should the couple do with all those expensive wedding gifts?

Funny enough, relatives of etiquette guru Emily Post are on different sides of the fence on this one. Great granddaughter-in-law Peggy Post says that if a marriage lasts less than two months, the gifts should be returned. Kim and Kris’ marriage lasted a little over that. Lizzie Post, great-great-granddaughter of Emily, says the gifts should absolutely be returned. Kim has opted to keep the gifts and instead make a donation to charity of what some are saying is $200,000.

I don’t think we can treat Kim Kardashian’s situation just like anyone else’s. She’s in a unique position, and that needs to be taken into consideration.

  • The guests at the Kardashian-Humphries wedding are wealthier than the average wedding guest. Attending weddings can feel like a major expense to many, and if a couple can’t make it to the three-month mark, it seems the least they can do is return the gift. However, this doesn’t seem as necessary for the guests in attendance at this one.
  • Unlike most of us, Kim didn’t register at Crate & Barrel, a corporation that could handle massive returns of unusually expensive items. Instead, Kim and Kris registered at Gearys Beverly Hills for such items as Hermes dinnerware at $100 a plate and a Baccarat crystal vase costing $7,850. Having to take back thousands and thousands of dollars of merchandise in returns would be a hard hit for even a high-end store, especially in this economy.

Kim’s sister Khloe joked that Kim’s wedding would be the second royal wedding. Kim probably should have taken a cue from Prince William and Duchess Catherine and requested that in lieu of gifts, guests should donate to a charity. It would have been an especially appropriate move because Kim is a millionaire and this was her second wedding — in fact, registries tend to be less extravagant for the second marriage.

That said, she did register for gifts, and I think her solution to donate a sizable amount of money to a charity that’s comparable to the price spent on gifts she received isn’t a bad one. A potential better one? Auction those gifts and donate that to charity. They would likely fetch a higher sum at an auction, and then people can’t murmur about how she kept the gifts.

A funny aside: When Kim and Kris registered at Gearys, the date of their wedding was listed as Oct. 31, which turned out to be the date of the divorce filing. In retrospect, it seems like maybe they knew something important would happen on that traditionally slow news day. They just hadn’t decided if it would be the wedding or the divorce….

All snark aside, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the proper etiquette for Kim and Kris.

Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

Poll closes on Nov. 11 at midnight.

Photo by Getty Images/iStockphoto


  1. Nice point but I don’t think the issue is about the stores having to take their items back, and lose on their inventory. It’ should be more about the guests who put thoughts into the gifts, spent, attended the event and must now feel like robbed an decieved ( even if most of them are rich).

  2. It’s also worth nothing that Kim has something to gain by making a donation to charity: a huge tax write-off. And she keeps the gifts!

  3. I don’t think those people who were attendees of the wedding were deceived, neither those who had given their gifts were robbed in any form. (Basic rule of gift-giving: NEVER EXPECT SOMETHING IN RETURN.) Well-wishers, however, always hope for the best of luck to every couple. No one knows if the marriage will work after all! No amount of certainty guarantees that. Kim just did the right thing, I guess. Besides,it’s all about who was too sentimental on every gift they’ve got. I agree with you Christine on taking the bigger picture here. Great days everyone! Am a fan.

  4. Thanks, Owen! I struggled with that too — in what other instance do we ever expect gifts back? That said, this may be a special circumstance since some doubt the sincerity of the wedding in the first place.

  5. I personally think the that Kim should seriously give back all the gift’s cause for one thing what on earth is she going to do with it all???She own’s a house & a car what more does this girl want or need??Me personally i would’nt be able to sleep at night,I don’t know how she can.

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