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The Dowry. More Than Our Name. It's Our Mission.


An ethical wedding gift registry and American-made artisan marketplace.

Traveling is more than a hobby for me. Meeting new people and experiencing other cultures opens my eyes to how we are all interconnected and more alike than different. It drives me to look for ways to connect to and be intentional with people near and far. Each time I step foot in a new place, I discover more endless beauty but also struggle and suffering.

Indian Woman pumping water 

In particular, my 2015 trip to India opened my eyes to the daily struggle women, young girls and entire families experience within traditional dowry practices. Young girls are given into an arranged marriage, producing early motherhood and domestic abuse.

Without economic independence, they are inclined to depression and suicide and murdered over their dowry money and property. Though the centuries-old custom has been outlawed, it’s still putting women and young girls at great risk.

"Reported in India every day, on average, 35 cases of dowry practice, 20 dowry deaths and 283 cases of cruelty toward the wife by the husband or his relatives due to dowry." According to 2018 Indian National Crimes Record Bureau

That is 7,300 dowry deaths a year that we know about. Most go unreported or reported as an accident. And of the 4,594 marriage-related female suicides reported in 2018, 40% were related to dowry issues.

Indian women walking in village

The Dowry is an ethical wedding gift registry and marketplace full of style inspiration and handcrafted home goods with a distinct purpose to challenge historical dowry practices, while generating awareness of the ongoing abuse created by conventional dowry practices.

I have chosen The Dowry name to provoke more conversations about this very real danger, with the goal of turning those conversations into donations of time, education, money, and ultimately positive cultural change. The Dowry is committed to facilitating growth and independence for women and girls victimized by cultural dowry practices.

I’ve spent years thinking through the details of The Dowry. I know the kind of experience I want to offer shoppers, artists, engaged couples and wedding guests, and the impact I want to make on dowry-specific suffering.

Whether you're a recently engaged couple looking for a way to create a unique wedding gift registry, an artisan interested in expanding your business, or a wedding guest looking for a meaningful gift, I’m extremely proud to introduce you to The Dowry






Megan Hodges

Check out our ethical wedding gift registry

Check out my story The Essence of The Dowry blog post. 

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