Your wedding is a milestone event. So, it is only natural that the guests who attend it will want to gift you something valuable and useful on this occasion. A wedding registry is a convenient deal for both the couple and their guests. When you set up a wedding registry, it is easy for your guests to find something that you will appreciate and use in the new chapter of your life. So, if you thought you do not need a wedding registry, you ought to rethink this decision.
Today we look at the do’s and don’ts when setting up a wedding registry as well as some important information you should know about it.
When should you start your wedding registry
While some of your guests will wait till the last minute to get you your gift, others will prefer to complete the task ahead of time. It is best to get your registry ready before you have any wedding-related celebration, like an engagement party. In any case, your registry should be ready seven to nine months before the wedding. Now, if you prefer to wait and do things at leisure, this Brides article suggests that your registry should still be ready in time for your bridal shower. This will ensure your guests have enough time to check it out and find a suitable gift.
Top places to register for wedding gifts
There are several places where you can register for wedding gifts. So, don’t be hasty or limit your choices without first exploring your options. Create a curated list of items that will help you as a couple, and find places where these are available. Once you know what you want, we suggest that you restrict your registry to a few online and in-store locations where the items are available. Many of the suggested retailers offer extra discounts, perks and free gifts for registering with them. So, add it to your watch list.
Wedding registry Etiquette—Do’s and Don’ts couples should know
Do choose from low, medium and high-end stores
Many couples often wonder how many gifts they should register for their wedding. We think it is better to register for more gifts than just what you need. A good rule of thumb is to register for more gifts than you have guests. Your guests will then find it easy to locate an item you prefer. While providing a wide range of items, you should also pick items of varied pricing. Include low, medium and high-end stores to keep your list diverse. This will allow your guests to find a gift that fits their budget without much difficulty. Your guests will also appreciate the fact that you do not expect them to shell out a fortune to get you an expensive gift, if you only register with a high-end store.
Don’t forget to include high-ticket items as well
While it is sensible to add gifts of all price ranges into your list, this doesn’t mean you should exclude expensive gifts entirely. It is likely that there may be at least a few friends, family members or work associates who would prefer to gift you a generous gift. Give them the opportunity to find something that fits their idea by providing at least a few high-end items in your list. As long as your list also has moderately priced items, the rest of your guests can overlook these options and go with one that is within their budget.
Do keep the wedding registry information out of the invitation
It may seem easy to simply put your wedding registry information in the wedding invitation. However, we do not recommend this as it isn’t considered good wedding etiquette. Some experts suggest it is alright to add your wedding registry details to an invitation insert, but never directly on the invitation. Include the name under which the registry is listed, so it is easy for your guests to find the right one.The ideal place to provide your wedding registry details is on your wedding website. You can also share this information with your family and bridal party. They can then pass it on to anyone who asks for it. Although most guests won’t ask you for this detail directly, there is no harm in telling them if a guest chooses to ask you directly.
Don’t ask for money in your registry
Whether you already have all that you need in your home or would prefer cash over gifts, we do not recommending asking for cash in your registry. The traditional expectation from guests is to give a gift in kind, and this is what most prefer. However, if you think its better to receive money, consider registering with a financial registry. This greatly reduces the awkwardness of the situation. These non-traditional registries will allow you to pool your gift money together and buy something bigger. Honeyfund allows couples to register for honeymoon extras through guest gift giving.
For more tips on asking for cash for your wedding gift, take a look at this article on Apartment Therapy.
Do create a wedding registry ideas list
Your wedding registry needn’t just have items that are useful for you right now. So don’t limit your options. Think long-term and create a wedding registry ideas list first. Consider what you may need in the years to come. Remember to include special occasions, items you will need for entertaining or even for when your family grows. Set up your registry accordingly, so your guests can get you gifts that may be useful later, if not immediately.
Don’t forget to update your registry on a regular basis
Just so you don’t end up with duplicates of the same item, it is important to review your registry regularly. As you do, remove items that have already been bought and include new items if any. It is a good idea to set up your registry so that you receive updates when an item is purchased. With this option, you will know when to update your registry without personally checking it every time. As the wedding approaches you will have to review your registry more frequently, and keep updating it every time a gift is bought by your guests.
Do keep track of who sent which gift
It is common courtesy and essential wedding etiquette to send thank you notes for all the gifts you received. For this, you should maintain a list to record who sent you what, just as you receive each gift. Either create a list on your mobile device or computer for the purpose. Or write down the names and the name of the gift as and when you receive each of them. At your bridal shower, don’t forget to have one of your bridesmaids note down who got you what if you open the gifts at the venue.
Don’t delay writing your thank you notes
Since thank you notes are time-consuming, it is a good idea to start writing them before the wedding. Common courtesy is to send the thank you notes out soon after you return from your honeymoon. Start with your thank you notes just as your gifts begin arriving. By completing a certain number every week, it will be easier for you to finish them. You can then put them in envelopes and get them ready in time for the wedding. All you have to do afterwards is to post the notes once you are back from your honeymoon.
DO focus on gifts that are useful to you as a couple
The idea of a wedding gift is to give the couples something that will help them grow as a family. Guests also usually prefer to gift items that do not have an expiry date attached to it. So, it isn’t really appropriate to ask for gifts that suit just one of you. Instead focus on items that are useful for entertaining, for your new home or that contribute to a family experience like a trip. Don’t add personal items like shoes, shades, handbags or makeup to your registry.
Don’t hesitate to edit your registry if you have second-thoughts about certain items on it
One good way to avoid regret is to take some time when creating your wedding registry. You may feel that you have a complete registry. However, let it sit for a day or two and then get back to it. This will give you time to recollect if you have missed out anything. Sometimes, it may also be better to edit out certain items from the list, when you go over the list again.
Do take inventory of what you own before setting up your registry
It isn’t always easy to decide what should and what doesn’t have to go on a registry. After looking at what you need in your new life as a couple, also take inventory of the things you already own. As you go through it, you will most likely notice that some of the stuff you already use needs replacing. You may also be adjusting with what you have in certain cases. Use your wedding registry to upgrade these things to serve you better when you are a couple.
Do mix the types of gifts you have on your registry
Everyone has a certain idea of what is an ideal gift. Hence, your guests may prefer certain types of gifts to give you for your wedding. To satisfy this need, keep the items in your registry mixed and there will be a choice that suits everyone. From essentials for a home like towels and linens, add items for entertaining and partying as well as household tools, dishes and equipment that will be useful in your new life together. Heavy-duty kitchenware, basic set of china and good quality bed sheets are definitely useful for all newly weds. So, definitely add these to your list.
Don’t forget to read up on the store’s policies before registering there
If a store stocks most of the things you need, also find out about their shipping, exchange and return policy before registering there. Your guests will prefer to shop at a place where their gifts will be shipped directly to your address. Take a close look at the exchange policies. In case you end up with duplicates of a gift, the exchange or return policy is important to help you switch it out for something else. It will not be easy to exchange your gifts if they allow limited time for it. So, check this out as well. Some stores also offer incentives and discount programs that will give you better benefits when you register with them. Do your research and you can make the most of the available options.
We understand how busy and taxing it is to be a bride, and in most cases the registry isn’t always on the top of your priorities. However, it is folly to let this opportunity slide. Follow this rule list and you shouldn’t have any trouble with setting up and making the most of your wedding registry.
For more updates, advice and help on everything wedding-related, keep visiting us here on the Best for Bride blog. The Best for Bride website is your one-stop wedding destination, featuring most modern wedding dresses, bridal party attires, bridal accessories and everything the modern bride needs for her special day. From designer labels to in-house custom creations, we strive to help you realize the perfect wedding day with our extensive range of wedding services. Visit our website today, to find out how we can help you.