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Whether or not you agree with the concept of a wedding registry, they do exist and today’s blog is for those of you who plan on having one and are here to learn some history, tips, tricks, and general info about registries.
The Best Way to Make a Wedding Registry
Stick to 2-3 stores that have items of value to you. Consider what you truly need and chose stores that collectively cover those items. When choosing the stores, consider your guests’ financial means and chose stores with a range of prices to give everybody a fair pick.
Register for more gifts than your number of guests and register for a wide variety of prices. This allows guests to choose comfortably. You can also, on some sites, make large ticket items a group contribution. On Amazon for example, say you want to register for a $500 Breville Air Fryer/Toaster Oven. You can choose to make this a group contribution item so that multiple guests could apply their funds to the item.
Some common sites for registries include Amazon, Crate and Barrel, Anthropologie, Williams Sonoma, Pottery Barn, Target, Macy’s, and more. Alternatively, some registry sites like Zola allow you to register for numerous brands within their site.
Be mindful of the shipping settings. When and where do you want the gifts mailed? If you’re moving soon, hold off on having items shipped until post move. Most registries will allow you to delay shipment.
Make Your Registry a Partner Activity
Do the registry with your partner. If possible, don’t let this be a solo activity. Struggling over your partner’s desire to add something you don’t want? What about the opposite? Discuss items of contention and perhaps create a system maybe each person gets a set number of vetoes and a set number of items one of you can add that the other cannot veto.
When to Create a Wedding Registry
Create your wedding registry about 4-6 months before your wedding. Ensure you have it fully completed before you’ve sent out the main invitations. Please don’t put where you are registered on the actual invitation. It’s considered too forward. Instead, simply provide your wedding website which should contain a link to your registries.
In my experience as a bride and also as a wedding guest, I’ve found that most guests will purchase from the registry within a month of the wedding. It’s rarer to receive gifts earlier than that.
Alternative Wedding Registries
If you actually want cash, don’t explicitly say so. Simply register for very few items and people will likely get the hint to provide cash or a check.
A popular alternative type of registry includes honeymoon funds. These are somehow controversial because some see them as asking cash, but that outlook is fading as times are modernizing. What we did for our wedding was to add specific honeymoon activities to the Honeyfund site like kayaking, dinner for two, etc. rather than just a single “cash” fund. This made our guests excited to gift us activities, knowing we’d really enjoy the experiences.
After the Wedding
Write a thank you card for every gift you receive. This is not old school. It’s polite and I think it’s something couples shouldn’t skip. The best tip is to write them as the gifts come in so you’re not overwhelmed after the wedding.
It’s ok to return items that don’t work out. You don’t have to tell the gifter.
Many registries, including Amazon, give discounts to you on leftover items called a completion program where you can buy any leftover items yourself and save 10-20%! Many programs that offer this will allow you to add items even after the wedding is over in case you forgot anything.