After the excitement of your engagement turns into full-fledged wedding planning mode, you might be looking around your home wondering, “Do I really need a wedding registry?” If you and your partner already live together and have accumulated years of knickknacks and cookware, you may even be thinking that you don’t need even more stuff to fill your cabinets.
But hear us out: Wedding registries aren’t just for formal dinnerware and fancy flatware that will collect dust in storage. Get creative! If you already have everything you could possibly want for your home, wedding registry etiquette suggests it’s appropriate to ask for big-ticket items and even cash for honeymoon fund. No matter what you need to start this new phase in your life with your partner, this wish list can set you up for newlywed success.
Not convinced yet? Read on for 10 reasons why you need to create a wedding registry before your big day.
Get Exactly What You Want
No one likes a guessing game, especially when it comes to wedding gifts. Your aunt’s infamous love-themed birdhouses may not exactly be your idea of an ideal gift, so give her some guidelines. With a wedding gift registry, you’re not only asking for exactly what you want, but guests also get an idea of the vibe you’re going for in this new phase of life. Love a vintage look? You can paint a clear representation of your aesthetic by adding home decor that suits your style. More adventure-oriented? A cash registry will help show show where your priorities lie. If you leave your gift selection up to your wedding guests, you may end up with gifts that are more their vibe instead of yours. Even if you think you have absolutely everything you could ever need, start thinking outside the box — after all, there are many gift-giving occasions between now and your wedding day. A registry will only help guide your guests as they search for the perfect gift for your engagement party, wedding shower or the main event.
Refresh Old Favorites
We all have those mismatched items we have collected over the years and just haven’t had the time or budget to replace. Now is the time to make a list! Go around your home and take inventory of things that could use some attention. Start with the most expensive items, such as a dining set or a couch, then work your way down to smaller accents like window treatments and flatware. Have a few chipped dishes you refuse to get rid of because you don’t want to invest in new ones? Register for the same pattern! Does your glass collection reflect a hodgepodge of past moves and roommate leftovers? Select a fresh set that you would never buy for yourself.
Treat Yourself to an Upgrade
If you’ve been flipping through that overpriced catalog and coveting everything from upgraded cookware to a new leather couch, you’re not alone. Creating a registry isn’t just for things you need, it’s also for things you want. Our wedding registry tip here is to think about this moment as a splurge, as opposed to just the bare essentials. No one needs a fancy three-in-one espresso, cold brew and coffee machine, but if you’re feeling a little extra, it can’t hurt to ask for a big-ticket item. Your wedding guests will relish being able to get you something special you’ll keep for a long time. If you feel guilty asking for something big, be sure to balance it out with registry items at every price point so it won’t seem so scary. Remember, every guest is working with a different budget and some may be interested in group gifting. Those wanting to gift a more expensive item will appreciate that they can splurge on something you’ll love.
Avoid the “Where Are You Registered?” Question
If you haven’t already been asked, you absolutely will. Start thinking about registries ASAP once the question is popped. You will be shocked at how many people are immediately ready to shower you and your partner with gifts to celebrate the good news, even before you’ve planned an engagement party! If it’s early for you to select physical items, start with a cash registry and build from there. Everyone could use the gift of a few extra dollars, but sending a check is sometimes difficult for loved ones, especially if you’ve changed addresses recently or have been traveling. Pro tip: Drop that registry link everywhere, from your wedding website to your wedding invitation suite, or let family members share by word of mouth. Even if you haven’t finished it by the time your save the dates go out, include the link to avoid all the texts and calls about where to find your wish list. You can always update your registry with more gifts as you get closer to your wedding day.
No More Duplicate Gifts
You and your partner have probably acquired quite a collection of things throughout your courtship. While some household items you might want to recycle for a newer model, chances are there are quite a few you love — and one is more than enough. Creating a wedding registry can take the guesswork out of gift-giving for your guests who want to avoid duplicates as much as you do. A registry can also eliminate dupes among other guests, as registries will update in real time to automatically show items as “purchased” once a transaction is complete. Plus, a registry is a great way to save time and energy on dreaded returns.
Skip the Wedding Night Haul
Picture this: It’s the end of your wedding night and you’re finally newlyweds. You’ve danced until your feet hurt. Your hearts are full of joy and love for your friends and family members. Then as you walk out of your dream venue, you see a table practically spilling over with wedding gifts that you now have to haul back to your hotel or home. Panic ensues. But you can start married life with ease by registering for gifts. Trust us, it will make this nightmare scenario just a figment of your imagination. While some guests might still opt to bring gifts to your wedding ceremony and reception, the majority will just have them shipped to your home directly from your registry. Worried about privacy? We hear you. Most registries only show your guests a prompt that confirms they want to ship to the happy couple’s home without displaying the actual address.
Ask for Experiences
Many couples have more than enough “stuff” in their home after years of being together. That fear of loading up a registry with even more that will just clutter your home? Squash it. Physical items are great to register for if you need them, but don’t skip this step of the wedding planning process just because your cabinets are already full. Instead, set up a cash registry that allows guests to help you start married life in style. Cash funds can be set up for everything from charitable donations to specific personal experiences, such as special dinners or airfare and hotel for trips (like your honeymoon!).
Fund the Honeymoon of Your Dreams
Even if you’ve decided to register for a few items, you can still create a honeymoon fund! When you decide where you and your partner are ready to jet off to post-wedding, start tallying up exactly what it will cost to get there. Register for everything from plane tickets to excursions to help ease that honeymoon price tag. Get creative and don’t forget to send your guests a photo of you enjoying their gift in your thank you card! Your loved ones will be so excited to feel like they’ve made your dreams come true.
Reach Your Financial Goals
Every couple has different goals for their future, and your registry should reflect those specific needs. Don’t forget, your nearest and dearest want to help you and your partner get off on the right foot as you start married life. It might seem awkward to ask for money, but it helps to show your guests exactly what they are supporting, whether it’s a down payment on your future home or renovations to your current one. These life milestones seem to come at once, so asking your friends and family members to help as you enter this new phase in life is a no-brainer.
Find an All-In-One Solution
Let’s be honest, having 300 people buy you a physical gift may seem a little excessive. After all, how many toasters, wine glasses and cookware sets could you possibly need? Flexibility is a must when it comes to choosing a registry site. All-in-one solutions like Joy allow engaged couples to add physical gifts, set up cash registries, request gift cards and charitable donations, and even link registries from multiple stores if there’s a specialty item you’re dying to own. Not knowing what else to add won’t be a problem is an added perk of choosing an all-in-one wedding registry. Plus, mixing up your gift list will allow your family members and friends to treat you to something that is memorable for them and for you.