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A Wedding Registry

There are many signposts in life that most of us experience: graduating college, buying your first house, starting a family, and getting married. Getting married can be as simple as showing up to the courthouse and having a Justice Of The Peace give you your “I Do”s or it can be as complex as having hundreds of guests and entertainment involved. One of the options that is catching on in recent years is the advent of a wedding registry being used by the bride and groom in planning out the nuptials. But what exactly is a wedding registry? If you’ve caught a thrown bouquet recently, please read on and all will be revealed.

A Wedding Registry is simply a list that an engaged couple gives out that lists all of the gifts that they would like to receive at the wedding. If you used to give your parents a list of toys you wanted around the Holidays when you were little, it’s the same concept. Except in this case, it is all of your friends, family, wedding guests, and anyone who wishes to contribute to the buying of the gifts on the list. Usually, the wedding registry is set up through a department store and other stores that can display the list online and in their registry books in-store. The process is simple as friends can buy the items online or in-person and with each purchase, the list shortens with each purchase until all items are purchased.

Some advantages that the registry method has is that it cuts down on the duplication of wedding gifts, who needs three vacuums anyway? Another advantage is that the Bride and Groom know where they stand on items that they need. They can view the list at the end after the wedding to see what items weren’t purchased and they can buy the items themselves, ostensibly with any money that may have been donated to the couple at the Reception.

If you go the wedding registry route, here are some tips that you can use while planning your wedding.

  • You should institute the registry list around six months before the wedding and make it available at whichever stores you choose.
  • For best representation, you should use at least two or three different stores when setting up your registry list.
  • Have  both online and offline registries so that friends can view the list and make purchases for the lovely couple. There is always a couple of friends who don’t shop online, so having that in-store option would benefit them greatly.
  • Keep track of your bridal registry as it’s in progress. This way, you know which items are left to buy and you can also send poignant thank-you cards to the ones who have purchased items so far.

There’s also a couple of things NOT to do during the wedding registry process.

  • Don’t get too crazy with the list and list items that are hard-to-get or super expensive, this puts an undue burden on your friends and it also increases the likelihood of having items that go not purchased.
  • Don’t put money on your registry list, there is a lot of “money” coming in the way of purchased items that you don’t have to pay out of pocket for. Asking for actual money on top of all of this is bad form.

Deciding on whether to go with a wedding registry or not is purely down to the Bride and Groom. There are a lot of factors to consider when planning a wedding, a registry is only a part of that planning. You have to consider the overall economy in relation to what you think your guests can afford. Putting a wedding registry up and having almost nobody purchase anything from it is embarrassing not only to the Bride and Groom but also to their friends. If the economy is in a slow period and you suspect that most could not really part with the money for buying wedding gifts, perhaps going without a registry would be your best option. Besides,  the real gift is being able to spend your special day with your new spouse and your friends and family.