Some twenty years ago, registering at the local department store was a right of passage. Most girls knew the exact china pattern they wanted well before the marriage proposal. Checking the various kitchen equipment and accessories, believed to be the tools that would fulfill one’s life, sealed the deal. That young girl was an adult once that registry checklist was submitted to the department head. I can’t say there aren’t brides who still dream of walking down the aisles of house wares imagining how her kitchen will shine or her first formal dinner party will look, but technology and time have dramatically changed things.
The days of formal dinner parties with smiling hostesses in their aprons serving guests from a sterling silver platter are long gone. Registering is commonly for practical items for daily living and often tangible things. Many couples opt to help with funding their wedding, life or even support their favorite charity. A few ideas:
- Set up a gift registry with wedding vendors. The easiest way to do this is to have cards made that have the contact information on them as well as the couple’s. Many will provide these cards for free. Friends and family could call in or send in monetary gifts that would build up a credit with the vendor.
- Ask guests to donate to a favorite charity instead of the traditional wedding gifts. There are millions of organizations that will set up a giving program under a couple’s name.
- Couples could register where they have specific needs. For example, a couple is in the middle of purchasing a home that needs fixing up could register at Home Depot.
- Have a honeymoon registry where friends and family help contribute towards the trip. Perhaps place a notice in the shower invitation that reads "In lieu of traditional wedding gifts, the bride and groom are taking monetary contributions to the honeymoon". In many cases, a travel agent can help set this up for the couple.
Etiquette says not to include information about the registry in the actual wedding invitation as many guests feel the mention of a registry overpowers the importance of their attendance. It is perfectly acceptable to place registry cards in with the shower invitations, as gifts are expected there. Some couples will make mention of registries in the Save the Date announcements and on personal wedding websites. This is a tactful way to share registry information and allows guests to easy access with provided links.
However couples choose to register, or not, be sensitive to each other’s needs. Take into consideration what both will need for this next chapter in life. This is definitely one of the first exercises in sharing and compromise!
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Stoneleigh Event Consultant Meredith Thomas is available for additional planning services on a fee basis. Meredith has many years of experience planning special events and will work with you to create the wedding of your dreams. Contact Meredith at [email protected] to learn more.