wedding bridal registry

gift ribbons

One fun part about getting married is registering your gift preferences at your favorite store or boutique.

How exciting it is to be able to choose your wishes for china, linens, silverware, and just about anything else you can think of. And you're not paying!

This task isn't just left to the bride anymore. The groom should take part so the decisions can be made together as a couple. If you're just setting up a new household, there's plenty you're going to need. Start with the basics by registering tableware, crystal, sheets, towels, and small appliances.

If you've already set up household, you probably already have many kitchen and bath necessities. If that's the case, you can select unique gifts that you wouldn't get otherwise. Be reasonable and choose from many price ranges so everyone can afford to give you a gift you'll be happy with.

where to register

Most large department stores such as Macy's, Dillard's, Bloomingdales and less pricier stores such as Target (for guests on a tight budget) have bridal registries. They will have a consultant available to help and guide you with gift selections in various price ranges. Registering at two or three stores is considered ideal and will give your guests a choice on where to shop for your wedding gift.

Trust a reputable store and a consultant who is pleasant and willing to explain everything in-depth. This is a free service from the store and they will benefit from your business, so make sure you and your family are comfortable with the atmosphere and employees.

Check the store's return and exchange policies. Ask them how they deal with damaged or missing items. Overall, are returns going to be difficult after your wedding without a receipt? If the policies are acceptable, plan a meeting with the consultant that will take about one to two hours.

You can also register for your bridal gifts at smaller boutiques that offer more unique items and a relaxed environment. The personal service can often make up for less inventory. You can also select your gift preferences online if your favorite stores have websites that are easy to navigate. If it's hard to get around, don't bother.

getting the word out

When you sign up for a registry, some stores will give you small cards to insert into your wedding invitations. This is a tacky way to tell guests what you prefer. Instead, tell your family and attendants where you registered so they can tell your guests when asked about gift ideas. If you have a wedding website, add a page or section advising people where you have registered your gift preferences.

While you shouldn't include bridal registry information on wedding invitations, it's acceptable to print them at the bottom of shower invitations. This is one way to be subtle and your guests may decide to pick out your wedding gift when shopping for a shower gift, saving them time.

registry maintenance

The closer it gets to your wedding day, the more important it is to keep your bridal registry list up to date. This prevents duplications and hassles. Keep close track of the presents you have received at showers and the ones that have arrived at your house prior to your wedding. Maintain a current list by checking off or deleting (online) gifts you have already received.

include your fiance

Don't limit your selections to household goods. Your man is going to have preferences too, like power tools, yard equipment, etc. Sounds fun, huh?

related pages

today's tip

Don't go overboard and register at too many stores. You'll appear greedy and have difficulty keeping your lists updated.