Not Your Grandmother’s Nuptials: Wedding Registry Do’s and Don’ts for Modern Couples
Old wisdom says to keep the registry on the down low; uncivilized talk of gifts occurs in whispers behind kitchen doors or cupped hands. Modern etiquette recognizes the practicality of the wedding registry, and a lot of things have changed since your grandmother’s wedding. In fact, it’s a recognized truth that etiquette evolves–organizations such as the Hayward Area Historical Society have even created exhibits highlighting the differences between today’s good manners and etiquette of yesteryear.
To List the Gift Registry…Or Not
Traditional etiquette experts who follow Emily Post frown on including the gift registry information on wedding invitations, although it is seen as proper form to add the registry locations on bridal shower invites. Modern couples have long ignored Ms. Post and emblazoned registry information on tasteful inserts that come with the growing package of direction sheets and response cards found inside a wedding invite. Modern etiquette experts either agree with this practice or collude to look the other way because they recognize the practicality of the measure. Guests don’t want to wait until the bride’s sister tells Aunt Sally, who can tell them, where the couple is registered. In the pace of modern living, no one has time for that.
A Registry That’s Refined and Online
Couples who want to go big and formal, who just like old traditions or who have an adamant grandmother or two on the guest list can get around the ban on registry inclusion with technology. Services such as MyWedding.com let you create free wedding websites, and you can also use blog tools including Blogger or WordPress to keep guests informed about wedding plans. List your wedding site URL in the wedding invitation or in an insert, inviting guests to share your wedding journey. You can link to your registry on the site as well as share updates, pictures and stories about the big day.
Choose Registry Carefully
There aren’t hard rules about registry item selection, and you aren’t obligated to include an entire collection of china. Modern couples tend to register a mix of traditional and contemporary items. Select things you would enjoy for your home, but keep your guests in mind. Not everyone has deep pockets, so include gift ideas in a range of prices. For those who have a tighter budget, include items such as dish towels, glasses, and utensils. For those guests who want to spend a little more, include kitchenware from your favorite designs, such as the Kate Spade line found at at Macy’s, or choose select pieces of crystal from their Waterford collection. Finally, simply asking for cash isn’t as taboo as it used to be, especially if you need assistance with a down payment for a home or other large purchase, though it’s a good idea to give gift options as well.
Something Small, Something for All
A number of department stores offer great registry options. Since individuals can also order online with these stores, you don’t have to worry about access for guests. Some couples like to support small business, but registering with a single store that is only available in limited areas places undue stress on gift buying. If you’re choosing to support a small business, consider a limited second registry with a major chain for out-of-town guests.
Check out Music By Design for more wedding registry websites.