Creating a Wedding Registry: Part 2

Last week, we talked about wedding registries, and most of what I shared came from lessons I learned. However, along with the things I learned, there are some things I am so glad we did the way we did! So for part two, here are some final thoughts for creating a wedding registry.

1. Choose good quality everyday china.

More commonly referred to as "casual dinnerware," everyday china is a valuable collection for today's couple. Real, fancy china is a treat, but as culture has changed and causal dining is most common, having pieces that are easy to use and wash, yet are still beautiful and make you proud to serve with, is key. As someone who is still getting comfortable in the kitchen, I feel more confident cooking and serving food because I have great dinnerware!

As we talked about last week, there is no need to feel pressured to determine your "forever style" as a couple when registering, but I do recommend selecting everyday china that will work for a long time. It's a significant investment to get a sizable collection so it's something that's important to do right. Considering this, we chose to go with something classic and white that still had a touch of interesting detail. We selected the Gabriella style from Pottery Barn and we LOVE it! 

When considering everyday china options, think through these questions: 
-How will food look on the color?
-How will it coordinate with the style of our home?
-Do we both like it?
-How long has the style been around and how long will it be available?
-Do the sizes and variety of plates, bowls, and mugs work well with how I eat and serve food?

Everyone is different, but I've got to put in a plug for white or ivory everyday china! Food always looks good on white, and how food looks is part of it being appetizing. Also, white is easy to dress up and add personality to over the years with linens and decor. So with a light neutral selection, as your style develops, you can use the same great dinnerware that you always have and still make it look fresh and new!

1. Select nice towels.

Y'all. I can't repeat this enough. It's like the spa every day. Nice towels are cozy, comfortable, and just plain enjoyable. We chose the 802-gram Turkish towel from Restoration Hardware and have been so pleased. It's actually ridiculous how much we talk about how much we love our towels, so I'll spare you here, but just trust me and register for good quality towels. 

Lamp from Bed, Bath & Beyond End table from West Elm (selected after months of marriage searching for the right bedside table!)

Lamp from Bed, Bath & Beyond
End table from West Elm (selected after months of marriage searching for the right bedside table!)

Lamp from Pottery Barn (this came straight off our wedding registry and we love it!)

Lamp from Pottery Barn (this came straight off our wedding registry and we love it!)

3. Choose multiple stores to fit your specific style and needs.

Chances are you shop at more than one store, so it only makes sense that to build a personalized home, you should register at multiple places. I found four to five stores to be a great number to create options while not spreading it out too thin. If you want to create a larger mix of stores than that, I recommend going with an online registry through Amazon or other wedding registry site. My friend, Emily, did this and I love her post about it! 

Here's engaged me in 2012 excited about Macy's wedding gifts!

Here's engaged me in 2012 excited about Macy's wedding gifts!

Here is how it broke down for us:

Bed, Bath & Beyond: Basics like kitchen tools and cleaning supplies. Returns are super easy and most of our guests had access to BB&B.

Pottery Barn: Everyday china! I loved the selection and price point at PB. We also selected some kitchen linens, glassware and décor here (like the lamp above!).

Restoration Hardware: Bedding and bath linens. When we were engaged, RH was the only store Woody and I completely agreed on in style. So, for items like our bed and bath linens, we went straight here.

Macy’s: China and specialty kitchen items. Macy’s had a great selection of china and fun, different kitchen items (this is where my favorite cake stand came from!) 

McCurdy’s on Main: Décor and specialty items. Woody is from a small town in Georgia, and McCurdy's is the shop where everyone registers. They have so many beautiful items, and we definitely wanted to add this option for guests from his hometown.

We had guests coming from several states and this selection of stores proved to work well for us and our guests. We received a variety of gifts from each store, and I love that our home is made of a thoughtful collection of things we love from people we love!

4. Do it together.

How this works from couple to couple may vary, but in whatever capacity you do it, it's important to build your home together. Shopping seems to be a love-it or leave-it sport, so I recommend spending time talking through your expectations and game plan for registering together. You may want to do it all in-store, all online, or a mix of both.

We registered all in-store in multiple trips. Woody's shopping endurance is lower than mine, so we spread it out into about four trips (including the store in his hometown.) You may not be able to register together due to travel or long distance, and in that case I recommend looking online together or texting photos while one of you is in the stores.

Ultimately, make sure there are items on your registry you both like, will be excited to receive, and that represent who you are as a couple. Just like your marriage, your home (and therefore your registry) is about two becoming one, and that is how it should be built. 

I'd love to hear from you! What advice or questions do you have about wedding registries?