When, Where and How to Create Your Wedding Registry

If you haven't yet started your wedding registry, you may find that you're either (a) SUPER excited about it, and can't wait to go 'shopping', or (b) COMPLETELY overwhelmed, and don't know where to start.

Never fear!  There are lots of places to go for help, not the least of which are the specially trained staff at a lot of stores that offer wedding registries.  I also suggest that you do an internet search for lists of the actual items you'll want to register for - there are tons of them out there, and they will guide you as you make your choices.  The purpose of this post is to give you some tips and tricks to consider to make the PROCESS smoother, once you've decided on the specific items you'll add to your registry.

Tips for Registering:

    • start your registry early to make sure you have time to refine it before wedding showers and engagement parties.
    • create registries in 2-4 places to make it easy for your guests to purchase gifts. Think about accessibility for out-of-town guests - if you’ve only registered at one small, independent store, it may be challenging for them to make purchases.
    • look for options that offer discounts or bonuses: many retailers will give you 10-15% off the remaining items on your registry if you wish to purchase them following the wedding.

Where to Register (brick and mortar):

  • The Bay
  • Pottery Barn
  • Crate & Barrel
  • Linen Chest
  • Bed, Bath & Beyond
  • Small, independent retailers

Where to Register (online):

  • Amazon.ca - click 'Registry' in the top menu, and add anything you like!  (Or use their helpful guides for the most-registered-for items)
  • Giftspaces - Canadian website: you add one large gift (like a honeymoon, or even a house downpayment!) or multiple smaller ones, guests contribute money (secure online processing), with a 5.4% transaction fee
  • LifeExperiences - Canadian website: choose from their extensive list of experiences and receive a gift card for purchased experiences
  • MyRegistry - (choose the Canadian option) add the button to your bookmarks bar, or download the app, and add any item from any store. Guests will be directed to the store’s website to purchase the gift. You can also register for cash gifts or experiences.

What to Register For:

  • have a discussion with your partner about which of your existing items you’ll keep, which you’ll replace, and what you need that you don’t currently own.
  • think through the items you’ll register for, and allow lots of time to finalize the selections.
  • try to register for items in every price range, from very affordable to more substantial, as well as providing a variety of traditional items for older guests and ‘fun’ items for younger friends.
  • keep in mind that your lifestyle may change; while you might not currently plan to throw dinner parties for twelve people, you may need to in the future. While you currently only use everyday dinnerware, it might be nice to have a fancier option in the future.
  • try to register for non-seasonal items: those which are carried by the store year-round. If you’re registering far in advance, you don’t want to choose something that’s unavailable when your guests go to purchase it.
  • check up on your registry about three weeks prior to your wedding. Most guests will shop within the two weeks prior, and you’ll want to ensure that there are adequate items remaining. You can add items at any time.
  • if you’d prefer cash, have your family members spread that information by word of mouth - you can specify that you’re saving for a new refrigerator or washer and dryer, for instance.
  • it’s poor etiquette to put your registry information in your wedding invitations - this information can be put on your website, or spread by word of mouth.

As always, let me know if you have any questions!

If you're finding that you're totally overwhelmed with wedding planning in general, check out our Wedding Academy courses - we'll teach you everything you need to know to plan your wedding like a pro!

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