The Ultimate Shopping List – Creating Your Bridal Gift Registry
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The Ultimate Shopping List – Creating Your Bridal Gift Registry
By Amanda Stout

Setting up a bridal gift registry is one of the many fun things you will do during your engagement. In case you’re not sure where to start, here are some basic steps to begin your wedding registry.

Woman browsing on laptopSetting up a bridal registry is one of the many fun things you will do during your engagement. Compiling a list of all the things that you and your fiancé need for your new life together will certainly get you excited for your ‘I dos’! While your bridal registry may seem like nothing more than the ultimate shopping list, there needs to be a lot of thought put into it. Before you go crazy with that scanner gun, take a moment to plan, research and get organized. In case you’re not sure where to start, here are some basic steps to begin your wedding registry!

When to get started - Start thinking about your registry right away. This may sound a little premature but once hearing about your engagement, some friends or family may want to get you a gift right away. So to better accommodate everyone’s gift-giving strategy, register for a few items soon after your engagement. Since it may be difficult to decide on all the items for your registry this early, more items can and should be added later on. If you are having an engagement party or bridal shower, make sure to register for gifts at least one month beforehand. This gives guests enough time to shop.

What to register for - It can be an overwhelming task deciding what items to select for your registry. There are probably a lot of things you and your future spouse need to begin your lives together. So it is best to prioritize and stay organized. Before going to the store or browsing online, it may be helpful to make your own list of things you need. Go visit a friend or family member’s fully stocked kitchen/dining room/ bathroom/etc. Take a look around at the necessities they have and then jot down any items you don’t yet own but would like for your own place. Having this primary list will make it easier when you visit the store or begin your online registry. Think about daily activities, chores and tasks and the items you will need to complete them. Also think about special occasion items that you may need for holidays or entertaining. Once basic items are taken care of then think of fun items or decorating pieces that will complete your living space.

Now if you and your fiancé already live together and have many of the necessary items needed for everyday living. Think about expanding your registry to include items that are tailored to your hobbies and interests. Consider camping equipment, wine chillers, electronics, or gift cards to Home Depot, Lowes or Target.

Where to register - So as not to overwhelm yourself or your friends and family, stick to one or two stores for your registries. Having too many options for gifts at too many places can be overwhelming to others and tedious and confusing for you to manage. Choose a well-known national department store for at least one of your registries, so that no matter where your guests are located they recognize and have access to the store. Also, make sure that at least one of the stores you register with has an online shopping option for added convenience for your friends and family.

Managing your registries - It is important to frequently check back on your registries to maintain them. If the list is looking a little sparse, add more items so that people have plenty to choose from. You are going to want to make sure your registry has a wide assortment of price ranges represented so that everyone you invite to your wedding has an appropriately priced item to choose from. A recent college-grad friend is not going to be spending the same amount on you as your grandparents are.

Announcing your registry - Proper etiquette states that you should not list where you are registered inside of your wedding invitations. When you send out invites to your bridal shower this is the place to include a card or note of where you and your fiancé are registered. It may also be the task of your family and bridal party to spread the word about where you are registered. A personal wedding website is also another place to list the locations of your registries and provide a link to your online registry.

About the Author - Amanda is a writer and product developer for My Wedding Reception My Wedding Reception Ideas specializes in personalized wedding favors, decorations, accessories, and wedding party gifts. You can find more helpful wedding tips, advice and ideas from Amanda and other wedding experts here.

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