Creating your wedding gift registry can feel like a strange thing, even if it’s a part of the wedding custom. You’re probably used to writing wishlists, thanks to writing birthday and holiday gift lists to your parents as a kid, but something about asking for specific items as an adult feels strange.
Don’t overthink it, though. It’s a tradition, a means for couples to start their relationship off on the right foot, all with a little help from their friends. So while you’ll foot the bill for a set of unique wedding rings for you and your spouse, you can rely on your family for assistance in covering the basics of your home.
With technological improvements and simplicity, many couples are turning to the internet to develop their wedding gift registry. It’s so much easier to provide people with direct hyperlinks to company sites than it is to ask them to travel to a specific store for a specific item they’re going to have to look for.
But what is it that you should and shouldn’t do when developing an online wedding gift registry? Here are the do’s and don’ts to developing your wedding gift registry.
Talk to Your Partner About What You Need
Off the bat, have a discussion with your partner about what you need as a newlywed couple. Is there a home aesthetic you’re going for? Are there specific home appliances you’re in need of? Would you rather receive money that could be put towards home renovations or your honeymoon? You should work together to settle on what it is the two of you want, as you want to start your marriage off on a positive foot.
Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute
Try to get your registry set up at least four months prior to your wedding date. This is an easy way to show your guests respect, showing that you value their time, all while not expecting them to just throw you money at the very last minute.
Make it Personal
Find ways to make your wedding gift registry emulate the two of you as a couple. Unique wedding gifts will make for a more exciting excursion for wedding guests, too, especially if you give them free rein based off of an idea. These personalized gifts can include personalized luggage, matching bathrobes, and more.
Don’t Forget About the Future
While you want to give your list a personal feel, you’ll also need to think about how these gifts can benefit you in the future. Money for your honeymoon might be great in the moment, as that’s more money to be spent on tropical cocktails, but an everyday item related to your home will be far more useful in the long run. Consider your options and determine which is the best gift for both you and your spouse.
Make it Convenient for Guests
Your guests shouldn’t have to scour the earth in search of your wedding gifts. Furthermore, it should be made as easy as possible for non-tech savvy wedding guests. Provide them with direct hyperlinks next to every item. This could be housed within an unmistakable “BUY” button which directs guests, by hyperlink, to a site that sells the very item you are talking about. This level of simplicity makes life easier for your guests, allowing them to view your registry in one place, all while being able to evaluate the items contained throughout it.
Don’t Rely on High-Ticket Items
The average wedding gift is $100 for each guest. What does this mean for you and your spouse? Don’t ask for too much.
You can put big ticket items on your wedding gift registry if you’d like, as there are some relatives who are willing to spend that type of money on you, such as your grandfather buying you a state of the art washing machine. But not every guest is going to be able to financially swing an expensive item.
A good rule of thumb is to have 25% of your gifts be less than $75, 50% between $75 to $150, and the last 25% over $150. Don’t test the generosity of your guests when it comes to creating your wedding registry. Shop your thanks by being appreciative of having them at your ceremony and reception.
Include Experiences Alongside Items
Not every gift has to be an item. You can include experiences for both you and your spouse to enjoy. These could be future experiences, such as money to be set aside for a vacation to come, or it could be gifts related to your honeymoon—such as a couples massage at the hotel you’ll be staying at.
Don’t Forget Cold-Hard Cash
Sometimes cash is the best gift you can receive. This is especially true if your new home is in need of serious renovations, or if you already have a family and could use some extra support after paying for a wedding, reception, and honeymoon.
Be kind about it, though. Rather than asking for cash gifts at certain amounts, simply ask guests to provide what they can, whether it be by digital payment (Venmo, PayPal, Zelle), cash, or check. It will be greatly appreciated no matter its form.
Don’t Forget to say Thanks
The most important thing for you to do after your wedding is to say thanks. Don’t just accept your guest’s generosity and move on with your life. A heartfelt thank you note will go a long way, letting them know that your gift was truly appreciated. Just like your unique wedding, take the time to make every thank you note personalized.
Even if laborious, consider it to be an act of good karma, paying back for what you have received.