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Some Thoughts on Registries

Gift registries are a terrific way to remove guesswork for your guests, and ensure that the gifts you receive are practical, useful, and appropriate. But beware! Once you get that scanner in your hand your registry could become a runaway train. Let’s take a few simple steps to prepare for a gift registry.

  1. Assess your needs – Are you a cook? Do you like to entertain? Take a look around your home and notice what household items you presently use. Notice, too, if they need to be replaced. Here’s a great opportunity to add practical, useful items to your registry. Keep a running list on your phone of things you realize you need, and start there. Registering for things you need is a great start.

  2. Make a plan – After addressing your needs you can move on to wants. But again, a great place to look is in the things you already use. Believe me, if you don’t eat a lot of cheese before you get married, you are unlikely to need a fancy cheese service set after you get married. Again, be practical. While the allure of fancy gadgets and shiny things is difficult to resist, you should. Just combining your stuff with your spouse’s stuff is more than enough clutter without adding a motorized apple peeler, especially if you have never needed one before. Just as you shouldn’t go food shopping without a list, don’t go gift-registering without one, either.

  3. Think about the basics – A gift registry is a great way to cover essential needs. But planning is important here, too. For example, you may need a simple frying pan. A store like Bed Bath and Beyond likely has a wall of them. Which do I choose? It is always a good idea to choose pieces that are part of a larger set. This way when you need to expand your cookware to include a sauce pan and a pasta pot, you can select from a matched set. Table linens in basic colors are another great staple item upon which you can build in the future. Cover the basics, and select foundation pieces.

  4. Work with your registry host – Most retailers will provide a host who will join you on your registry spree. They are there to help you make selections and will provide suggestions of items you might have missed. Since you came prepared with a plan, you can go over it with your host before you start scanning. This way you can avoid impulsive additions that you will begin to regret the moment you get it. See: apple peeler. However, if you are unhappy with your host don’t be afraid to ask for someone else. They should be helping your toward your goal, not pushing you in other directions.

  5. Vary the cost of items – Be considerate to your guests, each of whom likely has a different budget. You should have little trouble finding practical, useful items, that any guest would be proud to give. At the same time, don’t be afraid to include items that are more expensive, provided it is something you will surely use. Some guests may have a higher budget and might want to spend a bit more. You might as well let them.

  6. Have Fun – A little preparation will help you to enjoy registering without feeling pressure and anxiety. Even the process of making your list can be a great way for you and your future spouse to get to know each other even better. It can be a time to discuss the things you do now, and the things you want to do together in the future. A well-prepared gift registry can give you the tools to get started. Good luck!

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