Top Tips for Your Wedding Registry

You guys! One of the most exciting parts of the wedding planning process is planning out your wedding registry. Not because you get a bunch of gifts, that's not what the wedding is about! No, doing our wedding registry has been exciting to me because we've finally begun to envision our life together. Every time we put something on our wedding registry or opened a gift for our bridal shower, I could see using that item for years and years to come.

I can't believe I've done a wedding post each week for nearly a year and have yet to talk about how to do your wedding registry! I'll be honest, I didn't do THAT much research prior to doing our wedding registries. We kind of just jumped right in but we definitely made some mistakes. That's why I'm bringing you my top tips for your wedding registry in this post!

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Five Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting Your Wedding Registry

1. What do we need to put on our wedding registry

The thing about wedding registries is that it can be very easy to get overly excited and add literally all of the things. When you go and actually start your registry, the store where you're going to be doing your wedding registry is going to attempt to get you to add as much stuff as you can. It can be super overwhelming if you haven't taken a minute to stop and think about what you actually NEED to put on your wedding registry. If you're moving in together for the first time after your wedding, then chances are you're going to need pretty much all of the basics. But if you've lived together for years and are getting married, your wedding registry might look a lot different than mine!

2. What will be easiest for our guests

Where we did our wedding registry is something Justin and I spent a lot of time thinking about. We have family all over the place, including Alaska, so we knew that a lot of people wouldn't be able to physically go to stores to purchase items if they chose to. We knew we wanted to do our wedding registry at some place that had lots of locations but that also had reasonable shipping practices and prices.

3. When should we start our wedding registry?    

A lot of places will tell you to start your wedding registry immediately and I will say that this is what Justin and I did. That being said, if you're having a long engagement, you might want to wait until you're closer to your wedding date to set up your wedding registry. We started our registry quickly after getting engaged and it was honestly more hassle than it was worth. However, if you're having an engagement party then you might need to start your registry before that takes place.

4. How will we inform guests about our wedding registry?

We made sure to place our wedding registry on our wedding website but also included a note within our bridal shower invitations to let people know. Word of mouth has also been a great way for our guests to find out about our wedding registries. Some places, like Bed, Bath, and Beyond will actually give you little registry cards that you can share with people.

5. Should we have multiple wedding registries?

Multiple registries are something that was suggested by almost every website I looked at prior to creating our wedding registries but looking back I kind of wish we had just stuck to one place. While there were a few things at one place that you couldn't get at Target, they were items that would have been easy for one of us to mention to close family that we wanted. Keep in mind that multiple registries mean double the time spent updating them.

More practical advice about your wedding registry:

- you may have to update them frequently

I've lost count of how many times I've updated our wedding registries. Updates happen because things go out of stock (especially if you're using Target) or because you've changed your mind about a certain item. I've gotten in the habit of updating our registry every couple of months or so over the course of our engagement.

- only put the stuff you really want to get or highlight important items

Don't put something on your wedding registry that you don't think you'll actually use... because someone will buy it. If you're like us and go a little crazy with the scanner, make sure you highlight items that are most wanted, something you can typically do online.

- have thank-you cards ready and send them out immediately

The number one tip I have is to stock up on thank-you cards. I've heard of brides waiting almost a year to get any kind of thank-you cards out and that is something I didn't want to happen to us. Each time I get a gift, I make sure to have the thank-you card in the mail within the week.

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