Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Registration Redux

Hello again readers! Today, I once again address the topic of registering for gifts. Hopefully, last week I convinced you of your need to register, and all that remains is telling you what to register for and where to register.

Yes, “telling” and not guiding, suggesting or even gently nudging. Why “telling”? Because there are some items that you absolutely must register for, despite you or your family’s views on modern wedding gift-giving etiquette.

Yup, that’s right: must. I almost never use that term because it’s so rarely applicable. Yet when it comes to wedding gifts, it’s completely needed.

See here we return to tradition (yea, we all love the history of weddings, right?!). No matter how much society changes, there are some traditions that weddings just can’t shake. One of these traditions is what to put on a wedding registry.

China: the very first registries created in the 1920s solely contained a bride’s china selections. This specificity made the dishes a practical staple for wedding registries. Luckily, today’s china makers have realized that not every bride is into non-dishwasher-safe, so-thin-as-to-be-see-through china and now offer sturdier dishes designed for everyday use.

Champagne glasses: a registry should contain at least two, which indicates that they will be used to toast at the wedding and on anniversaries. The exception to this rule is for couples who are members of religious groups or cultures in which drinking is taboo. However, remember that a glass designed for alcohol doesn’t necessarily need to hold it – it’s perfectly okay to fill a champagne glass with sparkling cider.

Flatware: a couple has to eat, right? And to eat they (hopefully) use flatware.

Notice anything? These three must-have items are all connected: each is designed to be used in a celebration. And what is a wedding? A celebration!

The “must” I used earlier lies in that connection. Because you set the precedence of celebrating the first eve of your wedding, your guests expect you to continue to do so in the future. To engage in this celebration both on the night of your wedding and in the future, you will need the items listed above. Guests, therefore, expect you to register for these things.

What a guest expects, a host should provide. It’s that simple.

Now, you know what you want (or at least have started a list per last week’s recommendation) and must put on your registry, but the question of where to register remains. Unlike the contents of your registry, there is no “must” to the store in which you should register. However, I do have a recommendation: the store should make it easy to register and to maintain a registry.  

At the thought of registering, stores like Pottery Barn, Bloomingdales and Crate and Barrel might appear in a couple’s mind. This is because these stores are set up to create and operate registries. They are used to doing so and, in fact, have a side of their business dedicated solely to this purpose. This translates into easy registering, making changes to existing registries and resolving problems with delivered gifts.

It doesn’t matter if a store is unique to your area as long as guests can access the store and your registry online. However, it does matter that you have access to the store, for easier exchange and return purposes.

Happy registering!