Wedding season can get a bit pricey if you're attending a couple this Summer. After all, each event requires yet another gift for the happy bride and groom. There are plenty of gift registry rules out there that seem a bit dated and unreasonable for post-recession survivors. Read on to have your say in which rule is still appropriate in this frugal day and age.
My fiancé and I will be getting married next Spring and have chosen to save the money and time that it would take to have a wedding. He recently went through a foreclosure and we really would rather begin saving for our future. Instead, we will have his father marry us in front of 10 family members and will most likely go out to dinner afterward. Here is the problem — many of my friends have asked me if I'm registered. I am not, and have no idea if it is really a good idea since hardly anyone will be invited to the actual wedding. What is the etiquette in this kind of situation? I wouldn't want people guessing on a present if they choose to get us one, but I also think it would come of as rude to send an announcement for the registry but nothing about the wedding. Do we have to explain to everyone that we have just chosen to skip the wedding? Is there some tasteful way of announcing that there is no wedding but there is a registry? Please help.
Building a wedding registry is one of the most fun parts of wedding planning. It’s a great bonding experience with your intended, and let’s be honest, it’s pretty exciting to pick out tons of new stuff. But it’s also easy to get carried away. Some people — those who aren’t planning a wedding, in my experience! — feel that you should register for as much as possible, to give your guests plenty of options and ensure you don’t run out of registry items. I received that advice from several well-meaning relatives, and did end up adding a bit to my registry — and wished I hadn’t! Not only did I receive a few superfluous items, I also ended up with incomplete sets of the things I really needed. So when you venture into Pottery Barn, registry gun (or mouse) in hand, channel your savvy side and show some restraint; you won’t regret it.
Help future brides out by posting your tips and ideas in our How Do You Save? group or leaving a comment below. Your own precious tips could be featured on the site and help tons of other savvy brides plan their own dream weddings!
Dear Savvy Bride,
My cousin recently had a "destination wedding". During the planning it was made very clear that it was going to be a small wedding and that no one but immediate family was invited. I recently learned that nearly 40 people attended the wedding, (including some co-workers). My feelings are hurt since he is more like a brother than a cousin.
During the months building up to the wedding, the bride would not even talk with us about the wedding details. When my sister asked her about the wedding dress, she rudely responded, "Ugh! I don't even want to talk about it!" So, 1. we're not invited to the wedding, and 2. we can't even ask about the wedding!?!?! Come on!
Next month, they are having a reception. I'm not sure what to do for a gift. My cousin is very close to me and I'd like to do something nice for him, however my feelings for the bride leave something to be desired. My sister tells me that since we were not invited to the wedding, we do not have to give a gift. Is this true?
Can anyone offer suggestions for a gift idea? I don't feel like giving something off her greedy gift registry.
To see the Savvy Bride's advice, read more
You're happy for the two lovebirds, but the gifts on their wedding registry are way out of your budget. Drop the old tradition of resorting to the cheapest gift on the registry when you're strapped for cash! instead, take a more modern, savvy approach and pick a personalized gift that'll portray your thoughtfulness and give your wallet a breather. Dana LaRue, from The Broke-Ass Bride blog gives us some tips on the smart way to give below.
- Check Out Coupon Codes: Never hit "purchase" on an online order without checking RetailMeNot.com for a coupon or promo code. You can score percentages off, free shipping and more by doing some stealthy searching around the web, which adds up to big savings!
- Go With the Gift of Experience: Sometimes experience is the best gift of all. Rather than a novelty gift or trinket that will just sit on a shelf, show your gratitude by taking your giftee out on an adventure that suits their interests. A fancy gourmet dinner out (or cooked at home with love) will satisfy your foodie friends, a hike and picnic out in nature will tickle your hippie-buddy's heart, massages at the spa for your luxury-loving sister, or tickets to a concert or play could be just the thing for your cultured crew. Personalizing the gifts for each recipient is a very special touch that will not be soon forgotten.
Each Spring, when wedding season begins to ramp up, I start storing not only cash but also creativity to help me navigate through the bridal registry process. Thankfully, I've got many years of wedding gift-giving behind me, and plenty of useful ideas for couples who are starting a kitchen anew. From an everyday coffee brewer to the perfect serving tools, here's my foolproof list of practical kitchen items that any bride and groom will make use of. Here, what you can't go wrong with.
Engaged? Congratulations! You're about to start your life as a married couple, and one of the advantages of getting married is getting to register for fabulous things to feather your nest with. But like many things that sound fun at first, it can also become overwhelming.
The Internet is your best friend in managing your registry. So much can be done online that you (almost) don't even have to set foot in a store to look at china patterns. Of course, you also need to know where to start, which is where this guide comes in.
First step: Deciding where to register.
- These days, it seems like most couples are moving away from registering only at stores that have a lot of brick-and-mortar outposts because so many people are comfortable shopping online. It's also good if you don't know which store is convenient for most of your guests — but pretty much everyone has an Internet connection. The best places to register, in my opinion, have both physical stores (so you can see things in person) and online-accessible registries.
- Some bigger stores that have both a physical presence and online registries are: Macy's, Crate and Barrel, Bloomingdale's, Pottery Barn, Williams-Sonoma, Bed, Bath and Beyond, Target, and CB2. For each, you can either go to the store and register there, and they'll set up your online registry simultaneously, or you can just set up the registry online.
To see the rest of my online registry tips, as well as linking etiquette and some warnings, just keep reading.