Monday, August 27, 2018

Wedding Registry Ideas

So the title must have really thrown you for a loop, right? No, I'm not getting married (one day!). However, over the last 2 or so years, SO many of you have requested that I share what I would register for if I was engaged. It's such a fun topic- creating tablescapes and stocking a kitchen are some of my favorite topics!

To be honest, I've held off on writing this for so long because it's kind of odd to write about this because I'm not getting married, but it's also fun to think about! 

I always joke that when I do end up creating a wedding registry that I won't need to register for anything because I already have everything.

But since I do already have everything, I thought I would share what I think the necessities really are. This list doesn't have to be for your wedding registry! This is a great list if you were like me: living on your own without roommates and wanted to invest in things you know you'll use for years to come! 

Pots and Pans// Well this is a big DUH! But what I mean is that I think investing in really high-quality pots and pans are so worth it. All-Clad is my go-to brand that is reasonably priced and works incredibly. Their nonstick surfaces are so good. I'd suggest registering for a set so you have everything. I got a big set and am so glad that I did because I really do use everything. 

Knives// This was one of those things that I had been holding off on. I had average knives and they were fine but I kept having to replace them. I finally caved when there was a Wustoff set on sale and oh my goodness, nice knives are a game changer! Seriously- I didn't realize how much I actually needed them. They cut everything so much better. It's just easier and they're pretty, too! 

Steak Knives// My mom got me these knives and not only do they work wonderfully but they are so beautiful. Laguiole also makes cheese knives, spreaders, etc. I actually ended up finding some of the other Laguiole items at Homegoods, so keep an eye out! 

Fine China// I am pretty traditional so I am very into china, crystal, and silver. I got Wedgwood china when I moved into my apartment. It's more on the casual side, though, so it's very easily used every day. I got a set of 12 of everything: dinner plates, bread and butter plates, cups and saucers, etc. I see no reason as to why you should only use your china on special occasions. I say use it daily! It's beautiful and there is no sense having it just sit in a cabinet collecting dust! If you don't think you would use it, though, then there is no reason in registering for it! Brands to look for: Wedgwood, Herend, Lenox, Villeroy and Bach, etc. I think the one misconception about fine china is that it looks fancy. You can get fancy china, sure, but they also have casual patterns, too. I actually got Villeroy and Bach plain white lunch plates. They are beautiful bone china, but they are unassuming and great for everyday use! I typically eat lunch off of these plates and even eat dinner off of them since they are small and help with portion control. 

Everday Plates// Besides china, I think you should also have a few sets of casual plates. I got the Aerin scalloped plates. They are neutral and simple so they work with a multitude of tablescapes. I'd suggest going with something simple and neutral so you can utilize them in every setting! Also- try to pick a price range that is on the less pricey side. Plates that you are going to use every single day are much more likely to break, so get a set that won't break the bank when replacing a plate here and there! Anthropologie is a great place for 'everyday plates'! I also love Spode

Crystal// I love crystal. I really like the brand Schott Zwiesel for everyday use. I have these glasses and they are great for everything from sparkling water or even red wine! They are what I drink my water out of every day at home. I also have basic Riedel stemmed wine glasses for both white and red wine. I have Waterford cut crystal goblets that can hold both red or white wine. I have champagne flutes in both simple Riedel and Waterford cut crystal. I use all of these glasses often. I mostly use the Riedel casually, but use the Waterford for when I am having many guests over. If you don't think you'll use all of your glasses or don't have the space to store them, they make these amazing storage cases where you can hide them away safely and pull them out when you need to! Something I don't have that I think I would register for are water goblets. Even if you don't want to register for china, it's always nice to have a surplus of glasses. Think of all the times you have 10+ people over!

Glasses// Besides crystal, you'll probably want to have some more casual glasses. I have a bunch of high ball glasses which are great because they serve so many different purposes. You can serve cocktails, water, etc. in these glasses! You'll also probably want a set of rocks glasses for cocktails or juice... I have Waterford crystal for these, but also have more casual ones like this! Depending on what you or your guests drink, you might also want specialty glasses such as beer, martini, or margarita glasses! I love martinis, so I have these martini glasses. You might also want casual wine/champagne flutes that you can toss in the dishwasher, like these

Silverware// I have old school silverware, and that is what I use daily. My mom, on the other hand, uses regular utensils for everyday use. I actually don't have non-silver utensils, so I'd register for that (love these)! I just personally love the elegance and how ornate silver is! 

Coffeemaker// To me, this is an absolute necessity. I wrote a blog post about it, here! Coffee machine goals is the Miele built-in machine!! 

Espresso maker// Another absolute necessity for me! I have the Nespresso and love it. I love the idea of a fancier espresso machine, but since it's time-consuming, I'm not so sure how much use I'd get out of a fancier one.

Bowls// For soups, salads, mixing, serving, etc. There are so many bowls, it's honestly a little ridiculous. I also have a crystal bowl similar to this one, that I use for serving fruit but it's also great just as a decoration! And lastly, I love a rimmed bowl that's great for things like pasta. I have these Spode bowls that I use all the time! 

Serving platters// I have so many of these. They have so many uses. Whether you are using it for a meat and cheese board, serving a roast chicken, or just hanging one on your wall! I got a stunning Herend serving platter at their warehouse sale and it might be my most favorite of them all! 

You might also want:
- Storage Canisters (I get mine at Homegoods)
- Measuring items (cups, spoons, etc.)
- Mixer... My sister and mom both have Kitchenaid mixers and love them! I can't imagine myself ever using a mixer, though! I don't think I have ever baked anything in my entire life except for break and bake cookies and boxed brownies, ha! 
- Blender. I have this one and love it, but honestly rarely use it. I've heard a lot of people swear by the Ninja blender and Vitamix
- Basics: colander, cutting boards, etc. 
- Decor: Vases, napkin rings, Candlesticks,  Picture frames, cashmere throws 
- Barware: cocktail shaker, copper mugs, pitchers, muddler, ice bucket, coasters, etc.
- Bakeware: again, no recommendations on this one, this is out of my league.  


Sheets// I like to have 4 sets of sheets on hand at all times. All of my sheets are white. Depending on how many bedrooms you have, etc. you might want more or less. Right now I have one bed and I still have 4 sets. It's nice because I don't have to wash a set immediately and also great for emergencies... for example, Henry threw up in my bed a few weeks ago (poor guy) and I was so glad to have fresh sheets ready to change immediately! I like a high thread count, but the higher thread count, the more wrinkles, so I like to choose something in the middle- the ones I linked are 464! 

Pillows// Pillows are expensive and I think they make a huge difference in the way you sleep. I recently updated my pillows and it's life changing!


Steamer// Best. Steamer. Ever. I have tried so many different ones and this one is truly the best. It's small and compact so you can travel with it but also is powerful enough to replace the need for a larger floor steamer! 

Iron// I have and love this iron but mostly use my steamer. This iron is great for when you need to iron something like a dress shirt that needs to look really crisp. I also think an iron works better than a steamer on bed linens! 

Vacuum// I have this one and for the price, it works wonderfully. My mom has this Dyson vacuum and says it is the best vacuum ever. I am waiting for my current vacuum to die and when it does, I'll switch to Dyson!

Towels// Really nice towels are such a great feeling. Find a brand you love and stick to it so your entire collection coordinates well together. I only use white towels because they're easy to just bleach if they get dirty. It's a great time to pitch some of your older, well-worn towels and go for something fresh and new... maybe some with your new married monogram! 

Best Advice 

My biggest tip is to register for what you'll truly use. For example, I think fine china is important, but my sister is more casual and probably wouldn't register for that! There are so many articles with advice on what to register for. I see so many lists with random things like a waffle iron, fondue set, candles, etc. I personally would not register for things like that because I know they don't fit within my lifestyle. Think about what you actually need and also what you have the storage space for.

You also want to think about the future. Maybe you live in a small apartment right now and the thought of having 12 of everything is ridiculous. But if you think you'll be living in a home and will eventually want to entertain, then you'll be glad you got a full set! 

It's also important to keep your registry simple. Have things at all different price points, but don't overload it. If you register for a smaller list, you're more likely to get exactly what you want. I also never understand registering for things like this silicone jar opener- basically things under $5. Things like that might be fun to give to your spouse in their Christmas stocking for your first married holiday together, but it just doesn't make sense to register for stuff like that! I once saw a couple register for a $5 toilet bowl scrub brush... buy that yourself! 

If you are going to register at a place like Amazon, you should also register somewhere else that has an actual store that you can walk into. For example, my grammie wouldn't know how to shop on Amazon, so being able to walk into a store such as Williams-Sonoma (can you tell I am WS obsessed?!) would be easier for her!

Things I Would Register For:
These are random things that are on my current wish list so if I were getting married these would be the things I'd register for!

If you have made it this far, bravo and thanks for sticking with me! If you are or have been a bride, what were things that you wish you would have registered for or things you did register for and didn't actually need? Let us know in the comments so all the brides that read here can gain insight! 


Kristen said...

I am happy to report that I've used - to some degree - everything I've registered for (much of which you mentioned in this post!). My most used/loved items from the registry have been our Juliska flatware, Wedgewood White China, Reidel wine glasses, Breville toaster oven, All-Clad pots & pans, W├╝sthof knives, and Matouk towels & bed linens. Also, a Le Creuset Dutch oven is a nice gift to register for, as they last for decades!

Anonymous said...

I'm a former WS associate and I would advise a little differently than you did. Registering for seasonal items isn't a good idea since the bride & groom's showers and wedding are likely months away. When the guests shop for the registry items, those seasonal things are long gone and the bride & groom's guests tended to get very frustrated.

I would keep those inexpensive items [like the $5 silicone jar opener] on the registry. Guests may not have a lot of money and if they think that only expensive items are on the registry, then they'll shop for random stuff on sale that isn't on the registry. This just means that you'll have to return it after the wedding.

People always register for towels, but no one likes to buy them. Guests want to buy something more "fun" but at WS [and Pottery Barn] anything left on your registry after the wedding will be 10% off for the bride and groom.

Unknown said...

Great post! Thank you for sharing
Mademoiselle Coconath

Cee Cee from KY said...

I would add a couple tips:

1. People want to gift you things that they feel you will use and think of them when you use them- entertaining pieces, china, crystal, etc. I didn't register for any sheets or towels because I wanted to focus on things I would have in my home forever- crystal vases, pitchers, candlesticks etc. and I think this really resonated with my guests. (We were also slightly older- 29 and 30, so there were many every day items we just didn't need)

2. I think there is a magic price point of $100-$150 that most your guests want to gift in. I think it's great to find as many items as you can in this range. There will certainly be bigger spenders (aunts and uncles, very close family friends), but most our gifts were in that range and we received nearly our entire registry.

3. The final tip, from the owner of the local china shop I used, was to register for some lower price point items you may not really want (or several of some gifts) and you can then stack the store credit to buy more china, etc. We also had all components of our china setting available for purchase individually or as a complete set.

4. Ok my for real final tip- write your thank you notes within 24 hours of getting your gift (or notification of the purchase). We only have about 30 to write after our wedding, and I was able to knock those out right after we returning from our honeymoon. Giving yourself "up to a year" is just a recipe for disaster and guilt!

Sydney Carver Snyder said...

Love your tips, Cee Cee! I also think age was a great point to bring up-I'm 28 and feel like I pretty much have everything I 'need'... or really even want! Plus, now that you mentioned age, I guess it's also good to mention that it differs if you are already living together before marriage, you more than likely have all of the everyday things you need and can register for more special items!

Sydney Carver Snyder said...


I love that you use everything from your registry!! I have the Le Creuset dutch oven and you are so right- it's not only functional but also beautiful!

Meghan said...

Wow, excellent post! So comprehensive, too. Bravo to you.

A couple things I would add (almost 2 years out over here!)
- The $10-15 range can be ideal for people who want an add-on to a gift. As a guest, I'm always looking for that too. I received a LeCreuset casserole with a few pretty towels and a pot of Herbs de Provence.. a guacamole molcajete with herb measuring spoons.. etc.

- Don't hesitate to return stuff you don't love - something better awaits you! We accumulated a credit from multiple returns at Sur La Table. On our next trip to the store, I spotted two LeCreuset pieces on sale - with our credit and completion discount, we got an amazing deal!

- Before you register, assess what you have, what you use a lot, what could be upgraded and what needs to be added and go from there. We lived in an apartment and knew a home was in our future, so we made sure to upgrade our towels, flatware and to register for 12.

-Pick stores you love that have good perks. Can't say enough great things about Bloomingdale's if you are lucky enough to have one - free monogramming, great coupons and free gifts.

- Keep adding to it! We had guests use it after the wedding for birthday and Christmas gifts.

- One last tip - there are SO many deals to be had on some of these brands if you don't receive them on your registry or they are a lower priority item.

All-Clad: Great online warehouse sales through and in person if you are Pittsburgh-area
Lenox: Kate Spade and other popular lines are available through their outlets with the best savings at their Warehouse Stores. They come in a variety of qualities (first, second) - and I was not able to notice a difference when compared to those purchased at Bloomingdales!
Le Crueset: Many colors are 'standard' - red, blue, orange - amongst all stores while different stores will receive their own special colors. If you aren't set on a specific color, there are many deals to be had in-store when they are marked down. Honestly, they are so versatile and amazing, it's fun to have a rainbow of them. (Blue, red, 'aubergine' in my kitchen!)

Sydney Carver Snyder said...

Meghan, thank you so much for sharing so many great tips and loved the info on where to grab the best deals! Xx

Anonymous said...

I sometimes feel like a registery is moot now that so many couples live together before marriage they already have a lot. I struggle to find a good wedding gift....I hate to give money I feel like its tacky! Any future advice on that is appreciated!

Laura said...

What a fun list of things!! I will say depending on when you get married, adding those small gifts to your registry is really important (making sure you actually want them of course). When I got married last year we had a destination style wedding and most of my friends that came were in the 24-25 years old range. They paid a good amount to travel and stay for our wedding so we wanted to make sure we were considerate and had some inexpensive items in there for anyone who wanted to get us something but weren’t in the position to shell out for a big gift (their travel was obviously more than enough!)

Elizabeth said...

While totally random, one of my absolute favorite items we registered for is an electric salt and pepper mill set. I made fun of my husband for picking it out, but it is an absolute game changer!! I also second writing your thank you notes within 24 hours, it will make your life so much easier. Also try to personalize them as much as possible. Not just “Dear_____, thank you so much for the _______. We love it.” And no matter how detailed and perfect your registry is, still be prepared to recieve random items that you would never chose in a million years. It is inevitable!

Nancy Vassilakis said...

My husband and I did not register when we got married. I can relate to you as I also lived in my own place before and did buy a lot of home items when I was single. But I did notice that once we started our married life, our taste changed and we ended up buying ourselves different chinaware. Currently we have Johnson Brothers "Old Britain Castles - Pink" (1940s) for formal, Russel Wright "American Modern" (1938) and Anchor Hocking "Fire King Charm - Forest Green" (1950s) for casual. We opted for vintage chinaware since that is what we like now. And our china gets used every day. Not only for special occasions.


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