Wednesday, March 26, 2008


According to wikipedia:

A bridal registry is a system designed by department stores for the purpose of allowing an engaged couple to manage the purchases of gifts for their wedding. From what is available at the store, the couple creates a list of items they would like to receive, then the list is mentioned or provided to their wedding guests. Some implementation methods allow participating stores to provide the list to guests. As a gift is purchased by a guest, the department store's list is updated and the item is removed from the list of the desired items, preventing a single gift from being accidentally bought redundantly by multiple people. This can be more efficient for the couple to be married, as well as providing guests with a framework for making decisions about which gift to purchase.

I'm sure for the most part we all knew that! But did you know:

  • The concept of a bridal registry was first instituted by Chicago-founded department store Marshall Fields in 1924
  • Target was the first to introduce an electronic gift registry in 1993 using The Gift Certificate Center in Minneapolis, MN that you are well educated in the history of the bridal registry it is time for you the help me out! I've looked around a couple of times at things to register for but haven't actually sat down and got it all together in order to get the whole process started. I've been a little stressed about whether or not my china was too expensive, how many place settings to get, what about every day dishes, etc. So I decided, why not ask my blogging friends?! Those of your who are married should have lots of experience in this department. And those of you who are not probably have lots of experiencing buying gifts off of registries. So here's what I want to know:

  1. How expensive do you think is too expensive for a place setting of formal china?
  2. How many place settings should I register for?
  3. Did you all double register for your china and/or other items? If so, what items?
  4. What did you register for that you wished you wouldn't have?
  5. Did you register for crystal? What items did you choose?
  6. What didn't you register for that you wish you would have?
  7. What did you register for that you are glad you did?
  8. How many places did you register?
  9. Any other tidbits that you think I might find useful.

My mom and I are going this weekend to look at a lot of things. I hope to do most of it online but would like to see it in person before I add it to the list. Fortunately Josh is very laid back and doesn't really care what I pick out. I've already consulted him on the important decisions so I'm sure he'll be on board with what I decide. I'll have to finish the rest of it though, like bedding and towels, when he is with me to offer his opinion!

Thanks in advance for helping me out with this process! I know I can count on you bloggers! And for those of you who read my blog but don't comment (I know you are out there! That's what my blog trackers are for!!) now is the time to start!


Caroline said...
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Caroline said...
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Heather said...

Unfortunately, I can't remember all of your questions. But, as far as place settings go, I think it depends on whether the place settings are for casual or formal dinnerware. For casual, I would say 6 or 8. And for formal dinnerware, I think the standard is either 8 or 12.

Hope this helps!

Melissa said...

okay, i just typed out a huge response and i guess Heather and I were sending it at the same time and it rejected mine! i'll try to remember what i said.... Bobby and I didn't register for china or crystal. we are both very laid back people and we wouldn't ever use it. I would think you'd want 6 setttings. A girl i teach with didn't get all hers and her grandmother buys her a piece every holiday! very sweet! :) it's definitely a long tiring process. be careful adding stuff online, some of it may be for sale online only (esp at target!)

Caroline said...

hillary..i am a dork. i have deleted this thing 2 times because i can't read and answer the wrong questions uggggghhhhhhhhhhh

not married...but i love all this stuff and this is just my opinion ....
How expensive do you think is too expensive for a place setting of formal china?
anything over $90 for me..but i love china and it will be passed down and stuff...but you don't want it too expensive because you won't get it all....i love china and everyday dishes...oh and reg for the extra stuff too...veg bowl and gravy fun

How many place settings should I register for? 13 or 14 in case one breaks...

What did you register for that you wished you wouldn't have?
well, not married but my sister ended up getting alot of the silly stuff they liked and none of the stuff that they really needed.

crystal? ....sure if you get it great if not maybe your mom can give you hers!!!! kidding...

How many places? one thing i have learned from my friends is that you can always add to your list when the gifts begin to be purchased. sometimes when the registry is really overloaded people don't know what to really buy.

hope this helps.....don't stress...this is a great part and i can't wait till it's my turn

Shannon said...

Hey Hillary! I registered for 12 place settings in China and two sets of everyday (a traditional white one and a fun colorful one) and got it all. I think that is because my everyday was cheaper than most and my china was $100 a place setting. I would definately do at LEAST 12 though. Yes to the crystal. I got only a few of my crystal goblets but was able to complete the set (of 12) with duplicates I returned. I did not double up on things except for things at Dillards and Fifth Seasons. I think I registered at 5 places...Dillards, Fifth Season, Pier One, Target, and Crown Shop. I wish I didn't register for all the cool appliances (waffle maker, quesadilla maker...) that never got used. Hope this helps! What a fun time!

Kelly said...

I got 12 of each set of dishes and I would reccommend at least that many. I got Christmas dishes which I really enjoy! I did double register. You will take a lot of stuff back but then you can get what you need of everything else. Like if you get 20 of one thing but only 4 of the other.
I wish I would have gotten China. I didn't think I needed it and I probably still don't but it would be nice one day.
I didn't think I would want any crystal and i got a ton of it - but it so nice to use as serving dishes for parties. Register for a lot of arthur court and wilton armetale (or serving pieces that are similar)- that is always nice to have.
I'm like shannon - I got a lot of silly things like quesadilla makers and ice cream makers that I haven't used in almost 5 years.
Wedding gifts are SO great!!!! (Writing the thank you notes is stressful though - get ready for carpal tunnel).

Leigh Ann said...

Definitely register for 12 of everything. Dishes break and I didn't think about that when I just registered for 8. I did not register for China and I have not regreted it. I kind of want it now...13 years later and I'm glad I waited because my taste has changed so much. I registerd for really nice every day white dishes and did get crystal and that works just as well as China I think. With white you can mix and match, too which is nice to have different looks for different holidays, etc. We did not double register...didn't even know about that, but we did have so much duplicate stuff that we took it back and bought a new television! Ha! Have fun looking! Probably more info than you wanted! Ha!

Robyn Beele said...

The only thing I can think of not to register for are picture frames or vases. I got so many it was ridiculous. I wouldn't register for anything decorative b\c you will get plenty from people who do not bother to look at your registry. I would ask for more sheet sets and towels.

Kelly said...

I want to second Robyn - I got 500 vases and crystal candle sticks. And I didn't register for either. But they will come in handy one of these days! :-)

Jennifer said...

I actually didn't register for china. I won a set at one of the bridal fairs........just a real basic white set and I was ok with that. I did register for two sets of casual dinnerware. One was the corning ware and the other was pflatzgraff. Last summer I cleared out my china and sold it in a garage sale. Then I bought a set from Princess House. Still don't use them, but they are pretty in the china hutch. LOL So because of all that I just hate to see wasted money on something that I wouldn't really use. If that makes sense.

For any type of place settings, I would say 14. Really just need one extra but I don't care for the number 13. LOL

I did double register, especially in towels and sheets.

I didn't register for crystal either. LOL I did pick up some from ebay from Princess House and love them, but haven't used them either. Sad, isn't it.

I would register at several places. let's see where did I register........JCPenney, Dillards, Target, and there was some place else but that store closed.

I registered for items that I would really use. I had lived on my own before marrying and so I had a lot of basics. But I did register for new towels and then got rid of all the 'old ones'. LOL I also registered for sheets, casual dinnerware, casual silverware, kitchen items, etc.

I would suggest having a Pampered Chef bridal shower. It's a ton of fun and so many great items! Another fun one would be from Princess House. They have beautiful crystal and other items. If you do have the one from Princess House, ask about the fantasia miracle dish! It's the best dish ever......make a roast in record time and it's quite tasty!

I wouldn't register for photo frames, vases, candle sticks, etc. You'll get them anyway, so no need to add to the list. LOL

So much fun!!! Enjoy the time!

Shannon said...

PS I didn't think I would use my china or crystal for awhile (they stayed in their boxes for a year)but when I got them out I used them a LOT!! I would have really regretted it if I had not gotten them! I love having it. I don't know if you have a dining room right now but if you don't, some day you might and you might want china then. :) Even if you only use them once a year it is worth it.

Brad & Jill said...

Hey Hillary! (I met you at Jenny's shower) so now that we're blog friends, I felt like it was acceptable to offer advice! Ha!! I would register for 12 settings, you will be surprised what people will get you, no matter what the price. I have never used all of mine, but we like to pull it out on our anniversary....which is fun to remember what they look like!! Also, don't be surprised if Josh has more of an opinion than you think once you guys go to register. That came out of no where for me, so I wanted to give you a "head's up." But as long as he has the little gun, he should be happy!

I wouldn't register for "games" because you may end up with 10 "Craniums" or "Yahtzee" and no towels or pratical items!!!

Have so much fun!!!!

Lindsey said...

I have never commented before but enjoy reading your blog and got married less than a year ago so I feel like I can offer some advice.

First off would be do NOT register at Target. It was the biggest nightmare b/c of their insane return policy. I receive duplicate items and they would only allow me to exchange the items for other things on the exact same aisle. So, I ended up with a lot of things I didn't need.

Second, Bed, Bath, & Beyond is a must. They give you cash back for anything off of your registry that you return. I registered for my china, crystal, and Wilton Armetale at both B,B&B and Dillards and ended up with 24 place setting of china between the two. So I took the extras back to BB&B and my husband and I received cash which was nice since we were moving into a new hosue and needed things like paint and other items we didn't register for. Yo ucan also use the cash to purchase items off of your registries at other stores.

I would go for the china and crystal....I acctually use mine all the time. As far as china prices go, IMO if the place setting is more than $100 you most likely won't get all of the settings that you want. For crystal, I just went with the Iced Tea glasses in my Waterford pattern b/c I had already gotten really pretty/ fun wine glasses.

As far as things I use all the time: my pots, knife set, baking items, and my mixer.

Some things I could have lived without: too many mixing bowls, measuring cups, and ice cream maker.

Another thing is to make sure you register for all price points. Even if you don't necessarily need the $30 coffee pot you can always exchange it to buy other items that are more expensive that you don't get. I found that most of the items on my registry in the $30 - $50 range we purchased.

Sorry this is a book but I just went thru this not to long ago and thought I might could help.

Even though I don't know you feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions. My e-mail is

Hope this helps!

Serah said...

I would register for 8 place settings, but it really depends on the size of your extended family/friends and how often you think you'll have big groups at your house. And definitely pick both casual and formal. I didn't pick a formal pattern and now I regret it.

And keep the receipts! You never know when you'll get duplicates (two waffle irons in my case) and need to make returns.

Happy Registering!

Tiffani said...

Thanks for the comment. I just want you to know that we registered for the Vera Wang Grosgrain & then we switched it to the Vera Wang Lace...I went back & forth on that one too! Ha!

We registered for 12 settings of china. I thought I wouldn't use it that much, but like I said I am going to make myself because it is so much fun!

I have to agree with the comment on Bed Bath & was great. We got lots of duplicates & we returned stuff & got cash. We were able to use the cash at one of our other stores we registered at. Besides, they have so much stuff there & they are always sending those 20% coupons in the mail...which is nice for your gift givers!

I didn't register for crystal or silver. We got some crystal from some people though. Definitely, register for some of the same stuff at different stores, and the price point thing is a must!

I'm not sure if y'all have a Crate & Barrel, but that was one of my favorites stores that we registered at. Also, Dillard's gives you a 20% off coupon to complete your registry...most only do 10 or 15 so that was nice.

I got so many spatulas, measuring cups, etc. I wish I hadn't doubled up on some of those.

Ok, that is all I can think of off the top of my head. Btw, I went to Baylor & lived on 2 North. I saw your post about Katie & I was so excited. Katie and I pledged DDD together. So fun that you know her! I always thought you looked familiar...not that we ever knew each other, but maybe we passed by each other in Collins!

Megan L Hutchings said...

I am so excited for you...REGISTERING can be a blast! I can't remember ALL of your questions, but here are a few helpful hints.

We registered at Target, Linens N Things, & Dillards. We also registered at a small boutique in the town where my mother n law was raised. They did not have some of the major department stores and most of them do not own a computer. I did get some very unique gifts!

I agree that 12 is always good for settings, but you might want to get 13 in case one breaks. I did not get China but hopefully one day I will. I wanted to be able to buy mine all together some day, but that is just me.

You WILL get some crazy gifts that you did not register for, but you can always return them. Also, remember to include a gift certificate on the registry.

I hope this helps and enjoy your registry!!!