Getting married often means that a friend or family member will offer to throw you a wedding shower. The original intent of showers was for women to share wisdom and lessons on the art of becoming a wife. Showers have evolved into more of a food/game/gift event, and it’s usually expected that the couple-to-be will create a gift registry so that the guests know what she wants and needs.
When creating a registry, it’s important to not add too much stuff to the registry – things you don’t actually need or want, but you also want to try to have enough options from which your guests can choose. My favorite wedding registry option that covers nearly any gift is simple to use and simple for guests to purchase from – AMAZON.com.
You add items to the Amazon.com registry from the comfort of your own couch without a “registry expert” hounding you to add useless china or crystal to your registry when you don’t want it. Amazon.com carries a nearly unlimited selection of items and plenty of reviews to help you make your decision. While you’re adding items to your registry, try to select items that offer free Prime shipping so your guests don’t have to pay extra for shipping that takes longer. You can also mark things as “must” have, and leave comments on each item (such as color or size).
One of the best features of Amazon registries is that you’ll receive a 10%-20% off registry completion coupon to purchase any items from your registry that you didn’t receive or decide that you need (even if they are added at the last minute). Coupons for Amazon are hard to come by, so this is a BIG bonus.
The other big bonus is for your guests – they don’t have to run to a crowded store and try to hunt down each item from your registry. Some of the big box stores have absolutely nonsensical and difficult layouts that make finding very specific things difficult. Read below for other benefits of Amazon Wedding Registry, as well as my personal registry suggestions.
- Simple to create and manage
- Registry Checklist and Ideas & Inspiration sections help guide you towards items you may want to consider
- *Get a 20% completion gift off most products on Amazon for a savings up to $100 (10% if you’re not a Prime member)
- World’s largest selection
- It’s universal – Add items from other websites with the universal button
- Easy returns, even if a gift receipt wasn’t included – your gift giver won’t be notified.
- Thank-you list feature displays what each guest purchased, their address for you to send a proper “thank you”, as well as a return option in case something doesn’t work out.
While I feel that Amazon.com offers the best, all-encompassing registry, I also recommend registering at a local/national brick and mortal store for guests who prefer to purchase gifts in-store, don’t have a Prime account, or wait until the day of the event to buy a gift. Top picks for wedding registries include Macys, Crate & Barrel (my favorite), Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, Kohl’s, and Ikea.
Don’t know where to start? Here are my personal suggestions for your registry.
Kitchen Registry Items
Skip the gadgets…most of these can be found inexpensively at your local TJ Maxx, Target, or other store. You probably don’t need them anyway. How many pineapples are you going to “core” a year?
Stainless steel pans. These will last you decades and are easy to clean without worry of scratching. Consider added some individual, rather than as one set, which allows those with a smaller budget to purchase what they can afford. Cuisinart for good quality, Le Creuset for best quality/highest budget
Cast Iron Skillet is so versatile and one of those things that get better with age. It’s the only skillet we use for eggs, sauteing, and any other stovetop cooking – we even use it in lieu of a toaster. If you’re set on having a non-stick skillet, get a good one and replace when it’s scratched.
A good santuko or chef’s knife, serrated knife, and a paring knife. Those are the basics – you don’t need much more unless you are a serious chef. (To be honest, my $10 Crate & Barrel Santoku knife is still going strong 7 years later as my main knife)
Blender if you make batches of smoothies and drinks, or a personal size blender if you just make one at a time (mine has lasted for over 10 years, and I rarely pull out the big blender). her get a Ninja that covers both (and food processing)
Plates and silverware that fit your personal taste. Stick with a great set of plain white dishes if you want to be able to replace broken ones easily or add serving pieces later on. I picked mine from Crate & Barrel – their kitchen items are really affordable.
Baking sheets – avoid non-stick versions which can flake off teflon or other coatings into your food. A heavy baker’s sheet can handle just about anything. Non-stick baking mats eliminate the need to grease your pans before using, and help prevent burning.
Glass 9×13 and 8×8 baking dish (with lids). These work great for baking casseroles, desserts, and meat, without worrying about scratching the surface when you cut or serve – plus they are dishwasher-safe.
Trash can. Unless yours is new or built in to your cabinets, now is the time to get a nice stainless steel trash can that fits your needs (handsfree, divided for recycling, etc.)
TV trays if you like to eat in front of the tv
If you entertain frequently, consider registering for serving pieces for parties, bar glasses and accessories, ice bucket, tablecloth/napkins, and other special serving items. If you don’t entertain; these items aren’t must-haves and will take up valuable storage space (Ask me how I know! Hint: entertaining happens a lot less after kids!)
Bed/Bath Registry Items
While it may not be “fun” to register for towels and sheets, it sucks to have to buy these for yourself. So register for them now and you’ll be set for the next decade.
Bath towels, hand towels, and wash cloths in neutral colors. Pick something that will go with a variety of decorating colors in case you paint the walls, move to a new house, or even get a new shower curtain down the line. Tan, cream, gray, and white are good choices. Register for enough to have a set for 2 bathrooms, even if you only have 1 bathroom. This will cover having house guests, moving to a 2 bath home, or if any get ruined or stained.
New shower curtain and matching bathroom accessories if you don’t already have them.
Sheets for each bed in your house. If you only have 1 bed without a plan to size up to a bigger bed in the future, get 2 sets. Again, go with neutral, as you’re likely to change your bedroom decor down the line. I recommend mid to high count cotton sheets or bamboo sheets. Microfiber sheets are cheap, but they sleep very warm and show wear more quickly.
Mattress protector for each bed. These are just for bathroom accidents in the bed – they protect your mattress from sweat, oil, bodily fluids, and skin flakes. Dust mites feed on dirty mattresses, so having a barrier between your sheet and mattress is a good idea. Avoid ones that have vinyl and look for noiseless options to avoid the crinkly sound of plastic mattress covers.
New bed pillows. They should be replaced more often than any of us do anyway.
New Kitchen dishtowels, dishcloths, and pot holders – these get grimy and worn quickly.
Velvet hangers – they are so much nicer than plastic, and are less likely to snag your clothing than wooden.
Other Miscellaneous Registry Items
Board games or lawn games
Bike gear or other outdoor sports gear (tent, kayak, backpack, cooler)
Patio or lawn furniture/accessories
Home audio speakers
Photo albums and frames
Experience gifts. Amazon offers gift cards for movie tickets, hotels, airlines, excursions at popular honeymoon destinations, spas, restaurants, and more.
If you have curated your home belongings just how you want them or combined 2 households, you really may not need or want “stuff”. In that case, it’s best to skip having a traditional shower and have a party or outing instead. Guests can bring a favorite bottle of wine or liquor, houseplants, or nothing at all – their company is enough.
Enjoy all of the wedding planning – it’s worth it at the end!