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OK, Clever Couples- we have taken a bit of a break on the wedding planning tips- so I thought it was time. We are heading into the season when 80 percent of people get engaged and I hope this site can be a valuable resource for those of you heading into the stress of wedding planning. I consulted a friend and author of “Donnie Brown Weddings” for some advice on registering.

Your Bridal Registry

By Donnie Brown

In the world of wedding planning, couples get so caught up in the details they very often forget about the registries until very late in the process.

As with most things in life, don’t put off critical items until the end. Registering for your wedding gifts can be a lot of fun and certainly less stressful than most of the decisions you will have to make along the way. Below we have compiled some tips for developing your bridal registry that should help to make the decisions easier and better thought out.

  • Register early – plan on at least three months ahead of the wedding date. This gives guests time to look it over, and you time to think about your “couple style.”
  • Choose things you really want!
  • Select items that will be available on and around your wedding date.
  • Find out about return policies and guest services, i.e. shipping, gift wrap/messages, and backorder updates.
  • Register together, as you may find some concessions need to be made, which will make you both happier in the long run. Flatware REALLY matters to most men. Who knew?
  • Choose enough items for guests to choose from. A good rule of thumb: Two to three items per invited wedding guest. 150 guests = approximately 375 items
  • Be sure to select items in several price points. Be considerate of your guests who cannot afford the more expensive items. The rule of thumb is for the guest to spend the equivalent to the amount you and your family will be spending on dinner for the wedding. Approximately $50 per person attending or invited should suffice.
  • Choose the things you’ll use- even if you still have to learn how. Do what is right for you. If you don’t want to the whole china place setting with cup and saucer- just register for the accent salad and dinner plates. Mixing and matching different sets can make a great personal style statement. Or register for something that you can add to your grandmother’s inherited pattern to make it feel more your own.
  • Make choices that will last. You should choose quality over quantity and items you feel will not have to be replaced for a very long time to come, if ever. For instance, one great omelet pan, a great sauté pan and a large quality stockpot beats a pre-packaged set of eight any day. Think about the types of things you use and might use in the future. Perhaps watch Alton Brown on the Food Network in advance of choosing your cooking items. He has a lot of tips for good kitchen items that will help you make the right decisions.

 

For further assistance in developing your wedding registries, as well as other wedding planning tips, perhaps you should come and see me live in person at Dillard’s at The Shops at Willow Bend. The event is at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 9, 2010, in the store’s fine china department. Use the east entrance of the lower level. There will be many outstanding prizes and giveaways,great vendors and lots of fun. Seats are limited, so please call and make your reservations as soon as possible. See you there!