Everything You Need to Know About Setting Up Your Wedding Registry

Worried about setting up your wedding registry or how to even start? No need, we’ve broken down everything for you so that you can easily set up the perfect registry (and hopefully get everything you asked for!) From linens to fine china, decorative pillows and of course the oh so essential coffee maker--here’s everything you need to know about setting up your wedding registry!

What Is Wedding Registry?
A bridal or wedding registry is a list of wedding gifts that an engaged couple has selected in advance. Registry service is typically provided by various stores free of charge to the prospective bride and groom and allows guests to choose things the couple needs or wants.
Benefits of Setting up A Wedding Registry
Get What You Want

When you set up a wedding registry, you get what you want! Think of a wedding registry as an extra long Christmas list. All your guests have to do is look at your registry and see which items you love and want. That way you avoid getting gifted things you didn’t ask for…another toaster? No thanks!

Perks + Discounts

When you register, many stores offer both you and your guests can access multiple perks and major discounts on high price items!

Guest Friendly

Registries are the easiest way for your guests to get you something that is within their price range, but also something you’re guaranteed to love and need! They don’t have to go through the hassle of trying to figure it out--you made a list for them!

Free Shipping

When you register, shipping is often FREE! And that definitely comes in handy when you’re purchasing larger items like furniture or appliances!

Quick History Of The Wedding Registry

So how did registering even become a thing? Well, it all started with the wedding gift, which originated from what was once known as a bride price or “dowry.” Going as far back as 3,000 B.C., land, animals, or money was exchanged to the bride's family--now fast forward a few thousand years, and wedding gifts have transformed into a an offering that guest bring as symbol of thanks and congratulations!

So when did registering become a thing?In 1920’s, Macy’s was the first store to come up with the “wedding registry” --the easiest way for guests to see what you want and purchase the perfect gift for the new couple that fit their budget! Now, there's hundreds of stores that offer wedding registries!

Types of Wedding Registries

Registering for things like dishes and household items used to be a way for a married couple to furnish their new home, and oftentimes still is! But with many couples cohabitating prior to marriage, modern-day registries include a wide variety of items, with some even requesting donations to help pay for the couple's honeymoon trip.


A couple can register for a charity of their choice as a way to give back through a celebration of love!


Cash registries are an awesome way for couples to raise money rather than receiving specific items.


Traditional registries are great for the new couple who need everything from household appliances, to linens, and more!


China registries are great if would like high end and sentimental dinnerware.


Couples can register for experiences--a vacation to Europe or a cruise perhaps!


Looking for the honeymoon of a lifetime? Couples can register to pay for their honeymoon rather than registering for gifts.

What are the best places to register for your wedding?

Department stores are typically the go-to for wedding registries, but online registries are becoming more and more popular. Furniture stores are also great options, especially if you're moving in together.

Traditional Wedding Gift Registries

Everything you could possibly need for your home and life is at Target. They have the easiest returns, a 15% discount, and more!

The pros of Target
  • Easy returns
  • 15% discount
  • Fund Newlywed experiences

If you’re moving into a new home and need a ton of new home decor, registering at Wayfair is the most convenient.

The pros of Wayfair
  • Free shipping & returns
  • 10% discount
  • Group gifting

You’ll know love when you see it.

The pros of Crate & Barrel
  • 10% off for 6 months after your event
  • Free shipping on eligible gifts of $99 or more
  • A special gift just for the two of you when you register in store

Because everyone loves that little blue box!

The pros of Tiffany & Co
  • Registry consultants
  • Easy returns
  • Register in-store or online

For weddings & birthdays & just-because days…

The pros of Anthropologie
  • Register online or in a store
  • On-the-go access with our app
  • Expert help building your list

Luxury & love.

The pros of Neiman Marcus
  • Free shipping and returns
  • 10% off on items after your big day
  • $100 off any $400 Neiman Marcus online purchase
Digital Wedding Registries

A new kind of wedding registry.

The pros of Zola
  • Choose from over 500+ brands
  • 20% off on items after your big day
  • Use the mobile app

Make your newlywed dreams come true!

The pros of Honeyfund
  • No fees
  • Weekly travel deals
  • Store registry syncing

Create an amazon wedding registry.

The pros of Amazon
  • 10% off select items across Amazon
  • World’s largest selection
  • Universal registry capability
Speciality Stores

Something new!

The pros of Food 52
  • 10% off on items after your big day
  • Gift tracking
  • 10% off a wedding website through Squarespace

A personalized touch.

The pros of Etsy
  • Add up to 100 items to your registry
  • Add notes to your items
  • Easily share on social

Wine & spirits registry for the modern couple.

The pros of Thirsty Nest
  • Register for booze
  • Stock your barcart
What Should You Register For

Popular items on wedding registries include household goods, like kitchen appliances and the like, but if you already live together, chances are you probably already have a lot of these. Here is a master list just in case you missed something:

The Wedding Registry Master List


Dining room table









Wall art


Picture frames

Shelf decor

Home care



Organization boxes






Pillow cases


Shower heads

Soap dispensers








Table linens




Coffee & tea



Fine China












Smart products

Apple Home

Bluetooth speakers








Bar & Wine
Quick Registry Tips For Getting Started
Register as Soon As you Get Engaged

They key to keeping registering super easy and stress free is to register as soon as you get engaged! That way you have time to figure out what you really need and people will start gifting you things asap..I mean who doesn’t love an early wedding present?

More Registry Etiquette:

Set up a Few Registries

It's a good idea to register with at least two stores. This way your guests have options. Make sure wherever you register is accessible to your guests. Department stores vary by region of the country, and remember, not everyone has a computer to visit your online registry.

Register for different price points:

Register for items at different price points and register at more than one store. The main thing guests hate about registries is when they feel like they couple didn’t give them many options. So hit a couple stores and try to choose at least one big-box store that is located in most of your guests’ hometowns so they don’t have to worry about paying for shipping.

Share your wedding registry

The best way to announce your wedding registry is through a wedding website! Click here to read more about how to set up your wedding website and connect your registry so that your guests can easily shop online!

Cash Vs Gift Registry?

So should you just go for a cash registry or gift registry? It comes down to what your preferences are--do you want to rip open presents or is see a that bank account totally bump? Still stumped?

Biggest Wedding Registry Mistakes:

When it comes to registering, you don’t want to be make these mistakes! Follow these steps to easily set up the ultimate wedding registry!

Section of Tedious Questions
Section of Tedious Questions
Do Wedding Guests Have To Buy A Gift?

Remember that no one is required to give you a wedding gift, and they aren’t required to shop the registry. A registry is a list of suggestions, not a shopping list. Be grateful that people want to buy you gifts at all and don’t get too caught up in who gives what, or how much they spend.

Gifting Off Registry Items

It is perfectly acceptable to gift an item off the registry. A gift is more about the thought than the actual gift itself...that being said, if you are going to be gifting something off registry make sure it is something thoughtful that you know the couple will like. If you’re re-gifting an item or trying to get rid of something you can’t return--you’re better off sticking with the registry.

So basically...

There are so many wedding registry resources out there; it may be hard to filter through them all and figure out exactly what you want. That’s why we made this guide, to help give some clarity in all of the madness. Think long and hard with your partner about what it is you two really want to register for and/or receive and decide which registry sites and resources will give you what you need. We hope you get everything you wish for :)