5. Upgrade your everyday sets.
Register for a nice set of everyday flatware, "A group of family members bought ours for us and it's really nice and we'll have it for a long time," says Heather. Also think about a separate set of everyday plates, cups, and mugs, in addition to any "special" china and crystal you are registering for. These are things you'll use way more often.
Tip: If you have open cabinetry, I recommend (in this case) buying sets that match for a streamlined look.
6. Register for more of what you love.
Heather recommends upgrading pieces you already own and love "consider your wedding registry the opportunity to upgrade some items you use a lot but want a better version of."
- If you already have a LeCruset pot you use every single day, think about registering for a different-sized version.
- If you love your cheese grater, register for another one and store it in case your original is ever lost or becomes warped.
- If you love your wine glasses, register for twice as many and store them so you can replace glasses as they break.
7. Register both online and in person.
I recommend a combination of registering both online and in-person. "It's always better to register in the store," advises my friend Meghan, a lawyer in New Jersey, "that way you can judge the quality of the items you are registering for and avoid the hassle of trying to return items that don't meet your standards." It's true that some items look better online than they do in-person.
Registering in-the-flesh also has another advantage, it may make it easier for you and your future mate to register together. Typically one of you will be more into registering than the other and some people are just fine doing this on their own, while others may want a little input from their spouse-to-be "I think in person is better if you want your hubby to help with registering," advises Heather. Just make sure they have a good online registry if you want to make changes.
Another option is to look in person so you get expert advice from store clerks. But come prepared with a list, recommends Jen, "don't rely too heavily on the staff at the different stores where you're registering -- they will tell you to get every last sized pot, pan, and knife, that you will never use in your lifetime."
8. Measure shelves so you're not buying plates too large for your space.
"Think about how much space you'll have in your new living quarters before registering and don't register for more than you can fit!" says Jen. If you can't fit huge platters in your shelves, but still need them, think about storing them above your refrigerator or with cutting boards.
9. Think outside the normal.
Register for the basics and then some things you may not think of, like closet accessories (shelf dividers, good hangers), frames for the wall, and small area rugs. You're going to need these things anyway, so why not register for them?
Another great gift idea are "cooking for two" books like this one from America's Test Kitchen.
10. Skip fancy if it doesn't fit into your lifestyle, but do get creative.
"I registered for a fondue set, which you would think would be one of those things you never use," says Meghan. "But we have created a tradition by using it, every New Years Eve, specifically the past 5 years, we have a late fondue dinner to celebrate the New Year."
If you're going to register for that specialty item, then make good use of it:
Wedding Registry Organization 101
Absolutely everything you need to know to organize a wedding registry, including tips, lists of what to registry for, and helpful hints on how to set up or combine a household.