Six Tips for Building a Registry

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January 15, 2013 by Amie M

Paul is picky. I am stubborn and highly opinionated. Those traits together make an interesting go of it, especially when style comes into it, because even there we butt heads. So going into The Bay on Saturday afternoon to register, I was expecting at least one whispered fight in the middle of the china and crystal section as we both try to put the other’s style choice down to make ours reign supreme.

That didn’t happen. Not even once.

After a quick but dragging meeting with the registry consultants where they droned explained that the perfect household requires all of these things, and now is a time to dictate what our style will be, we got the gun.

Sorry, the scanner. The consultant tended to not acknowledge when Paul called the scanner a gun, and gave up correcting him after two times.

Tip #1: Give him the gun. That way as you touch and grab and pet all the pretty things, he gets to feel some control because he presses the button, hears a beep, and enters how many of the item you would like. Thanks for that tip, Melissa!

Most of the items we registered for were upgrades on things that we’ve been holding onto because they were still functional, just not fully so. Like bath towels, they are my towels since first year of undergrad, and glasses which are IKEA ones that I tend to be lackadaisical with because I know we can just go buy replacements, but never have.

Registering was an incredible amount of fun, and a rush! It felt so good to stop thinking of somewhere in the distant future of owning these items, and move away from “it will be nice, but we aren’t there yet” to “we could possibly own these things in a couple months,” thanks to the generosity of our loved ones. My window shopping and wishing came in handy because I had already done the research on materials, construction, warranties, and lifetimes of different items. The only issue we had was picking a theme or colours. So we went neutral and classic. If we are lucky to get some of the quality items we registered for, having them in neutral will make sure that when our tastes change, because they will, they will still be relevant to our lives.

Tahoe by Noritake

Take our china pattern, Tahoe by Noritake. A simple and elegant silver rim that lightly frames a textured lace-like floral pattern on an off-white rim. Something that will go well in a vintage and eclectic house, or a modern and trendy one. The crystal we picked is similar in thought. Simple, clean-lined and classic, Marquis by Waterford Wedgwood in Vintage.

We sashayed around the store, looking at appliances, and utensils, because again they were relics from undergraduate days. But we happened upon a trove of every day dishes at a reasonable price!

Tip #2: Keep it inexpensive. When registering for sets, or multiples, make sure it’s at a price point so you can finish out the set or complete the amount that you need. Or to replace the one that fell on the floor when clearing the table when Charlie decided it was a good time to swat your bare foot, claws out. Thanks for the tip, Bridget!

Gluckstein Catering

The Gluckstein Catering dishes were perfect! At an inexpensive price so that if we only end up with the dishes and mugs, we can get the bowls and salad plates. The ivory colour, again, will go with anything and porcelain (according to Martha) is fairly durable. Obviously so if they consider this their catering line.

The rest of our time was quick and painless with Paul being handy with the gun. Can’t you just picture Paul “firing” away at the bar codes as I rattle off how many we need, and him adding at least one or two because he “likes even numbers?”

Other tips we received from friends who have been through the registering process before:

Tip #3: Do it in shifts. Do not attempt to do your whole registry in one go. Good luck keeping yourself, never mind him, occupied and attentive. Make one day kitchen, one day bed and bath, one day entertaining. We will be doing appliances and other household items at Sears in a couple weeks.

Tip #4: Talk it out. If you have a man or person that is interested in doing the registry with you, take advantage of that. You have examples of different styles in front of you, in person, to touch and feel, rather than pointing at a computer screen at home. He/She may surprise you and agree with a style that you had nixed because it was too vintage/eclectic/modern/weird. There are two people registering, the other person’s opinions count, too.

Tip #5: Think long-term. As you are walking through the store and think “Well, we don’t have counter space for this. We don’t have closet space for more than x towels. When will we ever use y?” instead think of what your life will be. Set yourself up to have that quality toaster that will live up to 6 pieces of toast made on a weekday, more on a weekend as your family grows. Ask for the durable and quality dishes that will last longer as your little ones grow and get into sports and 4-H and Scouts and you don’t have the funds to contribute to new dishes because Dale needs new hockey skates and goalie gear and Pearl really wants to join the equestrian club. Having the items now, instead of getting them then, will (hopefully) help your family out by avoiding some costs in the future.

Tip #6: Do an inventory before you go. This was crucial. Much to the chagrin of the registry consultant, I was super prepared with my Martha checklist of items we already had, and stole the show away from The Bay’s Book of Everything. I knew exactly how many napkins (cocktail, dinner and luncheon), placemats (casual and formal), wooden spoons (sauce and soup), rolling pins (pie, pastry, dough) and storage containers (glass and plastic) we had. I kept track of the quality items we had already, so we need not worry about registering for them. I wrote down the style of some of the keepers, to make sure things we registered for went with them.

Are these tips helpful? Did anyone else have a great time registering? I couldn’t stop smiling and glowing after we left the store. A cohesive house will be wonderful.

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