1. Register for enough stuff. Many couples do not. It’s a good idea to register for two to three times as many gifts as you have guests.
2. Make sure your gifts span a variety of prices. Your registry should start at twenty-five dollars (less is fine, but don’t start it higher), and you should have choices in twenty-five-dollar increments. When looking over the registry, check that you have a variety of prices not just across the board but also within each category.
3. Don’t get pressured into registering for things just because they’re somebody else’s idea of what you need. If you don’t think you’ll ever use fine china, you don’t have to register for it. Instead, you might want to register for two sets of everybody dishes (one patterned and one solid).
4. Even if you’re combining two well-stocked households, ask yourself if you want to register for better versions of things you already own. In the registry business, this practice is called “trading up.”
5. Register for more place settings than you think you need. Many store registers suggest eight, but I think you should ask for twelve.
6. You can’t go wrong registering for a great set of pots and pans.
7. Register for more serving pieces than you think you need. Come Thanksgiving, no one ever seems to have enough.
8. Keep your registry open as long as possible. Since guests have a year to purchase a wedding gift, ask the store how long it remains active.
9. Set up a new joint back account at least six months before the wedding. Deposit monetary gifts in this separate account so they don’t get mixed up with household funds and frittered away.