My Trio Rings Blog provides useful information about how to experience the timeless traditions of marriage on an affordable budget
A Different Kind of Budget Wedding Registry
Some couples spend a lot of time registering for the perfect china pattern, the right towels for the guest bedroom, and the most powerful blender in the midst of planning a wedding on a budget. And it can be exciting and fun to plan a budget wedding registry with items to fill your new home together.
But this process isn’t something that all couples participate in before they get married. Some brides and grooms are a little older and each have already-full households that that will suddenly have two toasters when they share a home together, so they may be looking to host a yard sale rather than plan a budget wedding registry. Other couples have lived together before marriage and already have everything they need. Still other couples have families who have saved lots of things to give them upon their marriage to fill their new homes. And some just want to feel like their love makes a difference in the world. If you and your spouse-to-be fall into one of these categories, consider creating a different kind of budget wedding registry as you start your lives together.
1. A Honeymoon Registry
Sites like Honeyfund can give your wedding guests the opportunity to contribute to the trip of your dreams. Instead of gathering a house or apartment full of stuff, you want to collect memories to last a lifetime together. Create a registry to help fund a leisurely week in the south of France, a cruise in Asia, an adventure tour in Jamaica, or a cabin in the woods a few hours’ drive away.
2. A Charitable Registry
Some couples would like to know that the celebration of their love for each other also helps other people. If you are one of these couples that already has it all and wants to pay it forward while you are planning a wedding on a budget, consider asking your wedding guests to contribute to a charity such as Heifer International or Kiva, organizations that help people help themselves out of poverty around the world in lieu of more traditional wedding gifts.
3. A Local Registry
If you are just disenchanted with the idea of a big box budget wedding registry with gifts that aren’t as original or full or character as you’d like, think about creating a registry of locally sourced wedding gifts. Request gift cards to your favorite local businesses, or create a wish list in person at a favorite local boutique or craftsman’s guild for more unique and personal wedding gifts.
How did you customize your wedding registry?
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Budget Wedding Registry Tips
If you are planning a wedding on a budget, then you are probably planning to start your life together on a budget, too. Think ahead carefully about what you might need in order to maximize the usefulness of your budget wedding registry. Before you start drooling over the enticing catalogs of your favorite expensive kitchen stores, take stock of what you already have. If you each already have a home, then you probably already have some duplicate items that you may want to sell or give away. Regardless of the situation, it is best to make a list of what you need first, then think about what you want, and then start looking at the catalogs and websites to craft your budget wedding registry.
Budget Wedding Registry Tips
Items to Choose
1. Select long-lasting, high quality items for your wedding registry. Don’t choose items just because they are inexpensive, because then you may need to replace those items in a few years.
2. Select solid colored or neutral patterned pieces when you are choosing items that will be around for a lifetime. If you ask for high quality white dishes, for example, it will be much easier to match those dishes to different seasonal décor or your own changing tastes over time.
3. Do choose items for your registry in a variety of price ranges so that none of your budget wedding guests feel left out.
4. In addition to more practical items, consider asking for some memorable items that will always remind you of your wedding each time you look at them and the person who gave the gift, such as a really beautiful wooden fruit bowl or handmade pottery mugs.
5. If you’re already pretty well set for items for the kitchen, bed, and bath, then don’t forget to consider having a honeymoon registry instead to help pay for your budget honeymoon!
Items to Avoid
1. It can be tempting, but don’t ask for a bunch of fancy appliances that are likely to gather dust. If you’re not likely to make homemade pasta or funnel cakes but once in a blue moon, you may be best off asking for a multi-purpose electric griddle and borrowing the other items from a friend on occasion.
2. Don’t select items that are so expensive or fragile that you would be too intimidated to use them – or that none of your guests would be able to afford!
3. Just because you’re planning a wedding on a budget doesn’t mean that you don’t have an eye for quality! Items that are too inexpensive or cheaply made, such as particleboard furniture, is not long-lasting and may not make it to see your first child, let alone your grandchildren!
Photo credit: craiglea123
How to Create a Budget Wedding Registry
Part of planning a wedding on a budget is searching for high quality services for the lowest possible costs while prioritizing your needs and desires. Similar skills are needed to create a smart budget wedding registry. You will need to consider that many of your guests may also be trying to cut costs. It is smart to list gifts in a variety of price ranges to that each guest can purchase a gift that is within their comfort zone.
No matter what gifts you register for, be certain to select items for your registry that will last a lifetime. Don’t choose trendy items or things you may not use. Choose well-reviewed, long-lasting products that will last a long time so that you won’t need to spend money on replacements a few years into your marriage. Smart registry choices now, while you are in the process of planning a wedding on a budget, can save you money in the future.
When you are selecting kitchen items to include on your budget wedding registry, you may wish to avoid nonstick pans which often get scraped up and need to be replaced within a few years. Possible alternatives include pre-seasoned cast iron pans, which can last forever if cared for properly. Stainless steel is another durable cooking surface that you may wish to consider. This is also a good opportunity to consider high quality glass bakeware such as Pyrex, or long-lasting stoneware casserole dishes from companies such as Le Creuset.
When selecting glasses and dishes, choose durable, well-made pieces that won’t show age. For example, white dishes are a good choice because they don’t show chips or scrapes very easily. White is also an excellent choice because it will always match even if your dining room décor changes seasonally. Don’t make the mistake of choosing dishes that don’t go into the microwave or dishwasher if you know you will want to have that option.
It is tempting to pick out exciting new appliances for your budget wedding registry, but it is best to avoid appliances with very specific uses that you may not use very often, such as a funnel cake maker. In general, it is better to choose items that will get a lot of use, such as blenders, crockpots, and toasters. Before you add anything to your registry, you will want to read reviews of that product to be certain that it will last you a long time. This is especially true in the case of appliances. It is better to ask Aunt Mary to buy you a microwave that is well reviewed for longevity than simply choosing the most inexpensive microwave you can find.
What are your best wedding registry tips?
Photo Credit: Jessica Spangler
10 Green Wedding Registry Must-Haves
As you register for wedding gifts to complement your green wedding, choose items that are environmentally sustainable and will last you and your spouse a long time. It can be difficult to find wedding registries through websites that specialize in eco-friendly products, so consider creating a registry at MyRegistry.com, a universal gift registry site that allows you to pick and choose your favorite gifts from different sites and compile them into one easy online registry. Opt for products made from environmentally friendly materials, and pick energy-efficient appliances. As you and your partner choose special items with which to start your life together, be sure to choose gifts from different price ranges to accommodate your guests’ different budgets.
Here are some must-have green wedding gifts:
1. Organic cotton flannel sheets from Gaiam.com, a website that offers a wide range of quality green home products from comfy chairs to water-saving shower heads.
2. Customized recycled glass tree plate from UncommonGoods.com. Hang it on the wall, display it on your dining room table, or use it as a special place to store your conflict-free diamond rings on your dresser at night.
3. A set of bamboo cutting boards from 3rLiving.com. Bamboo is a renewable material that is both durable and anti-microbial.
4. Designer reusable shopping bags from Envirosax.com to give grocery shopping with your new spouse a green twist.
5. Washable cloth napkins from TenThousandVillages.com and GIANNAFairTrade.com, eco-friendly retailers that carry handmade items from underprivileged artisans around the world. All of GIANNA’s products are fair trade.
6. Organic cotton bath towels from PotteryBarn.com for both the master bathroom and your guest bathroom.
7. Recycled metal serving set from TheHungerSite.com, a website that sells fair trade and eco-friendly green wedding gifts from around the world.
8. Recycled glass tumblers from GreenWithGlamour.com to serve your family and your guests with style you can feel good about.
9. Long-lasting bamboo cooking spoons from GreenFeet.com. Bamboo cooking spoons are more eco-friendly than wooden or plastic spoons, and they last just as long.
10. Charitable gifts to help those in need. Ask your guests to help reforest Haiti hillsides or pollinate fields in Uganda with Heifer.org.
Photo Credit: Melissa