Etiquette Snob here… lol
@ZestyBee143: What you are seeing on-line are Wedding Websites, these are very popular now. Fellow Bees here on WBee can give you tips on how to get started, what companies host them etc.
Technically if this is your First Marriage, then things like Showers, Bachelorette Parties, and Registries are all considered the norm (not so much for Encore Brides)
If you are Eloping… in the traditional sense and NOT TELLING PEOPLE BEFOREHAND… then Registries can be awkward to say the least (and so can be a lot of other Rules of Etiquette)
If however you are Eloping, in so much as you just wish to get away to a Destination for your Wedding… and people know the event is happening, then Registries are ok (in the same way that they are ok for Destination Weddings)
In fact this latter example, is a lot more like having an Intimate Wedding / Destination Wedding than it is for a true Elopement
This was my situation…
Mr TTR & I were Encores (and Older)… so we truly didn’t want or need anything. We were Eloping to a Destination Wedding because we wanted none of the huge fuss (or expense) of a BIG White Pouffy Family Wedding this time round, in that we had both done that previously. We wanted our wedding to be just about us. And so that is what we told our friends, we were Eloping over our Christmas Holiday… heading to a favourite Destination / Beach and would stand alone to say our Vows (just our Officiant & Photographer, as Witnesses are not required in the State of Florida)
Our Friends & Family were thrilled we were getting married… BUT they were disappointed that our plans were going to be so private. Very upset. We had to find a compromise as soooo many people wanted to celebrate our LOVE with us… so we organized a Back Home Reception Party for after our Caribbean Cruise Honeymoon.
We sent out Invites (we had a Travel Theme… so we sent out the Invites while we were away for Christmas), and had pre-organized all the other details… Hall Rental – DJ – Caterer for light eats – Cake – Champagne – Bar Tenders etc before we went away for the Holidays.
We DID NOT register anywhere… because as I said for us it wasn’t about the Gifts (we didn’t need a thing)… and we were Eloping, and we were Encores.
People did ask… to which we reiterated, that old saying “Your PRESENCE is present enough”
And still people did want to do something… so many brought a Boxed Gift to our Party (mostly Wine… knowing we are Wine & Food Lovers). There were many cards filled with Best Wishes, and a few with Cash, Cheques or Gift Cards.
And some of our closest friends even got together and threw us a surprise Couples Shower in December BEFORE we headed off on our Wedding Adventure.
All was appreciated.
TIPS – From an Etiquette POV… technically Gifts mentioned in any way (including “No Gifts Please”) is seen as rude. So navigating this all can be a minefield. My best advice is just do what we did… “Your presence is present enough”… and keep the convo light, and off of Gifts entirely. IF someone wants to give you a gift they will (be gracious). People aren’t dumb… they can figure it out… afterall this is how the world was for 100s of years, and not that long ago before the Internet (lol, like my First Wedding circa 1980… we got TONS of gifts and the info was ALL spread by word of mouth via family members & my bridal party)
As for Wedding Websites & Registries… the way most couples inform people now… so quite acceptable. Just be tasteful. A good statement is in the 3rd Party… “The Bride & Groom is Registered at ___ and ___ ” That is all you say.
And the rule of thumb is no more than 2 places… so make them different.
Ie… Big Box Store & Department Store OR China & Giftware Store & Sporting Goods etc
And NEVER any sort of a Cash Registry… as that is still seen to be quite RUDE in many circles (asking for cash equates to fundrasing)… so forego the Honeymoon Fund or Jars that are often seen on Pinterest.
At any rate, in truth as with all things when it comes to Etiquette & Manners, it truly comes down to a choice. You can follow or not… just be aware that there are risks when you don’t… ONLY YOU KNOW your social circle… and how bad those risks / consequences will end up being. The reason that Etiquette / Manners works, is because the truth is, that if you do make a faux pas, it can unfortunately last a long time and wreck havoc with your social life afterwards. So best to tread lightly.
Hope this helps,