Post # 1
FI and I are having a huge dilemma regarding wedding gifts – any advice would be much appreciated.
We live in a 550 sq ft studio in Manhattan and plan on traveling and moving several times in the next 5-7 years. We have absolutely no space for anything – our closets and cupboards are literally overflowing. So more stuff is not only unnecessary, but also a huge inconvenience for us in terms of storage and moving. We just moved in a few months ago and bought all the essentials for kitchen/bedroom/bath, so upgrading existing items would be wasteful.
In my culture, people give cash for wedding gifts. The concept of a registry doesn’t exist. Half of FI’s guests are also from a cultural background where cash is the accepted wedding gift. However, part of the guest list from his side is made up of traditional Americans who are used to registries (around six couples/families).
We don’t want to do a registry due to the above reasons, but FI and FMIL are afraid of offending people or looking gift-grabby by not registering. I also would not want to offend anyone or seem tacky. But it seems irrational to create a registry for six couples, especially given that we can’t use any stuff we get. I know gifts aren’t required and people can get us whatever they want, but I at least would like to indicate that we can’t use household items but not registering for any.
We considered something like a honeymoon registry, but these are very traditional people and they consider a honeymoon registry as bad as straight up asking for cash. So I almost feel like it’s better not to register anywhere and ask FMIL to explain our situation to her friends/relatives if they ask.
Does my thought process make sense? And how do we avoid seeming tacky to traditional guests who are not fans of brides and grooms asking for cash?
Post # 3
That’s a good question! Maybe you pick a few things (a dozen?) to register for to appease your guests? Like new kitchen knives and dvd player. I know it seems silly and wasteful – or, you can always return the gifts for store credit/cash. Tacky, again. I honestly have no idea how to handle the situation… but your idea of having FI talk to the guests and explain the situation is a good idea – or including an incert in the invitation as to, “this is where we live, this what’s going on…” might be a nice idea, too.
Post # 4
If you don’t care about getting cash as a gift, you can always get the word out that gifts aren’t required and that the presence of the invitee is gift enough. That would probably be the easiest way to deal with it, some people will still probably get you gifts/cash, but then you don’t have to register anywhere, and people would understand. But if you say that, then you can’t be upset if people DON’T get you gifts.
Post # 5
Can you suggest a charity you’d prefer people to donate to instead of asking for gifts?
Post # 6
You could register for gift cards to places? I know, you said you don’t need more ‘stuff’ but perhaps next time you needed something from… Target or a nearby department store (who can’t use more linens?) a gift card might come in handy. Or, registering for gift cards at a place you can get luggage for (for your honeymoon and traveling?). Also, organizational stores like Organized Living and the Container Store usually have gift cards too and with a smaller apartment organization is key. Just a couple of thoughts.
P.S. You could also register for Amazon.com gift cards, or Barnes & Noble, etc.
Post # 7
Are you big wine drinkers? If so you could do a wine registry. At least that way you can drink your gifts and reclaim your space. If you are sentimental you can always save the labels.
Post # 8
- Wedding: June 2010 - Tannery Pond at the Darrow School
I think it’s perfectly acceptable NOT to have a registry at all, I’ve been to two weddings in the past year where there was none…The guests can make their own decision as to what to get you guys without the help of the registry (and hopefully they will take the hint and just give cash.) I think if you don’t want to do a registry, then you shouldn’t and just inform anyone who happens to ask that you’re simply not doing one!
Post # 9
I don’t understand how NOT having a registry would be seen as gift-grabby. If you hold to hard-core etiquette, HAVING a registry is what is rude and offensive…you’re telling people what to get you and appearing to have the expectation of gifts.
I would think you’d be fine with not creating a registry. Maybe think of a few things (there’s got to be SOMETHING you’d like…or certain stores you like where people could get gift cards) people could get you for those who really want to get a physical gift and just let your FMIL know so she can pass on the info to those who want it.