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It’s been so much fun to welcome our newly-engaged friends to the blog and magazine over the past few weeks! In that camp? Be sure to check out our special page just for y’all.

While there are no shortage of “to do’s” from the very beginning of wedding planning, one that I highly recommend getting a jump on is starting your wedding registry. Family and friends might like to get you an engagement gift, so it’s a great idea to at least get your registry off the ground and add a few things to it right off the bat. You can then continue to add to and refine it over time!

Today’s sponsor, Macy’s, is one that’s near and dear to my heart, because it’s where John and I chose to register. For us, it was pretty much a no-brainer, since Macy’s is the perfect one-stop shop for all things wedding. And the more we learned about their registry, the more excited we were — they have some incredible registry benefits, like exclusive discounts (20% off women’s shoes, 15% off jewelry, 20% off luggage…) and 15% completion savings for six months after your wedding! By far the most exciting benefit, though, was the Star Rewards program — as guests purchase gifts from your registry, a certain percentage is added to a Macy’s gift card, sent to you after your wedding! John and I had more than $200 on our gift card, which was perfect for purchasing a few things that didn’t get snapped up by guests.

From china to chairs, vacuums to sheets, Macy’s has an incredible array of products to choose from and amazing partnerships with brands like Kate Spade, Le Creuset, Vera Wang, and Martha Stewart that make everything feel curated. These were just a few of the goodies we put on our own registry:

Of course, Macy’s is about much more than registries! Their Wedding Shop has a “shop by occasion” feature where you can hunt for the perfect bridal shower, bachelorette party, or rehearsal dress. They have accessories, too, including a whole “something blue” section! Wedding guests, grooms, and mamas can shop within the experience, as well. Just for fun, here are a few of our favorite wedding looks pulled from Macy’s racks:

I’d love to hear: Are you registered at Macy’s? What’s your favorite item from your registry?

emily Written with love by Emily
  1. avatar Michelle reply

    Love the rehearsal dinner dress! Any details on it?

    • avatar Emily reply

      Yes, ma’am! Here’s the link:

    • avatar Michelle reply

      Thanks Emily! I appreciate it!

  2. avatar Taylor reply

    i love the shower and Bach dresses too! Can we

    get those links too please?

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Hello, friends! For the last few months we’ve discussed all things reception, so today, I wanted to share with you a little bit about another part of our wedding planning adventure: our registry!

Setting up our registry was something John and I did way earlier than necessary – back in August, about a month after we got engaged, and 13 months out from our wedding. Why so early, you ask? Well, for some reason, I got the idea in my head that a few of the guests at our engagement party might want to buy us something off our registry. Unsurprisingly, they didn’t, probably because it never would have occurred to most of them that we had already set one up!

Though most of our picks from our first scanning trips have remained favorites, we’ve definitely gone back and tweaked our selections several times over the last few months. I do anticipate a few more tweaks before my bridal shower in June (and then probably a few more before the wedding!), but I feel like I’ve learned enough to offer a few dos and don’ts from my experience thus far.

Do register for fine china, if it makes your heart happy. Once upon a time, it was considered sacrilege not to register for fine china. Now, I feel like the pendulum has swung in the other direction, and couples sometimes feel guilty about registering for porcelain. Some worry it’s too expensive, or that their peers will think they’re old-fashioned, stuffy, or impractical. I say just because your friends can’t figure out when you’ll use your china shouldn’t stop you from asking for it! They’ll figure it out when they arrive at your next dinner party :)

We chose the route of registering for a mix of every day china and fine china. We also chose to mix and match between patterns, and only register for the pieces we think we’ll most use and enjoy. (And yes, I plan to use these pretties! My morning muffin will look darling on those dotted bread and butter plates, don’t you think?) I had some fun playing around with the different pieces on my blog here, if you’re curious to see how everything will fit together!

Do register for your now, and for your later. When I first suggested registering for 12 place settings, John looked at me like I had 12 heads. We both come from large families, though, and Christmas and Easter dinners usually include a minimum of ten relatives. We might not be hosting said dinners now, but we very well might be in a few years.

Don’t feel you have to register for a full set of everything. We didn’t register for a complete set of glassware, since we already have everyday drinking glasses that we love, but we did opt to mix in a few new pieces, like champagne flutes and chardonnay glasses, since we currently own just four wine glasses (and they are very sad-looking, indeed).

Do test things out in person. I adore the flatware we chose. Something that was important to me with flatware was the heft – we wanted something slim and lightweight but with classic styling – and so testing different sets out in person was important to us, and something I’d highly recommend making time for.

Don’t agonize over expensive items. As long as you have a good mix of high and low price points, including a few pricier items is perfectly fine. In fact, I’d say it’s actually a good thing to do, because some guests might like to go in together on a single item. I would note here that it is important to think about the demographics of your guests, because what’s considered a high price point for one guest list could fall into the low price point bracket for another one. Finally, your store’s completion program could provide an incentive to register for more expensive items, even if you don’t expect to receive them as gifts.

For us, this meant registering for a few Le Creuset pieces, even though the prices can be a bit hard to swallow. Since we already own one piece, though, I know how amazing they are to cook with (and clean!!), and the lifetime warranty can’t be beat. I love the idea of receiving wedding gifts that will be a part of our life for years and years, and I think our Le Creuset pieces fall into that category.

Do register at a few different places. We registered at two chains with great websites and locations nationwide, and we also chose to register at Amazon. We like that this combination lets us choose from small and independent retailers, too.

Don’t be afraid to register for non-traditional items. Though I would say the majority of our registry falls into the “traditional” category, we’ve used Amazon’s universal registry feature to ask for some unique items, like a Brahms Mount throw, an insulated picnic basket, fun pillows, seagrass baskets, and even a piece of art. We’re considering adding some camping supplies, too!

There you have it, friends! Our registry in a nutshell. Should you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask! And I’d love to hear if you have any dos and don’ts of your own that you’d add to my list!

In case you missed a post…
The main characters
Where we’re getting married
I go dress shopping
We choose a photographer
I ponder bridesmaid style
Mini food!
The music
We’re renting a tent!
We discuss bouquets + boutonnieres
We send out our save the dates
I gather hair and makeup inspiration
We talk cake and sweets
I introduce you to our videographer

emily Written with love by Emily
  1. avatar Nicole (WeddingScan) reply

    Great idea about registering early! I wished I’d registered sooner. And I like the non-traditional items idea. We registered for a DVD player (may or may not be traditional) but came in handy. Your friends just want to give you stuff you’ll like, no matter if it’s traditional or not. Several registries are good, but with the WeddingScan app, you can register for any product anywhere and have one combined registry.

  2. avatar One of Our Brides… Meet Emily Ayer | a jubilee event :: wedding inspiration for the jubilant bride reply

    […] I gather hair and makeup inspiration We talk cake and sweets I introduce you to our videographer We create a registry We buy a […]

  3. avatar Emily Plans a Wedding: Engagement Photos! – Southern Weddings Magazine reply

    […] I gather hair and makeup inspiration We talk cake and sweets I introduce you to our videographer We create a registry We buy a tuxedo We style a reception I choose accessories Nancy Ray is a fabulous member of our […]

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