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8 Pro Tips for Setting Up Your Wedding Registry from the Experts at Zola

You asked, the wedding experts at Zola answered. Get the bottom line on creating a registry that delivers everything you need.

5 min read

There’s a lot of joy in imagining your future as you set up your wedding registry, but also plenty of confusion. How many gifts should you pick? What kind of price range should you include? Can you add a kayak? To take the stress out of registering for gifts, OXO and Zola(Opens in a new window), a wedding planning website, have teamed up to make things easier. Our tagline? Your registry made better: Cooking, baking and entertaining essentials that stand the test of time. To get you started on the right track for your wedding registry, Emily Forrest Skurnik, director of communications at Zola, shared some advice.

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How Far in Advance Should Couples Set Up Their Registry?

I recommend starting to add gifts seven to nine months before your wedding date and definitely before the first major wedding event, like your shower or engagement party. Many friends and family will want to start buying you gifts as soon as they hear you’re engaged, so it’s good to start a registry with at least a few gifts as early as possible.

How Can a Couple Decide What They Really Want?

Walk around your house and think about the next five, 10 and 15 years. Couples may feel like they already have everything they need right now, but a registry is about starting the rest of your lives together. Also, couples today are thinking outside the box when it comes to registries. Maybe you’re an outdoorsy couple and you really want a kayak—add it to your registry! Or you love your fitness studio’s class packs; add those. Nothing is off-limits.

How Can Both People Feel Involved in the Registry Process?

Each partner should include must-have items on the registry, as well as items that serve you both. Maybe one partner loves coffee and wants a pour-over, but the other is more into tea. Both can add the items that are specific to them, while coming together on items that might benefit them both, like an electric kettle. Also, it can be fun to turn the registry process into a date night: Order takeout, pour some wine and go online shopping!

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How Can Couples Make the Registry Process Less Overwhelming?

Do a little bit at a time. Your registry can change and evolve. Also, be mindful about your registry during your normal day-to-day activities. If you’re pouring your morning coffee and realize your mug is chipped, pull out your phone and add new mugs to your registry.

How Many Items Should Be on a Registry?

Variables include how many guests you’re expecting and if you want physical gifts, or a mix of cash and physical gifts. Generally, there is no rule around adding too many gifts. Guests love variety. They also love to bundle gifts together to create a fun package, like a spatula with a cookbook. So add away!

Is There a Price Range to Aim For?

You should have options at every price point, especially in the $25 to $75 and $75 to $150 range. But add the $10 measuring cup or the $500 Dutch oven as well—there’s a gift giver for every price. On Zola, couples can also consider making their more expensive items “group gifts” which allows guests to contribute what they wish.

What Common Mistakes Do Couples Make When Registering?

One of the most common is not adding enough gifts at different price points. Also, it’s a good idea to look at your registry after events like a wedding shower to make sure you still have enough options. Another mistake is not adding the basic things you use every day. One of the top registry regrets couples have is not including things like trash cans or storage containers. It’s not wrong to ask for a toilet brush, and it’s not wrong to give one.

Any Other Tips?

Only add items you want or need; don’t add things just because you feel like you “should.” You can also mark items on your Zola registry as your “most wanted” so that your guests know which gifts to prioritize.

For more great gift ideas, check out these 10 classic presents you’re sure to love.


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