WEDDING REGISTRY ESSENTIALS: What we would register for today (8 years later)

July 7, 2016

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Our niece is getting married at the beginning of September and we’re over the moon for her and the rest of the couples lining our calendar, prepping to tie the knot this summer/fall. It’s officially wedding season and it’s one of the most wonderful times of the year if you ask me. This year, makes 8 years since Chris and I were married and first of all, what?! Secondly, in those 8 years, we’ve experimented with more things home-related than probably the average person, in large part due to blogging about our home 7 of those 8 years. Which started the conversation: If we could make our wedding registry today, what would it include? 

We came up with 15 things that would absolutely be on our registry today. Some are things we now own and love, some we have researched and are on our own wish lists and all come extremely highly rated and made to last so you can look back on your anniversaries and say “Oh yeah, we got that for our wedding from ____.” Which is kind of the point, right? Behold, what would be on our wedding registry (8 years later):


  1. Coyuchi’s Air Weight Bath Towel  This towel is made with 550 grams per square meter of environmentally friendly and responsibly produced organic cotton and probably possesses the smallest footprint you’ll come across in home linens. People rave about it’s quick-dry ability and luxe feel against the skin; a match made in heaven.
  2. John Boos Cutting Board  No matter what size your home is, a nice butcher block to prep on feels fancy and will last a lifetime.
  3. Le Creuset Signature Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven Cast iron is the best way to cook because it holds heat so well, is durable and the enamel keeps it easy to care for and non-stick. Even still, Le Creuset is a splurge. For a budget option, we have the LODGE version which we love and has really high reviews, too.
  4. Crate & Barrel’s White Essential Dishware It only took us 6 years to finally figure out a full set of simple white, quality dishes would make us feel like adults.
  5. Wusthof 8″ Chef’s Knife One great knife will replace 20 subpar knives. So skip registering for that knife-block set. This 8″ knife has a very comfortable design and is large enough to handle all your cutting but can make some nice, detailed cuts as well. As long as it is cared for properly (i.e. don’t put it in the dishwasher) it will last years and years.
  6. 18V Dewalt Drill/Driver Whether you’re renting or own a home, there will always be projects to do that will require a drill and driver. We have found this one has the best power and versatility and is an essential part of our tool arsenal.
  7. Anolon Nouvelle Copper Stainless Steel Cookware We only got these pans last year and Chris always says they’re the best pans he’s ever used. Want to start with just one? Go for a lidded saute pan.
  8. Handled Seagrass Basket This may seem like a weird thing to gift for a registry, but a high-quality, versatile basket can hold laundry, toys, blankets, shoes, a plant, magazines–it can be with you through every stage of your life.
  9. OXO Lidded Nesting Bowls w/ Colanders  The ideal nesting set for rinsing, straining, mixing, serving, storing AND stacking.
  10. Crate & Barrel Working Glasses  We registered for glasses for our wedding and they all broke in the first year. These are so sturdy and even have lids!
  11. Classic Schoolhouse Clock  This timeless clock is as beautiful as it is functional and a welcomed decor piece amongst all the kitchen goods.
  12. CB2 518 Flatware After lots of research, we bought ourselves this flatware for Christmas and the weight and shape of this feels so luxurious for a really reasonable price. Why did we wait so long!?
  13. Rubbermaid Tupperware We now own 3 sets of this, one drawer holds all the bottoms and a narrow drawer above of all the lids (check out how we organized all of our kitchen cabinets in this post. It’s my happy place. Matching tupperware is pretty adult.
  14. Lakeside Blanket  An indigo throw that goes with everything, like a good pair of blue jeans. It’s a  woven cotton, large enough to spread out for picnics or beach trips and soft enough to cuddle up under for a movie.
  15. Apple TV We got the latest version as a gift from my parents and it’s even better than before.This little box is a great way to save money on cable, and all newlyweds want to do is Netflix and chill anyway, right? ;)

I think it’s also important to be mindful of price range when making a registry. Include things under $20-around $200 (although some people will even go above that). Is there anything you would add to the list??


What do you think?

  1. Colleen says:

    Julia! I get so much shopping inspiration from your blog! We are on the hunt for new flatware and I love the design and price of the CB2 set you’ve mentioned here. How have you found they hold up? We are definitely a dishwasher family and some reviews say they are great and others say they spot/rust.

  2. SLG says:

    I’ll put in a plug for Crate & Barrel dinnerware — we registered for their Aspen plates and bowls, and four years on they’re totally going strong. No gray scratches (like you see sometimes on Ikea’s white dishes), and in spite of heavy use with kids, etc. I think we’ve maybe broken one plate, if that.

    I also went big — I registered for for about 20 place settings (particularly since the Aspen dishes were so affordable). I got some lighthearted mockery but the last time we had a few families over at once, I was glad I had all those dishes!

  3. Kristen says:

    Wouldn’t it be nice if you could have a five year anniversary registry?! I feel like I would register for much more practical items. Quesadilla maker?! So unnecessary! :)

  4. allison says:

    One of my friends said her favorite wedding gift were these cute personalized ice cream dishes….I thought that was awesome! (especially because it was from a friend who knew the couple well)

    And I saw the comment above about the Kitchen Aide. I felt so much pressure to “want” one, and I’m actually glad I didn’t get one as a wedding gift! I would have never used it!

  5. Michele Double You says:

    We have friends who are in their late 20’s, have been living together, and are now getting married. As a result, their household needs are few. They have a small and traditional registry of varying prices at 2 stores, but also have a honey-fund, which admittedly was a bit of a surprise, but upon reflection, is amazing–due in large part to how it is presented. (Let it be known I could’ve birthed these friends, so generational differences exist at first glance.) I think it just as wonderful to be the people who have given them not just things (though I agree with Sayward–I still think of who gave us what when I’m using wedding items), but experiences. Their honey-fund to a central American country has varied price-points, and is written in a way to make guests feel as if they’ve contributed to a special time in the honeymooners’ lives. It’s a great reaction to the idea that spending money on experiences is just as important, if not more so, than spending money on things.

  6. Meridith says:

    I think it’s important to consider different price points when registering. Not everyone can afford high end items, or they may not want to chip in on items with others. Or, they may have been invited several weddings in one summer. Registering for items, or sets, that can be purchased in increments, is a really nice gesture.

    My husband and I married last summer, and while we agreed that we did not want anything excessive, in put from others made us realize that a big part of registering and marriage is accepting what is given to you because of the gesture. Sure we ended up with a few duplicates which we did exchange, but the best gifts of all are the personal items — the dish towels embroidered by his grandmother, the wedding quilt from my grandmother.

    It’s important to be a gracious recipient whether or not you specified you wanted something specifically.

  7. Kerri says:

    The wedding gifts I still love (from 10 years of marriage): bocce ball set, matching beach towels, and a fancy Scrabble board…you know it’s all fun and games with the Capones.

  8. Nichole K says:

    This is a great list! I would add a sturdy set of wine glasses (for those of us that imbibe). The couple could register for a set of red and a set of white, or just one set of in-between that would work for both. Lately, we’ve been using juice glasses (that look like stemless wine glasses) instead of our “fancy” wine glasses and I sort of love it, so stemless is a good option too!

    We had a large-ish wedding (200 people) and had to go back and keep adding things because our family and friends were feeling generous and we kept hearing “nothing is left on your registry.” If you plan to be hosting people frequently in your home, registering for sets of 12 instead of 8 may be a good option too (then if you use a couple of plates the day before your party, you’ll still have enough left for your guests).

    I would also say DO NOT register for seasonal items (as fun as they can be) because by the time your guests get around to looking at your registry, the majority of them will be either sold out or have been replaced with the next season’s items.

  9. Shauna says:

    In Ireland it seems no one wants anything but money which is sad and also so expensive for guests. Here it seems at least €200 is the going rate. I wish we could buy a present that the couple would cherish and be easier on our pockets but they would just turn their noses up at it.

  10. AnnMarie says:

    Despite what I said above, oh MAN I covet that Le Creuset! Every time I go to Williams-Sonoma I wander over to that display and drool a little. So pretty! We never had one of these growing up, but my father’s ancient 12″ Lodge frying pan sat on our stove every day of my life. He gave me an 8″ one last year (it was supposed to be a wedding present, but I guess my parents gave up on that happening any time soon, ha!) and the first day it sat on my stove it immediately made me feel more at home than the previous 15 months of living there had!

  11. Sayward says:

    We’ve been married for two years and got Bed Bath’s plain white every day china similar to the CB dishes you posted. They look delicate and classy but are so sturdy and versatile. Some other great registry items that we still rave about are a really huge, plush throw blanket – we loved it so much we couldn’t share it and had to buy a second one. Really nice sheets that I would never pay for on my own, and camping gear! We got a big tent with a screened in porch, new sleeping bags, and a really nice cooler that we also use for cookouts, etc. We remember who most of the gifts were from, and I constantly find myself saying things like “man, I love this silverware from so and so.”

  12. Emma says:

    Lots of good options in your board, a few I’d add:
    -Sheets!!! Get the best ones you want (we registered for hotel collection) because they’re painfully expensive to purchase on your own
    -Luggage – People loved giving us a few luggage pieces (and even added a mini rollon that we use all the time b/c we fly regional jets which don’t have overhead but it fits!) and we’ve made a ton of us of most of our luggage (probably wouldn’t get the big ‘ole suitcase again, I think we used it once)
    -Serving dishes – similar to the white dishes we got a lot of Crate & Barrels white serving pieces and they are SO handy
    -Vitamix – total splurge, but 100% worth it

    Also makes me think, Julia maybe this was the same for you, Kitchenaid mixers were HUGE when we got married (are they still?). All the registry emails were all “what color kitchenaid are you registering for?” I didn’t understand the phenomena. I’m a countertop minimalist and rarely bake. And I grew up using the hand mixer, it just didn’t make sense to register for. All this to say be sure the pieces you register for fit your life and how you spend your time and don’t get too swayed by the constant emails and eye candy! Hence I’d totally rather get a vitamix than a kitchenaid mixer and keep it on my counter! [steps off soapbox :)]

    • Julia says:

      Chris and I were just talking about that! We have a kitchenaid mixer that we rarely use, but we are big bakers and I don’t eat bread so that could be why.

  13. Allison says:

    I get a kick out of wedding registries….. especially the drinkware. One couple I know registered for no less than 180 various drinking vessels. Highball glasses, red wine glasses, margarita glasses, champagne flutes, bourbon snifters, juice glasses….. the list goes on.

    I know many people don’t like giving gift cards (and I get it), but when so many couples are merging first homes/apartments many of the less expensive items are already covered. I think in these cases a gift card is a better option to help them purchase “buy it for life” and other pricier items that they will truly enjoy for the long haul.

    • AnnMarie says:

      I totally second this! I think traditionally, giving couples money or gift cards was seen as a bit gauche and thoughtless…but I’ve known more than one couple who got married and then promptly moved across the country. In order to keep the moving costs down they took most of their gifts back and took the money and/or store credit with them instead — MUCH easier to move! Also, personally, at almost-30, there’s nothing really pressing that I NEED, and I’d rather do some experimenting with our new lifestyle and habits before committing to anything, so I’d rather buy it myself. Plus, I actually think I’d rather have people contribute a few bucks here and there to a really nice bed than any amount of kitchen stuff! That has to be the epitome of #adulting, right? ^_~

      • Julia says:

        Even 8 years ago, we got cash and gift cards as gifts, but I think there are traditionalists like to give gifts. I don’t think it has to be one or the other.

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