(BPT) - As you busily prepare for your walk down the aisle and make countless decisions regarding every flawless detail, one task on your to-do list will help you see beyond your wedding day and into your future life together - the wedding registry. And though few things could be more enjoyable than a day of shopping with your beloved, there's also a bit of strategy that goes into building a complete registry.
When making registry selections, be sure you've listed a variety of items at different price points - high and low. This way, guests can purchase gifts they can afford but they also have room to exercise some creativity. According to theknot.com, you should aim to have at least twice as many items on your wish lists as attendees at your wedding.
Having two to three registries is common and completely manageable. Consider including a department store, a national chain and an online retailer. Registering for items that are available at nationwide locations and online is convenient for out-of-towners. Be sure to check store return and exchange policies in case you receive duplicate items. Some retailers offer completion programs, providing coupons or discounts to purchase remaining items on registries after the wedding. Wherever you decide to build your wish list, make the most of it by segmenting your needs into separate, distinct categories.
Kickstart your kitchen
Cooking together is a simple way to bond with your spouse and have some fun in the process. Now is the perfect time to think about upgrading your kitchen essentials, including dinnerware, silverware, glassware, cookware, bakeware, cutlery, gadgets, storage containers and barware. Love hosting holidays and events? Opt for at least eight place settings and mix and match with complementary serving platters, bowls and serving utensils. Choose versatile pieces that can go from cooking to serving, saving space and adding convenience.
If you're looking for a kitchen appliance that can do the job of several, consider a high-powered blender. The Vitamix Professional Series 750 offers five pre-programmed settings, including a self-cleaning option. It has the ability to chop, cream, blend, heat, grind, churn and more - without any attachments. Other appliances that shouldn't be forgotten include a slow cooker, coffee maker, toaster or toaster oven and microwave.
Hone in on home basics
Since you won't spend all of your time in the kitchen, the rest of the home should be included in your registry. An assortment of matching linens, such as towels, rugs and shower curtains for bathrooms, plus bedding sets with extra blankets and pillows add comfort and style to your master suite and any guest rooms. Decorative pillows, ottomans and throw rugs are nice transitional pieces to tie a room together, especially if you are blending items from each of your previous, unique spaces. Don't be afraid to register for a few larger items, such as chairs, tables or storage pieces. Lamps, wall art, picture frames, candleholders and vases will help round out your home decor.
Think outside the home
If you've already found the perfect starter home and have an outdoor area, why not register for items that will extend your living space? An outdoor grill is a perfect choice for the couple who loves to cook, and fire pits are ideal for summer get-togethers and relaxing weekends. If you enjoy al fresco dining, add a patio furniture set to your wish list. Consider other accessories such as hammocks, umbrellas and outdoor games.
Creating gift registries is a fun way to bond with your better half and make your house into a home. Use them as a tool to plan how you'll be spending your future together. Cater your registries to your own unique interests and don't worry if your wish list isn't 100 percent conventional, as long as it fits your needs.
With some careful planning, creativity, teamwork and a bit of fun, your wedding gifts will be used for many years after saying 'I do.'