Friday, August 24, 2012

Registry Breakdown: Most Popular Choices for Your Guests

If you engaged (or getting engaged anytime soon), figuring out your registries can be difficult.  Besides dealing with uncooperative fiances (luckily Mr. 3 was more than helpful as long as he was fed and caffeinated) and figuring out what you need (pots and pans usually) vs. what you want (toss pillows! crystal barware! monogrammed anything!), you have to also think about the number of gifts, the price points, what stores are going to be accessible to both you and your guests.

Mr. 3 and I chose to register at Macy's and Bed, Bath, and Beyond (BBB) because we figured that they would be the most accessible to our families in North Carolina and Virginia.  We also decided to put in Williams Sonoma because we LOVE their kitchen gadgets and kitchen linens.  From there, I decided I wanted to put Pottery Barn on the list because I love their home decor items and bed linens.  Finally, I added a Bloomingdales registry because they were the only vendor that carried these pretty bowls (and yes, that is the sole reason I registered at Bloomies...although after their wonderful registry store event, I definitely added a few more pieces).
So cute for fruit or sorbet!
Iittala Kastehelmi Bowl

I figured that our guests in DC would like all of the options because we have brick and mortar stores near by that are easy to get to.  For our friends traveling from afar who have a very limited selection in their hometowns, I figured they would appreciate the variety of places to scout out free shipping.

All of our guests were extremely generous and thoughtful in their gift giving, but Macy's and BBB were by far the most popular choice among all of our guests for both shower and wedding presents.  I would say about 90% of our gifts came from those two registries and all of our gift cards we received were to those two stores.

Macy's also has a great rewards program and BBB always has a 20% off coupon (btw...did you know that they never expire despite what the coupon says and you can combine coupons in the same transaction?!?!  try it!).  BBB also offers a $25 coupon for ever person you refer who sets up a registry, so tell all your engaged friends after you set up your own!  Both stores offer free shipping if you go to a location and they don't have the item you want to order in stock.

One thing I learned was that if you really want something, like your pots and pans, but them in multiple places and check back often to delete the duplicates as your guests purchased them.  This really works out well for the couple and the guest!  For example, All-Clad Copper Core is carried at Williams Sonoma, Macy's, BBB, and Bloomingdales. 

All Clad Copper Core
Image from Williams Sonoma

Macy's and Bloomies will sometimes put All-Clad on sale, but BBB does not .  However,  BBB may offer your guest free shipping and Williams Sonoma will sometimes offer price breaks on specific pans.  Williams Sonoma and Bloomingdales carry this brand in store, but you can usually only find it online at the other stores.  By putting the All-Clad at all the websites, you will increase your odds of receiving the pots and pans you want and your guest can 1) look for the best deal or 2) look for the easiest way to send you these pots!  It may be a little time consuming to check everything (Mr. 3 said I watched the registries like the stock market), but it definitely pays off.

All that stated, here is a ranking of our registries in order of guest popularity:

1. Bed, Bath and Beyond (BBB)
2. Macy's
3. Pottery Barn
4. Williams Sonoma
5. Bloomingdales

What's your favorite registry?  Any perks you want to share, let us know!