This article originally appeared on Lucky and is reprinted here with permission.
Deciding what to put on your wedding registry can be stressful. But what’s worse is winding up with 15 butter knives and only two of the nice wine glasses you requested! Don’t worry — we’ve searched through hundreds of registries and sites and compiled our own tips to bring you six easy tricks that will help you make the most of your wedding registry.
1. Pick the right registry for you.
We love Thankful Registry, which not only offers beautiful and clean templates, but can also pull items from almost every site out there. Unlike most sites, there is a $30 flat free per registry, but with their one-week free trial you can test it out to see if Thankful Registry is right for you. Another perk? The site keeps a running track of who purchased which gift, and can be easily exported into an Excel file for optimal thank-you-note writing! You can add your honeymoon fund as well. And along with each gift requested, you can include a little description and explain why you’re asking for it.
2. Find an all-inclusive registry.
Especially if you don’t need big-ticket items like dishes, furniture or bedding. NewlyWish is totally free, plus it gives you choices from chic, stylish shops that incorporate less-traditional gifts. From artwork to food to event tickets, you can add almost anything to your registry.
3. Register based on your location.
While big-name superstores are great for out-of-town guests, make sure to include a few local boutiques that you love, too! There’s nothing like supporting your local merchants when it comes to your big day. Most online registries will even allow you to add items from these boutiques, provided they offer e-commerce. If not, call them and see if they have their own registry options — or just drop hints to your friends and family!
4. Choose places with completion program offers.
When registering, choose places with completion program offers, which allow you to get additional items on your registry at a discount. But remember, most are only good for up to six months after your wedding, so don’t wait too long!
Rei offers 10 percent off any remaining items on your registry after your wedding date.
Bloomingdale‘s also offers a 10 percent completion discount for up to six months after your wedding — plus free monogramming, invitations to exclusive events, and honeymoon discounts from participating hotels.
5. Register for fun gifts over big bulky items you’ll never use.
Unless you really plan to use that $500 espresso machine, leave it off the list! Instead, pick out something more fun that still suits your taste. Whether it’s sports game tickets or a deluxe DVD set of your favorite show, you’ll end up loving it more than an unused coffee machine that takes up your whole counter. This is also helpful for your guests with limited budgets — don’t think you can’t include an item on your registry simply because it’s under $50!
6. Register for gift cards.
Some people still feel uncomfortable giving cash, so gift cards are an easier way to get that $2,000 sofa or grill you’ve had your eye on!