When Chuck asked me to marry him, the first thing I did (after crying like a baby and saying yes), was look at bridal registries. This is probably not where most girls start... but we still haven't set a date, so we aren't going in the traditional order of things anyway.
Anyway, a great new trend that couples are doing now is a Honeymoon registry- you register for things you want to do on your honeymoon, and essentially your friends and family buy pieces of your trip. I feel like this will be really great for us, since we already have towels, sheets, plates, pots, etc. People can contribute to your candlelit dinner, horseback ride in the surf, or whatever other cheesy romantic things you want to do on your first trip as a married couple. They can even 'purchase' part of your plane ticket or hotel. All the money technically goes to the couple, then they are responsible for booking the honeymoon with their funds. Giving to the honeymoon is more personal than just handing over money, but I felt like some would still prefer a traditional registry...
Which brings me to my point. Then I found the Williams-Sonoma gift registry. You can register online, people can purchase online, and ship gifts to you- no one ever has to set foot in an actual W-S store! Which is great because there aren't any around here.
So to show their appreciation, many companies will send you a free gift just for registering for their products! And ANOTHER free gift if your guests purchase a certain dollar amount of their product for you! Sign me up!
It was a bit of a pain to do, each vendor has certain guidelines for how much of their products you must register for. For example, Calphalon's was $500 worth of merchandise. Then you print your registry, print out a form with your name and address, and snail mail(!) it all to their home office. All in all I did about 5 of these offers, and 6 months later have received them all! Now if everyone will buy me thousands of dollars worth of presents maybe I will get some more! Ha!
Stay tuned to see what all I got!