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Special section Wedding costs

The real reason anyone gets married -- gifts!

Wedding presents

10 tips for creating a wedding registry

Making gift-getting easier for groups,, lets each guest contribute a "partial payment" toward the total gift amount. When the gift has been paid for in full, the company orders the gift. If the gift is not physical, the company will collect contributions, then send the bride and groom a check. Felicite charges a fee for this service.

6. Do check for a completion package. Some retailers will offer a discount of 10 percent or 20 percent on unpurchased registry items. Some will even let you add last-minute gifts before you close the registry, so be sure to ask before you sign up. Also, add things as you go so you can get more items at a discount and keep gifts in everyone's budget.

7. Do become a connoisseur of household essentials. Read up on information about thread counts, knife tang and silverware chromium-to-nickel ratios before you make selections or you might end up with items that feel rough, break or rust easily. A rule of thumb: If a product's description involves jargon you don't recognize, conduct a simple Web search on the unfamiliar terms. It could save you from buying replacement items sooner than you'd like.

8. Do ask that your address remains hidden from guests but on file. Guests don't need to know your mailing address to send you a gift, and that way strangers can't find out where you live, says Naylor.

9. Do appoint a reliable person to check on your house while you're honeymooning. "You don't want a bunch of Crate & Barrel boxes sitting out on your porch," says Naylor.

10. Do consider keeping duplicate gifts, says Becker. That second set of drinking glasses might come in handy when some start breaking, for instance.

Ultimately, remember that registries are meant to make your guests' lives easier by providing them with a wish list, but they are by no means bound to that list or obligated to buy you anything. That said, according to Becker, "Look at the things that you need, treat yourself to things you might not need, and don't be afraid to think outside the box."

Modern wedding registries are going beyond towels and toasters. To learn about the trends in wedding registries, see "Offbeat wedding registry ideas."

-- Updated: July 23, 2007
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