shabby chic wedding ideas

Photo: Lisa D. Photography

In the last few weeks before your big day, your wedding registry is probably in overdrive. Guests usually purchase wedding gifts shortly after receiving your invitation, so you’ll want to keep a close eye on your registry to ensure that you still have enough gifts so that your guests will have plenty of options.

If you find yourself with a near-empty wedding registry and can’t figure out which gifts to add, here’s our best advice on updating and adding to your wedding registry.


More Place Settings

If you’ve only registered for a few place settings, you might think about registering for a few more. You may think that entertaining isn’t your thing, but you never know what the future holds. Perhaps in a few years you’ll be hosting Thanksgiving—and buying extra china can be a big expense. So don’t be a afraid to add a few more place settings to your registry.

Consider “Upgrades”

You may have decided against registering for a particular appliance or item because you already own it. Well, perhaps it’s time for an upgrade! If you’ve owned an item for more than a few years, you could probably use an update—whether it’s a toaster, towels, or a serving bowl. You’re starting a new marriage, so it’s totally okay to get new housewares to go along with it!

Don’t Be Practical

You may have set up your wedding registry with practicality in mind. If you weren’t totally sure you’d use an item, you avoided adding it to your registry. But if your registry is looking a little bare, you might want to reconsider. Perhaps you won’t use an ice cream maker/rice cooker/picnic basket everyday, but it’s certainly a nice-to-have and a great gift. Of course, if your home doesn’t have the space for such items (and you don’t have an option for storage—like your parents’ basement or a storage unit), you might need to be a bit more practical.

Think Hobbies

If you and your future spouse have hobbies, feel free to register for items that you relate to your favorite pastimes. Enjoy camping? Register for a tent and other outdoor gear. Love gardening? Register for gardening tools. The rule of thumb is to only register for gifts that you and your future spouse can use and enjoy together, so don’t be afraid to have a little fun with it.

Go for the Splurge

Perhaps there was an item that you had your eye on, but it just seemed too pricey to add to your wedding registry. Remember that your guests may wish to purchase gifts for you in groups, so a more expensive item can be totally within reach. Add a few bigger items to your registry—like furniture or luggage—so guests can purchase in groups.

romantic wedding tablescape

Photo: Kimberly Kay Photography

Think Through the Year

Sure, it may be summer now, but you’ll want your home to be stocked with appropriate items year-round. So go ahead and register for holiday-related items, as well as appropriate home items for different times of year—leaf-blowers, snow shovels, Thanksgiving dinnerware, gardening tools, religious items, and more.

Look at Each Room

Mentally take a tour of your home, and try to register for at least one item that is appropriate for each. The kitchen and dining room are probably no-brainers, but also be sure to register for items for each of the other rooms in your home. Towels for the bathroom, new sheets for the bedroom, a pretty throw for your family room—look for ways to upgrade each corner of your living space!

More Picture Frames!

With all of the gorgeous photos you’ll receive from your wedding day, you can never have too many picture frames! You’ll want to display those gorgeous images all around your home, so feel free to add a few more frames to your registry. They’re an easy and affordable gift, so guests love ‘em, too!

Cleaning and Organization

Think vacuum cleaners, storage containers for your pantry, laundry baskets, and more. While these may not be the most stylish items on your wedding registry, they’re no less important and are often forgotten. These items will help you maintain an organized and clean home, so don’t forget them!

Set Up an Alternative Registry

If you truly feel that you’ve exhausted all of your registry gift options, you might want to set up a honeymoon or cash registry—if you haven’t already. Through sites like WeddingWire Registry, you can register for honeymoon-related expenses (like flights and accommodations) and activities. Cash registries allow guests to contribute to a larger purchase, like a new car or a down payment on a house. These registries provide a nice alternative if you don’t need or want more traditional wedding gifts.