Posted by Mackenzie on Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Every week Xochitl (pronounced so-cheel), our resident wediquette expert and owner of Always a Bridesmaid Wedding Consulting, answers an etiquette question submitted* by one of our readers. So, (without further ado):
Q: My daughter will be married in December in a 100 guest wedding of close family and friends. Giuliana and Marcelo told me that they would rather not do a traditional registry, but want to save for a downpayment for their first home. They are a sensible sort... thirty, still in grad school. They have many household items and since they will be moving during her residency don't want to carry much more around.
I am not objecting, but they asked me for the weddiquette. Help! Is this done, how to word it, should they give people a choice?--Ann
A: The registry thing is so sticky, since generally people don't know exactly what to do about spreading the word. I think it becomes mildly stickier when the couple wants or needs cash for a particular purpose. From a technical etiquette perspective, registry information should never be published and should always be spread via word of mouth, the Mother of the Bride being one of the more vocal mouths. If the couple is setting up a wedding website I think you can include some casual information there about how they are saving for a first home.
I would caution you about the following two things: the bridal shower and determined guests. It's not customary to bring cash to a bridal shower, so I think that should your daughter really not want any new clutter in her life, she could request a lingerie shower when that time comes. At least then she will get new items that she can always use, and these showers are kind of fun. If she doesn't like this idea, I would suggest another kind of theme shower: such as "Around the Clock" or "Room of the House" or a "Linen Shower " (who doesn't want new 500 thread count sheets?) to limit the random-ness of gifts she might receive. My other point is that there are often guests who simply insist on buying gifts no matter what and they'll just go willy nilly buying whatever suits them. Not always desirable.
As a final note, I just got back from visiting friends who live in Amsterdam. They were telling me about Dutch weddings and about how in Holland when you send a wedding invitation, you often include an empty envelope that says something like "Thank you for your gift towards our new Apartment" on it and sometimes even includes deposit account information. Then, it is often customary in the Thank You card for the Bride and Groom to send photos of what they purchased with the money from their wedding. I do love the practical Dutch!--Xochitl of Always a Bridesmaid
*If you've got a question for our expert, submit it by clicking "submit your question" in the right hand column, under "wediquette".