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Ask the 10 Basic Questions

10 Questions to Ask Before You Register for Wedding Gifts
Of all the decisions you'll make before your wedding, choosing gifts for yourself has to be among the most fun. Everything else is about the day itself-or the week after, if you're planning your own honeymoon. Gift registry, though, is about so much more. It's about creating a vision of your new life together. From the linens on your bed to the china you'll use for special occasions, your registry defines your style as a married couple. Before you dive right in and start adding items to your want-list, take some time to talk it through. These 10 questions can help you hone your vision of the future to start building your perfect registry today.


1. What's your decorating style?
It's a simple question with a lot of possible answers - for both of you. You might already know what you like, but have you asked the groom? Don't just take clues from present living quarters. Those could be the result of hand-me-down furnishings or the style-sense of a roommate. Instead, talk about your style sense together. Flip through decorating magazines if that helps. Choosing patterns and styles that fit you both is much easier when you have a good sense of your individual style preferences. If you have a mixed view you may want to look for a pattern that is in between the two styles.


2. What are your favorite colors?
You're going to be looking at your dinnerware every day, so pick a color that works for both of you. Color trends come and go, but your china will be with you for a long, long time. Choose a color you have always loved that also will stand the test of time.


3. How will colors be used in your home?
More specifically, which colors do you want to use in which rooms? You wouldn't want to pick a color of dinnerware or decorative items that clash with the color of the room you're going to be using them in. Are you going to have stainless appliances in the kitchen or will you select a color? This could definitely impact decisions about the type of small kitchen appliances you add to your registry.


4. Will you entertain formally, casually, or both?
As a host, you should have an assortment of formal and casual dinnerware. Casual china is often less expensive than formal, which gives your guests a wider price range of gifts to choose. Request more of one or the other depending upon how frequently you intend to use them.


5. How many people do you typically invite to dinner?
This will help determine the number of place settings to add to your registry. Most dinner parties include between six and eight people. For family gatherings like Thanksgiving, though, you'll want to have enough china on hand to serve a larger than usual gathering. To be safe, register for at least 12 to16 of each individual serving item (dinner plate, salad plate, wine glass, etc.). Also, for every eight people you typically invite, add an additional serving piece.


6. Is holiday entertaining important to you?
If you tend to host family and friends at the holidays, you'll want to make each one a special event. There is no better way to bring out the holiday spirit than to serve on holiday china. Add it to your registry if you plan to create holiday traditions that include entertaining at your home.


7. Will dinnerware be used in the microwave and dishwasher?
Many patterns of china (both casual and formal) are now dishwasher and microwave safe. If these features are important to you, you'll want to be sure to select items you can and will care for correctly. The best part of having beautiful china is using it.


8. What types of beverages do you serve?
Do you enjoy a glass of wine at your holidays and gatherings? Do you have cocktail parties or enjoy serving fresh lemonade? Make sure you register for barware and crystal. If cocktail parties are your thing, you'll find some very fun barware patterns that are sure to keep your guests talking. If punch and lemonade are more your style, be sure to add a few pitchers and a punch bowl, too.


9. What type of flatware do you prefer?
Is the beauty and tradition of sterling silver a "must-have" for your new home? Do you intend to pass sterling flatware on to your children? Do you prefer a stainless everyday silverware that is dishwasher safe? Remember, you can get the satisfaction of both by registering for both.


10. What's most often on the menu?
Think of a meal you would prepare for friends and family. Now, what will you put each item you are serving on and what will you serve it with?
What do you need to serve it to your guests? Tray for chips and dip? Serving Forks? Platters? Plates? Thinking about your ideal entertaining scenarios will be a great help to determining what to include in your registry



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