Registries and Thank You Notes Etiquette

June 5, 2013
Words by Jennifer Stein
Photos courtesy of


Q: What is the appropriate way to inform our guests of where we are registered?

A: A wedding registry is a wonderful way to receive items you truly desire and can be a convenience for your guests. Your friends and family can easily make a choice and have the gift directly shipped to wherever you want them sent…this is especially important for destination weddings. Guests will not want to carry extra packages, and you will not want to figure out how to transport them all back to your home.
There are some rules of etiquette that should be adhered to though. Let your parents and attendants know so they can share that information with guests who ask is acceptable. In other words, it’s fine to spread the news word of mouth. Including stores you are registered at on your web site is also appropriate if it is in the midst of other information. It is never appropriate to print registry information on your wedding invitations. Including registry info on an enclosure card in shower invitations might be acceptable in your area, but it’s more appropriate to wait until guests RSVP and then the hostess can share the information when guests inquire

Q: I’m already feeling overwhelmed with writing thank you notes. What amount of time is considered appropriate for responding to gifts? How shall I respond to monetary gifts?

A: Wedding gifts are wonderful, but the task of responding in a timely manner looms heavily on most couples. Ideally, you should write thank you notes as soon as a gift arrives.
By handwriting a few notes a day, the task can be less daunting. Also, this is something your fiance/spouse can assist with. Work together and perhaps he can help with the notes to his side of the family. Try to get your notes out within the first month after you return from your honeymoon, but if you miss that mark, continue until they are done. It is a misconception that you have a year to acknoledge gifts. Guest have up to a year to send their gifts, but your acknowledgement should be made as soon as possible.

If you receive a monetary gift, it is appropriate to thank the giver for their “generous” gift or to name the amount in your note. If you happen to be opening these cash gifts in front of others, you should never name the amount. It is also gracious to let the giver know how you plan to spend the money. For example, you might say, “Thank you Aunt Emma, for the $100. We are planning to put it towards the purchase of our new bedroom furniture.”


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