A Millennial’s Guide to Updating Your Wedding Registry

Originally published by PittsburghMagazine.com, Photos by The Knot World Wide in August 2019.  Click here to read the original article.

When creating wedding registries, millennials are shying away from those fancy bedsheets. Here’s how you can change your registry to feature new experiences, local items and a favorite charity.

In May, The Knot revealed the results of its 2019 Registry Study, which listed some of the most popular wish list items for millennial newlyweds. While there are some traditional items remaining at the top of the list, such as household appliances, representatives discovered several ways in which millennial couples differ from previous generations.

According to The Knot, many younger couples are opting for a honeymoon registry in addition to or in replacement of a typical registry. For a honeymoon registry, couples are asking for upgrades in lodging and flights, or just cash.

“Millennials are placing a much higher value on travel and experience than previous generations,” says Shari Zatman, owner and principal event planner and designer of local wedding planning company Perfectly Planned by Shari.

According to The Knot’s study, one in 10 couples is considering their honeymoon registry their primary registry.

Lauren Kay, executive editor of The Knot, says more and more millennials are also beginning to use The Knot Gifts Back, a charity program that donates a portion of the cost of gifts purchased from a couple’s registry on The Knot to an organization of their choice.

“Couples using their wedding registries to give back has been a growing trend,” says Kay via email. “In 2018, one in 10 couples hosted a charity registry on The Knot Registry.”
The study shows that in 2018 couples using The Knot Gifts Back were able to provide 2,032 new toys for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital and 9,680 meals to those in need at various shelters.

Zatman says couples she’s worked with have donated to charities such as the Children’s Trust through the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation as well as Penn State University’s THON fundraiser to find a cure for childhood cancer.

Millennial couples are also leaning towards making registries at local stores to support small business owners. According to Zatman, some Pittsburgh favorites include Glassworks and Cheeks, Contemporary Concepts and its rebranded location Apropos in the North Hills. These stores are known for their glassware, table sets, home decor and clothing items.

Kay says one reason millennials are making the changes to their registries is because they are often living together before the wedding, and therefore already have small appliances and other household items.

Still, if you’re living with your fiance and a set of cracked plates, Zatman says it may be time to ask for a few upgrades. Millennials’ registries may also include larger items such as appliances and furniture to upgrade their homes.

“It’s your one opportunity to get those things that you wouldn’t buy for yourself — your nice dishes and fancy bedding — the stuff you wouldn’t splurge on,” she says.

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