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Wedding Registry Trend Report: The Rise of the Cash Gift

By: Meredith Toy

Ever since Chicago’s historic Marshall Field’s department store invented the wedding registry back in 1924, the rules and trends dictating how couples use this helpful gift-finding tool have fluctuated greatly. The latest trend on the Wedding Registry front is registering for cash gifts. The appropriateness of giving a cash gift has long remained in the wedding etiquette gray area of ‘is it’ or ‘isn’t it’ until recent years. In these tough economic times, many couples have a strong preference for cash, and the challenge is simply finding a way to express this politely.

Thanks to the all-encompassing power of the Internet, couples have finally been given a tasteful way in which to register for cash. MyRegistry.com, the leader in online gift registry technology, provides couples with an etiquette-friendly way to request cash gifts right on their online registry. When activating a Cash Gift Fund, registrants can label the fund anything they wish, whether it be a Home Renovations Fund, Honeymoon Fund, Wedding Fund, or even several different funds designated for various purposes. The Cash Gift Fund appears on the couple’s registry alongside more traditional items such as an espresso machine or flatware, so it becomes the guest’s choice whether to give a cash gift, a more traditional gift from the registry, or even a gift not listed on the registry at all.

Couples can share their online gift registry with wedding or shower guests by utilizing a number of etiquette approved methods. Registry Announcement Cards, a long-time favorite of department stores, can be included with the engagement party or bridal shower invitations. Online gift registry sites such as MyRegistry.com often offer printable versions of these cards available for download as well. Couples who would rather not include registry information with invitations can notify guests by email, or with the free customizable eCards available to MyRegistry.com members. A great way to share registry information politely is to have the host of the bridal shower be the one to spread the news. And thanks to advancements in gift registry technology, like MyRegistry.com’s facebook app, sharing registry information in an Internet-centric world is easier than ever.

The cash gift trend has helped newlyweds afford the sometimes costly expense of getting hitched these days, while providing wedding guests with an easy alternative to finding gifts from the registry that fall within their budgets. While some wedding registry trends may come and go (picking out a china pattern is no longer the registry must it once was), it’s unlikely that there will ever come a time when newlyweds couldn’t use a little cold, hard cash!

Check out Today’s Bride’s Bridal Registry Suggestions here

About the Author

Meredith Toy is an Editor for MyRegistry.com, the leader in online gift registry services. As a former pregnancy/parenting Magazine Editor and Personal Shopper specializing in helping customers build gift registries, Meredith has a strong background in all gift registry related topics. Meredith’s goal is to use her expertise of the gift registry industry to provide strong editorial content to fit your registry related needs.

(ArticlesBase SC #1443651)

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/Wedding Registry Trend Report: The Rise of the Cash Gift

Go Green with Your Bridal Registry

This was posted on OneWed.com and contains great ideas to consider when creating a green bridal registry.

Creative and Earth-Friendly Ways to Get Your Gift On
by Azure, Recycled Bride, OneWed.com

Think your wedding registry options are limited to stockpots, blenders, and china? Think again! There are tons of innovative ways to make your wedding registry more creative, more personalized, and yes– more eco-friendly. Nearly 70% of couples live together before getting married, and if you’re one of them, it’s likely that you already have the things you really need for your home. Luckily, the wedding registry is quickly becoming about more than just housewares. Maybe you want to donate to charity instead of getting gifts, or put a down payment on a house, or fund the honeymoon adventure of your dreams. Perhaps you’d enjoy non-material gifts like spa visits and concert tickets, or you want to start filling your home with sustainable, modern housewares instead of the standard department store fare.

Click HERE to find out how to register for just about anything you want.

Brides-to-be…What to do After the Bridal Show

Ok, so you went to the bridal show and talked to a lot of people, picked up a lot of literature, saw great fashions shows with the latest in wedding and bridesmaid gown design, awesome wedding cake ideas and so much that you are getting dizzy.  Hold on!  We made it happen, we will help you through it!  Great organization, follow through and planning can turn piles of brochures into a well thought out and perfect wedding day. 

1) Dump & Categorize

Dump your bag out and separate the brochures by category; DJs, cake companies, photographers, bands/live music, flowers, reception halls, etc.  Once you’ve done that, take each pile and pull out the company, or companies,  you actually had the opportunity to talk to.  These will be the first people to review.  From that group, chose one to three companies from each category, paying attention to any coupon or show pricing deadlines, that made the biggest impression on you when you spoke, i.e. personality of the representative, overall look of their booth – samples, photos, etc – and any offers they presented.  These will be the first people you want to consider for your wedding.

2) Contact them

Now that you’ve narrowed it down, the next step is to contact them and set up an appointment to talk about what you’re looking for, what your budget is for that particular service, availability on your date, etc.  The one thing we do not recommend is just calling up a company and asking what they charge.  That doesn’t give you a true idea of what that company can offer you.  Here’s something to think about, just because a company may LOOK expensive, i.e. high quality ads, brochures, booth displays, etc. doesn’t mean they are expensive, that they aren’t willing to work within your budget.  You’d be surprised how many companies can offer you their best work and still won’t break the bank.  Give them a chance. 

3)Research what you need to ask

After you set the appointment, print out  a copy of our wedding
planner  http://www.todaysbrideonline.com/planning_tools.phtml.  It contains great information and just about every question you should ask.   You may want to check out their website too.  Many companies will list their services and possibly a price list.  But don’t let that be the end of your research.  A true measure of a company is not necessarily what they look like online or what their brochure look like, it’s the people and how they interact with you.  Which brings us to the next step…

3)Get to know them personally

While talking with the vendor, make sure everything they will do for you will be written in the contract and that every aspect is covered.  Yes, they know what they need to do, but you need to know too!  They do this for a living and it’s second nature to them.  What you might assume will be included, often times is not and could be an issue later on down the line.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions and don’t be afraid to ask for it in writing!

4)  Time to Make a Choice

You’ve “interviewed” your top choices. Now comes the hard part, choosing that one company that will make your day perfect.  Review all of the information you collected when you spoke.  Take into consideration the personality of the person you spoke to, the atmosphere of where you met, any testimonials or recommendations from others that have used their service, etc and the choice should be obvious.

5) File It Away

Once you have made your final decisions and booked your wedding professionals, don’t throw away your research!  File it away for a future use.  You never know when you’ll need the services of a company you talked to or received literature from but didn’t use. 

Your wedding day is the most important day of your life and the companies you choose to help you celebrate play a big role in making it perfect.  Follow your heart, after all, it brought you to this point and hasn’t been wrong yet.

Money Can’t Buy Love: Northeast Ohio weddings still going strong despite economic downturn

We are not claiming to be the original source of this post: View full post on wedding « WordPress.com Tag Feed

by Jennifer Boresz on January 20, 2010

Weddings tend to boom during decade years.

Who knew?

My fiancé, Brian, and I sure didn’t plan to get married in 2010 for any particular reason. It’s just the way things worked out. But bridal vendors throughout Northeast Ohio are hoping others will also choose this decade year to plan their big day. It would give their businesses a boost, following a not-so-great 2009.

It seems that just about everyone has been impacted by the struggling economy. Even though some couples in 2009 worked within a budget to throw the weddings of their dreams, others decided to postpone their big days. A decrease in wedding funds may delay plans, but bridal vendors can count on one thing: People will still continue to fall in love and get married.

This Friday night (January 22, 2009)  at 8:30 on NEOtropolis, we’ll talk about the economic impact of Northeast Ohio weddings. If you think about it, just one wedding — one single day — touches many different vendors. By having your wedding here in the region, instead of a “destination wedding” out of the state or even the country, you’re actually helping the local economy.

According to the Wedding Report through the Bridal Association of America, the average U.S. wedding cost more than $30,000 in 2009! (Now I’m not saying everyone pays that much, but can you imagine the impact thousands of weddings have on Northeast Ohio businesses each year?)

Here are some interesting statistics from the same 2009 study that I thought you might enjoy:

17 months = average engagement time

169 = average number of guests

26 = average age of bride

28 = average age of groom

2,326,485 = numbers of weddings in the United States (a 2.37 percent increase from 2008)

I’m proud to say that since Brian and I are both native Northeast Ohio residents, we are using all local vendors for our June wedding. We’re even incorporating elements from the Lake Erie shore into our centerpieces and decor to reflect the region we love.

What about you? Are you a bride or groom who is planning a wedding? Will it take place in the region? Or, if you’ve been to a wedding recently, did you notice that it was less extravagant due to the economy? What stood out? And who are your favorite Northeast Ohio vendors?

——–

See Today’s Bride’s own Jim Frericks and Jennifer Fyffe discuss the outlook for the Northeast Ohio bridal industry on this episode of NEOtropolis.

NEOtropolis Episode 112: The Business of Brides{{desc}}

via Episode 112: The Business of Brides.

January is Bridal Show Month!

January is a very busy month for bridal show producers, including Today’s Bride.  We are the largest Bridal Show producer in Northeast Ohio for over 20 years, bringing newly engaged couples hundreds of wedding professionals all in one place!  It’s one-stop-shopping for all your bridal needs.

This Sunday, January 17th will be our largest show of the season at the IX Center in Cleveland.  Over 200 wedding professionals will be on hand, from florists to teeth whitening, Bridal gowns in Henri’s gown showroom to photobooths that will add additional craziness and fun to your reception.  It’s all here!  Beautiful fashions shows highlighting this seasons most sought-after gowns will be at 11:00, 12:30, 2:00 & 3:30pm, brought to you by Henri’s Cloud Nine with fashions from Henri’s, Expressions Bridal, David’s Bridal, Dora’s Bridal & Formal and more!  For the Mother-of, beautiful gowns from Peneventures will also be featured.  Don’t forget to check out the American Commodore Tuxedo dancers showing off the latest in formal attire for the groom too!  They are sure to rock the show!

Doors will be open from 10am to 5pm.  Admission at the door is $10 but you can get a $3 off coupon or buy tickets online for 50% off by pre-registering at www.todaysbride.com.  Parking is $8.

To help you prepare for the show, check out our bridal survival guid by clicking here.  Come to the show excited and prepared!

Bridal Shows – One Stop Shopping

2009-10Facebook Image-2Planning a wedding can be fun and exciting, but with so many plans to be made you’re going to need all the help you can get. Don’t sweat it Bridal Shows may be just what you need.

If you’ve ever planned a wedding before, you know the budgeting and myriad of details involved can be overwhelming. And if you’ve never planned a wedding before, you’ll soon discover the pressure of contacting and contracting with the church, the reception site, the caterer, the florist, the photographer, the videographer, and the musicians – – not to mention ordering invitations, sending thank you notes and finding gifts for your bridal party.

Feeling stressed yet? Well don’t – – whether you are newly engaged, almost ready for the big day, or planning a second wedding, attending a bridal show will save you an abundance of time and significantly reduce the amount of stress you may experience. 

Bridal shows are an inexpensive and timely way to meet and speak directly with a vast variety of wedding professionals from your hometown at one time, in one location! They can help you to get started planning or help you acquire those last minute services to make your event special and unique. 

If you are an encore bride (planning your second or third wedding), don’t hesitate to attend a bridal show. So many new wedding ideas have emerged since your first wedding and a show is an ideal venue to soak it all in.

With shows being a one-stop shopping experience under one roof, a bride can virtually plan her entire wedding in just one day if she is prepared ahead of time. Here are some helpful hints to benefit the most from your bridal show experience:

Establish your wedding budget ahead of time. Make a list of what you need the most and what portion of your budget you wish to allocate to each service/product. 

Plan to spend half of the day there.  Allow enough time for parking, registration, watching the fashion show (usually it lasts approximately one hour), and time to view exhibits before & after the fashion show.  When you get there, go to those businesses who have what you need the most first.

Pick up any information available.  Take some time to look over what you’ve collected once you get home.  Make notes on the literature at the show while it’s fresh in your mind.

Be prepared to make decisions and put deposits down on services. Bring those people who are vital in helping you make decisions, or at least bring someone to bounce off ideas.  Wedding dates fill up quickly once an exhibitor participates in a bridal show.  If you know you definitely want to book with a service provider at a show, they’ll probably require a deposit to hold your date.  Each exhibitor will have its own requirements for payment be it cash, check, or credit cards.  Read contracts carefully and inquire about refund policies before giving any money.

Bring color swatches of the material and ribbon in the colors of your wedding, and even photos of your wedding gown.  This will assist bridal shops, bakeries, florists, and many other professionals in generating ideas to complement your wedding theme.

Bring printed address labels and a pen. Some shows have multiple prize drawing opportunities through the show producer and/or offered by the individual vendors.  To avoid having to write your name, address, phone number, and wedding date 50 times, consider bringing some address labels with all the information on it, or make up your own computer labels that include your phone number (which is usually required for all drawings). If you do print your name on entry forms, write neatly and legibly.

Bring a calendar or date book to help you schedule appointments with potential service providers after the show.

Arrive early regardless of which fashion time you choose, approximately 1 to 1-1/2 hours before the fashion show.  Fashion show seating is typically first come, first serve.

If you can’t attend personally, send your mom or a friend to pick up information for you. You may even still qualify for prizes at some of the shows.

Grooms-to-be are always welcome!  Bridal shows are not just for brides, there are plenty of wedding plans that may require the groom’s input. 

By all means, ASK QUESTIONS! The vendors are there to help you. You are under no pressure to buy from them, so find out everything you need to know.

When used to the fullest extent, you can plan your entire wedding with the help of just a few shows and without having to fight traffic and drive all over town.  How many shows you decide to attend is up to you. If you only have time to attend one show, try choosing a show that is either produced or sponsored by professionals that specialize exclusively in weddings. However, the more of them you can attend the more time and money you can save. And who knows, you might just win a valuable prize!

How to Create your Bridal Registry

jcpcollage21As a soon-to-bride the gift registry will be a nice way to invite your friends and family to purchase items that you need or want for your new life with your husband. There are a multitude of stores such as department stores such as Macy’s, JCPenny, Dillards, Crate & Barrel, Bed Bath & Beyond, and other small family heirloom shops and in-home demonstration companies that can provide a bridal registry. One stop shopping places such as Wal-Mart and Target also offer gift registries. Creating a bridal registry is simple and can be done in a short period of time.

Set up a wedding registry checklist if you want to avoid getting five sets of cutting knives and multiple waffle irons among your wedding gifts. 

A wedding registry is a system where you and your partner go to various stores and choose a list of gifts your friends and family members can choose from. Setting one up helps you make sure you do not receive items you already have or do not need, and it will help your loved ones choose gifts you and your partner could really use.

Most stores have a wedding registry system either in the store or online. If someone buys a gift, the list is updated, which will prevent another guest from bringing the same item.

Getting Started

Think about the kinds of items you and your partner need and want for your new life together. Some people will want dishes and others may want decorations.

Remember to research the stores you use; each store may have a different set of guidelines and policies for their wedding registries. Choose stores with wedding registries that are easy to use. Ask if the store has multiple locations, online access and an easy ordering process

Wedding registry Web sites have simplified the gift-buying process. Using the Web will allow you and your guests easy access to your online wedding registry when all of you look to see if updates have been made to the list.

Check on the return policies for the stores you’re considering. For example, they may give you cash back for returns from the registry. Other stores may have restrictions on returns and dictate that you have to have a receipt, that the tags must still be on the item and that you can exchange items only in the same department as the original gift. Make life easier on yourself by finding this information in advance.

Also, some stores offer users a discount on items that are not bought. If you choose each wedding registry list wisely and consider what you and your partner really want, you will be able to start your new life while saving yourselves some money.

Ask friends and family members about their experiences. Also, check with bridal forums and magazines for word-of-mouth feedback on stores and their user-friendliness.

How Many Wedding Registries Are Enough?

You want to have enough wedding registries and selected items so that your guests have options, but you do not want to have so many registries that you overwhelm them. Remember to start this process early; you want to give your guests enough time to shop around and make a decision regarding the perfect wedding gift.

However, you do not want to start your search so early that the items sell out, are discontinued, or shift in price. Take your time doing your research and make your selections three to six months before the wedding. Make sure to check back from time to time to see if the store still has your items in stock.

What Items to Choose

Be sure to choose a variety of items in a range of prices. You don’t have to ask for things you don’t want just because they are cheaper, but some of your guests have and are willing to spend more money than others. Let your guests enjoy buying you gifts without worrying about their bank accounts.

Before you select items, look at your guest list. Most people select two to three items per guest. Your guests will have many options to choose from, but they won’t see so many items that your guests can’t make a decision.

Choose items that you want, and take a little extra time to assemble your wedding registry list. This is your chance to ask for things you and your partner really need or desire and will eliminate gifts you’d return or might take up unneeded space. Many people use their registry to receive items for decorating their new homes. Traditionally, people ask for tableware, china and kitchen appliances, as well as bedding and other home-based items. But always keep your and your partner’s needs first.

When you create your wedding registry, also specify you and your partner’s name. Some of your guests may want to personalize their gifts to you. For example, they may want to engrave a picture frame with your names.

If you do not want traditional gifts like kitchenware and throw pillows, try making a honeymoon-specific registry where guests can contribute meals, trips, lodging and small extras. Also, consider asking your guests to donate time, money, or gifts to some your favorite charities

How to Tell Guests

Many stores provide users with cards to include alongside wedding invitations. However, the decision to include these cards is up to you. Some people may think mentioning gifts in your invitations is uncouth or rude, but some people may welcome the information because they won’t know where to start or shop. 

Check out  this Bridal Registry Checklist when trying to decide what you need and what you don’t.