Register for Real Life

By Laura Mericas | Make Favorite

Photo: Hannah Mougel | Invitation: Isabella Invitations | Table Setting: Bering’s

Pulling that trigger on the registry scanner can be one of the most exhilarating parts of the entire wedding planning process. Point toward an item you covet, out shoots a laser, and a few months later (if you’re lucky) that very item arrives at your doorstep, courtesy of a gracious guest’s generosity!

But here’s the thing: With ease comes risk. Tag too many impulse items, and you’re likely to end up with a hodgepodge of nice things you’ll rarely use, and may not even remember zapping. Wouldn’t it be great, instead, to build a wedding registry that truly reflects—and equips—your personalities, passions and lifestyle? To help you avoid “random registry” regrets, we’ve identified four types of wedding couples: The House Hunters, The Foodies, The Adventurers and The Heirloom-ers, and we’ve hand-picked items for each that you probably didn’t know you could register for…or live without!

The House Hunters
Believe it or not, life does go on after your wedding day. After saying your “I do’s,” the next major milestone for many couples is designing a new place to call home… together! That means it’s time to get rid of your college corkboard collages and bachelor-pad futons, and create a warm, inviting, grownup residence. Lucky for you, Houston’s best registry retailers don’t just stock traditional crystal and china, but offer tons of decor, furniture, and even building supplies, to help you customize your first “together” home.

Over its more than seven decades in business, Houston institution Bering’s has evolved to become a registry destination for wedding couples in need of both fine objects and practical pieces for their new home.

“We have everything under one roof: the paint, the fixtures, the sinks, the vanities,” says Parisa Reith, marketing and public relations manager at Bering’s. “These are things that you take for granted when you’re registering. When you move into a new house, you are going to kick yourself for not asking for them.”  

Wedding couples can register for big-ticket purchases like comfy couches, rugs, bedding, artwork or ornate light fixtures at Kuhl-Linscomb, Houston’s iconic design and lifestyle store. The sprawling boutique offers top-of-the-line brands, displayed in elaborate showrooms, sure to inspire any couple in the process of creating a new abode. We suggest wedding couples include a few sizable items on their registry—say, for example, that must-have modern sectional you’ve been eyeing—even if the price tag seems a little out of place. You never know when guests might want to chip in on a gift together.

Newlyweds also will need accent pieces to tie their entire home together and create what Colby Goetschius, buyer at Kuhl-Linscomb, calls a “collected look.” Pieces can range from trendy cork Juliska bowls, to artistic Jewish mezuzahs by Michael Aram, to one of Goetschius’ favorites: books.

“Couples want their decor items to appear as if they have been accumulated over time,” Goetschius says. “We’ve seen lately that books play right into this. Books, even cookbooks, portray lifestyle. Book spines read like headlines to visiting house guests. Couples can register for lots of books as an efficient way to share their personal style.”  

The Foodies
Couples with a taste for, well…everything, will love registering for items that make their meals taste amazing and their kitchen look even better.

Hoping to start experimenting in your kitchen as soon as you’ve settled into your newlywed nest? Top-notch appliances like the Cuisinart Food Processor and Big Green Egg Grill from Bering’s or the Vitamix Blender and Coravin Wine Pouring System from Kuhl-Linscomb make for great wedding gifts within attainable price points, and allow you to try out new recipes and entertain guests in style.

As a bona-fide foodie, your meals will have to look great, too. Wedding couples can register for colorful everyday table settings, hammered-metal utensils, modern glass stemware and chic tapas platters, to create the perfect presentation. Add in a modern dining room table from Kuhl-Linscomb, and your featured feasts are bound to get that sought-after Insta love.

And we can’t forget the booze! Whether it be an LSA International Vodka Bucket from Kuhl-Linscomb or fun Corkcicles from Bering’s, cocktail lovers and wine aficionados can always eat and drink in style, cheers to their registry!

The Adventurers
Jetsetters and outdoorsmen/women can often feel out of place when registering for fine china, linens and home goods... and we get it. Many would prefer to spend time in wide-open spaces, rather than entertain guests or lay out the perfectly designed den. And they can! Aside from registering for honeymoon travel expenses themselves, couples who love to travel can also add passport covers, noise-canceling headphones and travel-tech items such as mini drones, portable chargers and GPS systems to their registry list.   As for luggage, Bering’s carries colorful, monogram-ready Jon Hart suitcases, and classic, masculine White Wing luggage ranging from full-size sets to weekend-warrior duffels. Those whose luggage requires a little more grit will also appreciate Bering’s Topo Designs adventure gear, slated for its soon-to-open men’s store. The new-to-Houston luggage line, with tear-resistant, water-resistant backpacks, promises to withstand just about any expedition.

Kuhl-Linscomb, too, carries flexible Yeti coolers, as well as classic Stanley vacuum thermoses, S’well Teakwood water bottles, Addon portable speakers and Barebones lanterns for those who want to bring a little modernity to their outdoor adventuring. Those who can’t imagine hitting the great outdoors without their fur babies at their side will be pleased to discover Bering’s pet-friendly road-trip gear, including pet seatbelts and seat covers, and portable water bowls and kibble carriers, which can be added to a registry with the quick click of a button.

The Heirloom-ers
While the gifts in this section are perfect for avid antique-hunters, genealogy buffs and curators of classic home items, we recommend that all registering couples think beyond the foreseeable future when zapping the registry gun.

Quality china place settings, crystal stemware and formal flatware are wedding gifts that will remain with you and your partner for a lifetime, and likely beyond. There’s a reason your family members insist that you must register for such items even if you’re not sure how practical they are in the moment. Once you begin a family of your own, and start hosting holiday gatherings or entertaining more frequently, formal housewares will become a necessity. And how great would it be to pass on a much-used sentimental object to your children someday?

We know, we know: That’s so far off in the future. You’re focused on planning an imminent wedding, not your retirement decades down the road. But let’s face it, there’s no other time in your life when you can convince other people to give you hundreds of dollars’ worth of housewares, except for when you create a wedding registry.

Don’t fear, though. Today’s fine china has come a long way from the fussy pieces of yore. According to the experts at both Bering’s and Kuhl-Linscomb, the modern couple is mixing up the time-honored tradition of good tableware, both in terms of style and price point. “A lot of couples will just get a china charger and a dressier everyday setting,” Goetschius says. “They will dress the setting up with crystal glassware or nicer serving pieces when the table needs to be more formal.”

Reith adds: “Couples now want to include a mix-and-match element in their settings. The main plate is classic, but the salad plate has a splash of color or floral on it. We love it, because we want the registry to represent their sense of style and their taste, and to work with their house and their theme!”

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