What You Need to Know: Wishing Wells and Gift Registries

The amount of couples opting for a wedding wishing well has definitely increased over the past few years however bridal couples still have to navigate some tricky wedding etiquette to ensure their request is well received.  So whether you’ve chosen to opt for a wishing well, a gift registry or a combination of the two we’ve put together our advice for the best way to get around this modern wedding conundrum.

wishing well wedding

First and foremost subtlety is the key. However you choose to inform your guests that you have a gift registry or wishing well needs to be done in a discreet manner. Your message must be seen as merely a request to notify your guests of your preferences and should come across as an option as opposed to an obligation.  The tone and language you use to inform guests is crucial, it must be completely transparent that guests are welcome to still buy you a gift or a gift that is not on your registry.

If you will be having a gift registry the emphasis should be placed on the fact that you are trying to make things simpler for your guests. Many guests are likely to be happy that you have taken the time to register for gifts as they will see that it takes the guessing work out of it for them and makes their decision on what to give you significantly easier. When choosing gifts be sure to cover a wide price range to be considerate of all budgets, while some guests will want to buy you something extravagant for others it will not be financially possible. Also consider the relationships you have with these people, obviously your closest of friends and family will spend a little extra but you wouldn’t honestly expect something lavish from your distant relatives or co-workers. You should compile a lengthy list of gift ideas so that there are quite a few options for your guests to consider. Limiting your guests takes away from the helpfulness of having a wedding gift registry in the first place.

Etiquette suggests that it is inappropriate to put any information about your gift registry on your formal invitations. If you must include it within your invitation it is instead recommended that you add an additional enclosure card with the details. Don’t include your full registry list within your wedding invitations but rather provide the details of where guests can find the list such as a link to the relevant website. Gift registry card wording can be a little more forthcoming than what is recommended for wishing well cards. Bridal couples don’t need to find a nice poem or rhyme to inform guests of their registry however a brief note is recommended. As mentioned above the note should highlight that you are trying to making the process easier for your guests. However you should never expect gifts nor make your guests feel like they have to buy you a gift.

Wishing wells are now becoming largely accepted and expected at weddings. With guests understanding that you may already have all the items you need or simply want to choose them yourself. This is especially the case as many couples have already been living together for some time before they ultimately tie the knot.

wedding wishing well

There are a range of reasons why brides prefer monetary gifts perhaps they want to put the money towards their honeymoon or they already have a fully furnished and equipped home whatever the case is there will always be guests who feel uncomfortable giving money. Couples need to be accommodating in these instances and make it clear to their guests that by no means are monetary gifts the only option.

When it comes time to inform your guests that you will be having a wishing well at your wedding there are a couple of ways you can go about it. The first is to have your family and close friends spread the word that you will be having a wishing well – this applies to gift registries as well. Coming from a friend or family member the request won’t seem in anyway ‘cold’ or impersonal.

Alternatively you can direct guests to your wedding website which is fast becoming popular amongst all bridal couples. Wedding websites allow couples to provide information and updates to their guests in the lead up to their big day. In relation to etiquette wedding websites are a great way to convey information which might be deemed inappropriate for the formal wedding invitations.

The most obvious option is to include a separate enclosure card to inform your guests of your intention to have a wishing well or gift registry.  Wishing well cards can be neatly included with your invitation so that all guests are provided with the same information.  Typically couples will use a poem or rhyme for their wishing well wording, which is a great idea. Wishing well poems and rhymes make the request feel more like a request as opposed to a command. Picking the right poem is essential to ensuring your guests understand your request.

Mentioning how you intend to use the money your guests will be gifting to you is always a good idea. By doing this your guests will know what they are actually contributing to and can feel assured that they are truly helping as opposed to giving you money which could be used to pay for something insignificant.

No matter how you decide to let your guests know that you will be having a gift registry or wishing well always be mindful of how you would like to be informed. You will know your guests best, so ensure you are asking in a manner that you know will be considered respectful and is guaranteed to be well received.





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