Wedding Registries. Standard or strange to have mundane items, e.g. trash cans on them?

I have a few classmates from high school that are getting married and have posted their wedding websites on Facebook which include links to their registries.

Posting wedding information and registries where people who are not invited can see the details is probably a faux pas in itself, but that’s not my concern here.

What I think is weird is one girl has very mundane every day items including trash cans, shower curtain liners and a paper shredder (???) on her registry. I know from her posts that she is not setting up an entirely new household from scratch and I hope for her sake that she currently has some sort of waste receptacle and that she is not leaking water all over the floor when she showers.

Am I totally clueless or is stuff like that standard? I always imagined wedding gifts to be something special like completing a set of china, a complete formal dinner setting, a nice vase, etc. Not a trash can. What would you even say in a thank you note for that? “Thank you for the lovely trash can, I will think of you every time I dispose of my waste”?

I’ve only been to three weddings and unfortunately I have no idea what my family gave as a gift or what the registries for those were because I went to these weddings when I was a kid. If I had a friend getting married I would want to give them something truly special- not a trash can.


For my registry I had a few mundane items on it that we needed to replace because I had a couple of relatives (specifically my cousin, but a couple of others as well) who wanted to get us gifts and I figured having things that came in at under $10-$15 would make that much easier. Unfortunately my cousin is a crazy weirdo who bought us matching rain ponchos and machetes instead of getting something on the registry, but it is the thought that counts. Even if that thought is insane.

Registries have turned into greed lists, yes. You didn’t know this? I haven’t seen one in years that didn’t list every household item and whim the lucky winners, I mean couple, could find in the store to add.

Meh. I say people should ask for what they need, even if it’s a trash can.

I’m actually getting married this Fall and had this discussion with my fiance. We already have a kitchen full of dishes and appliances, we already have “good china” and plenty of household knick-knacks. We weren’t even going to do a registry, but the advice we’ve received from people who went that route is that if you don’t have a registry, even if you explicitly request “no gifts,” people will buy you something anyway, so it may as well be something you want and/or could use. So we’re going to do a registry and fill it with cheap, but useful shit (a trash can may even make the list!).

My first thought is that her and her husband are planning to move soon after or before the wedding. That is the kind of stuff that even if you have, you’ll probably need if you move.

My second thought is what one of my friends did. She had a few big ticket items she wanted. Several hundred dollars, things she knew she wouldn’t get if she put them on her Target registry (and might even be considered insulting). So, in addition to the stuff she actually did want, she put a ton of ‘throw away’ stuff on there. $10 and $20 items. Things that people that don’t know her or her (now) husband all that well can get her. Just go on the registry with the intention of spending a $X (I don’t care honey, just buy her something that’s like $25 dollars, I work with her mom, I’ve only met her twice). Her plan was to return all that stuff and put it towards the more expensive stuff.

But that was a pretty well thought out plan and garbage cans and shower curtain liners seem too mundane even if you just plan to return them, might as well just ask for gift cards. I’m guessing she actually does need them. But, OTOH, if you need a shower curtain liner, go buy one, don’t hope someone gets you one for your wedding in two months. That seems weird, unless, like I said, they’re planning to move (or redo their bathroom).
On the other other hand, if you need something and people want to buy you something, you might as well get something you need rather than something they think you should get like a picture frame that doesn’t match your house 10th or set of china when you’ll really never use more then 5 sets at once.

Anyone requesting, or worse, giving gifts less than the level of Waterford tree toppers or gilded fish forks is a barbarian.

That’s kind of funny. I would love it if I got a machete as a wedding present even though I have no need for one, just because it’s such a strange gift.

Moving and needing new stuff makes sense. And that is a somewhat clever idea Joey P****- returning items for store credit, although I’d be scared that the giver would somehow find out.

But honestly, one of my first thoughts was that registries like this are gift grabs or ways to get free every day things that may break or need replacing down the line and they see this as an opportunity to get a bunch of free stuff. Or maybe they were trying to find cheaper items for people on a small budget and couldn’t find anything cheap, but still “special.”

DCnDC**** I don’t think I’d want a registry either, I wouldn’t even know what to put on it. I think I would rather receive random items than feel obligated to make a registry of stuff I don’t actually need.

I’ve seen trash cans on baby shower registries. The nursery was being done in a theme and even the trash can would match.
Kind of weird to me, especially for a wedding shower. Then again some trash cans are pretty expensive.
I think gifts were a lot more fun when you had no idea what you were getting. True you got some weird/hideous stuff but you got a lot of things you’d never thought of having.

Many people have no need for a formal set of china or crystal stemware. A lot of people don’t really entertain at that level. My mother, who is old school and actually did have dinner parties, has several china sets (Wedgwood, Lenox, etc.) that have never been used or hardly ever used.

(Incidentally, out of boredom, I looked up the prices for actual sterling silver flatware on Macy’s website. They were astonishingly expensive. I think a single place setting was about $500. That’s so unnecessary when you can get very nice stainless flatware for much less.)

So registering for things like trash cans may seem mundane, but at least they’re useful.

True. Can’t you get cheaper dinner set though that’s not china, but still nice? I bought a full dinner set for four through Macy’s a while back and it was in the $40 range on sale. Not the fanciest thing ever, but surely one could put a nicer one on their registry which would be affordable if split among a bunch of people (assuming individual pieces can be bought separately). And as for entertaining like that- my mom and I always go to a family friend’s who serves a very formal meal on Christmas and Thanksgiving using a nice china set (and that was the first I’d ever heard of chargers), but I guess most people don’t do stuff like that anymore.

But you’re right, a trash can is useful. I just don’t think it would ever cross my mind to put that on a registry since I already have one.

I agree, Sahirrnee. It is fun to be surprised.

Some trash cans are insanely expensive. So maybe they currently have a crappy plastic one with a manual lid and want a nice metal one with electric opening.

It’s extremely common to have mundane household items on wedding registries because the list doubles for shower gift ideas. It might also be a late add, because shower invitees will complain if there’s nothing under $20 on the registry.

While I’d never give someone a trash can for a wedding gift, I’d most certainly give it as a shower gift (if it was on their registry).

New or gently used?

I’ve mentioned it here before, but I have a coworker who is a notorious cheapskate, and when he and his fiancée put together their registry at Target they had a whole bunch of cheap kitchen items like wooden spoons on their list. I guess you could put together a “kitchen grab bag” sort of gift by combining several items, but to me it was like “if you need this stuff, just buy it!”

Well, I am sure they washed the blood off the ponchos before gifting them if that is what you mean.

I don’t give a guilded fish fork what you think! :stuck_out_tongue:

You could, but if it’s not what you actually want, why would you put it on your registry? Isn’t that the point of a registry, so you get things you actually want, instead of things other people think you ought to want?

When we were doing a registry, we didn’t want or need “nice” dinner ware. What we needed and wanted was a full set of basic stuff that actually matched and that I wouldn’t feel terrible about dropping and breaking (and could afford to replace). We wanted and needed a trash can that the *%^&$% dog couldn’t break into and string shit all over the kitchen. We wanted and needed a step-ladder, and a rolling pin, and all sorts of other weird little odds and ends. So that’s what we registered for.

Yeah, we could have bought most of those things ourselves. (Except the $100 dog-proof trash can. We would never spring for that, and apparently neither would anyone else.) But it seemed really silly and counter-productive for us to spend the money to buy those things, and then have our friends and family to spend an equal amount of money buying us a bunch of stuff we didn’t want and wouldn’t use. It was much more efficient to register for that stuff–and it ultimately was more gratifying to people’s feelings, because they’d much rather hear “It’s ridiculous how excited I still get when I open the cabinet and see a set of something instead of all that random garage sale stuff we had before” than “Oh, yes, it’s a lovely vase, and we finally found a place the cats probably can’t knock it off and break it.”

It’s their registry. They can put whatever they want on it, so why not request things they actually need and will use?

When my parents got married, they got something like 10 dozen wine glasses. :rolleyes: I have never seen either of them use a wine glass.

I think it’s becoming more standard, and I appreciate that some people are trying to provide a few options that are in lower price ranges (or just a greater variety of price ranges). I can’t really fault someone for preferring a $12 shower curtain liner that they will actually use instead of a $12 random paperweight.

Of course, never underestimate that some people are just weird and have poor taste.

I certainly put some small cheap things on my wedding registry because I had friends who didn’t have much money, but still wanted to get me something. They wanted to know what I wanted, and I obliged by offering them ideas that weren’t more than they could afford.

I don’t really draw a line between gifts that are too mundane or not. Wedding gifts usually fall into the realm of “setting up house” and honestly, other than that $200 Cuisinart or $1500 fine china set nobody but your parents/grandparents would get for you, the rest is non-expensive stuff like salt and pepper shakers, picture frames, soap dispensers, and laundry baskets. Household items are usually the very definition of mundane.