Curate Your Personal “Couple Style” Take your wedding registry beyond the basics and set yourselves up to be the consummate hosts.

BY AIMEE ROWE, Bridal/Giftware Manager at Schiffman’s Winston-Salem

It’s official! You’re getting married and deep in the throws of planning your perfect wedding –– one of the most important items on your list of a million-and-one-things to do is planning your wedding registry. What better way for you and your betrothed to start building your life together, than taking the time to go together to select the things that will make a house your home.

A wedding registry provides a rare opportunity to ask for and receive your dream items for your home. Sure, hosting your family for Thanksgiving dinner may be a few years down the road, but dinners with good friends are certainly on the horizon. Your wish list should include the items you’ll need now and then––from an oversized ice bucket to chill your craft beers, to candlesticks for lighting a festive table, to everyday plates and formal dinnerware, and little things like salt & peppers. Tip: Choose items that you love in a variety of price points to accommodate all of your guests.

White is the little black dress (or LBD) of dinnerware, and just like a LBD, you can dress it up or down to capture your mood with the accents you choose. Add snowy white linens and monochromatic accessories to create a chic canvas for your meal; layer in pieces with a touch of gold for an elegant, luxe look; or add color by mixing in artfully selected patterned pieces.

Personalize anything and everything! Add a custom monogram to your dinnerware or incorporate the one designed for your wedding invitation; reproduce your invite on an accent plate for posterity; engrave your initials on sterling flatware; or have them etched on your glassware. You can even personalize the back of a plate with a special inscription or your wedding date.

Add your own imprint to a family tradition. Grandmother’s china takes on a playful new persona when you mix and match it with patterns, stripes, monograms or solid borders in similar color ways. Tip: Take a piece of your china with you when you register to use as a reference for color cues and to see how it blends with the new pattern you choose.

A well-dressed bar is high on a groom’s wish lists. Set aside a dedicated area for it and stock it with the essentials––a cool ice bucket, a cocktail shaker, pitcher, bartender tools, an assortment of glassware and a decanter or two. Tip: Surprise your intended with monogrammed set of Double Old Fashion glasses.

There’s a lot more to hosting a wine and cheese party than the wine and cheese. Serve the delicacies you pick up at your favorite gourmet shop in style and your guests will never guess they’re store-made. Select small dipping bowls for olives, nuts, chutneys or dried fruits; assorted cheese trays and servers; crystal decanters to elevate everyday bottles of wine; and wine glasses––stemless or stemmed––to suit your lifestyle.

Have your wedding cake and your china too at your sweetheart table. What better way to celebrate the start of your marriage than enjoying your first meal, or dessert, as a couple on your new china, or making your first toasts with the crystal flutes you selected together?

Whether you’re a couple of 20-somethings and outfitting your first home, or a bit older and have your dining and entertaining basics, your wedding registry provides a special opportunity to outfit your home with things you love. By registering for your dream items––in the colors, patterns, and styles that define your distinct couple style––you take the guesswork out of gifting, making it easier for your guests to buy for you.