As gung ho as I am about shopping from your friend's wedding registries, there's another side of the coin to consider, and I'm talking to you, brides and grooms. Look around your apartment or house. Open your cabinet doors. Peek your head into your dusty linen closet. Take a gander at your bank account. If you have all the heavyweight cotton washcloths and sterling silver gravy boats you need, or you're struggling to make your mortgage payments, maybe you should consider a nontraditional wedding registry. Unorthodox as it may be, the practice has evolved since Marshall Field's dreamt it up back in 1924, and it's perfectly acceptable to compile a more out-of-the-box wish list. The thing to remember, my friends, is that a wedding registry isn't about getting things you individually want. It's meant to provide engaged couples with the things they need to make a house a home and "live" as married couples do. So don't even think about using your Bloomingdale's credit for a new pair of Ferragamos. Asking for cash is also an absolute no-no; if you truly need help with your finances, you'll have to create a "gift" guests can help you work towards like a house down payment or furniture. Want to see eight nontraditional wedding registries?
- HoneyLuna — Can't afford a honeymoon like other newlyweds? Consider registering for yours.
- MyRegistry.com — From an iPad to eBay finds, you can add items from any store in the world to this universal gift registry.
- I Do Foundation — Forgo the Crock-Pot and use your wedding as an opportunity to raise money for charity.
- Our Wishing Well — If you need a scooter to get you both to work, guests can contribute to your chosen "cause" instead of sending presents.
- Art — For you creative types, most galleries will accept contributions or at least work something out.
- Landscaping — The same goes for nurseries. Maybe what your home really needs is some boxwoods and a lemon tree.
- Gifts of Stock — Guests can make an investment in your future by purchasing stock on your behalf.
- Hatch My House — In a fun and interactive way, guests can help you save for your house or down payment.