Do I Need a Wedding Shower Registry and a Wedding Registry?

Contemplating if you need to have both a bridal shower registry and a wedding registry? Continue reading to find out.

By Shameika Rhymes

Do I Need a Wedding Shower Registry and a Wedding Registry?
Photo by Zola

The First Look ✨

Shopping for items for your wedding is fun, but putting together your wedding registry to outfit the space where you and your honey will spend the most time is on another level. But the question is: Do you also need a wedding shower registry?

The wedding shower registry is different from your wedding registry, but you can still have both if you prefer. Zola is here to help you navigate which one will serve you best. Here’s what to consider when moving forward.

Table of contents:

What Is a Wedding Shower Registry?

One of the biggest differences between a shower and a wedding registry is the type of gifts that are on it. Couples typically will ask for smaller and more personalized gifts on their wedding registry, such as lingerie or even home decor items, and leave the bigger items for their new home together for the wedding registry.

The wedding shower registry is the best time to receive small gifts from the wedding party and close friends and family.

Organizing Your Wedding Shower Registry

Every individual and couple has their own style of organizing every part of their wedding day, but there are some key things to consider when setting up a wedding shower registry.

Make a List

You and your partner can sit down and create a wish list of what you both want for your wedding. Then you can divide the registry item list up into two parts and decide which items you would like for the wedding wedding shower, and which ones you’d like to receive as a wedding gift. Be mindful not to duplicate items on the list, because after all, what will you do with 2 of everything?

Keep the Gifts Personal and Affordable

When it comes to the wedding party or shower gift, guests tend to lean towards purchasing more personalized items, such as picture frames, books, wine, and even lingerie. Not everyone can afford to purchase big ticket items, so try to ask for items at various price points.

Create an Online Registry

Decide where you’re going to host your registry. If you do it online and through a wedding website like Zola, there’s a variety of items that’s easy for people to access and purchase from.

What Is a Wedding Registry?

Wedding registries are the wish list for your wedding gifts. A wedding registry is a quick and accessible way for guests to see everything you desire to kick start your life as a married couple.

A wedding registry is usually where you’ll put big ticket items that you want. The wedding registry list also gives insight to guests if the gift they intended to purchase has already been bought, and what else is still up for grabs. The registry checklist allows your guests to find the perfect gift that fits their personal budget.

Organizing Your Wedding Registry

Just like a wedding registry, a wedding registry works best when you’re committed to the process. That means you are constantly picking out registry items that have a special place in your heart. Daily registry checks to add things and create your wish list or remove gifts that have already been purchased are a highlight of engaged life. Here are a few things to consider when creating your wedding registry.


It’s become more common for couples to begin a registry even before they are officially engaged. However, it’s also acceptable to create it immediately after you are engaged. A wedding registry checklist is the ultimate guide to help your loved ones figure out what to get you. It also makes it easier for guests who want to purchase a gift for any pre-wedding festivities as a way to say congratulations.

Stay True to Who You Are as a Couple

Whether you’re a minimalist couple or you both steer clear of the kitchen but love the great outdoors, it makes sense to register for camping tents instead of dinnerware. But the key is to remain flexible, because your tastes may change, and you just may decide you’ll need dinnerware to host the in-laws during the holidays. It’s important to take some time to think about your lifestyle presently, but also what the future may hold, and choose gifts that reflect both.

Aim High and Personalize Your Registry

This is the perfect time to ask for everything you have always wanted—there is no limit to what you can put on your registry. If you already have everything you need for your home or if you are combining households, then it’s okay to think out of the box for your registry. Ask for cash to help you save towards that new backsplash in the kitchen or ask for gift cards to home improvement stores, your favorite restaurants, or even for couple experiences like cooking classes or dance lessons.

What Items Should You Include on Your Registries?

When it comes time to register for bridal shower and wedding gifts, it can be difficult to know where to start. Traditional gifts for the bridal shower can ultimately be items for the bride to use. This will differ from the wedding registry, where gifts are intended for the couple to share in their new married life.

Of course, that’s not to say your significant other can’t enjoy the family recipe book you received at the bridal shower. As you decide what to register for your bridal shower, keep your wedding registry at the forefront of your mind. You’ll receive the smaller gifts at the shower, so you don’t want to duplicate your wedding registry.

Create the Wedding Registry First, Then Keep Updating It

The bridal shower will take place before the wedding, so you should include anything on the bridal shower registry that you may want and need immediately. Once those gifts have been purchased, you can replenish the list as your wedding gift registry and direct guests there.

What Goes on the Registry?

Deciding what to put on which registry can be daunting, so here are a few tips to help you narrow it down.

Take Stock

See what items you already have and what you are missing. You and your partner may already have some household items, so assess what you already have. And remember: It’s okay to ask for multiples in sets such as wine glasses if you are a couple that likes to entertain.

Upgrade What You Have

If you have double of certain items, asking for another will just add to the list of things you don’t need. If you have some older items, then consider asking for an upgrade or nicer version of something you have had your eye on. Once you take stock of what you and your partner already have, then you can adjust the list to include any items for upgrades. Now is a great time to get rid of any old household items you’ve had for a long time and ask for the newer version.

Be Realistic

You may have your eye on that camera that costs $300, but not everyone can afford to splurge for your wedding gift. Make sure you have a variety of items on the list in various price ranges.

Be Specific

A registry works best if you are specific about what you really want. The more specific you are, the better chances you have of getting what you asked for. Don’t feel like you have to include items that you don’t really want because of their price point. Adding filler items that you don’t want will result in you having to return and exchange items ater. There’s no need to compromise what you want, so be sure to ask for exactly what you want.

Do You Really Need a Wedding Shower Registry and a Wedding Registry?

The short answer is no, you don’t need two separate registries for your shower versus your wedding. That said, you might want different things for your wedding than you want for your shower, and there’s a good chance you might need to do a little refreshing after your wedding shower since many gifts likely got purchased, leaving fewer options for wedding guests.

The good news is you don’t actually have to make two separate registries—which is good, because planning alot of these events will keep you busy. With Zola, you have the opportunity to use your registry for both your shower and your wedding. To make things easier for your guests, start by registering for gifts you’d like at your shower, such as smaller appliances or bridal accessories. Then after your shower, simply log back into your Zola account and add some more gifts to fill in the gaps. Ahead of your wedding, you’ll want to make sure you have a wide variety of gift options ranging in price to fit everyone's budget and gift-giving preferences.

Where to Create the Registry

There are so many options to register for bridal shower and wedding gifts, whether it’s inside a store or online. Consider the following when deciding on where to create your registries.

Use Zola’s Online Registry

Zola’s online registry offers couples an easy, convenient way to get their lists up and a ton of resources to help you every step of the way with the wedding planning process. From features such as group gifting, price matching, virtual exchanges, and more, Zola offers a convenient place to put your bridal shower and wedding registries in one place.

Whether you opt to go the more traditional route and do an in-store registry or publish it online on your wedding website, keep in mind what you as a couple want and what your style is, because that will help you decide which registry option works best for you. It’s also helpful to make sure you have an option for the wedding guests to shop online.

Another bonus is your Zola registry will even help you remember to send thank you cards. Zola helps with every part of the registry process to make it as seamless and fun as possible.

Universal Registry

Consider a universal wedding gift registry. It brings together all of your registry gifts on one page for easy one-stop shopping. It also helps you keep track of everything, including what gifts have been purchased, what’s still available, and who you need to send a thank you card to. At Zola, you can register for gifts, experiences, cash funds, and add gifts and registries from other stores.

Get Set Up for Success and Gifts

Ultimately, it’s your decision on whether you want both a wedding shower registry and a wedding registry. Having both will help ensure that you receive all of the gifts you need as newlyweds.

Creating your registry is the fun part of the wedding planning process, and Zola can help ensure you are set up for success and help ease the stress.

Zola offers a variety of tools to help make it easier for you and your guests. The best part is our registry resources are free. Everything can be set up in a matter of minutes, and we’re here to help you every step of the way.

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