Traditional or contemporary? Monogrammed or patterned? White or eggshell? Today’s bride has more options than ever before when it comes to registering for wedding gifts, from place settings and flatware to electronics, services and even honeymoon funds. With so many options, what do you really need? Long after you say “I do,” there are few things beyond your wedding photos and blissful memories that will be cherished for years to come like your wedding gifts, so it’s important to pick the right things for your wish list. As if planning the wedding wasn’t overwhelming enough, we know navigating napkins and trying to coordinate cookware can seem equally daunting.

Thanks to the help of bridal registry experts Kathy Berry and Jane Dungan, owners of The Registry in Franklin, TN, we have you covered with a handy checklist of must-haves for the modern bride. Their store, which has been a part of Historic Downtown Franklin since 2003, serves as a one-stop shop for home and entertaining needs for brides-to-be and hostesses alike. Read on for a list of registry essentials.

Kathy and Jane own The Registry in Historic Downtown Franklin.

Kathy and Jane own The Registry in Historic Downtown Franklin.

7 Wedding Registry Essentials for the Modern Bride

Registry Essential: China

Today’s china doesn’t necessarily need to be formal. “Start with something more casual, and select fine china as needed,” Kathy says. “Don’t be afraid to mix and match between casual and fine collections.” Think of the pieces you will need for every day, including dinner plates, salad and dessert plates and cereal bowls, and add in mugs and saucers if needed. The duo recommends registering for 12 dinner plates for a complete set, and twice as many salad and dessert plates since they will serve a dual purpose. Remember, it’s easier to make returns than it is to finish purchasing your set after the wedding, so don’t skimp on registering on place settings.

If you have family china you plan to use, be sure to bring in a piece when registering so they can match your existing pieces with a new collection.

“Don’t be afraid to mix and match between casual and fine collections," says Kathy, co-owner of The Registry.

“Don’t be afraid to mix and match between casual and fine collections,” says Kathy Berry, co-owner of The Registry. We love the monogrammed china!

The registry has a wide selection of beautiful China patterns from which to choose.

The Registry has a wide selection of beautiful China patterns from which to choose.

Registry Essential: Flatware

Sterling is no longer the standard. Some brides are lucky enough to inherit their grandmother’s silver, but if you’re in need of utensils, don’t think you can’t stick with the more affordable stainless, which pairs well with both fine and casual china. SB TIP: Register for the same number of flatware place settings as you do dinner plates.

Registry Essential: Serving Pieces

Don’t overlook the need for several of these on your registry. “Think of the type of entertaining you like to do,” Jane says. “Will you plan outdoor parties or bring a dish to a friend’s house?” Be sure to include pieces like acrylic that will travel well and won’t break easily, in addition to the formal dishes you may pull from the cupboard for special occasions. Think trays, casserole dishes, chip-and-dip plates and platters.

These casual serving pieces are perfect for warm weather get-togethers.

These casual serving pieces are perfect for warm weather get-togethers.

Registry Essential: Glassware

No cupboard space for four different types of glasses? Today it’s perfectly acceptable to choose one type of wine glass to use for red and white and a tumbler or short-stemmed glass for water and tea. Glasses do not have to match, but rather coordinate. SB TIP: Register for the same number of glasses as you do dinner plates.

Registry Essential: Barware

Barware is not only great to have in your home collection, but it’s a fun way for the groom to be involved say Kathy and Jane. After all, his family and friends will want to choose gifts for him, and barware is a great opportunity. Think of the type of drinks you like and like to serve, and choose glasses accordingly. These may include old fashioned glasses, highballs, wine glasses and decanters. Register for four of each type of bar glass you prefer, and prepare for lots of toasting in your future.

Get the groom involved in the registry selections by letting him select the barware!

Get the groom involved in the registry selections by letting him select the barware!

Registry Essential: Candlesticks

Traditional décor that can be used year after year and for many different occasions, candlesticks are a registry must. Depending on your style, you may opt for crystal or go for silver, but these are pieces that will last a lifetime.

Registry Essential: Napkins and Tablecloths

Colors change with the season, so it’s a good idea to add these to your list closer to your wedding date. While you’ll need basics like whites and neutrals, add a few fun colors to match your home and style. Kathy and Jane recommend always having 12 white linen napkins in your collection and incorporating additional colors for holidays and parties.

Whites and neutrals are great for tablecloths and napkins, but have a colorful alternative as well. The Registry has a generous selection available.

Whites and neutrals are great for tablecloths and napkins, but have a colorful alternative as well. The Registry has a generous selection available.

Congratulations! Now that you have your list of must-haves, it’s time to choose your favorites and register away.

Stop by The Registry at 347 Main St., Franklin, TN 37064, or call (615) 595-2323 to make an appointment. Each bride will receive a helpful packet with more registry tips and tricks. You can also browse and shop The Registry online.

This article is sponsored by The Registry