One of my wonderful current customers and I had a long talk yesterday about registry information on invitations and what is truly proper compared to what is currently accepted, as they are very different things. I always appreciate it when a customer quotes traditional etiquette as it is so rarely used or appreciated.
Traditional etiquette dictates that registry information should not be printed directly on a party invitation, wedding invitation, shower invitation, birth announcement, etc. The purpose of having a shower or event is not to receive gifts. It is truly to celebrate an important event with friends, loved ones and family. Traditional etiquette says that it is presumptuous to expect a gift from everyone attending and listing this information can make guests feel obligated to do so.
So how on earth are you supposed to inform the guests that do want to bring a gift about a registry/gift request? The most traditional etiquette suggests by word of mouth only by the mother of the bride, bridesmaids or hosts of the shower/event. A little more modern etiquette suggests including a separate insert with your invitations that lists the registries. This way you can include the registry in the invitations to which you want to supply with the information, (maybe leave out Grandma or co-workers who you would just like to attend the event, but not feel obligated to bring a gift). Below is a suggestion for registry inserts to include with your invitations. Choose an item that has a coordinating color with your invitations or wedding/baby theme.
Totally a modern chick? Go ahead and print your registry information on your invitation, printed small, and as the last piece of information on your invite. It should look like the least important piece of information on the invite. We would suggest listing the stores you are registered at but not to suggest/request specific gifts, (money, gift cards, etc.), as that can be considered extremely tacky.
Need more advice? Feel free to ask, as always!