Mendoza School of Business

Gift Registries Dampen Wedding Experience for Guests

Published: March 4, 2013 / Author: Elizabeth Contributor

Is a wedding about the love between two people? Or is it really all about the loot? A new study of retail’s role in nuptials shows that the introduction of gift registries has made weddings more bountiful for couples, but less meaningful for the guests.

Tonya Williams Bradford, assistant professor of marketing at the University of Notre Dame and author of the study, said that gift registries might seem more convenient for all parties involved. But they tend to de-emphasize the traditional role that family members once played in helping a new couple arrange its household.

“Decades ago, the main role of the mother of the bride was creating the new home for the union of two families,” Bradford said. “By turning to bridal registries, we’ve outsourced to the marketplace the sacred traditions of planning and outfitting a new family space.”

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Topics: Mendoza