Monday, March 21, 2011

Adventures in Registry Shopping

Who knew walking around your favorite store(s) with a scan gun, registering for gifts, creates a long-term opportunity for compulsive savings, when you're not even the one spending the money?

See, the nice sales lady advised us to register for the complete sets of pots/pans, dishware, utensils, and such.  Then she also suggested we register for each piece separately.  I thought, sure, I like a gazillion presents, but duplicates get old. First she shared this helps with guests' price points.  Some people can afford the complete $450 11 pots/pans set.  Most normal people Others aim to spend in different windows, say $50, thus enough for one pot.  (side note: quality pots are expensive, especially when you're used to purchasing them at IKEA).  The sales lady (possibly out to gain more revenue for her fine establishment) made sense.  And so we over-registered.

I wondered how this might play out.  I dreamed up events of stashing away giant boxes until we gained enough return credit to purchase the giant set of whatever.  I saw those boxes spending more time in my home than I do in a workweek.

But my shower changed everything.
And before I go on, I have a little guilt over this game.  I know my family and friends purchased their gifts with intention of us actually using them.  For grilled-cheesus' sake, we registered for those items.  We want them.  And what am I turning around and doing with them? Returning them.  Some appreciative person I am.
However, Mike's in on this too.  I'm totally throwing him under the bus with me.  After all, that's what marriage is all about, right?

No, really. By returning these individual items we are essentially receiving the exact same item, just in giant set form.  It's an even exchange, with bonus items and money saving incentives! It might not be the exact one my friend took the time to pick out, wrapped so lovingly, and presented to me, but you can hold it up to the one in the giant set box and you'd never know the difference.

So why am I outting my secrets?
Because what Mike and I did yesterday was nothing short of a shopping miracle.
And blog worthy.

Here are the details.
Take two separate pots, received independently of each other: one is about $30, the other $40, and you get around $85 with tax.  Take the two pillow case covers that belong to a bedding set now discontinued and now pointless to own (boo. because I wanted that complete bedding set) and get around $65 with tax.  Bam. $150 instant store credit.

The 11 piece pan set (droooolll) runs a hefty $450.  Luckily, the current sale marked it down to $400.  Of course, I had an additional 15% off coupon to bring us down to $340.
Now at $340, take away the $150 store credit from your previous return PLUS the $50 store gift card we also had and we're at $140.  Thankfully, we had an an additional $75 in credit card gift cards.
After sales tax and everything, Mike and I only paid $83 out of pocket for that $450 11 piece set!
(And honestly that wasn't even out of pocket since we recently received a nice check around that price as an engagement present!)

The cherry on top? When you purchase the 11 piece set, you automatically get two bonus items free: a dutch-oven pot set (yes, another pot valued at $250) and a 7 piece mixed utensil cook set (valued at $50).

11 pots and pans, an additional pot with spoon and towel, 
and 7 cooking utensils valued at $750 for $83.

And friends? I love the pots and pans you originally bought me even more now that I they allowed me to do own all of this!! Amazing!

Anyone score any major shopping purchases this weekend?

{All images from Macy'}


  1. Awesome score!! I loved going shopping after our wedding. We returned so much, and had so many gift cards. It was the "Shopping Spree" that I've always wanted. Haha.

  2. WOW!!! Way to work the system!!! Love it! :)

  3. i must say i had never registry shopped like that before. but i give you major kudos for getting such a deal on returning, swapping, & saving.

  4. Ok so Krysten stole what I was going to say. I'm seriously going back over our list now! LOL

  5. Wow! that's so sneaky....yet GENIUS!

  6. Oh, I totally did it too. I returned a crapton of stuff to Target and then rebought it as it went on sale/when I had coupons for 10-15% off. The best deals were returning summer items that we bought for the patio and then bought again when things went on clearance at the end of the season. I got so much more for the same amount of money! Brad thought I was crazy, but I knew it was genius! Plus, some stuff that you register for just doesn't work right for your house when you actually get it home and put it where you thought it would be perfect. Sorry for such a late comment. I'm just catching up on your posts.


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