Ok. I will start off by saying that I am British, and this whole baby registry thing is completely alien to me. I'm not looking to be critical of another culture's traditions but to try to work my way around it. In Britain you would certainly expect to buy (or be passed on) all the basics for the baby yourself, and tbh I think most people give clothes and perhaps a very small toy or book if they don't know the family well. You just might have a baby shower-though in my circles it would probably actually be a blessingway-but you wouldn't give your guests a list. I mean, like, whoah, never. So that's the gulf I am negotiating.
I have a close relative in the US who a few weeks ago emailed me a baby registry list. Its actually their fourth baby, but they have moved a lot and to different countries in their parenting lives and I think they just get rid of stuff / sell it on. The stuff on there is entirely practical. My problem is-there's nothing on there I want to buy. I know that's really selfish. But I don't do pacifiers, disposable diapers, baby monitors or bottles. We actually spend very little money on babies and what we spend doesn't go on this stuff. I don't begrudge anyone else them in the slightest but it doesn't excite me to buy them for someone else. They are absolutely not short on money btw and I'm also mystified as they clearly have friends there-why would they then need clothes? I don't think I actually bought any clothes for mine when they were tiny, we were handed down them all.
What I would prefer to do is to pick out a couple of books for the siblings and one for the baby, and make something (I am reasonably good at making things, and have sold stuff in the past-anything I sent would certainly be good etsy standard). TBH, I would rather choose something a bit more individual, even if not made by me. I'd also always rather support small scale/WAHM enterprise. Not sure how much sense this makes. I think especially since we are not going to be there at the baby shower or actually see them before the birth, making it personal feels important to me. Its also important to me to remember the mother in all this, with something (not sure what I can get through customs-I'd usually send some nice toiletries, chocoaltes, etc). And there is nothing on the registry for her.
My ethos is very strongly handmade, craftavist, and I totally get that that isn't them (it really isn't. This is not intended to be snide, but the only book-type things in their house, apart from some kids books, are catalogues for stores) and I don't want to impose my beliefs on them. The baby registry seems big for them. They are really, really different to us, and I respect that, but I need to think how to make it work.
Or maybe in the US the deal is, you buy whats on the registry. That's fine, I just need to know that. Because in the UK you expect to get 17 handknit boleros from Great Auntie Maude and see it as good practice for your so-excited-to-add-something-to-the-attic face
Edited by Fillyjonk - 1/20/14 at 2:03pm