Whether you spell it "favor" or "favour" I'm sure you'll find my second blog of interest!
QUESTION: What do you give the wedding guest who has been subjected to hours of great food, fine wine, fabulous company, and better entertainment than a night out at Shepherd’s Bush Empire?
ANSWER: A small token of your appreciation! The days when guests used to go home with a slice of cake and a doggy bag, are now a thing of the past, as more and more couples are now following the trend of giving wedding favours to their guests.
Wedding favours serve as a memento of the happiest (who said most stressful?!) day of your lives, as well as showing appreciation of your guests presence, and letting them know how pleased you are that they were able to help celebrate your nuptials. They normally co ordinate with your wedding theme, and should ideally be stamped with your own personal style.
The only problem concerning favours is that many couples don’t know what to give. I had asked one customer, who was looking for wedding favours, what she would like to give, to which she replied, exasperated, “I don’t know – just favours!” I’m sure that most people are more clued up than my learned customer, but there are still many people out there who are overwhelmed by the choice available. So what are your options?
The most popular of wedding favours has to be the bonbonniere – five sugared almonds representing (let’s see if I can remember this) health, wealth, fertility, long life and… (It’ll come back to me later), wrapped in several layers of tulle. However, you don’t have to limit yourself to sugared almonds if you don’t like them, or you’re worried about guests who are allergic to nuts. I remember handing out bonbonnieres I’d made for my brother’s confirmation and hearing a teenager ask his mother what he was supposed to do with the white stones!
♥ You could always substitute sugared almonds for other sweets. Chocolate dragees, chocolate covered raisins, nuts, or coffee beans, jelly beans, truffles, or mints, are just a few options available. My personal favourite are little nuggets of sugar coated nougat. Yum!
♥ You could always use sweets which have a special meaning for the two of you. One couple gave out love hearts, because the groom used to buy them for his beloved when they started going out. All together now – aaah!
♥ If you want to forego the tulle, you could always use little boxes (cardboard or clear plastic), organza bags, fillable novelty items (bells, hearts, top hats, champagne bottles or glasses etc.)
♥ Personalised wrapped chocolate bars, which could even double up as place cards!
For those of you who want to venture away from confectionary, this is where the fun really begins.
ROMANTIC FAVOURS :
♥ Anything heart shaped – soaps, cookies, lollies etc.
♥ Welsh love spoons.
♥ Rose quartz crystal pieces presented in a small box – the stone of love. (I love this idea because it’s so unique. This is one for all us hippy chicks!)
♥ Rose scented candles.
EVERLASTING FAVOURS :
♥ Flower bulbs – A symbol of your ever growing love, and a permanent reminder of your big day.
♥ Cookie cutters.
SEASONAL FAVOURS :
♥ Chocolate eggs are perfect for a wedding at Easter.
♥ Personalised baubles suspended from a Christmas tree are perfect reminders of your Yuletide wedding.
♥ Little heart shaped scented cushions are ideal for wedding on Valentine’s Day.
♥ Monster cookies for a spooky Halloween wedding, or little scrolls containing love spells if you wish to indulge your romantic side.
PRACTICAL GIFTS :
♥ Lottery tickets – just don’t be disappointed if someone hits the jackpot!
♥ Donations made to charity on the guests behalf.
♥ Charity pin badges. One couple bought breast cancer badges for the female guests, and prostate cancer badges for the men.
PLACE CARD / TABLE DÉCOR / FAVOURS :
Personalised favours which serve as place cards and enhance the table settings are an excellent choice for couples on a budget – or those who just want more ‘minimalist’ look on each table!
♥ Small potted plants.
♥ Lit votives in votive holders. (WARNING: Guests who have had one too many will need to be reminded to blow out the flame!)
♥ Hand painted wine glasses
♥ Small picture frames, which guests can later put in a wedding photo of the two of you.
♥ One couple had pinned tiny diamante brooches to napkins. A hit with the ladies I’m sure.
SOUVENIR FAVOURS :
♥ Stick of personalised rock – great if you’re having a beach theme, or got married in a coastal town.
♥ Local West Country delicacies which include clotted cream, honey, jams, preserves, and chutneys, which can all be presented in miniature jars, as well as the most delicious fudge to die for (Yes I know we’re back to sweets again)!
♥ Nottingham lace handkerchiefs for the ladies favours.
♥ Friends of mine who married in London gave their guests miniature red double decker buses – perfect, as everyone was ferried from the church to the reception by bus!
Should you wish, you can embellish any packaging that you choose with crystals, beads, feathers, artificial flowers etc. It isn’t necessary to give all your guests the same type of favour. Many couples opt for different favours for men, women and children, which makes sense as most men probably don’t appreciate frills, and scented candles may not be the most appropriate choice for a five year old.
And finally, plan how you will present them. Many favours end up left behind as guests fail to notice them, or assume that they’re part of the wedding décor. You could place them at each place setting, or arrange them at a separate table with a sign for guests to help themselves. Perhaps your bridesmaids could help distribute them to guests (but maybe not if you have a party of 500!)
Whatever you decide to give as favours, the most important thing to make sure (apart from there being enough to go around) is that your favours have special significance to both of you and your guests.
Oh, and the fifth almond – it represents happiness. Quite obvious really!
Until next time ....all the best
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