Wedding favours – should you gift your guests?
Forget the sugared almonds that adorned each place setting at weddings hosted in the 1990’s – favours (or bonbonniere), have well and truly evolved with the times.
From personalised name plaques, to tiny bottles of booze, pretty pots of greenery, and many creative offerings in between – much can be done with this age-old tradition, but is it a must-have, or just another wedding item set to make you scream and your purse string lighter?
We have taken a look at how these well-meaning messages of love to your guests can be done well, and offer some thoughts as to when it might be right for you to give the gesture the flick.
Typically speaking, favours are a couple’s way of thanking a guest for their presence (and, presents) on their big day.
Yes, you may have already forked out a significant sum of money for them to be in attendance, though the idea behind this symbolism reaches well beyond the monetary matters.
The love, support and excitement you are showered with surrounding your marriage is something special. Favours acknowledge this, and send guests on their way with a tactile memory of your big day.
We all wish we could pull off our perfect party without consideration for budget. Sadly, this is not often the case. When it comes to splashing the cash, its often the fringe-items on a wedding budget that inevitably take a hit. Favours can be one of these. Consider your priorities, and plan your spending – does the idea of forking out an additional $5 (if not more) per person make you feel ill? What’s $5 you say? Multiply that by your 200 guests and you can bid farewell to another thousand of your hard earned…
We aren’t saying they aren’t worth it, but we are saying, consider your spending and allocate toward areas that really resonate with you as a couple.
THE SENTIMENTAL STUFF
What we do love about the tradition of offering favours, is the chance to make your mark on your guests and really pull at the heartstrings. Gifting your guests a keepsake of your day so they remember your special celebration for years to come is a beautiful touch.
Whether this is a sweet snap of you and said guest, a hand-written memory shared, it’s a sweet touch that can convey to your guests just how much you care and are grateful for their presence.
TRASH OR TREASURE
This may sound a little brutal, but there’s a high possibility that your wedding favour may just find its way to a bottom drawer and after some time, in the bin. Mongrammed items, while thoughtful, don’t tend to be displayed around someone’s home. So why stress over gifts that your guests won’t use, and instead put that money towards your honeymoon!
TWICE AS NICE
Favours can be très useful, trust us! Have you considered your take-home treasures playing a part in your overall table styling? These days, personalised name settings – by the way of acrylic plaques, scripted coasters or even candles, are growing in popularity. Adding pots of greenery (think herbs or succulents for your guests to take home), or even jars filled with home-made jam or preservers could just make your table styling go pop and add an extra layer of personalisation while you’re at it.
The way to your guests hearts could just be through their stomach! As the night nears its end, you will be hoping your guests have danced all night long. So refuel their energy and send them on home with a little take-home treat. Not only will it help line the stomach, but they will be grateful for the sustenance and thought. Think donuts in stamped bags, a boxed up midnight snack (toasted sanga or a burger could just hit the spot), personalised fortune cookies, or a sweet treat to take home such as macarons.
Caution: there’s a chance your wedding favours could be completely forgotten and may not end up in your guests’ hands.
If you place your favours on a table for guests to help themselves to at some point in the night, they may be so busy enjoying themselves they may not even see them there. For a little more assurance it’s best to place them at a place setting, however, be mindful that you will probably encourage your guests to move around through the night (after all, you want them on the d-floor) so there’s a high chance they could simply be forgotten! Save your spendings if you’re worried that you’ll be lumped with 50 bags of cookies you will never make your way through!
If all this talk of gifts gets your goat because the money could be better spent, then in lieu of traditional favours why not make a donation to a charity of your choice. Print out cards letting your guests know what you have done is a nice reminder that weddings are about so much more than gifts.
Sure, the idea of potting 150 succulents or making home-made jam seems like a sweet idea, but the time taken to complete these task could just send you mad. Wedding planning is time consuming and stressful and favours is yet another items to add to your already overflowing to-do list. Keep it simple and save yourself countless hours as well as unnecessary stress.
With all the goings-on of wedding planning, favours are one of those items that can easily be forgotten… keep across your planning and avoid and last-minute surprises by getting your hands on our wedding planning book – Wedding Plans.