When planning a wedding there are a lot of components to consider. Of course, there are all of the big things that you have to decide before you can even touch on the little details, but let’s be honest the little details are the most fun to pick out. We all want our wedding day to be a reflection of us and our relationship with our fiancé, but when do you decide that some things aren’t necessary (either due to the time it will take or money it will cost) or if you can’t picture your day without it? I told you all that I would like to take you on little journey along with me for some of my planning decisions for my wedding in February and so today I am going to give a little snapshot of my favor decisions and try to help you decide whether or not you need them.
So, when my fiancé and I were figuring out our wedding budget, favors didn’t make the first cut, actually programs didn’t even make the first cut because he thought they were something that just got thrown away. I saw his point, to a certain extent, because there are a lot of things that go into a wedding that aren’t necessarily necessary, but programs?!?! – they are a must…how else would everyone in the pews know who everyone in the bridal party was? Long story short, we compromised. We are having programs, but we are definitely being frugal about our choice. A great place to look is on Etsy.com. There are Etsy shops that have downloadable templates for $10-$15 and you get to put all of your own touches to it and then all you have to do is print them. We are saving a little more by printing them ourselves, but even taking a copy to Office Depot or Office Max to get them printed won’t break the bank! Anyways, getting back on track…FAVORS. There are a few different options that I have seen while decorating different weddings that I think are really neat that I would like to share with you and then I will tell you what we decided to do for our own wedding.
One really neat idea that benefits many people and is a very charitable option is making a donation. If you have an organization that is close to your heart or your fiancé’s this might be just the right type of favor for you. Basically, however much you were thinking about spending on take-home favors per guest you instead make a donation to your favorite organization. Then you can either put a little typed out card at each place setting or have a framed informational card by the guest book explaining what you decided to do instead of giving wedding favors. For example, my grandpa passed away from complications with Alzheimer’s and the Alzheimer’s Association is very near and dear to me so if we were to do this we would give a donation of $500.00 ($2 per guest). Your guests will love seeing the thought and love behind a favor like this because instead of a simple gift you are helping people. This option isn’t for everyone and it doesn’t mean you are a bad person if you don’t want to make a donation on your wedding day, but it is an option that isn’t as well known and I wanted to share.
THE CANDY/TREAT BAR
“Love is sweet, take a treat.” Everyone loves candy and even if you aren’t having kids at your reception, adults will be just as happy to take a little goodies bag of treats home with them or back to their table to satisfy that sweet tooth. You don’t have to have just candy either, you can do a popcorn bar or any other little snack that you love and want to share with your guests.
With as many weddings I see, the most common favor I see are the personalized koozies or cups. Either with a little saying about the couple or a monogram with your wedding date, this is a great take home favor that guests will get to use over and over. Other favor options include matches, “Perfect Match” type sayings are usually included or a set of playing cards with sayings like, “What a Pair.”
I personally like the idea of favors, but they are an added expense to an already pricey affair so we decided to have a postcard at each place setting with an engagement photo and a personalized thank you to our guests. We designed them and ordered them from VistaPrint.com and ended up paying a total of about $30.00. In order to stay on budget and have the big items and vendors we really want, this is about as much as we could set aside for favors for the reception. I think most of your guests are just grateful to enjoy the you both as a couple and the reception festivities. So, if it isn’t in your budget to have favors or you can’t decide on one you really love, your reception will still be wonderful and your guests won’t even think twice about it.
It is sometimes easier to come up with favor ideas for bridal showers and more cost effective because there aren’t as many guests to give them to. I have attached a picture of the shower favors my mom, grandma and I have worked on. The shower will be vintage themed and have a tea party feel. I wanted there to be something for guests to take with them, but again I didn’t want a lot of money to go towards favors and with using coupons and buying things in bulk we kept the cost very minimal. The pink paper bags are from Michaels (20 came in a pack for just a couple of dollars per pack), the ‘thank you’ stickers as well as the stamps also came from Michaels and then we bought a big box of tea bags. I love how they turned out and I loved being able to be a little part of the planning of the shower… because sometimes it’s just a little hard for me to step away and let someone else plan something for me. After all, I’m the one that’s usually planning and organizing for everyone else.