Tip of the Day #69: Expert Wedding Favor Advice from Beau-coup For as long as I can remember, I have fixated on the contents of goody bags at parties. A fully stocked goody bag or parting gift is truly icing on the cake at any event, especially at weddings. Our friends at Beau-coup share their top tips for choosing memorable wedding favors.
If a bride wants to give favors but has no clue what she wants to give, how do you typically guide her in selecting appropriate favors? We’d start with a series of questions to help the bride figure out what’s most important to her: -Is there a theme? The easiest favors are theme based, e.g. a bag of seashells for a beach-themed wedding. -Is there something special or significant about how she met her husband-to-be? If you they met while playing golf, then golf balls and tees would be a great way to share that memory with guests. -Does she prefer practical or pretty? Knowing whether she wants guests to display their favors or get some sort of everyday use out of them will help her narrow it down. -And lastly, does she prefer getting hands-on and crafty, or does she prefer to set it and forget it? This will help her decide whether she wants to create every aspect of her favors from scratch, or buy pre-made favors.
What is standard wedding favor etiquette? What if a bride and groom decide not to hand out favors to guests? It’s totally okay to skip the favors. It’s not a breach of etiquette and really should only be included if the bride and groom want to do it for their guests and have the budget to support it. Brides should remember that if they choose to give out favors, those favors do not need to be extravagant or expensive because it really is the thought that counts.
What are the biggest wedding favor trends you have seen for 2013? Right now, vintage and retro are huge. Thanks to shows like Mad Men and Downton Abbey, the roaring ‘20s are playing a big part in décor and outfit styling. We are seeing our Victorian-era products increase in popularity. People are also really getting into the bold colors and contemporary patterns of the 1960s. And lastly, people still love giving more environmentally friendly favors like plantable favors.
What trends are you hoping to retire? A donation to the bride and groom’s favorite charity in lieu of favors is a kind gesture, but can also be a deeply personal choice. If the happy couple decides to donate to charity, they should try to choose something that is important to them and has touched many lives. Political causes and obscure charities could potentially be divisive.
What are some unique ways to display favors? Some of the most creative ways to display favors are inspired by the location of the reception or ceremony and their natural surroundings. For example, if the wedding is outdoors in an orchard or on a farm, trees with low level branches can be perfect for hanging favors. Favors can also be arranged into centerpieces that guests can break down and take home.
What are some of the interesting or unusual requests you have for favors? We have had several guests request favors with the comedy/tragedy theater masks as a sort of logo. We hope that wasn’t a representation of their love lives!
Semi-homemade wedding details have become a staple in most weddings today. What favors are a good choice for brides who want to get a little creative but not be attached at the hip to a glue gun? The easiest way to dress up a favor and make it super personalized is by starting with a favor that means something to the bride and groom and using different packaging items to make it special. For example, a bride could fill a favor box with her favorite candies, accentuating the box with colorful ribbons and personalized tags. The hand-assembled look adds a little something extra that guests love.
On average, how much should a bride budget for favors for her guests? That depends on the overall budget. There’s no hard fast rule, but the average is $2-3 per guest. If the bride and groom think of it in terms of spending a few dollars per person, it becomes easier to calculate.
What are some ways for a bride to personalize her wedding favors? There are a variety of options available to suit any style. Couples can add personalization by affixing custom stickers, labels, or tags to their favors. These options typically include space for monograms, names and event date, or special quotes or sentiments from the bride and groom to their guests. Alternatively, couples can order personalized favors that come engraved or printed or embroidered.
What are some favors that are sure to "wow" guests? Favors that look like a lot of thought went into choosing them or putting them together are the ones most likely to “wow.” It’s the little details like a handwritten note to each guest, or a story about how the favors were chosen (chocolates from the bride and groom’s favorite candy shop, e.g.) that make an impression.
Edible vs. non-edible. Which is better? Why? We love a favor that will last. The Holy Grail is a trinket or a practical favor guests can use that also happens to fit the theme event perfectly. Having said that, sometimes the bride and groom just can’t seem to agree on anything, and that’s where edibles come in...who doesn’t enjoy a sweet or savory treat after a long day of celebration?
How soon in advance should a bride order her favors? In addition, what quantity should she order (is there a magic formula or do you just recommend ordering one favor per guest?) We recommend two months in advance, but sometimes you want to wait for RSVPs to come in, so it helps to decide on a favor, and take note of the lead time. In many cases, it takes less than two weeks to receive an order, but all products have their own leads time, so it’s good to plan ahead, even if you don’t actually place an order until close to the event. As far as quantity, a good rule of thumb is ordering one per guest, plus some extra just in case. If there are unexpected guests this ensures there will still be plenty to go around.
Do you offer green/sustainable and/or charitable favors? We do offer a variety of green and eco-friendly favors, from seed packets to recycled paper products to small plant favors. We also have a large selection of reusable glass favors that double as decorations and guest favors, which significantly helps reduce waste.
Check out a few of Beau-coup's best selling favors. To learn more about Beau-coup or to place an order, please visit www.beau-coup.com Happy shopping, brides!