Favours? These little gifts can often become a huge discussion point when planning a wedding! And can even cause arguments! So, in the following blog we have put some pros’s and con’s to help you decide.
Where did favours come from? Many years ago the tradition was to always have 5 sugar coated almonds in a bag. These almonds were symbolic, the bittersweet taste of fresh almonds symbolises life, whilst the sweet sugar coating represents hope that the newlyweds will enjoy more sweetness than bitterness in life. The five almonds represent wishes of happiness, health, wealth, children and longevity. Almonds are no longer very popular, some brides will give five chocolates, that kind of still represents the tradition. In our experience a lot of sugar almonds are never eaten!
So move on twenty years and there are not too many people out there that know why this famous tradition started. Nowadays favours have become gifts for your guests, to thank them for coming and sharing in the couples special day or something to nibble on or even a novel quirky item that may go with the theme of the day.
Are they a waste of money?
Well, being brutally honest, sometimes, yes! If you buy bubbles in pretty little bottles and put them in front of all your uncles who are burly farmers, are they going to use them? Like wise, as we mentioned the almonds earlier, buying a translucent cheap plastic car that has to to put together and then filled with sugared almonds is probably going to be left on the table and then end up in the bin! So, our first bit of advice…. Think about your guests and their likes!
On a budget?
If you are on a budget but would love to have favours then the easiest option is to make them! We have seen some fab ideas from homemade biscuits to welsh cakes, fudge, millionaire shortbread and cookies. If you have a friend or a family member that is handy in the kitchen then ask them to help you, buy some little bags or boxes that are not fiddly from your local craft shop or good old Amazon and BOOM you have some favours!
Making your own, but no time for last minute baking?
So if you want to make your own and have them all organised for the tables as you are maybe travelling to a different part of the country buy some small bags or boxes and fill them with sweets, these can be made up a couple of months in advance and put away in a box ready to go! Another option is homemade jams and chutneys, this can be done yourself and quite often ‘Gran’ loves to help! Buy some little jam pots, again, these are widely available, make the jam or chutney and pop inside. Seal them up and place a little round of fabric that matches your day on the top with a ribbon. Quite easy and not too expensive.
Other popular favours that you can prepare in advance are small bottles of flavoured gin, port and wines along with flower seeds that can be planted in gardens so that your guests can always remember the day! Personalised gifts such as pens, cow tags, glasses and homemade tea light ceramics all work brilliantly well, this option can be done in advance and put away ready for the day. Guests really appreciate a person or homemade touch. (Maybe don’t put a date on them in case there is a pandemic!!)
The best favours for children are little presents that will keep them busy during the speeches, such as a colouring book and pencils or a lego toy for them to build. Give them this just as the speeches are about to begin and they will think you are the best bride/groom in the world as they are having an extra gift and they will be busily occupied and hopefully quiet for the speeches.
Want to buy a gift for each of your guests?
So, if you want to buy your guests a little something, there are lots of choices out there, we have included some pictures at the end for you. One that always sticks in our minds were printed tea towels for all the ladies, they matched the colours of the day and were personalised with the date, names of the bride and groom and a little note. Another of our favourites, has to have been the lego favours. These were all personalised to the guests, we had a vet, a chef, a walker, a drummer, a doctor to name a few and of course a bride and groom. They looked fab but took quite a while to make and were a little on the costly side!
One of the best favours, in our opinion has to be a charity pin, with many different charities making them there is lots of choice out there. For example cancer reasearch make a male and a female version in many different designs, they supply small cards to place the pin on. Or if you have a charity that you support, make a donation and print cards to tell your guests, such as ” A favour for you and for others” and explain about the charity or why you have donated if you feel you would like.
The most popular favours!
Charity pins and lottery tickets are by far the most popular favours and these always all go, especially if the charity pin is meaningful to the couple and no one wants to miss out on the chance of being a millionaire! Favours that are always gone when we clear the tables are ones that can be eaten, such as biscuits and chocolates, the boys eat them while the girls may save them for later.
There will never be a correct answer for favours, we have given you some ideas which we hope will help and maybe even inspire you! The most important thing is to think about your guests, their tastes and likes, do not buy dainty, flower scented soaps for rugby players, for example! Or spend lots of money on pretty succulents in vintage cups which can be quite bulky for ladies to put in their hand bags. If you do have time and want to buy gifts, buy something for the ladies and something different for the men.
For more information, or some helpful hints and tips please download our “Stress Free Wedding Guide” from our website. Or if you want to have us cater for your wedding, so that you have advice on tap please contact us now on 01837 55841