What are Wedding Favours and why do we have them at weddings?
Wedding favours are small gifts given to your guests to show your appreciation of them joining you to celebrate your Wedding Day. They are usually designed to complement the table decorations at your reception and can even double up as place cards.
The tradition of giving Wedding favours goes back many years. The ‘Bomboniere’ was thought to be the first Wedding favour and was given out by the European Aristocracy and Upper Classes. It consisted of a small porcelain or crystal trinket box often decorated with precious stones. The boxes usually contained sugar or confectionery which was a symbol of wealth and royalty. At this time sugar was expensive and only the wealthy could afford it but as it became more widely available to those less wealthy, the tradition of giving ‘Bombonieres’ became more widespread.
Over the years, ‘Bombonieres’ were replaced with almonds. These were given to guests to signify good wishes for the couple’s new life together. 5 almonds were given to signify Health, Wealth, Happiness, Fertility and Long Life. Sugar coated almonds were introduced in the 13th century and are still popular today.
Unique Wedding Favours
In recent years couples have opted for more unique favours such as shaped chocolate lollipops, small jars of jam or chutney, small bottles of alcohol, seed sticks, lottery tickets, key rings, candles, flip flops, photo frames, cupcakes, cake pops and so much more!
Depending on the time of year that you are getting married you could theme your favours to match the season. For example: Candy apples in the Autumn or a personalised Bauble for a Christmas wedding
Donate to Charity
A very popular option these days is for the happy couple to donate to a charity that is close to their hearts in lieu of wedding favours. Charity pins may be provided or it can be communicated to your guests by writing it on your menu.
Another option would be to have a candy cart at your reception instead of individual sweets for your guests and this way they can make their own selection. After all who doesn’t love the childhood memories of having a 10p mix-up? (Showing my age!!)
Speaking of childhood memories if you are having kiddies at your wedding then you can personalise their favours, for example, colouring books, card games etc and these may come in handy during your speeches.
So do you have to give wedding favours? Well, that is entirely up to you, just because it was “Tradition” doesn’t mean you have to feel obliged to do it. Your guests may not thank you for your little trinket and remember you have already given them a great day out with a beautiful meal!
Paul is married to Patricia (who helped him write these Wedding Hints & Tips posts!!) and the proud Dad to 2 fantastic sons.
He has been a full-time professional photographer since 1990 and been privileged to have been asked to photograph well over 1300 weddings since then.
He worked in his own High Street Photography Studios up until December 2010 when he decided to downsize and work from home. He now splits his time between running Photography Courses and Workshops and Wedding Photography, limiting himself to 30 weddings a year to maintain the quality and high level of customer service to each of his couples.
Based in Ballyclare, Northern Ireland