our wedding : the favors

It's hard for me to believe that just three short months ago, I married my best friend and one true love. Since August, I've felt very much like I was Clark Griswold on a greased up metal sled, completely incapable of controlling the pace of anything. But I survived...protip: we all survive. Sharing my wedding will come in bits and pieces, culminating with a post full of my favorite moments and faces. A vast majority of my wedding was DIY, and while I didn't painstakingly create step-by-step images, a lot of what I made it very accessible and easy for the average person. I don't believe in secrets when it comes to these things, so I will link to my sources and, as much as possible, give you an approximate cost. So welcome to what will be the first of many posts about things I did to make our wedding special, homemade, and from the heart.

I'm a pretty decisive person, but when it came to making decisions for our wedding, I sucked. Royally. I wiffled and waffled and second-guessed everything. I gave myself permission to feel that way, even though it drove everyone around me absolutely nuts, because I didn't wiffle, waffle, or second-guess the PERSON whom I was marrying. Em was a sure thing for me, someone I haven't questioned for a second since we met six and a half years ago. We went through every wedding favor idea under the sun, never stopping to consider just not having favors at all. I'm a favor person; you come into my house, you leave with some sort of token of my appreciation. I respect the opinions of those who think that favors are something you can nix, but it wasn't for me. We considered the following ideas:
  • personalized hockey stick rulers - because Em wanted something that felt Very Em and we both love to watch hockey together
  • pencil packs from Knot & Bow - because we both love to write, and the concept reminded us of Em's grandfather and his rules about go-withs
  • train whistles - because I love trains and they remind me of my grandfather; they'd also be fun for people to toot after the ceremony
  • autumn-scented handmade soaps
  • homemade candles
  • embroidered hankies
  • FUSAs - which everyone under the age of 40ish loved as an idea, but there were too many wrinkled eyebrows from the "adults"

What I refused to do was buy a finished product that wasn't hilarious and/or creative, and ultimately I wanted to make something. We settled on something seasonal and in line with the "crafty autumn" theme of our wedding - mason jar mugs and mulling spices. Cliche? Maybe. Boring? Whatever. What I accepted in my heart is that while in the eyes of the WIC, mason jar mugs are sooooo overdone, the people attending my wedding weren't going to judge me for choosing them, mostly because they don't attend the 25+ weddings I read about on wedding blogs each day** and because in the context of Em and me, they make sense. I labored over the research for mugs and mulling spices, trying to decide what was most affordable and of the best quality. We needed to make 60 favors, and here's what we wound up buying:
Once all of the supplies were collected, I set out to create a foldover tag for the top of each plastic bag, which contained a mulling spice filled muslin bag. The plastic bag was to help keep things tidy and fresh. If you're interested in a copy of the file I used to create my tags, please feel free to e-mail me.

Each muslin bag was filled with approximately 1/3 cup of mulling spices. I tied the bags with a bow (so people could do other things with the contents or reuse the bag, if they wanted), and tucked them into the plastic zip top bags. After printing out the foldover tags, I cut them out carefully, folded them in half and stapled them to the top of each plastic bag, disguising the zip top. The bags were then folded gently and put inside a mason jar mug. Each mason jar mug was finished off with a pinking-sheered strip of fabric (that coordinates with our decor, as you'll see in later posts), and a note about the safety of the glass itself. I learned soon after the boxes arrived that the glass was not designed to be exposed to sudden temperature changes, and I went back and forth about returning them, eventually opting to include a note in each mug about how to safely handle them. Not an ideal situation, but it worked out well in the end.

The favors were stacked up on an old red table, that I found many years ago at TJ Maxx, which was situated by the front door. I hand-lettered the sign for the favors to make sure people knew to grab one on their way out, and made sure to encourage everyone to take one as they left (which speaks to the current opinion on favors - why have them if no one remembers to take one?). The extra mugs went to family and the catering team. After months of indecision, the best idea really did bubble to the surface, and our wedding favors turned out to be a huge hit.

[All photos by our amazing photographer, Pang of Pangtography]

** I hope to write a separate post going into [more] detail about shaking off this completely suffocating insinuation made by the WIC that we must all have the most original wedding ever. Weddings are all variations on a theme, and there are few ideas that are completely original...so you can either drive yourself to drink trying to be The Most Creative Person Ever, or you can take what's out there and make it yours.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for posting this DIY! I'm going to make similar favors for the same amount of people. Did you find that you had plenty of mulling spice? I can get an extra pound (5 total) for $2 more, but I don't want a ton leftover.


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All content © Meaghan O'Malley, 2009-2012. Header image by Rebekka Seale.