Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Favors vs. No Favors?

Favors or no favors, that is the question? I must admit the idea of favors has boggled me since I first encountered a birds nest of sugar coated Jordan almonds at a cousins wedding. Why? I wondered... I'd read the symbolic meaning of the almonds however, as I looked around the room no one cared; I saw children playing table football with almonds, adults with puzzled looks picking birds nest apart at their tables and when the reception concluded I found a ballroom littered with almonds left at the tables and on the floors and again I wondered what's the point. Today I think of a wedding and I believe it is a opportunity for friends and family to help a couple celebrate their choice to walk through life together. The couple or couples parent's plan a great party with at the very least food, drinks, and some sort of entertainment. All this is planned for the guest enjoyment so why is it necessary to give guests a gift for attending? Isn't a invitation to a wedding a gift in itself? The "favor" which in my opinion is nothing more than a unappreciated afterthought with the couples name on it is a wedding racket and a huge drain on a wedding budget! Who's really going to use the playing cards with your picture, or weird apple butter you made and stuck your monogram on. I'm not one of those people who hangs around weddings until the end to snatch a centerpiece all I need to take away are a a few photographs and some great memories. Now I am planning my own wedding and being constantly reminded by venue directors, caterers and my mom that I must decide on a favor because as they all say, "you can't have a wedding without favors..." Whatever! I've entertained the idea of making a donation to a charity in the name of my guest but I don't want to impose my beliefs on them what if they don't want to support the charity we select. I also thought about making cookies or fudge or something but really, who has the time? Second, after the wedding cake who needs more sweets! I don't know what I'll do but I'll keep you up to date on any new ideas I find. Here are a few unique ideas I found at The Knot:

A sterling silver luggage tag with a personalized thank you note. (Cute since all of our guest will be traveling.)

How about a recovery bag for when the party wraps up in the wee hours of the morning! (Vitamin Water, Excedrin, and a snack bar.) Or a breakfast bag with some instant coffee or tea & a muffin for guest to munch on as they head to the airport!

A tissue for your tears... This is a nice idea offering a hanky to your guests as a useful keepsake perhaps with our monogram...

A $1 dollar lottery ticket & a shiny new penny in a vellum envelope! Lucky in Love; give guest the opportunity to win back some of the cash spent on getting to our destination wedding !

An uplifting or inspirational read for the plane; hmmm... I'll keep you posted on our decision!



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awesome ideas!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 11:06:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

choosing favors was my favorite part of the wedding!! I loved finding something my guests would enjoy. And a salt/pepper shaker set/jordan almonds/ or crappy picture frame is not anyones idea of a good gift.

We finally settled on boxes of Godiva for each guest. We had white boxes wrapped in ribbon (the wedding colors) on each place setting. At the end of the night people happily took theirs home (some snacking on the chocolate in between dances!) I was very happy they all loved it. Not one box was left behind.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 11:59:00 AM  
Blogger Prettylittlemess said...

I went to a wedding in March and there were not favors. I felt as though they had not thought the entire wedding process through neglecting this element. Since the couple was in their early 20s, it showed their lack of maturity in my opinion.

But now that I read more about it being a cost saving measure and really who uses the mixed CDs or needs the candy box, I'm torn. More creative and useful suggestions in this area are definitely needed!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 1:10:00 PM  
Blogger Ms. 122 said...

i think we'll be going with the snacks as favors. something we love, or that is really northwestern. plus, who doesn't love MORE food. :)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 1:26:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I've come to the conclusion that favors should either be; useful or edible. I find those are the only two things that people would really keep.

In this day and age we are really spoilt for choices there are so many things that are available. However, favors are traditionally only meant for the women of the wedding, after all, let's face it what men really use favors nor even notice the favors from the wedding? A really nice idea, if your going women only would be compact mirrors.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 2:11:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 2:11:00 PM  
Blogger KRISTIN said...

I'm think I'm very mature in thinking..."No favors at my wedding!" It'll save me and the FI a few hundered dollars that we can add to the catering costs!! And instead of slaving away in front of the oven baking cookies the night before, I'll be spending precious moments with my OOT guests!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 2:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are doing donations instead of favors. We are chosing 3 charities. If you chose something non-controversial (ie Breast Cancer Research) imposing your beliefs on others isn't an issue. Our are charities for issues that have impacted the lives of our families and help us remember those who are no longer with us.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 2:44:00 PM  
Blogger Quinn said...

Thank you for posting about this! This is something I feel very strongly about, and I agree --- they received an invite. A wedding is NOT a child's birthday party and it is NOT a fundraiser. I completely disagree that the wedding looks incomplete without a favor. The meal, entertainment, and day are why they're there. Not for a frosted cookie with my future monogram.

The one thing we're doing is putting flip flops in a basket in the women's bathroom at our reception, to encourage our female guests to dance comfortably.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 2:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can honestly say that I've been to a wedding with no favors and I truly didn't notice...not till much later when I was thinking back over the day...and I was in full wedding planning mode. So in that regard, I don't think they are important, I don't think most people will notice, and if you are on a budget, skip it.

That being said....I love getting favors. When they are there I'm always like "oooh a favor!" But agree it should be something useful or edible. If you have a little extra cash then it's a nice touch.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 4:16:00 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

I never ever take the favors. Ever. They are a total waste to me. I much rather have better food, more drinks, cooler band, better venue, whatever...just don't give me something with your name on it, your monogram, a stale cookie, chocolates(they usually have nuts and I'm allergic) and please do not honor me with choosing a charity you support to donate to in my name that I might not support. Do me a FAVOR and save some money!

That being said...if I come from out of town, I want an OOT bag! :) What can I say, I'm hard to please.

We're not doing any sort of favor, but we're doing great OOT bags with tons of cool junk in them. ;)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 6:36:00 PM  
Blogger Dynamite Weddings said...

I gotta tell ya, as much as you normally don't take and use favors a wine stopper or wine opener has always made it home to be used at my house. I do love the OOT bag w/ goodies from around town, whatever the city's known for. I think an arrival/recovery basket is great! How many times late night have you dipped into the per charge room goodies b/c you're starving or thirsty! Love it!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 8:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Favors are purely an optional extra in my book. I've been to many a wedding where I had to figure out what the hell to do with some bizarre plastic doo-dad or a wine glass with the name and wedding date of someone I didn't know that well...particularly useless since I don't drink.

That said, I did give favors at my own wedding. Mostly, it must be admitted because there are so few excuses in life to buy that many Jordan almonds, which I (unlike most of the world) love. I figured anyone who liked them could take a bundle, and any left over were fair game for me to eat at my leisure.

I come down firmly against giving charitable donations as favors. If you believe in the charity and want to support it, by all means do, but don't tell me that it's a gift to me. It gives me nothing and even the most popular charity can offend someone. Charity is charity, favors are favors. They aren't the same thing.

If you want to give a favor, edible ones are usually the most popular (and the easiest to find alternate homes for if some folks leave theirs behind), but no favor is required. If you can't think of one you'd like to give or you have to choose between favors and an upgrade on appetizers, go for the appetizers.

Most people won't even notice there wasn't a favor until well after they don't get one.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 9:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Like stated above, I agree and I am sure most of us have received some small gift with the couples name and date on it...and maybe even some hearts or some expression of their love for one another. Because of that very reason, I was leaning against having favors, especially at the table settings.

Instead had various petitfours, coffee, and biscotti (with a label with our names and date). It was all on table at the end of the room. People definitely enjoyed it! The only favors I really like is when people give sweets or the favor is tied in with - or is - the (unique or creative!)place card/holder.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008 9:57:00 PM  

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