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Favours, for those of you who are not in the know, is the word that describes the small and inexpensive gifts that are given to all guests at your wedding as a thank-you for their attendance - they can also serve as a souvenir of the day.


There are a vast range of options available these days and deciding what to go for can be a bit of a minefield, but the following information should help you on your way. We look an in-depth look at the most popular options as well as some of the lesser known stars of the favour world, so whatever your budget there should be something that suits you.


The Sweet Tooth Brigade

Whether you choose to just go with a sweetie option or enhance the guests’ favours to incorporate additional gifts, there will probably be no getting away from candy.


Assuming you are planning to stick with tradition and incorporate a sweet element (shame on you if you’re not!) then there are two things you need to determine – firstly, what sweet option you will be providing, and secondly, how they will be presented.


Let's take a look at some popular options for the sweet element:

  • Sugared almonds (the old favourite – usually given in batches of five to signify health, wealth, happiness, longevity and fertility).
  • Candy Rock (perhaps with the happy couple’s name running through the middle)
  • Chocolate dragees (silvery coated chocolate sweets)
  • Mint Imperials (granny’s favourite!)
  • Jelly Beans (why not combine multi-flavours for a taste sensation!)
  • Smarties (ideal for little kids and adults alike, but remember, only smarties have the answer!)
  • Fudge (flavoured or plain, it’s gooey and it’s great)
  • Chocolate mint crisps (fresh and tasty – a good after dinner option)
  • Chocolate Bars (Kit-Kat’s, Toffee Crisp’s, Lion Bar’s – you name it – they all taste great and are a really cool contemporary option)
  • Individual chocolates (loads to choose from, but pralines and kirsch cherries are proving particluarly popular indulgent options these days)

In terms of presentation:

  • Organza decorated with ribbon (ideal with sugared almonds for the traditional bonbonničre).
  • Small decorative tie-bags (a contemporary option and a twist on the organza tradition)
  • Mini-Hat Boxes (top hat’s for the gents, boaters for the ladies – ideal for individual chocolates)
  • Presentation Tins (a little more pricey, but you can have them engraved or decorated with wedding details to act as a keepsake)
  • Cones (classy cardboard objects that are ideal for smaller sweets – jelly beans and alike)
  • Character Boxes (cute idea for little kids – designs such as clowns or Disney characters can easily be tracked down if you shop around)
  • See-through patterned cellophane (the least ornate option, but a cheap and modern one nonetheless. A sensible option for rock and fudge).

Adult Only Favours

If you fancy splashing out and getting your guests something in addition to the candy, then there are a number of options open to you. Let’s first of all take a look at those options which are most suitable for the guests aged 18 and over.

  • Alcohol Miniatures (whether it’s whiskey, vodka, gin, brandy or whatever, these are sure to be popular amongst your guests – you can even have each label personalised)
  • Lottery Tickets (16+: an opportunity to make one of your guests a millionaire, and they’re bound to give you some if they do win big! You can even buy lottery ticket wallets these days to top them off)
  • Bets (if there is a major event happening soon – the Grand National, the World Cup, even the Eurovision Song Contest, then why not place a bet on each entrant and randomly distribute the slips amongst your guests!)
  • Luxury Soap (a quality favour that can be boxed and personalised – ideal for all guests, but older ones will perhaps appreciate it a little more)
  • Scent Miniatures (not as expensive as you might think – these smellies are available as perfumes or aftershaves and are ideal for men and women alike)
  • Personalised Toast Glasses (a pricey option, but a high-class one – acts as an ideal keepsake also)
  • Personalised Match Boxes (perhaps not the most PC-option these days, but a traditional option and ideal for any smokers)

For the Kids

If you plan on having some youngsters at your wedding then the chance of them appreciating some lavender scented soap is small. Instead, why not get them an appropriate gift that they will love and cherish – here are just a few options.

  • Teddy Bears (pink for the girls and blue for the boys – a cuddly teddy bear is a cute option that is sure to go down well)
  • Seed Sticks (ideal for all you eco-warriors out there – a really cool option, not suitable for really small children but potentially suitable for adults also)
  • Goody Bags (a selection of sweeties and small toys can be put together for just a few quid – a neat idea that you can tailor to each child dependent on age and likes – they will love it!)
  • Bedroom Name Plaques (didn’t you have one when you were small, I know I did – well why not get one for the kids at your wedding – a keepsake and a gift all in one!)

DIY Favours

You don’t of course always need to buy your favours ready-made, although sometimes there is no option. Instead why not put them together yourselves?


Doing your own, allows you to add your own special finishing touches. Sparkle confetti can be placed in the presentation containers of sweets and you can even choose to fill some with lavender, pot-pourri or freeze-dried rose buds for any guests who may be on a diet.


Whilst potentially a little time consuming, it is often cheaper, and more fun to put your own favours together, so why not give it a go!


Distributing the Favours

When it comes to giving out the favours, it is simply a matter of doing so at the Reception via the guest’s tables.


Beforehand, simply ask the venue co-ordinator to also allocate a favour to each guest once the table's have been set up. Of course, one crucial thing to remember is to make that the co-ordinator knows just who is who. Whilst you may know that Sam Brown is your little niece, if the reception venue isn’t aware of this then little Sam could well end up with a vodka miniature and lottery ticket rather than a little pink teddy bear (you bad uncle/auntie you!!).


Hopefully you will think that all our efforts in writing this article have been worth it, and that in doing so we've done you a really big favour (sorry - we couldn’t resist!)



Related: There are hundreds of wedding articles on the site, each filled with superb ideas, advice and inspiration. Check out the links in the left hand column to read more. Alternatively, to search for a local wedding venue, product or service provider, try our Wedding Directory. With over 13,000 companies already listed, you're sure to find what you're looking for.



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