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Ceramic Macaron Boxes
There’s no sweeter way to ask friends to be attendants than tucking notes inside ceramic macaron cookies from Site NYC. Arrange several on a plate, offering one to each pal, or hide them among their edible counterparts for a true surprise. Make it personal by calligraphing recipients’ names on strips of paper. Later, the gold-clasped compacts, which come in six shades, can store tiny treasures like earrings or special coins.
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Help your 'maids relax while they prep for your wedding with matching robes in bold, playful prints. Get them embroidered in each of their names for a more personal touch.
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Spa Gift Bag
For a spa-getaway bachelorette party in Scottsdale, Arizona, this bride gave each of her girlfriends a tote bag, embroidered with the couple's monogram, that held a tumbler, headband, and the resort's spa menu.
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If you’re tying the knot stateside, give your BFFs United Scents of America fragrances ($58 each) that capture the essence of the place where you’ll wed. California, Florida, New York, New Jersey, and Texas are out now, with the remaining 45 set to debut soon.
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Custom Rubber Stamps
Custom rubber stamps, each bearing a bridesmaid's name in elegant script, let you -- and your attendants -- make a good impression. Ask a calligrapher to pen the women's names, then have a specialty vendor or office-supply store turn them into rubber stamps. Stampworx 2000 made ours.
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Share your favorite family recipes with your closest pals. Annotate with recollections to add personal flavor. Scan and size recipes and photos with photo-editing software, and print onto card stock. Cut to size, and place in tins. Wrap tins with a wide band of paper printed with a colorful pattern (scanned vintage kitchen linens work well).
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Silk-Flower Hair Bands
Silk flowers never wilt or fade, which makes them a fitting memento of your wedding. Share them with your bridesmaids by making these pretty hair bands.
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A few minutes of embroidery will turn plain woven-grass accessories, such as slippers or a small basket, into keepsakes for your bridesmaids.
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Your bridesmaids' eyes may fill with tears, but they'll be free of windblown hair if you've provided pretty barrette gifts. The barrettes start out as inexpensive bare-metal clips. You add flair by supergluing mother-of-pearl flowers or flowery buttons.
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Photo Magnets and Tacks
A homey take on the traditional locket: Bottle caps inset with small black-and-white pictures can be used as thumbtacks or magnets. Put favorite pictures of you and your bridesmaids in the caps and give them each a pretty box filled with tacks or magnets full of memories.
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With their lids painted and papered with decorative prints, these elegant wooden boxes recall the traditional craft of decoupage. Create a special box for your bridesmaids, and place a note inside thanking them for their friendship.
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Memory Flip Book
A video of your bridesmaids dancing at your bachelorette party or laughing at your bridal shower can be transformed into a keep-at-hand photo flip book for repeated enjoyment. Websites such as flipclips.com will turn a 10- to 30-second digital video clip into a palm-size tome with pages that re-create the big event when leafed through quickly. Choose from a range of sizes and custom-cover options.
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These fabric-flower bands will be a hit with bridesmaids. Give them out at the shower or rehearsal dinner.
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Etch a set of tumblers with the bridesmaids' names and a decorative motif, such as a ring of leaves. You can take them to a professional, or etch them yourself with etching solution sold at crafts stores.
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To turn wedding-day accessories into lovely keepsakes for your bridal party, why not add customized labels bearing your wedding date, monogram, or some other personal note? Start by creating a template at a specialty manufacturer (we tapped Name Maker) with the fonts, colors, and sizes of your choice. Hand-stitch the labels to the backs or insides of purses or other fabric items you plan to give your bridesmaids.
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Start with bars of white soap with flat sides and then create a custom graphic you can make into a decal. Here, we used a Japanese motif to spice up the soap, but you could use a digital image of your choice that you design on your computer and then print on special decal paper.
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Transform plain bookcloth- or linen-covered albums into one-of-a-kind keepsakes using iron-on transfer paper available from office-supply stores. Choose a favorite snapshot from your wedding (light, neutral-color fabrics work best with photos), or design a simple label yourself on the computer.
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Monogrammed Glassware and Stationery
Bridesmaids will feel special with glassware or stationery bearing their initials. Get creative and make your own monogrammed items.
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Although bridesmaids are likely to be more relaxed than the bride and groom, they still have their own share of anxiety and excitement. Soothe them with a set of luxurious toiletries more likely to be found at a spa than a wedding. Here, a simple box lined with a cloth contains small indulgences such as scented bar soaps, bath salts, bath gel, lotion, candles, and tea bags.
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Give your bridesmaids a fashionable floral accessory that will look fresh long after the wedding day: wrist corsages made with silk-ribbon flowers. They can even be tied around a ponytail or worn as brooches. These corsages are easy to make: Tie elastic ribbon around your wrist in a big bow, then pin the bloom to the knot.
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For the Luxe Bridesmaid
Cashmere pajama shorts. Perfume in a bejeweled bottle. Butter-soft leather driving gloves. Nothing here is a necessity, but to your friend who has everything, they are all necessary indulgences.
1. Candle in figuier vert, Diptyque, $68, bergdorfgoodman.com
2. Estee Lauder private collection tuberose gardenia parfum, $300, esteelauder.com
3. Tap shorts, White + Warren, $100, whiteandwarren.com
4. Monogrammed notebook, Graphic Image, $53.75, graphicimage.com
5. "Twist" tumblers, LBK Studio, $40 each, lbkstudio.com
6. Lacquer boxes, Pacific Connections, $59 and $77, lilleashop.com
7. Faux shagreen pencils, Dransfield & Ross, $26, unica home.com
8. "Princess" necklace, Suzanne Kalan, $520, Sundance Catalog, 800-422-2770
9. Topaz pendant, Suzanne Kalan, $380, Fragments, 212-537-5000
10. Driving gloves, Carolina Amato, $149, eLUXURY.com
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For the Hopeless Romantic Bridesmaid
For the bridesmaid who takes time to smell the roses (and gardenias and freesias), thank her with a unique artisanal find, such as a handmade porcelain vase, a striking photograph of peonies, or old-fashioned (but cheeky) engraved calling cards.
1. Print, Kari Herer, $25, kariherer.com
2. Engraved gold baby disc, Ginette NY, $490, 212-627-3763
3. Pink star tourmaline ring, Jamie Joseph, $1,331, shoppersimmon.com
4. "Cable knit" vase, Alyssa Ettinger, $120, alyssaettinger.com
5. "Gold suitcase" card, Dempsey and Carroll, $55 for 10 with envelopes, dempseyandcarroll.com
6. "Bicycle" card, $34 for 10; "Flying pig" card, $26 for 16; Foxglove Writing from Thornwillow Press, thornwillow.com
7. Scented soaps, Caswell-Massey, $35 for box of 3 in various colors, caswellmassey.com
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For the Gourmand Bridesmaid
If she's a foodie, she'll savor these delightful items we've cooked up for her, from gourmet sea salts to a coffee-of-the-month subscription to steak knives that look like works of art.
1. Pierre Dubost steak knives, Laguiole, $250 for 6, touchofeurope.net
2. Truffle salt, $28; set of finishing salts, $39.50; williams-sonoma.com
3. "Golden berry" champagne glasses, Roost, $16 each, janandaya.com
4. Rose champagne, Veuve Clicquot, $76, wine.com
5. Ice bucket and tools, $30; cocktail napkin, $3; Martha Stewart Collection at Macy's, macys.com
6. Stone spice bowls, SURevolution, $25 for similar, vivre.com
7. "Milano" 14-ounce milk frother, Frabosk, $30, chefini.com
8. "Ellipse" silverplate serving spoons, Calvin Klein Home, $40, 212-292-9000. Engraving, Jenny's Engraving, 212-221-2611
9. Coffee of the month, $60 for 3 months, igourmet.com
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