15 Years of Wedding Favors
Dragees have a long history at weddings, and a paper compote in the center of each table lets your guests be a part of the tradition. Construct the compote from a single piece of paper folded accordion-style, and fill with sugar-coated almonds.
Boxed Groom's Cake
Assembled in the shape of a three-tier layer cake, store-bought boxes hold individual slices of the groom's cake, ready for the guests to take home; tucked between the white boxes are ranunculuses, sweet peas, hyancinths, and lilies of the valley.
Beautiful boxes can be as much a part of the gift as the favors themselves: Long handmade boxes hold small cookies. Fabric lilies of the valley fasten tall sacks. Untie the ribbons, and "kisses" open into the shape of flowers. The couple's first initials are inscribed on the bottoms of paper pyramids. Easy-to-assemble boxes tied with ribbons hold dragees.
Mix and Match
Play with color by swapping the lids on bright boxes. Affix printed labels, then tie contrasting elastic cording in bows and loop them around corners.
This romantic box is swathed in organdy and finished with ribbon and a monogram sticker.
Buttons make charming closures: Punch holes in the box's lid for the button, slip wire through, and fasten on the underside. Then, tie a ribbon to the button's base, loop it around the box, and wrap to secure.
Ribbon Twist Box
Two-tone ribbon shows off its colors on this simply wrapped box.
Favor boxes can look playful or sophisticated with yarn. Many of these ideas use the same technique: Attach the end of yarn to the bottom of a box with a clear round mailing seal. Wind yarn around the box several times, cut off, and affix the other end to the bottom with a second seal. Precut all of your yarn before wrapping.
Elegant Cookie Cubes
For a sophisticated favor, stack cookies in a plastic box lined with your monogram on all sides. To line the box, scan calligraphed initials and print onto card stock -- back with glassine using double-sided tape. Score and fold to fit in box.
Polka Dot Box
A hand punch makes these cheerful dots (and a lot of confetti), while paper lining makes them stand out.
Origami paper in shades of orange and an understated tag create a stylish favor.
A tiny tassel makes opening this box especially fun. The wide, striped fabric around the box has been trimmed with pinking shears at the sides.
All Tied Up
A secret message hidden beneath coconut-and-cashew truffles is revealed as the chocolates are devoured. The packaging seems fancy, yet this is just a standard box trimmed with scalloping scissors. The tabs are usually tucked in, but we left them out, punched holes, and threaded ribbon through for a unique form.
If you don't want to hide your pretty favors inside a box, use a see-through package to showcase them instead. A trio of pastel macaroons in this clear container is finished with a paper flower.
Monogrammed Favor Box
This package is sealed with a personalized label made using a rubber stamp.
These whimsical dragee cones standing in a galvanized tray will delight even adults.
A color unifies a selection of cookies. Here, pink goodies, both store-bought treats and homemade shortbread stripes, are set out on a tiered bistro stand. A menu states the choices. The cellophane bags come with cardboard bottoms, which we lined with pink glassine to match the theme. Pink ribbon with striped tags tie bags closed.
Maple Sugar Candies
Maple sugar candies are a melt-in-your-mouth local specialty sure to be gone before the last dance. Transform a store-bought box of candy by replacing the lid with a paper band printed with a personal message (leave the shrink wrap intact). Finish with a yarn bow.
A novel favor in a Rocky Mountain state is a bag of little "rocks": actually nuts, dark chocolates, and dried apricots coated with a sugar shell, from MarieBelle. To echo the rustic motif, we used muslin pouches. Each sack was labeled using a custom rubber stamp.
Guests are sure to grin when they receive a pair of bright-red lobster lollipops, playful versions of a seaside icon, from Ju-C Suckers. We tied them together with a blue gingham ribbon and attached a custom-stamped hang tag. The good news: no plastic bibs or drawn butter required.
Framed windows allow a look-see into these fanciful paper packets filled with jelly beans. The envelopes are inexpensive and easy to customize; all you need is a craft punch and rubber stamp.
Swap the Lids
For a two-tone effect, we swapped the lids of brown and blue boxes and tied on coordinating ribbons. Clip-art drawings of leaves and nuts grace the labels. Simply add your favorite candy and you've got an instant favor.
Old-fashioned nature-theme wrappers transform trail-mix chocolate bars from Coco-Luxe Creations into unique mementos. We replaced the sleeves on the foil-wrapped bars with computer-printed ones depicting elk, trout, native plants, and evergreens (the images came from clip-art books; some have accompanying CDs of the images). We added the names of the bride and groom, the date, and the location, and printed the labels. Pile the bars in large wicker baskets or trays for guests to dig into when the party ends.
Bright and Preppy
The classic ensemble of a striped button-down shirt and French-knot cuff links inspired these favors in summery hues, which we filled with saltwater taffy.
Charming and Old-Fashioned
An afternoon reception set among lush plants and a great green lawn calls for a favor with a similar motif. The leafy fabric tendril entwining each cone lets guests carry the mood away with them. Inside, there are chocolates wrapped in strawberry-printed foil.
Sewn, Stamped, and Tied
Guests can't resist tearing into these charming parcels.
Paper birds keep watch over colorful chocolates. To create, use scissors to carefully cut tulle, which comes by the yard, into 8-inch squares. Deposit several dragees onto each one. Gather up the tulle around the candy, and secure each pouch with twine. Place a die-cut bird on top, knotting the twine around the bird's leg to anchor it. Set the pouches out on trays for guests to take home.
Tea Two Ways
Tea is twice as nice coupled with cookies flavored the same way. These Earl Grey Tea Cookies were made by mixing tea leaves into the shortbread batter. Customize a box with corrugated paper to form sections for cookies and tea bags. Ours is wrapped with damask paper and ribbon. Monogrammed tags, shaped like ones for tea bags, reveal the gift inside.
Blue and Silver: Precious Favors Add sparkle to your reception tables by decorating each place setting with metallic nets filled with foil-wrapped chocolate dragees. The parcels are tied at either end with blue ribbon. Computer-generated labels with blue lettering and borders display the names of the bride and groom as well as the wedding date. Alternatively, labels might list the names of individual guests, allowing the favors to do double duty as place cards.
Blue-and-white packaging complements dark coffee favors. Chocolate-covered espresso and coffee beans are stacked in hexagonal boxes tied with silk ribbon. Use rubber stamps to identify the treats. Homemade coffee truffles, composed of bittersweet-chocolate ganache spiked with Irish whiskey and coffee extract, nestle inside candy cups; paper bands, made on a computer using clip art, dress up their boxes. Rich espresso fudge brownies (wrapped in cellophane) are covered with dotted paper.