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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Specially For You In a Brown Paper Bag

It was three weeks out from our wedding and I still hadn't the slightest clue of what we were going to gift our wedding party.  When you add our parents and officiant, we were buying for a total of seventeen people. We decided we wanted our gifts to be simple, meaningful and cost effective.

Let's start with the boys. We briefly contemplated custom cuff links, but couldn't decide on what exactly we would pick out...kayaks, skateboards, snowboards, states? We couldn't pinpoint any one idea so we scratched that idea. We both really liked the idea of flasks, but felt like it was too common and expected. The solution came when I realized how much Mr. Honey really enjoys drinking beer out of a frosty beer mug; seriously the man loves an ice cold mug straight out of the freezer for his brew! Ah ha, custom made beer mugs for our groomsmen, dad's and officiant. We picked up this glass etching glue and this reusable stencil set from Hobby Lobby for a total of $13 (after a 40% off coupon). After browsing Ross & TJ Maxx for an affordable set of (large, Mr. Honey requested they be large in size) beer mugs, we happened to stumble upon the Dollar Tree. Gigantic beer mugs for one dollar! The etching process was pretty dang easy: apply stencils, secure with tape, slather with etching glue, let sit for one minute and rinse!

The other part to the guys gifts was their ties. Way back when I talked about the guys outfits, I said that we would have them in mismatched ties; I used cheap-neckties.com to buy a mismatch of ties and bow ties in navy patterns and ended up with 2 bow ties and 4 ties (one for Zeus!). Beer mugs and ties made for the perfect gift for our the special dudes in our wedding!

I love this picture of our groomsmen doing a "Cheers!" with the mugs and proudly sporting their ties/bow ties:

For my girls, I decided to go the same etching route but use dainty wine glasses instead of manly mugs. We got the wine glasses from the Dollar Store as well. I decided to put their names along the base of the wine glass instead of on the actual cup part:

I chose not to get the girls matching jewelry because each of them were picking out their own bridesmaid dress which meant varying necklines and details on each dress. I had fallen in love with the personalized hanger trend and decided to DIY to keep it on the cheap. I ordered a pack of wooden hangers from Walmart and used a white sharpie to just free write each girls name on the hanger. It was ridiculously simple and super cheap (20 hangers for $20.97! This also meant the guys got a nice hanger to hang their suit on, sans a heart and their name), plus it gave the personalized effect I was going for:

I had decided I wanted the girls to wear cardigans to help keep them warm during the celebration and picked up 8 gray cardigans at Target for $20 (which the girls later paid me for so it wasn't included in their gifts). To add a little flare to the simple cardigan, I made the same peach fabric flowers that I made for my garter and attached them to a pin and stuck them on the sweater. They turned out so cute! I even got a matching navy cardigan for myself and made a gray flower. Here's a shot of all the girls outfits ready to be put on the day of the wedding:

Every girl can use a little Bath & Body Works so I hit up the After Christmas sale and got a lotion, hand sanitizer and little bag for a total of $7 each. The last part of the girls gifts included free prints that I had collected over time from various blogs, which I printed at home and framed in little .97 frames from Wally World. I kept the quotes all happy and positive but tailored each quote to each girl, here's a couple examples.

For BM Fawn who recently beat colon cancer and truly is a sunshine-y person:
Sunshine Free Print via Collected Blog

For BM Scoot, because she fell in love with the song "Home" for her wedding:
Home Free Print via eighteen25 blog
Once I had collected all pieces to the gifts it was time for packaging. Simple, right? Wrong. I had an idea of how I wanted to wrap the gifts and it included kraft paper bags and tags made out of paint chip samples in our colors. BUT I couldn't find kraft paper bags anywhere...then I retraced my steps to search for white gift bags also to no avail. Thursday on the way to the airport to pick up my friend, I had had enough and just decided to use lunch bags. Yes our wedding party gifts were wrapped in lunch bags. I got crafty though, and with the help of two friends, left over card stock and yarn, we made them pretty darn cute (shhh don't tell the guys that their beer mugs were wrapped in a cute lunch bag!) if I do say so myself:

We handed out the gifts to everyone at our rehearsal dinner, after a very brief "thank you for coming" speech from yours truly and a big toast. Knowing our budget was next to nothing for wedding gifts, making them uber special was key. So just how did we do in the price department?
5 beer mugs at $1 = $5
3 ties at $10 = $30
2 bow ties, 1 at $9.99 and 1 at $14.95= $24.94
Total of $59.94 or $11.98 per gift

8 wine glasses at $1 = $8
8 hangers at $1 = $8
8 frames at .97 = $7.76
8 prints for free
8 Bath & Body Works goodies at $7 = $56
8 fabric flowers at $1 (this includes the cost of fabric and the cost of the pins) = $8
Total of $87.76 or $10.97 per gift

Parents & Officiant:
The dad's and our officiant received the beer mug and my mom received the wine glass. At $1 each we knew that obviously this wasn't remotely close enough to showing our gratitude, so we will be gifting them something special with wedding photos in the next few months. I will be sure to share that with you all!

Our gifts made our groomsmen and bridesmaids happy, and the more pictures I look through the more I see just how much use our homemade mugs and glasses got; I don't think the guys put down their mugs all weekend! Being that we served all beverages in plastic, it also made the wedding party stand out with their fancy schmancy glass cups!

What did you gift your wedding party? Anyone else now considering wrapping all future gifts in lunch sacks?!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for posting this! I'm trying to find information on Groomsmen Gifts and this has definitely helped me in this process.