There are a lot of details to plan for a wedding, but the most fun elements to plan are the little touches that represent the couple – like designing the invitations, picking a theme and theme colors, and deciding what to hand out to your guests.

If you are having a destination wedding, arrive a day early and place welcome bags in your guests’ hotel rooms, or just set one on each chair before the ceremony. It’s hard to greet all your guests at the reception, so these are a fun way to inject yourselves into the evening.

Container Ideas

The most popular container for a welcome bag is a reusable tote bag. With a couple of Google searches, you can find online stores to design your own image or tagline to be printed on different styles of bags.

Besides tote bags, you can pick other containers that fit in with your wedding’s theme. Experiment with metal pails, wicker baskets, drawstring bags, antique boxes, or paper bags. Decorate your containers with ribbons and bows in your wedding colors, scissors with decorative edges, stickers, or rustic touches like antique keys or beads.

Wedding program

The Essentials

First of all, be sure to include your wedding program in your welcome bag. You can do this in creative ways – like creating a tag that fits over a water or wine bottle, or the ever-popular fan program – or just slip in a traditional paper program. You can also include handy items that guests might need throughout the night such as travel Tide pens, pain reliever, a map to the venue (if you will be traveling from the ceremony to the reception) a pocket mirror, or breath mints. If you are having an outdoor wedding, be extra courteous with small bottles of sunscreen or bug repellent.

Snacks and Drinks

Water bottles are essential. You can’t go wrong with including a simple plastic water bottle, or you can add a personalized touch by printing your own labels (include fun ingredients like a dash of friendship, a pinch of support, and a hearty dose of love). You could also purchase a reusable bottle with you and your fiance’s initials, wedding date, or other details.

When it comes to snacks, it’s a good idea to supplement super sweet treats like mini cupcakes or caramels with energy-inclusive snacks like granola bars, popcorn, or mixed nuts.

Special Gifts

Add something to your welcome bag to represent you and your new spouse, such as special sweets, thank you notes, or customized magnets. For fun-loving, whimsical couples, airplane bottles of your favorite spirits or mini bottles of wine (be sure that this is okay with your venue first!) are a fun way to kick off the celebration. They also pair well with a wedding recovery kit. Include headache medicine, vitamin-c packets, Pepto Bismol, and a mini bottle of water. You can even decorate them in fun bags like this one.

A Touch of Nature

The last thing to include in your welcome bag is a little touch of nature. A fresh sprig of lavender, sage, or rose petals give your bag a refreshing scent to tie together the mood. Stones or seashells can make a nice impact as well, and tie nicely into wedding themes. As a takeaway, drop a packet of seeds – flowers, herbs, or vegetables – to take something home and watch it grow. You can even purchase beautiful individual air plants online!

We hope this guide has given you a few ideas to dazzle your guests on your special day. If you are newly engaged and searching for a venue, consider Earle Brown Heritage Center.