Andi WillisBride Online Columnist

Wedding Bonbonnieres On a Budget

With all of the mandatory costs that need to be spent on the wedding, it’s no wonder that those that are optional- like the bonbonniere- get a last look in. Though, chances are that if you’d like to spend part of your wedding budget on these wedding favours (however minimal), you’d like beautiful items that truly represent the spirit of your wedding, as well as your personality as a couple. If this sounds like you, we’ve got good news: your options are becoming more accessible, more imaginative, more individualized and more competitively priced everyday.


Your bonbonnieres can be organized via two routes: DIY or store- bought.

The Do It Yourself Option:

There are literally no limits to what you can produce. There are plenty of levels of creativeness, so whether you want to spend hundreds of hours getting your wedding favours absolutely perfect, or just put together the gifts as quickly and easily as possible, there’s a viable and appropriate option for you.

For the craftiest of the crafty:

  • Create your own lip- balm (especially useful for a winter wedding). Concoct unexpected flavours like ‘pink champagne’ or ‘pumpkin pie’.
  • Plant mini flowers or succulents in personalized pots, buckets, teacups, or whatever strikes your fancy.
  • Foods and drink are always a welcome option. Create a jam or chutney, flavour some rock-salt (bacon or chili flavoured salt will never go amiss, for example), wedding- moonshine or limocello for your guests to enjoy. 
  • Coaster made from instagram photos or personalized notes
  • Candles made from vintage teacups or glass jars
  • Terrariums
  • Create your own personalized tote bags.
  • Fashion a blank booklet, and include some coloured pencils for your guests to doodle in throughout the reception. Ask if you’d like for them to give you a page of their illustrations, poetry, note, or whatever else they’ve jotted down on your big day.
  • A personalized journal. Print their name, your wedding date, or a message of love.
  • Personalised luggage tags (for a destination wedding)
  • A personalized cocktail. Whether you want to come up with a cocktail for each guest (if you’re having a relatively small wedding), or assigning a cocktail to a group of people (e.g. women between 50-60 years old, table 10, those with hats on), this will make the guests feel appreciated. Bonus: Give the barmen a list of all the guests’ names with a corresponding personalized cocktail name (e.g. Delilah’s delight). Have your guests give their name to the barmen so they can give the guests this little surprise. 
  • Wedding ribbon wands
  • Homemade soaps

  • (Courtesy

For the less crafty, who still want to give the personal touch of a DIY present:

  • Provide your guests some pieces of deliciousness to snack on throughout the reception (and ceremony, if yours is a less formal event), such as doughnuts, popcorn, nuts, or lollies.
  • Wrap some sweets in pretty material, linen, tissue paper, or cellophane and put them into personalized mugs. DIY instructions here
  • Disposable cameras. Put one on each table, and collect them from your guests at the end of the night, to get a view into how their nights were. 
  • Pinecone ‘firestarters’ for a winter wedding.
  • Hanging birdseed feeders
  • A chocolate/ chocolate peanut butter spoon to be used and melted into hot chocolate or hot milk. 
  • Toffee apples. Decorate with more lollies, chocolates, and edible glitter.
  • Put together an edible ‘make it yourself’ kit. Stack up the ingredients to your food in a glass jar or simply a beautiful cellophane bag for maximum chic-ness. These foods can be just about anything you like, so long as they’re relatively easy to make. We love the idea of a s’mores package (plain biscuits, dark chocolate and marshmallows) or even a mojito package, complete with a small wooden muddler. 
  • Show your guests you thought of the toll their dancing would take on their feet by putting together a ‘foot repair’ kit, including: band- aids, a small bath- bomb, some foot cream, and a voucher for a foot rub, courtesy of their partner/ mother/ brother/ you name it. 
  • Similarly, organize a ‘wedding- hangover’ kit, which could include items like: Panadol, Powerade, an eye- mask and some earplugs.
  • Homemade cookies stamped with a literal ink- stamp (a new one, though). You can find thousands of these in craft stores, online, and even have them made up. 
  • Buy local produce and personalize it by seasoning it. Think honey pots infused with chili, cream infused with vanilla extract.
  • A confetti bar. Fill up several bowls and vases with different coloured confetti, and provide paper cups for each guest to create their own mix.

For Bought Options:

This means going for quality over quantity- Try to find a very small gift that is reflective of any part of your wedding or your personality. Essentially, this comprises of doing your research and shopping around.

  • Donate. Choose one charity or a few, make your donations, and give each guest a card that states what the charity is, and that the donation has been made in their name.
  • Seed paper. This is paper which- as you can probably tell- is embedded with seeds. If you can’t get your hands on this (it’s relatively new and limited), hand out some seeds or herbs with a personalized ‘today you’ve helped our love grow’ note instead. 
  • Luxurious soaps.
  • Temporary tattoos! Love- themed, of course. 
  • Just buy some donuts, soft pretzels, muffins, or any low- key dessert-y type thing for your guests to enjoy on the way home.
  • Water bottles. Everyone could always use an extra one, and this is far more eco- friendly than using hundreds of plastic bottles each year. 
  • Sunglasses for an outdoor wedding.
  • Flip- flops for a beach wedding.
  • Packaged and personalized coffee beans, cheese, or chocolate.
  •  Personal bottles of champagne.
  • Stunningly wrapped sweeties, like rock- candy, sour lollies, liquorice or taffy.
  • Bottle openers.
  • Cookie cutters.
  • Teas diffusers.

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After you’ve decided on one (or several favours), choose the most beautiful packaging you can find in either neutral colours or your wedding colours. Great packaging has the ability to elevate presents to the next level. If you’re at a loss here, remember that miminalism always looks incredibly chic and understated. Let your incredible bonbonnieres speak for themselves!

With these elements in place, your bonbonnieres will ensure lasting memories of the day, without a thought for the price of them!

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