Tips for Wedding Welcome Gifts
Wedding welcome gifts take many forms, but they all add an extra special touch for those traveling to your wedding. They can provide a glimpse of the festivities to come and highlight the most important parts of the weekend, all while thanking your guests with a thoughtful, personalized package of goodies.
While a typical welcome bag consists of basic wedding day essentials like water, snacks and itineraries, it's also a way to infuse your personality and locale into the details. We firmly believe that they need not be predictable, uninspired or time consuming!
At Shelburne Gift Company, we work with couples, wedding planners and venue managers who want memorable gifts to welcome their guests... as well as the convenience of NOT having to create them.
It can be challenging to come up with welcome gifts that are creative, thoughtful and personal. And, the process can also be unexpectedly stressful. The weeks and months leading up to a wedding are always a hectic time. Taking on the task of welcome gifts inevitably adds an entirely new batch of "To Do's" to an already long list.
In addition to coming up with the ideas, you'll then have to track down the items and packaging... make sure they're in your hands on time and as expected...clear the space and time to assemble everything...coordinate guest lists with hotels and venues... transport them to Vermont...and make the actual deliveries in the days before your wedding. All while sticking to a budget.
What seemed like a super fun and creative task can ultimately add loads of stress to your plate. So we encourage you to plan accordingly for the time, space and resources needed (or, you can turn the whole process over to a professional!).
We understand that everyone’s availability of both time and budget varies dramatically, so here are few pointers if you decide to tackle the task of welcome gifts yourself:The sky is the limit when it comes to how creative you can get with your gift items and packaging. However, a good rule of thumb for the “base” is to include something sweet, something salty or savory, something to drink and something personal.
Include a custom letter or itinerary to thank your guests and give them a sense of the celebration to come. Good information to include here includes a heartfelt greeting and thank you from the couple…a schedule of weekend events…any information about transportation…suggestions for things to do in the area…and important contact information.
Allow PLENTY OF TIME (preferably a few months) when ordering items for your welcome gifts. Particularly in this time of uncertainty where supply chains are concerned, you may have your heart set on a certain item, only to learn in the days or weeks before the wedding that it has become unavailable. This also super important if you are having custom items (including paper items like itineraries, letters or gift tags) printed locally or online for your gifts.
We can’t stress this one enough (because we have learned from experience!)… open your boxes and count your items as soon as you receive them! It’s not uncommon to discover at the last minute that your shipment is short or contains something that is broken or has leaked...and then it may be too late to get replacements in time for the wedding.
If you’ll have a significant number of gifts, save time and energy by making space for “assembly line” table, and call in your friends and family to help!
Give some thought to your transportation and delivery resources. We know (als0 from experience) just how many bags and boxes of varying sizes fit in the back of a Subaru wagon (and it can be an unwelcome surprise when it’s fewer than you had planned!). Also, it’s helpful to have some clean blankets and other cushioning materials to keep things pristine during delivery
Be sure to coordinate with your venue and/or hotels in advance on how you’d like the gifts distributed to your guests. Would you like them to be waiting at the reception area for the guests to pick up on arrival? Or perhaps you’d like them to be delivered to their rooms individually? In this case, be aware that hotels often charge a fee for this service, and you’ll need to be well organized with the appropriate lists and instructions for their staff.
Be aware that there are many protocols that apply when welcome gifts contain alcohol. Each venue and hotel has its own rules depending on their liquor licenses and other in-house policies, and some may not allow delivery of gifts containing alcohol to rooms. Also, if you’re planning to ship gifts to guest who can’t attend, be aware that every state has its own laws about whether residents may receive shipments containing alcohol.
If this all seems a little overwhelming and you decide you’d rather outsource your gifts, we’re here to help! We’ll set up a time to chat with you about your celebration and discuss your vibe, theme, quantity, budget, and any special design requests. Next, we’ll send over a design proposal and price quote. When you've approved it and signed off, you can sit back and relax...we’ll get to work ordering inventory, coordinating customized items and assembling your gifts into beautiful packages. Then, we'll make sure they get into the right hands at the right time, and you can kick off your celebration without a worry!
Our last bit of advice is to ENJOY this time! Planning a wedding is not supposed to be stressful or intimidating…you should be having fun. If we can help in any way, please feel free to reach out to us, and we’ll do our best to make sure you enjoy the process!