Everyone knows that weddings are expensive, it is a truth universally acknowledged, but it isn’t until you are planning your own that this truth really hits you. You plan out your budget and for a brief moment you think you can just about make it and then you remember all those little extras and the bill goes from manageable to ridiculous. But it needn’t be that way so long as you have a little time and imagination. Many of the tasks that you can pay a fortune for professionally can be very cheap and even more meaningful if you do them yourself.

Wedding favours are a curious part of the ceremony as technically they aren’t essential and many couples don’t include them. However, there are people who consider favours to be essential and spend a large amount of money on them. Wedding favours are a small gift for the guests that shows your appreciation for their attendance and good wishes. Some couples only give them to the wedding party, such as the groomsmen and bridesmaids and other couples give them out to everyone who attends. In some cases they are simple bags of sugared almonds and in others they are beautiful jewellery to be kept for ever. The choice is really up to you and will depend on your budget and how many people are attending. For very small cosy weddings people often choose more elaborate gifts and for large ones they will either avoid the favours or offer small tokens of their appreciation.

In general favours revolve around food, so they could be anything from cake pops to ornamental olive oil jugs. Following the common retro theme at the moment some couples opt for a display of retro sweets, allowing their guests to make their own favours by filling up individual bags with sweets of their choice. Homely jars of marmalade are also a common favourite, with some people twisting this idea by making a small bag with an old family recipe, for example. Kits are also a popular gift, such as DIY hot chocolate, including a chocolate stirrer, marshmallows and hot chocolate in a bag or pot. Depending on the budget and the amount of guests you are buying for you could get them personalised wine, with a label signifying the special day.

One of the more popular ideas is to create favours based on the couple’s talents. No matter how modest you might be, everyone has a talent so all you really have to do is find something that would be suitable for all your guests. Small candles are a popular favour and allow the guests to take them home and treasure them forever. Modern ideas are being developed all the time and some people even go so far as to create a personalised video message for each of their guests on DVD’s or CD’s. Whether you choose to create something simple or extravagant it is entirely up to you. There is no strict code when it comes to wedding favours so use your imagination and you could save yourself a lot of money. Although professional favours are lovely and have a certain class about them, there is something very personal about handmade gifts and in general that extra effort is certainly appreciated by all your guests. Even if it is just a case of a small fabric bag containing a personal message written on a card, wedding favours are a wonderful way to say thank you.

This post was written by Elizabeth A. Wright; reader, writer and gift lover. Elizabeth has always loved finding and making personal gifts for all of her family and friends and is happy that this trend has finally caught on. She writes on behalf of Personalised Pressies.