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Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Details Part 1: Leslie and Joe's Out of Town Guest Bags

Leslie and Joe were a beautiful couple that I had the pleasure of working with over the last eight months. Their wedding was on Sunday, August 23, 2009. One detail I will note about this couple is they took the time to ensure that every detail embraced their personalities and the love they have for one another. They wanted to express how much they valued and loved their parents, families and friends. Their wedding weekend started on Thursday evening as guests began to arrive from across the country, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.

When you are planning your Central Florida wedding, take a few minutes to consider your out of town guests. As the guests arrived at the airport, they received a welcome bag. Leslie and Joe assembled their out of town bags with the following:

  • An Official Guide Book to Orlando
  • A coupon book for local shopping and area attractions
  • A Magic Card
  • An Agenda of all of the weekends events
  • A Personalized Map
  • Snacks
  • Water
  • A scented candle
  • Chocolate
  • A Bottle of Wine
These were little yet very personal touches that had their wedding guests raving about their hospitality. To personalize the bags, Joie de View was able to create custom tags that matched the agenda that Leslie's bridesmaid designed for her. The contents of the bag (pictured above) were customized with personalized tags that they were able to create that tied in the overall theme of the weekend. The bag contained little items that helped her guests settle into their hotel rooms. They were small enough to pack and take home if anything remained unused.

Here are a few wedding tips if you are considering giving welcome bags to your out of town guests:
  1. Ask your hotel what charge if any is there to deliver or give out the bags as your guests check in. Many hotels will not charge you if it is given at check in or left at the bell stand. If it is the latter, the hotel would let each guest know at check in that there is something waiting for them at the bell stand. You will need to provide them a list of names (which should be just like your rooming list at that hotel).
  2. Be practical in your items. Consider what sort of container you are using for your items. In other words, heavier items may not transport well in a regular paper gift bag. Baskets are very cute, but remember they may not be as easy to transport home if the guest is flying.
  3. Think about all of the items you want to include before you start purchasing anything, because it can become an expensive project if you are not paying attention to what you've purchased. I believe a safe number is probably eight to ten items.
  4. Remember the FREE things. Call the Convention and Visitors Bureau for your area. The Orlando Convention and Visitors Bureau gave us visitors guides and the discount cards Leslie used in their visitors bags. The bureaus often have pamphlets and items geared toward different cultures and may even have guides in different languages.
  5. Think Green! Perhaps your welcome bag can be a green shopping bag ('green' in the sense that it is a reusable or earth friendly bag). There are many online resources like Bags On The Run that carry colors that can be ordered in small quantities. You can customize those bags with your own tag which means that your guest will be able to use that bag over and over again for their groceries and knick knacks.
  6. Remember the little ones! Simple snacks like Gummy Bears, Gold Fish Crackers or graham cookies are a great for the parents traveling with little ones to have upon arrival. A little activity book with washable crayons is a nice touch as well.
  7. Have your bridal party members and and fiance help you assemble your bags.
  8. Buy your items in bulk. If you buy items like gourmet cookies, popcorn or canides you can use cellophane bags to pack them into smaller quantities. Once you pack them finish the package off with a sticker or label with your theme. You will save money and be able to get more bang for you buck.
  9. Remember the region in which you are having your wedding. If you are getting married in Central Florida, why not have citrus or citrus items as a part of your bag? Include items that will remind them of the region they were visiting.
  10. Lastly, have a customized pamphlet or sheet that lists the itinerary for the weekend. It's a very easy, thoughtful and your guests will appreciate having the times for everything on hand. What if they forgot the invitation? It's a great reminder for them.

These are just a few of the reminders we give our brides as they prepare there bags. Try to plan out your bags (at least what you want in them) at least 3 to 4 months before the wedding. You don't want to have to scramble or stress yourself in the weeks before the wedding. You want the bags completed so that your last days are spent relaxing!

Until next time,

Kerline

1 comments:

elisa |weditorial(tm) said...

Great Post! Love it! Keep up the awesome writing!