A welcome bag is such a fun way to welcome out-of-town guests to your wedding. And as a wedding guest, there’s nothing quite like finding some thoughtful goodies waiting for you when you arrive at your hotel – especially if you’ve traveled a long way to get there! We’ve partnered with Zazzle to share some of our favorite ideas for building an awesome wedding welcome bag.

How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle

 

The Bag 

There are lots of container options for a welcome bag – anything from simple kraft paper bags to fancy gift boxes. My personal favorite is a customized canvas tote bag, because it doesn’t take up a lot of room in a suitcase, and it’s something your guests will be able to use again. I have a couple of these from weddings I’ve attended, and I use them at the grocery store on a regular basis – a fun reminder of a fun time!

Tip #1: Ask an artistic friend to create a fun wedding “logo” for you - or use some cool fonts to create your own – and use it to customize your welcome bag or other wedding swag (t-shirts, beer koozies, etc.). 

Tip #2: If you go with a reusable tote bag, don’t feel like you have to fill the whole thing - your guests don’t want to lug a bunch of extra stuff home with them anyway. Or, think bulky-but-cheap: full-size bags of popcorn or boxes of crackers take up space without breaking the bank, and people will likely polish them off while they’re hanging out between wedding weekend events.

 

How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle

 

The Snacks

Confession: I remember the welcome bag snacks from the past three weddings I attended. Homemade pretzel Hugs (seriously addictive), Garrett Popcorn’s Chicago mix (even more addictive), and chocolate dipped coconut patties. So my snack bias is probably showing, but I think if you’re only going to include one thing in your welcome bag, it should be something edible. Preferably something sweet and something salty. Bonus points for something made locally. For this San Francisco-inspired welcome bag we went with a couple locally made treats (479° Popcorn and Poco Dolce toffee squares) and yogurt-covered pretzels. For the popcorn and pretzels, we bought large bags and repackaged them in smaller glassine and kraft paper bags, then sealed them with a big round customized sticker.

Tip #3If you plan on packaging things yourself, glassine or cello bags are best for anything remotely greasy (chips, popcorn, cookies); kraft paper will show grease spots, so use it for things like chocolate covered pretzels or hard candies.

Tip #4: Don’t forget something to drink. Bottled water, soda, or sparkling juice are good options. Make sure you’re considering who your guests are before including booze in welcome bags – your college buddies might be excited to find something from a local microbrewery in their bag, but your fiancée’s grandparents might not. Or they might. Use your best judgment.

 

How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle

 

Welcome Letter & Itinerary

Send your greetings and gratitude in a little welcome note, and make sure to include an itinerary and transportation information – there’s nothing worse than traveling across the country for a wedding, only to realize you’ve left the invitation at home and have no idea what time the ceremony starts or how to get there! Depending on the location of your wedding, as well as how much of the weekend is scheduled, guests might have a little free time to explore the area. Give them a highlights tour with a list of your favorite things to see and do, and places to eat and shop.

Tip #5: Ask your guests to share their photos from the weekend on Instagram, and to make sure and tag them with a custom hashtag – we used #lizzieandjames for our imagined San Francisco couple. You might even set up Eventstagram at your reception to display all the pics!

Tip #6: Consider including the phone number of your wedding planner or a friend or family member who can answer any wedding-related questions. You probably won’t want guests calling you or your fiancé for directions while you’re getting ready to walk down the aisle.

 

How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle

 

Oops! Kit

Without fail, I forget to pack something important whenever I travel – usually toothpaste. If you want to go above and beyond snacks and a welcome letter, a little “Oops! Kit” is a thoughtful touch for your welcome bags. We used a fabric pen to draw a little red cross on small muslin bags for our kits (a rubber stamp would work well too), then filled them with trial size toiletries we think would be most useful: Kleenex, blister healing Band-Aids, Shout Wipes, Advil, TUMS, and mints.

(Note: Make sure to place a piece of cardboard or other liner inside the muslin bag before painting or stamping, otherwise the ink will bleed through to the other side.)

Tip #7: Drugstores should have travel size items, but they don’t always carry trial sizes. If you’re looking for a mini version of a specific toiletry, Minimus.biz is a great resource.

Tip #8: Depending on your wedding destination, you might want to include location-appropriate items that guests will be glad to have, like sunscreen or bug spray.

 

How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle How To Build a Wedding Welcome Bag | Zazzle

 

Fun Extras

If your budget allows, it can be fun to include little tokens of the trip for guests to take home with them. Some ideas:

- souvenirs like a magnet, shot glass, landmark miniature
postcards for your guests to scrapbook or send (Zazzle has a huge selection to choose from)
- local treat to take home like a jar of honey, jam, or mustard
- playful, customized things like a deck of cards, beer koozie, temporary tattoo
- mix CD or thumb drive playlist of your favorite songs

Tip #9: If you include anything like local jam or honey, make sure it’s small enough for your guests to pack in a carry-on bag. It would be terrible to have your thoughtful gift get confiscated at airport security!

Tip #10: Avoid scented candles or soaps; the fragrance can transfer to edibles, making your carefully planned snacks taste like perfume.

 

So there you have it! Our tips for building an awesome welcome bag for your out-of-town wedding guests. Did we miss anything? If you’re doing welcome bags for your wedding, what are you including in them?!

 


This post is sponsored by Zazzle, who makes it easy to create custom items for yourself or to sell, simply by uploading your artwork or personalizing one of their existing designs. From invitations to bridesmaid tank tops, from custom postage stamps to table number cards, Zazzle is a great resource for your custom wedding needs.

Custom designs by Kirsten Eva for Snippet & Ink.

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Meet some of the wonderful vendors who help to support this blog. Without them, there would be no Snippet & Ink! Some of them are longtime sponsors, and others are new, and they’re all wonderful. It’s our hope that you’ll discover just what you were looking for.

Men’s bow ties from General Knot & Co.

Custom letterpress stationery from Thomas Printers.

Hand-lettered envelopes and calligraphy from Trial By Cupcakes.

Elegant and modern stationery from Shine Wedding Invitations.

Unique handcrafted jewelry from Bario Neal.

Foil-press stationery from Minted.

Budget-friendly digitally printed stationery from Foglio Press.

Affordable bridesmaid dresses from Dessy.

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor on Snippet & Ink, please email us at advertise@snippetandink.com to learn more about advertising options.

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When I got my hands on samples of the newest letterpress wedding invitations from Minted, I could not wait to share them with you! The designs are wonderful on their own, but the look and feel of letterpress adds so much richness and depth. And right now we’re giving away $500 to one Snippet & Ink reader for any purchase from Minted! Read on to find out more…

(Click images to enlarge and see more detail.)

Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations
Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations

Rose Garden

If you’re in love with letterpress, Minted now has 100 fully customizable designs available to choose from, each one printed by hand on 100% cotton paper for a beautiful, tactile impression, using vintage Heidelberg Windmill presses.

Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations
Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations

Posted

One of my favorite things about Minted’s collection is that it’s designed by independent graphic designers from around the world. And no matter which Minted wedding invitations you choose, your personal Minted design specialist will hand-tailor your invitations to make sure they’re absolutely perfect. Plus, they offer free recipient addressing to help save you valuable planning time.

Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations
Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations

Floral Embroidery

Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations Minted | Letterpress Wedding Invitations

If you’re at all considering letterpress, definitely order some samples from the Minted collection – because as fun as these invitations are on your computer screen, they are even better in person. And of course, enter to win $500 toward any Minted purchase!

Just check out the new letterpress designs from Minted and decide out which one is your favorite (that’s the hard part – there are so many great styles to choose from!). Then leave a comment below telling us why it’s the perfect invitation for your wedding. Check back on this post next week when we’ll announce the winner.

Update! This contest is now closed.

The winner is Ashley Williams who said: “I adore the fling letterpress invitation by Andrea Mentzer! My wonderful fiance Chris and I are getting married on a late summer afternoon in the gardens of a historical adobe house from the 1850′s. I feel like this beautiful invitation would set the tone for the relaxing, intimate, joyful celebration we have planned!”

Contest begins Monday, June 9, 2014 at 9:30AM PDT, and ends Friday, June 13, 2014 at 11:59PM PDT. Winner will be selected by Snippet & Ink and announced on this post. Please note: winner must live in the United States or Canada (excluding Quebec).

Official contest rules.

 

This post sponsored by Minted.

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Do you dream of saying your vows at sunset on a white sand beach in Cancun, or dancing the night away under the stars in Hawaii? Or perhaps you imagine your guests giving toasts by the fire in snowy Aspen, or dancing the night away under the stars… If you’re dreaming of a memorable destination wedding in a magical venue, look no further than Starwood resorts...

Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink

Sheraton Kauai Resort

Whether you have somewhere specific in mind, or you just know that you want to find an exceptional venue, the new Starwood wedding website makes it easy to search for the perfect place to tie the knot. The only downside is that you’ll want to spend all day getting lost in all the photos of gorgeous real weddings!

Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink

W Retreat & Spa, Vieques Island

With expert staff and exquisite taste, choosing a venue from Starwood’s collection of resorts makes planning the perfect wedding a breeze. What could be more special than having all of your friends and family together in one breathtaking place?!

Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink

The Westin Resort & Spa, Cancun

 

Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink

St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, Puerto Rico

When you host your wedding at participating Starwood resorts, you’ll receive up to 100,000 bonus Starpoints® which you can redeem for free nights at more than 1,100 destinations worldwide, including popular honeymoon spots like Bora Bora, Paris and Maui (may I suggest a look at the St. Regis Princeville Resort on Kauai… I wish I could go back again and again!). You’ll also receive a complimentary guest room or suite on your wedding night and a sparkling toast at your wedding reception for you and your guests. Unrivaled venues, exceptional personalized service, and a wedding that pays for the honeymoon? It really doesn’t get any better than that!

Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink

The Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa Hollywood, Florida

Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink Starwood Resorts | Snippet & Ink

W Retreat & Spa, Vieques Island

So what are you waiting for? Get over to the new Starwood Resorts wedding website and start your search for the perfect wedding venue and honeymoon destination!

 

This post sponsored by Starwood Resorts.

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When you’re planning a wedding, and putting so much thought into every little detail, you want your wedding website to be as special and beautiful as everything else. Not to mention it’s often the first impression your guests will have of your wedding! That’s where Riley & Grey come in. Not only do they have terrific hands-on customer service, but they also have incredibly unique website designs, perfect for modern couples who want something exceptional and inspired, and that will reflect their style beyond just the wedding. Here’s a handful of my personal favorites…

Riley & Grey takes a modern approach to wedding websites, with an easy-to-use interface and limited-edition designs that draw inspiration from the worlds of high fashion and decor. But their customer service is perfectly old-fashioned, and if you ever find yourself in need of help, just reach out to the Riley & Grey team and they can walk you through everything.

Riley & Grey also makes things super easy on your guests, by providing a mobile experience that looks and feels just like a custom app, but doesn’t require your guests to download anything. So when they want to double check which hotels you recommend, or what time the rehearsal dinner starts, or how to get to the venue, they can just hop on their smart phone and pull it up.

Riley & Grey‘s wedding websites are limited-edition, and as a Snippet & Ink reader, you can start customizing your beautiful website right away. Collect mailing addresses, add your wedding itinerary, upload photos and even video! Oh, and if you’re looking for some chic, irreverent inspiration to get your creativity flowing, you’ll definitely want to follow Riley & Grey on Instagram – gold temporary tattoos? Marilyn Monroe and Kate Moss? I’m telling you, lots of wonderfully unexpected wedding inspiration to be found.

 

This post sponsored by Riley & Grey.

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