If you’re a bride to be, chances are that you’ve been told that wedding planning is a lot of work. And it’s true! Another thing that also rings true? That it’s all in the details. A lot of little details go into making your best day ever, well, the best day ever. Sure, some details may go unnoticed by your guests but there are a lot of details that your guests will appreciate and make note of throughout the weekend.
One of the first things wedding guests are greeted with (aside from the save the date and invitation) is the welcome bag if they’re staying at a hotel. Since a lot of our guests were from out-of-town we wanted to make sure they were taken care of from arrival to send-off. I had a lot of (local) brides & mothers of brides specifically reach out to me about welcome bags after seeing this instagram post, so I’m excited to share our welcome bags (er…boxes!) that we created with If It’s Paper and provide a few helpful tips about what to include, assembly, etc!
WHAT TO INCLUDE IN YOUR WEDDING WELCOME BAGS
First things first: what to include in your wedding welcome bag! Nick and I wrote out a list of what we wanted to include in our welcome bags and made sure to add that to our overall budget. Don’t forget to factor in how many you’ll need for each bag. We ended up having 38 welcome bags (one per hotel room). To draw inspiration for what to include in your bag/box think about you as a couple, your favorite things, and your location. Below are a few helpful tips for things to include in your welcome bag.
- ALL THE DETAILS | We worked with If It’s Paper to design a booklet that included all of the information that our guests would need throughout the weekend. After looking at a few different options, we chose to do a layered booklet to include all of the necessary info. I liked the booklet because you could easily see what information was included in each section, so it made things easy for our guests. On the very front we included our logo and our weekend hashtags. We designed the logo with If It’s Paper (didn’t they do a great job?!) and we used it throughout the weekend on our paper goods and even our signage! Creating and implementing the logo into our weekend really helped pull everything together.
- WELCOME LETTER | In this section we wrote a note to our guest thanking them for being with us to celebrate the weekend along with a run down of what we included in our boxes.
- ADDRESSES | We included the addresses for every event- from our rehearsal dinner and welcome party to the ceremony and reception locations. This is necessary info since out-of-town guests aren’t typically familiar with the area.
- SCHEDULE OF EVENTS | In this section we included a lineup of the weekend’s events, including time and dress code. We also made sure to add info about transportation in this section.
- DIRECTIONS | There’s nothing worse thanking in an unfamiliar city and not knowing where to go, so we included brief directions for the welcome party, ceremony, and reception from the hotel.
- LOCAL EATS & THINGS TO DO | In this section we shared our favorite local restaurants, shops, and things to do. We even included where we had our first date, where we got engaged & our favorite spots to hit up on the weekends.
- CONTACT INFO | We included our wedding planner’s phone number on the back of the booklet should any of our guests have any questions.
- SOMETHING TO SIP | Including bottled water is a must so that guests aren’t having to pay for water during their stay. We included mini water bottles (you can even add personalized labels!) and then included personalized Diet Cokes that had our names on them for a fun touch! We also had the personalized Diet Cokes at our reception and the guests really loved them!
- A LITTLE SNACK (OR TWO!) | Everyone appreciates a good snack! If you’re not sure what to include, add his & hers favorite snacks or locally made items. We included a his & hers favorite along with a mini salty and sweet snack.
- THINGS THEY MAY HAVE FORGOTTEN | We’ve all been there. You get to your destination and realize you’ve forgotten something …. think about the small things you often forget and include those! For me, it’s always Advil and Band-Aids, so we included those for our guests. Perfect for post wedding hangovers and a little too much dancing in those new heels!
ASSEMBLING YOUR WELCOME BAGS/BOXES
Once we had settled on exactly what to include in our welcome bags, we then decided what we wanted to use to stash everything in. We went with kraft gable boxes because they easily fit everything and they were cost effective. If It’s Paper had a few different sizes (I believe ours were 9’x11′) and colors in stock, but we loved the look of the kraft. Instead of doing stickers on the outside, If It’s Paper created a tag with our logo that we attached to the box with slate grey ribbon! When it came time to assemble everything, we opened a bottle of wine (and kept it away from everything ha!) and got to work. It took us a night or two to assemble the booklets and boxes, but it was fun to do together and revel in the last few days as fianceés! We filled the bottom with crinkle paper and basically played Tetris with everything until it fit perfectly in the box! My MOH came over to help finish assembling and securing all of the boxes a few days before!
A few tips when assembling your bags/boxes:
-Keep everything organized & pay attention! It is so easy to forget to put something in (like a booklet!) if you’re distracted
-Make sure you have enough of each item & take note of the dimensions of everything before choosing what to put everything in.
-Be aware of the hotel’s policy on welcome bags. Each hotel has a different policy, so make sure you are aware of what your hotel’s policy is. We had to have our boxes delivered to the hotels by Thursday morning of our wedding weekend. It’s also important to note that some hotels charge for holding welcome bags. Be sure to ask them so you can factor that into your budget. Our hotel didn’t charge to hold them, but they charged $7/box if you wanted them delivered to the room (which would have been almost $300!). We had them provide the boxes to the guests at check-in because it was more cost effective.We couldn’t have been more thrilled with how our welcome bags turned out! Elizabeth and Mallory at If It’s Paper really helped us develop the overall look for not only the boxes, but the entire weekend! When we had in-store meetings with them they really helped us narrow down and finalize our ideas and even provided some great advice and guidance along the way! Everything that they created helped pull everything together and really elevated our wedding weekend!
P.S. Not only do they have great items for weddings, but they have great gifts, too! I’ve gotten countless vendor gifts, Mother’s Day gifts, and birthday gifts for friends from there! If you’re in the Greensboro or Raleigh area- be sure to check this local gem out! You can also follow them on IG @ifitspaper to see all the great gifts and brands they carry. You can see their locations at the bottom of the page here! XOKRAFT GABLE BOXES, RIBBON, TAGS & WELCOME BOOKLETS c/o If It’s Paper | CRINKLE PAPER | PERSONALIZED DIET COKES | THANK YOU BAGS | TRAVEL SIZED ADVIL PACKS | MINI BOXED WATER BOTTLES | BAND-AIDS |
This post is in partnership with If It’s Paper. All thoughts, writing & styling are my own.