Sunday, January 16, 2022

Understanding the History and Nuances of Wedding Favors

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Wedding favors are an integral part of every wedding ceremony. It is an age-old tradition that signifies the thankfulness of the bride and the bridegroom towards the guests.

These tokens of love remind me of all the fun and frolics that one had enjoyed at a wedding function. So, how did the tradition actually start? Who came up with the idea of handing away these pretty knick-knacks to the wedding guests? Let’s dive deeper and know about the history of wedding party favors.

A tradition that dates back to 800 BC:

The earliest account that the world knows about wedding gifts dates back to 800 BC. In those days, sugar-coated almonds were used by the mighty Greeks during wedding ceremonies. Why sugar-coated almonds, you ask? The Greeks believed that these sugar-coated almonds were a symbol of absolute bliss, good health, and never-ending wealth.

Jordan Almonds

These almonds have been mentioned in “The Decameron” – the novellas collection of the Italian author Giovanni Boccaccio. Jordan almonds are quite popular at weddings, especially in the United States. These almonds are sugar-coated, brightly colored, and come in cute wrappings.

Wedding Favors
A cute little box full of delicacies

Bonbonnieres have always been an important part of marriage functions. Hundreds and thousands of years ago, European aristocrats of Italy and France used to give away pretty little boxes to wedding guests. These boxes were made of crystal, porcelain, metal, or precious stones. The boxes contained scrumptious delicacies made of sugar. Sugar was expensive in those days, and thus sugar-based delicacies were considered to be luxurious gift items.

Blessing the guests with good luck

In the olden days, the bride and the bridegroom used to give away five almonds and candy pieces to each of the guests. These almonds and candies were believed to bestow good luck upon the guests. These gifts were supposed to attract the blessing of wealth, happiness, longevity, and fertility.

Wedding favors in the 1700s-1800s

During this time period, party favors like spice boxes, flowers, and chocolates became more popular. So, couples used to give away a handful of flowers or a box full of chocolates and different exotic spices to their guests. 

The 20th Century evolution of wedding gifts

In the year 1907, Hershey came up with its iconic Milk Chocolate Kisses. All the chocolate lovers were going crazy over these yummy milk chocolate balls. These bite-sized choco-balls became a perfect option for wedding gifts. 

However, after the Great Depression, the world economy was down. And hence, the marriages were extremely simple and sober. Only rich couples could afford gifts such as M&M for their guests.

With the discovery of the screen-printing technique, the idea of personalized wedding gifts became quite popular. With the help of this technique, the couples could get their names and other details imprinted on gift items like wine glasses, t-shirts, matchboxes, etc.

Couples who loved music to the core started giving away 8-track tapes loaded with romantic songs like The Fire, The Bee Gees, and so on. These love songs symbolized their never-ending love for each other.

In the 1990s, disposable cameras were an absolute favorite among couples as party favors. These cameras served as a substitute for social media platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook.

The 21st Century wedding gift inspirations

The new century came with new ideas and inspirations for wedding gifts. There are so many products that are now popular among couples, such as wine bottle openers, mason jars, scented candles, exotic spices, and so on. Online stores provide many such options to impress your guests—Prince Harry and Megan Markle gifted gold bracelets worth $450 in their splendid wedding ceremony. Couples splurge according to their budget, but the ultimate aim has always been the same -to bring a smile to the face of the guests.

In a nutshell

Overall these years, the types of gifts may have changed. But if there is something constant, then it is the idea of gratefulness which the couples want to share with the guests. There are so many varieties of favors available nowadays. Couples spend months deciding about the perfect gift item for their guests. If you are planning to get hitched anytime soon, then get the best wedding gifts for your guests.

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