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32 Creative Wedding Welcome Bags Guaranteed to Delight Your Guests
Surprise your loved ones with bags or baskets of essentials they'll need for the celebration.
Photo by KT Merry
Wedding welcome bags have become increasingly popular in recent years, and while they are in no way required, they are a thoughtful way to thank your guests for being part of your celebration . Typically packaged in a reusable tote or cardboard box, welcome bags often contain wedding essentials like mints, sewing kits, bandages, and pain relievers to fight those post-nuptial headaches, as well as water, a note from the couple, and an itinerary of events . From there, you can get as creative or keep things as simple as you'd like. Destination guides, pampering essentials, and local treats are great ways to prioritize your loved ones and introduce them to the wedding locale should you have the extra budget available to spend.
The most important thing to remember is that welcome bags shouldn't just be for show. It's best if your offering gives everyone a glimpse of the festivities to come while also providing loved ones with thoughtful essentials they'll actually use. Snacks, drinks, and destination-specific must-haves (think: sunscreen at the beach, pashminas in the mountains) are always winners. While it's easy to get carried away and add tons of extras, it's best to consider what guests will need. Edible treats and practical products that loved ones might have forgotten to pack will almost always be more appreciated than a candle or a bottle of locally-made wine . But if you want to include those add-ons (and you comfortably have the budget to do so), you can rest assured your guests will be entirely blown away by your generosity and thought.
Whether you're looking to build modest, functional wedding welcome bags or over-the-top packages that help your loved ones become immersed in your destination, we're sharing 32 creative ideas guaranteed to inspire your own offerings.
Choose a Bag Everyone Will Be Excited to Reuse
Photo by BelathÃ©e Photography
If you're going to invest in totes for your wedding welcome bags, consider which options guests will really use after the big day. For this couple's garden wedding in Connecticut , sturdy totes were filled with everything from water and snacks to pashminas and a cutting board, but the bags themselves were appealing all on their own. Guests could easily reuse them post-wedding for shopping trips or beach days.
Make It Meaningful
Photo by Kurt Boomer Photography
While the tangible contents of your bag are bound to get a lot of attention from guests, it's the meaningful details—like a special note from you and your soon-to-be spouse —that they'll remember most. For their Big Sur wedding , the bride and groom treated guests to tote bags printed with a redwood design filled with a water bottle, beer, bottle open, chocolate, and a blanket, but they made sure to also include a personalized message thanking everyone for being part of the celebration.
Don't Be Afraid to Outsource the Work
Photo by Jana Williams Photography
If adding another DIY project to your ever-growing list of pre-nuptial to-dos just doesn't feel manageable but you know you want to gift guests welcome bags, don't be afraid to outsource the job. For this couple's Palm Springs nuptials , they trusted Marigold & Grey to curate beautiful boxes for loved ones to enjoy.
Create Options That Will Appeal to All Guests
Talk about hospitality! Because this couple hosted just 12 guests for their wedding in Utah , they were able to go all out with customized welcome bags for each attendee. If you have a similarly small guest list, choosing bags that speak to each loved one's personal aesthetic and filling them with essentials they'll love is an incredibly generous way to acknowledge how grateful you are for their presence on the big day.
Brand Your Bags
Photo by Michelle Beller Photography
It was important to this couple that their welcome bags introduce guests to Montana, their wedding locale , and speak to the two of them as a pair, so they made sure to brand every item accordingly. "Some of our favorites were beanies with our dog’s ears on them, as well as custom printed bandanas with little designs relating to us and our wedding weekend,” they say. “We still see friends wearing this gear now, and it always brings us back to our special weekend.”
Choose a Vessel That Speaks to Your Locale
Photo by Jaine Kershner Photography
Tying the knot by the beach? A tote bag—which guests can reuse for years to come—is a great wedding welcome bag vessel. For this couple's summer wedding in the Hamptons , nautical blue-and-white canvas bags filled with local wine, snacks, and a magazine made for a surprise that was both thoughtful and functional.
Include the Essentials
Photo by Caroline Lima Photography
Since this couple hosted a camp-themed wedding in Texas , they knew they wanted their welcome bags to both speak to that theme and contain the types of must-haves guest would need for the activities ahead. A hat, water bottle, and emergency kit kept everyone prepared for a weekend worth of events. You can easily buy these welcome bag essentials from Amazon for quick delivery.
Include an Emergency Kit
Photo by Twah Dougherty
Whether you fill it with bandages and antiseptic for unexpected cuts and scrapes or pain reliever and electrolyte packets for post-wedding hangovers, including an emergency kit in your wedding welcome bag will always be appreciated. For their Long Island wedding , this couple packed up mini sacks of essentials and tucked those inside a larger jute tote with wine, water, and a personalized note.
Pack It With a Variety of Tasty Snacks
Though an ultra-indulgent wedding welcome bag absolutely isn't required, there's no denying that they're a guaranteed way to please guests. At this destination wedding in Aix-en-Provence, France, the couple knew their attendees would be traveling from far and wide, so a little sustenance upon arrival was bound to be appreciated. They treated everyone to bottles of rosé, fresh baguettes, and jam, but feel free to include a selection of snacks and drinks that nod to your specific wedding location if you choose to follow a similar path.
Get Guests Locale-Specific Discounts
Photo by Max Wagner
While it's great to provide snacks and drinks guests can enjoy in their hotel room, there's a good chance they'll want to get out and explore, too. An especially thoughtful option? Securing a few local discounts your loved ones can take advantage of during their time in town. Attendees at this family-focused wedding in California were able to purchase discounted cups of Joe from a local coffee house thanks to the bride and groom's creative thinking.
Fill Your Bags With a Variety of Snacks
Photo by Sarah DiCicco
By including a mix of sweet, savory, and healthy options in your wedding welcome bags, you're ensuring there's something every attendee will enjoy. That's exactly what this couple did for their highly-customized wedding in Palm Beach, Florida .
Choose Destination-Specific Items
For this wedding on Maryland's Eastern Shore , welcome bags filled with essentials like Old Bay-flavored snacks were a no-brainer. If you're tying the knot in a locale that's known for a specific food item or flavor, it's a fun idea to make that the central theme of your offering.
Customize Your Monogram
Photo by Hana Gonzalez Photography
Tying the knot in a tropical locale? It's fun to design a monogram that speaks to the destination. Adding a palm tree between their initials made sense for this duo's Jamaican wedding , but anything that nods at your locale—a lighthouse for a beach wedding, a tree for a mountain wedding—would work.
Make Sure the Contents Are Entirely Functional
Photo by Stephanie Sunderland
As this couple chose welcome bags for their Westhampton Beach wedding , they prioritized including must-haves everyone would actually use throughout the weekend. A destination-inspired tote, a baseball cap, hand sanitizer, heel stoppers, and snacks are essentials you can feel confident won't go to waste.
Embrace a French Vibe
Photo by REBECCA YALE PHOTOGRAPHY
Planning a destination wedding in the French countryside or keeping with a French theme while hosting your guests stateside? Embrace a Parisian vibe with favorites such as a fresh baguette, mini jars of jam, and a little bit of bubbly.
Be Travel Friendly
Photo by Caroline Tran ; Event Planning by So Happi Together
Factor in guests who may be traveling to the wedding location when curating welcome bags—they'll need to take everything home with them, after all. "I obsessed over the contents because I wanted everything to be personal, useful (not wasteful), and suitcase-friendly," recalls the bride who created these jute totes filled with scrumptious snacks, a Turkish beach towel, and hand sanitizer for her wedding in California .
Include Your Favorite Snacks
Photo by JOEL SERRATO
If you're going to include snacks, make sure each one is meaningful. We love the idea of including an array of you and your partner's absolute favorites for guests to enjoy over the course of the wedding weekend. This package is especially thoughtful—in addition to sweet treats, the couple included practical bites like protein bars and dried fruit, which can easily serve as breakfast in a pinch.
Get Everyone Beach-Ready
Photo by STEVE STEINHARDT
Tying the knot near the water? Guests might want to enjoy a day on the sand, but there's a good chance SPF and other beach essentials didn't make it into their carry-on luggage. Giving everyone a small tube of sunscreen, a fan, and sunglasses —as well as a rope bag to carry all those items down to the water—is extremely thoughtful.
Commission an Illustration
Photo by REBECCA YALE PHOTOGRAPHY
If you or your partner love to draw or paint, adding a custom illustration to the exterior of your wedding welcome bags is a lovely idea. Commission (or DIY!) a custom piece to showcase your ceremony's setting to decorate the outside of your tote, then fill the bag with your favorite snacks.
Stick With Your Color Scheme
Photo by KT MERRY
Consider keeping your wedding's color palette going, even with your welcome bags. Opt for meaningful items that are packaged in similar colors for a cohesive look.
Create a Display
Photo by KT Merry ; Event Planning by The Lynden Lane Co.
Most couples have wedding welcome bags delivered straight to guests' hotel rooms, but it's certainly not your only option. For their glamorous Palm Springs wedding , this couple set up a gifting display where loved ones could grab their totes (which included custom monogrammed hats) and mingle with other attendees.
Make It Sweet
Photo by ELIZABETH LANIER PHOTOGRAPHY
If you and your partner are always drawn to the sweet stuff, go ahead and celebrate your snack preferences . Add in treats like saltwater taffy and kettle corn to gift your guests a scrumptious surprise.
Add a Local Fruit
Photo by Jessica Charles
It doesn't all have to be snacks and sweets. Add your state's most recognizable fruit —like an orange for a Florida wedding—to give everyone a taste of the destination.
Celebrate With Tea Time
Photo by Kate Headley
If you're hosting a smaller celebration, you might have more wiggle room in the budget to go all out on your welcome bags and boxes. And what's cuter than tea for two at a destination wedding in England or for two tea lovers? Gift attendees a few specialty teas and cute mugs to enjoy during their downtime.
Incorporate Local Beer
Photo by LACIE HANSEN
Your wedding welcome boxes are a great opportunity to share some of your passions with guests. If you love a good micro brew , treat everyone to a few local options along with a bottle opener as a special thank you.
Keep It Fresh and Simple
Photo by BELATHÉE PHOTOGRAPHY
Wedding welcome bags don't have to be extravagant. A farmers' market-inspired tote, filled with a few pieces of fresh, local fruit that guests can enjoy throughout the weekend and a sweet note, will be just as appreciated as more ornate offerings.
Include a Fan
Photo by ERICH MCVEY
When curating the contents of your wedding welcome bags, consider what guests might actually use. If you're hosting a beachside ceremony or a reception in a warm-weather locale, a useful fan and a few bottles of water are the types of essentials your loved ones will be delighted to unpack.
Pack a Postcard
Photo by Jen Huang Bogan
Hosting a destination wedding? It's nice to include locale-specific postcards in addition to other essentials. If your guests traveled to the big day without their children or just want to commemorate the trip, a beautiful postcard that they can either mail home or pack will be an underrated hit.
Include a Destination Guide
Photo by DAVY WHITENER
Tying the knot in a city or town that means a great deal to you and your soon-to-be spouse? Help your guests get to know the locale by including a destination guide. When paired with locally-made snacks, there's no way your loved ones won't feel entirely immersed in the region by the time they head home.
Include Your Itinerary
Photo by CASSANDRA CASTANEDA
While there's no denying that choosing snacks and knickknacks for your wedding welcome bags is more fun, you can't forget that these gifts are also meant to serve a functional purpose. Be sure to include a beautiful printout of your itinerary so guests don't miss a beat.
Celebrate Your Pet
Photo by ABBY JIU PHOTOGRAPHY
Incorporating a furry best friend into the festivities? Celebrate them in your wedding welcome bags by packing in a few custom cookies or other treats that feature your fluffy companion.
Don't Forget the Welcome Note
Photo by Jeremiah & Rachel
Adding a welcome note will make any gift bag all the more special. Pen or print a note from you and your partner, thanking guests for their attendance. Bonus points if you're able to personalize your message for each attendee.
You can fill your welcome bags with everything from wedding-day essentials to customized gifts as a way of thanking guests for their attendance. You can also include snacks, beverages, and souvenirs that are relevant to the wedding locale—this is especially useful for out-of-town guests.
If you and your partner are footing the bill for your wedding, then it's assumed that you will also be responsible for covering the cost of the welcome bags. Alternatively, if you're splitting the wedding costs with your parents, then be sure to ask ahead to see if they'd be willing to cover the additional expense.
Show your guests that you appreciate them by including everything from practical items like sunscreen and sunglasses (if it's a tropical destination ) to local maps and guides, and even a keepsake canvas tote that can double as a memento of your day.
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