Wedding favours are small tokens or gifts presented to guests at a wedding. They’re usually laid on the table at the wedding reception, next to the recipient’s place card. But where did the tradition of giving little gifts to your guests come from?
One of the earliest refrences to wedding favours comes from the French aristocracy in the 16th century. During a wedding they would give out a box, beautifully decorated with jewels and precious stones, to their guests. Inside would be sweets and other sugary goods. At this time sugar was very expensive, and therefore a luxury good. It was also believed that sugar had health benefits. If you were seen to be giving it away it was a show of your wealth and kindness towards your guests.
As sugar became more affordable, and as people outside the aristocracy were able to afford more luxurious weddings, the tradition of the boboniere began to be adapted. Almonds were placed into boxes, sometimes covered with sugar. The boxes were adapted too, sometimes being hand decorated with ribbons rather than precious stones. Now there are all sorts of wedding favour options, from alcohol to cupcakes! (For alternative wedding favour ideas take a look at our Blog Post.
The tradition of giving 5 almonds has stood throughout the years. They’re commonly covered in sugar to symbolise both the bitter and sweet side to every marriage. Each almond has a different meaning, and in giving the 5 almonds to your guests you’re wishing them
Health, Happiness, Wealth, Fertility, and a Long Life.
Are Wedding Favours Essential?
The act of giving a wedding favour has changed over the years. While most couples still make it a part of their wedding, they aren’t an essential part of the day. If you’d like to give your guests well wishes and thank them for their attendance and friendship then it is a lovely way to do so. If you’re giving favours simply because you feel you should, maybe think twice.