It’s the week before your dream destination wedding this summer. You’ve booked a spectacular seaside venue out of town for the ceremony. You and your fiancé have gone ahead to prepare for your rehearsal dinner. And now, in a couple of days both sets of parents, the wedding sponsors, best man, maid of honor, and the rest of the entourage will be driving over as well. Time to panic? Not at all! It’s time to put together delightful “goody” beach buckets to welcome your arriving guests.
What You Will Need:
- blue plastic buckets (or tin ones spray-painted blue)
- great gift items that any out-of-town visitor would appreciate
- pretty organza packaging
- specially selected items for a personal touch
- lots of creativity (a bucketful, in fact!)
Putting the Gift Packages Together
1. Select a pretty summer color palette: When considering the presentation of the buckets, let the beautiful colors of a summer beach serve as your inspiration. Plus, color immediately sets the tone of your gift. Think of aqua, sea blue, or pastel blue accented with neutral tones of tan or brown. For our beach bucket, we chose a cheerful skyblue piece.
2. Basic bucket goodies: All of your gift buckets can contain standard treats like chocolate truffles in a woven heart box, scented seashells in an aqua organza wrap, a sea-scented bar of glycerin soap, and a bottle of soothing body lotion. Be sure to incorporate unique items that are also practical and reflect the theme and location of the event. For example, if the wedding is by Cape Cod, then consider putting in goodies such as saltwater taffy, Cape Cod Potato Chips, oyster crackers, and chocolate-covered cranberries.
3. Thoughtful add-ons: With your guests looking forward to lots of fun in the sun during their stay, you may want to toss in thoughtful beach necessities as well. Some sensible choices would be a face towel, sunscreen spray, and a bottle of sparkling water. For some edible treats, add fresh fruit such as apples or bananas, crackers, trail mix, and an energy bar as tasty snacks. If the wedding is being held in a special tourist destination, you may also want to provide guests with local maps and brochures.
4. Personalized surprises: Now, here’s where your creativity and true graciousness come in! Delight each guest with a unique gift you’ve included in his or her bucket alone—a heartfelt way of saying, “We’re so glad you’re here to share our wedding day!” You may also consider placing a special handwritten note on a lovely note card with a beach motif. Tuck each card in the buckets for a lovely personal finish.
Some gift ideas for friends and family:
- For Dad, it could be that bestseller he’s been meaning to read for years, but never found the time to enjoy.
- For Mom, perhaps earrings made from local pearls or an elegant prayer rosary.
- For an aunt who loves to cook, packets of special spices found in the area.
- For the best man, a voucher for his first scuba diving lesson.
- For each bridesmaid, different shell accessories such as a wristlet with a lovely shell brooch to remember this wonderful destination wedding.
5. Where to present the buckets: You can present these goody buckets in several places: as a welcome gift in each guest’s hotel room (laid out on the guest bed with a thoughtful note), at the hotel lobby where the reception staff can formally greet each arriving guest with a gift bucket, or at the wedding reception itself on a gift and favor table. For a truly personal touch, they can also be personally hand delivered at the hotel by your bridesmaids or groomsmen.
Once you’ve included all the goodies, finish your gift buckets with flair. All it takes is some twine around the handles, a ribbon in sandy gold, and perhaps a seashell or two. Tuck in a special note of thanks signed by the two of you, and you’re all set to welcome your guests!