What Irish wedding favors
should you give your guests?
The best Irish wedding favors not only reflect your Celtic pride...
They also show your family and friends how much you appreciate them.
Understanding the history behind this Irish wedding tradition and how it has evolved for the 21st century will help you choose the perfect Irish wedding favors to give your guests.
Giving wedding favors is a longstanding gift-giving custom in Ireland. As is the case with many Celtic rituals, nobody really knows why gifts were originally given to Irish wedding guests, nor can they be exactly sure what wedding favors were given.
But it was customary for the bride and groom to give a small memento of their wonderful day to their invited wedding guests.
Traditional Irish Wedding Favors
One longstanding Irish wedding tradition is to place a small serving of the wedding cake into small boxes labeled with the couple's names and the wedding date, so the guests can take away a small memento of the special day.
Perhaps to make it distinctively Irish you could seal the boxes with your favorite Irish or Celtic symbol. Shop Irish offers very inexpensive Claddagh envelope seals that would work well to seal the gift boxes.
Another traditional way to give Irish wedding favors is to place little charms within the wedding cake itself.
Guests would receive different charms such as a ring, a thimble, a button, a dried pea, and a coin.
So when your guests are served a piece of wedding cake, they'll have fun finding out what they have received.
As with all Irish wedding traditions, the meaning of
these charms is steeped in superstition and folklore.
- If your piece of cake contains a ring, you will be married within the next year.
- If you receive a thimble in your cake, you will live a life of spinsterhood.
- If you find a button, you'll be a lifelong bachelor.
(Perhaps the button-recipients should strike up a conversation with the thimble-recipients!)
- Finding a dried pea inside your piece of wedding cake indicates you will live a life of poverty.
- But getting a piece of cake with a coin inside means you will find wealth!
(Irish wedding tip: To make for lots of happy guests, be sure to put plenty of coins inside the cake, and very few dried peas!)
Modern Irish Wedding Favors
Although the ancient custom of giving wedding favors fell out of favor for a while, it has recently come back into vogue.
As such, although it is not really necessary that you give out wedding favors to all your guests at your reception, the idea of doing so is always seen as being a nice gesture.
Today it is more customary to give your wedding reception guests a small Irish wedding favor when they arrive at the reception as a keepsake of the great day.
If your budget does not allow you to do this, perhaps you could just present Irish wedding favors to your wedding party instead.
Regardless of whether you give them to all your guests or just your attendants, the following items would make excellent favors for an Irish wedding:
- Irish Tea
Although possibly more famous for other beverages, Ireland is actually well known for the quality of its tea. You can have authentic Irish wedding tea delivered right to your door. One favorite brand, Barry's Gold Blend, is available online at Shop Irish or Amazon, direct from Barry's. Barry's specializes in high quality tea sold from its original shop in Cork. As an extra special idea for an Irish wedding favor, you might want to consider wrapping some Irish tea in a nice sachet of Irish linen.
- Irish Linen
If you don't want to wrap up tea in Irish linen, consider giving each of your guests a nice piece of Irish linen. Here you can give each of your guests some much sought after Irish crochet, Kenmare lace, Limerick lace, Carrickmacross lace, or Yougal lace. Any of these would make fabulous Irish wedding favors.
- Irish Chocolates
Or perhaps you could give your guests a wedding favor of Irish chocolate. One idea is to give them a selection of award-winning Butler's Irish handmade chocolates. But even if you can't afford luxury chocolates such as these, any chocolates in Irish Celtic shapes (like the Claddagh, the Celtic cross, or the Celtic eternity knot) would make excellent Irish wedding favors. Favors To Treasure offers several chocolate wedding favors with Irish and Celtic designs.
Charmingly Chocolate has several Irish wedding favor kits for guests with a sweet tooth and a craving for chocolate. My favorite is the Irish Claddagh Lolli Favor Kit. Each kit includes one lolli, a 12" strip of organza ribbon and one clear cellophane bag. Your kit arrives with step-by-step instructions so assembling your favor is easy, and your presentation is picture perfect.
Another option would be to give mints as Irish wedding favors. You can buy Colleen's Chocolate Peppermints from Tasty Irish Treats in 8-ounce bags.These delicious peppermints are individually wrapped in green foil and imported directly from Ireland.
- Irish Music
One emerging trend is to give CD's with Irish and Celtic Music to your wedding guests or attendants. My husband and I gave our attendants copies of "Riverdance" and Enya's "Paint the Sky With Stars", because this music was such a special part of us falling in love. Or perhaps your guests might prefer more traditional Irish music, like that of the legendary Celtic harp.
Check out my Celtic harp resources
for my short list of favorite Celtic harp CD's.
More Wedding Favor Ideas Online
The Printed Candle Company offers custom Claddagh glass favorlights with votive candles. A votive version of your favorite claddagh design comes personalized for your guests with your names and wedding date.
Favors Direct has a silver shamrock paperweight wedding favor. Giving this handsome, silver plated shamrock brings the luck of the Irish without the muss and fuss of kissing the Blarney Stone.
Tender Seed Company has several unique Irish wedding favors
The Tender Seed Company has been providing personalized flower seed favors and gifts for weddings and baby showers for five years. Their unique favors are made-to-order, by hand, but they aren't afraid of rush orders. In fact, their customer service consistently goes above and beyond most online merchants.
My Wedding Favors
Not only do they have Irish wedding favors, this site offers a very large selection of elegant wedding favors and unique wedding favor ideas. Worth checking out...
Looking for great wedding favors? Wedding Favors to go delivers unique wedding favors to your door step. 110% price guarantee!
Although I could not find Irish or Celtic wedding favors, this site provides one of the largest selections of unique and elegant wedding favors on the web.
As you set out on one of life's greatest journeys, show your family and friends how much you appreciate their support and the effort they make to share your special day by giving them unique Irish wedding favors.
Whether you use the tradition of placing charms inside the cake or you go with more modern ideas, the important thing is to show your Celtic pride by giving wedding favors with a distinctive Irish touch.
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