Weddings: 10 Guest Gifts That Make Sense | Knoxville Wedding Photographer

Hi friends!

I must say, one of the smaller yet important details in wedding planning is determining how exactly you want to thank your guests for giving their time and energy to celebrate your love. You definitely don’t have to go for broke with your party favor budget, but I always recommend taking a little time to consider a few options that would really resonate most with your crowd.

My best advice? Pick a gift that your guests can actually use! A truly thoughtful gift is both lovely in presentation and pleasant to use once the person returns home after the festivities come to an end.

Not sure where to start? Here are 10 guest gift ideas that just make sense.

1. Any Kind of Drinking Glass

Pint glasses, coffee mugs, wine classes, mason jars… there are so many routes you can take with drinkware! Plus, it’s super easy to personalize in bulk amounts, keeping costs in check for those larger guest lists. Simple decor like ribbons, florals and tags can give it a wedding vibe when it’s on your reception table, and then your guests can use it and enjoy it pretty much every day after your nuptials.

2. Candles

Who doesn’t love candles? They set the mood of a room, inspire a sense of calm, and just smell so good! They’re also easy to customize for weddings with labels and scents and buy in large quantities for reasonable prices. Although, I would keep the fragrance notes fairly neutral so it’s enjoyable for the entire crowd. Once they’re done burning the candle, they can even clean the jar and reuse it!

3. Customized Matchboxes

A matchbox is the definition of practical. It’s small enough to fit in a traveler’s carry-on bag without concern, it’s useful in the event of a power outage or when you want to light a fun candle, and it’s a blank canvas as far as sharing personalized details from your wedding days goes. You can also buy a huge pack of custom designed matchboxes at a very low price, making them easy to pair with another affordable gift option on this list.

4. Garden Seeds

Throwing a garden party wedding? Keep the theme in your guest gifts! Packets of seeds weigh next to nothing, are pretty when personalized and don’t cost a fortune. Plus, anyone can plant a little herb garden, even if they live in an apartment with limited access to the great outdoors. I love tucking them into mini terracotta pots before handing them out. Such a sweet touch!

5. Coasters

No one likes water rings on their furniture, right? And a personalized wooden coaster can make for a fun conversation starter or a happy reminder of your big day in your guests’ homes. Coasters are a great DIY option for the craftier couples out there, and they are available at great wholesale prices as well. Some even use them in the reception table setting — the part of the seating chart you can take home with you!

6. A Jar of Spices

This one is great for couples with a flair for all things culinary — and for guests who love to cook. You can come up with your own custom spice blend in the comfort of your own kitchen and then package it in pretty corked glass jars for all your loved ones. Add a little ribbon and a note to the top describing the best uses for it, and you have the perfect personalized addition to any spice rack.

7. A Custom Coffee or Tea Blend

Ah, another fun food-focused idea! If you and your partner are coffee fanatics or enjoy a steaming cup of tea in the evening, consider sharing that love with all of your guests. Concoct your very own blend of dried tea leaves or coffee beans and parse it out into pretty little decorative sachets with a note describing the contents for your friends and family members. Every cup brewed from that bag will immediately make them think of you!

8. Handmade Soaps

Every bathroom needs a good bar of soap, and there are so many wonderful vendors (both in your local area and online) who create and sell beautiful organic soaps that make excellent wedding gifts. You can coordinate the color and scent of your soap to your wedding theme or even have your date and initials printed on the top. Just remember my candle note about a neutral scent to keep it appealing to a larger audience.

9. Cheese Boards

Kick the wooden coaster idea up a notch and opt for mini wooden cheese boards! Your guests will be thankful to have a charcuterie platter that’s every bit as pretty as it is practical. And even if they use it to chop vegetables when their standard cutting board is in the dishwasher, it’ll still be used and very much appreciated. Lots of online retailers offer personalization options for a reasonable price, too.

10. A Jar of Jam or Honey

Alright, one more for my foodie friends out there! If you live in an area known for its fresh berries or honeybees, gift that part of your world with guests who otherwise don’t get to enjoy it every day. There’s nothing like a local jam spread or raw honey to elevate a weekend breakfast or simple cup of tea. Not to mention, there are so many “sweet” wedding puns you can use on those labels. Go wild with creativity on this one!

What do you think is the most useful and thoughtful wedding guest gift? Share your ideas with me and your fellow wedding planners in the comments below!

Happy Wedding Planning!
Sarah Keenan, Photographer
Knoxville, Nashville, Asheville
Outer Banks, Tampa, Williamsburg

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meet sarah


I have an affinity to all things light and airy.  I love color, sunshine, romance, and laughter.  I love inspirational quotes, meeting new people, flowers, and the idea of finishing a great book.  My go-to drink is coffee.  My outlet is dance.  And, aallllll of my free time is spent with my crew, including our German Shepherd, Gaia.   

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Hi there!  I am Real Estate Photographer, Sarah Keenan.  Raised in East Tennessee and a proud graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and all that offers runs deep for this gal.  Having worked in photography for over 14 years, I am excited to be back home and working along side folks like you.

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