The Time of Their Lives – Creating A Personalized Experience For Your Guests

I recently read an interesting statistic from The Knot 2015 Real Weddings Study. While the average guest count at weddings is generally going down, overall spending is going up. The current average spent per guest is $237, up from $194 in 2009. One of the major reasons this is happening is because couples are trying harder to create a unique personalized experience, something that is a true reflection of themselves, to be remembered after the last song has been played.

There are so many different cool ways couples can really make the day their own. Especially with the help of Pinterest, a whole new world has certainly been opened. Here are some of my favorites that I’ve seen so far:

Signature Cocktails

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Photo: Sep + Stell

By far one of the easiest ways to personalize the evening, and also save some money on your bar bill, this trend will never go out of style. Feel free to each pick one that represents each of you the best, or go in together on an idea to symbolize your new love. Extra points if you dress it up with a special name and nice swizzle straws! As an added bonus, providing just one or two cocktails means that you really don’t have to go all out on a full bar while still having options for everyone.

One-of-a-Kind Guest Book

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Photo: George Street Photography

Yes, you could pick up a traditional guest book at any wedding or party store that all your guests line up to sign at the beginning, then be done with it. But is there anything to do with it afterward that isn’t throwing it in a drawer? Better ideas I’ve seen include signed canvases, jenga blocks, puzzle pieces, and even a piñata! All of these can either be a fun display later or at least used for a great experience. So please ditch the feathered pens now!

Favors you actually want to take

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Can we please all agree to just stop with the matchbooks and mints that are a complete waste of money? I’ll be the first to argue that there really is no need for favors these days, unless you’re doing something cool. Then by all means, go for it! My favorite that I’ve seen so far is lottery tickets, enclosed in an envelope with a cute saying like “Wishes for riches from the new Mr. & Mrs.!”. I’ve also seen small herbs, tea bags, and even salsa. Just aim for something quirky and useful and you should be safe.

Dessert Bars

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Cake is great but it doesn’t need to stop there! Dessert can be whatever you want, including but not limited to donuts, candy, pie, ice cream, or even gourmet s’mores. While people tend to want to stay fairly safe with dinner, dessert is less risky and more fun. Setup a great display and get guests all sugared up to have more energy on the dance floor!

Feel free to steal any of these for your own use, and let me know what else you’ve done to make your day special. Some things are just worth the price!

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