Guest baskets have become an integral part of Indian weddings. Whether you are hosting out-station guests in a guest-house, having a resort wedding or organizing a five star hotel wedding – there is a basket idea for each style and price range.
There are 2 steps to making a great guest basket – the items included and the presentation. I wish people wouldn’t just throw in all their items into a cane basket, instead think a little more about the theme and presentation. In weddings planned by professional wedding companies this is usually taken care of, but if you are going the DIY route following are 3 guest basket options with personalized touches.
THE CASUAL BASKET (Under Rs.200)
The first step is to plan your budget per guest basket. For this under Rs.200 basket I have used a paper basket (Rs.15 including glue), 2 bottles of 500ml water (Rs.10 each = Rs.20), A5 size itinerary print (Rs.4), blue paper strip (Rs.2) nuts (Rs.15), toothbrush (Rs.15), toothpaste (Rs.17), cookies (Rs.40), giveaway present key-ring (Rs.35), stickers (Rs.24) and plastic pouches (Rs.10) – giving a total material cost of Rs.197 only.
I decided to go for a blue and green color theme for this basket. For the paper basket I used an A4 sized blue pearl paper and glue dots, check this post for a tutorial on forming this rectangle box. My final basket’s dimension was 19.7cm x 11cm x 5cm. For the itinerary I made the design on Corel Draw, you could use any designing program or ask your card designer to make you one. Next I printed a set of 4 itineraries on an A3 sheet and cut them to size. You can contact your local printer too for designing and a bulk rate.
Since I was just making samples I used 38mm circle print outs with the couple’s logo, but I would advise you to use personalized sticker sheets from Vistaprint which come cut into round sticker shapes. You can source your paper strips from the local paper wholesale market and most of them would cut the sizes too (for people in Kolkata go to Khangrapatti near Sealdah).
First remove the water bottle’s label and fold the paper strip around it. Next using Fevicol glue drops on the overlapping edge stick the strip on itself. Lastly stick the logo sticker on the opposite side of the paper strip joint.
The next step in customizing the guest basket is to label the food and other items. Use sealable clear pouches and transfer your food items from the original packing to them. Next, stick the logo labels in the centre of the pouches. Now just place all items onto the paper basket, keep in each guest’s room and see them smile at the delightful branding of the basket!
THE EXTENSIVE BASKET (Under Rs.400)
The budget per basket for this under Rs.400 basket is as follow: white MDF tray (Rs.80), blue tissue strip (Rs.3), washi tape (Rs.5 per tray), giveaway present vanity pouch (Rs.120), A5 size itinerary print (Rs.4), 2 bottles of 500ml water (Rs.10 each = Rs.20), 4 small packets of chips (Rs.20), toothbrush (Rs.15), toothpaste (Rs.17), chocolates (Rs.40 including mints), 2 packet of biscuits (Rs.20 ), stickers (Rs.32) and plastic pouches (Rs.4) – giving a total material cost of Rs.380 only.
MDF trays can be found with cane basket wholesalers, they usually come in a light brown colour and the vendor can get it painted in white for you. For the giveaway you could get custom vanity pouches made by your local tailor. 1 meter of fabric will give you around 10 pouches, so if you buy printed cotton for Rs.65/mt and lining fabric for Rs.45/mt your fabric cost is approx Rs.11 and zipper cost is Rs.10. The tailor could take anywhere between Rs.60 – Rs.100 for stitching each bag. These pouches make for great giveaways as they are both useful and pretty.
Most of the branding is similar to the casual basket. The additional branding would be of of the biscuits, chocolates and chips. Use washi tape or color cello-tape in the same colour theme as the rest of the basket. Wrap washi tape bunching products of the same category together and use round stickers on the front. Be sure your guests will appreciate such an extensive collection of care items!
THE REGIONAL BASKET (Under Rs.600)
The idea behind the regional basket is to give the guests a feel of the city they are in. I have used a higher price point assuming your guests are staying at a luxurious hotel with amenities like snacks and basic toiletries included. Even if not included in the room price, you can easily reduce the budget for the giveaways and include more food and toiletry items in the basket.
Being from West Bengal I have included a quilted Kantha scarf (Rs.135), a threaded box (Rs.185) and two bhand (clay cups) of mishti doi (sweet curd special to the Bengal region). The scarf can be used by the women and the box by the men. In-case of bulk order you can get the colors and designs customized too. The giveaway products are not limited to these items, for example a Rajasthan wedding can include pair of Jodhpuri slippers for both men and women or a Punjab wedding can include Phulkari pocket squares for the men and light embroidered Phulkari scarves for women.
Add a regional food item to this basket mix. You can ask the sweet shop to customize the packaging in colors of your choice and if needed provided him with the materials too. I used 12 cm x 12 cm paper and a contrast twist tie roll for the mishti doi bhands.
The appearance is important and to make the box and scarf fit into the cane basket, I rolled the scarf to form a floral like wrap inside the box. If needed you could cover this with cellophane paper and also add a thank you note. This is my personal favorite basket idea!
You could support charities by purchasing the giveaways from NGOs, all the giveaways (key-ring, scarf and box) are from an NGO based in Kolkata.
If you are looking for someone to take care of all your wedding branding needs or to get custom orders made, get in touch. 🙂
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