Bomboniere ideas for your wedding

Bomboniere gifts, or ‘favours’ to your guests on a wedding day have become quite common place over the years, however it’s usually a bit of a task to find bomboniere ideas that really speak about who you are as a couple and that your guests might actually want. As a wedding photographer I’m in a great position to get to experience weddings of all sorts, of couples of all different personalities, so I get to see a whole heap of different bomboniere ideas. I thought it might be helpful if I gave you a bit of a list of the more unique, or practical I’ve seen.

But first, a bit of history behind the idea of bomboniere gifts. The practice of giving bomboniere dates right back to 14th century Italy, when the families of engaged couples swapped small packages filled with sweets as a sign of good fortune. Over time, those horrible sugar-coated almonds became the preferred choice of sweets and are pretty much now the staple of Australian bomboniere gifts… unfortunately. Hopefully this list will give you other ideas! 🙂

Bomboniere ideas

Lolly Bar

This idea I’ve seen a few times at weddings I’ve covered. The idea is that your guests are given a small bag or basket of some description in order to fill up themselves with a selection of sweets. It’s also there to augment your menu during the reception of course 🙂

Bridal party deck of cards

This one can be fun, how about printing off a deck of cards featuring an image of the bride and groom, along with their entourage as King, queen, Jack, etc? Doing this is surprisingly cost effective when done on the scale needed for wedding favours, and you can literally personalise it with yourself!

Home made sauce or Jam

I often mention this to new wedding photography clients as an idea to get the older members of your family involved in your wedding day. It’s common to have members of the family who might want to be involved with your wedding, but cant for whatever reason. Why not let them sort out your bomboniere gifts with their cooking skills? This is right up there with the lolly bar in terms of how often I see this at weddings.

A scratchy lottery ticket

While perhaps not the most personal of bomboniere ideas, an instant win lottery ticket would be very cost effective (or expensive, depending on how much you want to spend) and can create a sense of excitement and even delirious joy in the off chance someone strikes it lucky! Could even double as a last minute gift for your guests to give back to you via your wishing well.

A picture frame

If you happen to have a photo booth at your wedding reception, and if it’s like the SvenStudios photo booth, that prints proper sizes prints for your guests to keep, why not keep them in style with their own photo frame?

Polaroids

As a bit of a segway from the photo frames, perhaps have a few polaroid instant cameras floating about your reception? your guests can pick one up and create their own little keepsake from your wedding.

Individual caricatures

Or how about even having a cartoon artist wandering about drawing everyone? This bomboniere ideas as it always makes people smile and how awesome is having a piece of art to take home from your wedding?

Lego minifigs or small toys

For the child in all of us, a recent wedding I was a photographer at had little bags of toys for every guest, and included were lego minifigs. Both young and old had a blast opening their little lego man and spending time building them while waiting for their entrée to arrive. By the end of the night, every table had a small army of little men running about. It was pretty awesome… Because everything is awesome.

Maxwell Winery Wedding – Julie & Dave

The rolling hills of Mclaren Vale was the setting of Julie and Dave’s wedding at the Maxwell winery. Julie and Dave took advantage of my flexible customizable wedding package to have me be their wedding photographer for 5 hours, this was plenty of time for me to travel to both of their preparation locations between Hackham and Moana, then a small part of their reception at the Maxwell winery.

Preparation photos

Dave was being prepared at their house in Hackham along with his grooms men. I think I surprised them as I turned up, as Dave jumped up and started getting dressed as I walked in. Apparently I wasn’t expected for another hour or so 🙂 Anyway, this drew the boys away from thir horse racing and started getting ready at least. The guys were really laid back, making quips amongst one another and keeping one eye on the horse racing. I don’t think anyone won any money unfortunately.

Julie was being prepared at a rental in Moana overlooking the beach. The setting was a lovely simple apartment which allowed for beautifully soft light which lent itself well to the style of dress Julie chose, along with her wonderfully long veil. Like the boys, the girls were fairly laid back, making sure everything was perfect as they were getting prepared. They even arrived almost an hour early to the ceremony, meaning they had to do a bit of a lap around McLaren Vale.

Maxwell Winery Wedding

The Maxwell Winery in Mclaren Vale is famed for it’s large hedge maze located at the foot of a vineyard covered hill it stands upon. As a wedding venue its facilities are perfect for intimate cocktail receptions. The main attraction for wedding photography is the inside of the old Maxwell winery cellar, however it’s not really that old at all. The winery itself was built in the 1990s after expanding to the location due to good business. I might just point out here that Maxwell winery does produce some very nice wine, but they are also Australia’s largest producer of mead – a honey based drink which is delicious 😉

As Julie and Dave opted to have their wedding ceremony rather late at 7pm, towards the end of their ceremony, the sun as completely vanished, as a result our choices for glamour shots after the ceremony was limited to artificially lit locations, such as the famed Maxwell winery cellar, which was wonderfully lit with candles. I had a lot of fun in here 🙂 The Maxwell Winery cellar is such a unique spot to have photos taken, it even looks as though Maxwell Winery have taken to using some of my photos in their own wedding advertising 🙂 Nice to see they like my photos!

Maxwell Winery Wedding Reception

I was able to stay until the end of Julie and Dave’s first dance at their cocktail reception, which was pretty perfect as I was able to capture all the official events they had planned before I left. The reception was a lovely family affair and you could really feel the love.

I’d like to thank Julie and Dave for having me as their wedding photographer and I hope they enjoy their wedding photographs as much as I enjoyed creating them!

Carclew House Wedding – Vivian & Rohan

You can’t get more well known in the Adelaide wedding industry as venues than Carclew house and the Mortlock wing of the Adelaide state library. So when Vivian and Rohan asked me to be their wedding photographer for their wedding, I could not have been more excited. The locations they chose for their wedding ceremony and reception are absolutely beautiful locations that provide some stunning visuals for wedding photographers such as myself. Both locations really compliment each other well, having been part of the historic institution of Adelaide since their inception. Their interior are where the best photographs were taken, with old world  high class charm.

Preparation

Rohan was prepared for his big day at their house in Torrensville, north of the city. Rohan’s passion for model cars was obviously pride of place in their house, with their tyre-shaped wedding rings being photographed with them, and also their lovely antique furniture creating what was colourful referred to as ‘new tinder pics’ for the grooms men.

Vivian and her entourage were being prepared at a rental apartment in the city which provided some nice open areas for photos, including a beautiful archway of trees which we made good use of for group shots. Everyone was quite laid back and were having a lot of fun.

Carclew House Wedding Ceremony

Carclew House, after having been bought by the Adelaide city council in 1965, is a center to showcase youth arts under the moniker of the ‘Carclew Youth Arts Centre’. The magnificent house however has been standing next to the stoic statue of colonel light overlooking the city skyline since 1901, having been rebuilt on the same land as the original 1840 house by Sir Hugh Robert Dixon, however is was not known as Carclew house until 1908 when the Bonython family bought the land and renamed the estate. When the city of Adelaide bought the house in 1965, the land was originally planned to be the new site of the Adelaide Festival Hall, but this was later built where it stands today on the south side of the river Torrens.

Vivian and Rohan’s wedding ceremony took place out the front of Carclew house, taking advantage of the shadows that were creeping across the gardens so as to keep their guests happy. It also made for a wonderful backdrop to their wedding photos. I’d just like to point out here, that Vivian and Rohan had impeccable taste for their wedding locations, but also thought of amazing details like having a BARISTA on site making coffees for all their guests! Now this was a detail I had not seen before at a wedding and I certainly hope this is the type of thing that catches on!

Carclew House glamour photos

After the ceremony had finished and most of the guests had headed off to the city to wait for the reception later at the Mortlock wing of the state library, we used both the inside and outside of the historic building for some bridal shots.

Mortlock Library Wedding Reception – Vivian & Rohan

After their beautiful ceremony at the historic Carclew house in North Adelaide, Vivian and Rohan held their wedding reception at the magnificent Mortlock library. This place is one of those locations that wedding photographers such as myself dream of shooting at, as the Mortlock Library provides sumptuous backdrops for some really intricate looking wedding photographs. It’s just a stunning space to visit and work in.

While commonly known as the Mortlock library as a wedding venue title, the building is actually now only a wing of the overall State library. The building now known as the Mortlock Wing was opened on 18 December 1884 as a Public Library, Museum and Art Gallery for the colony of South Australia with 23,000 books and a staff of three. In modern times, the Mortlock wing has been sandwiched between more modern additions to the state library and state museum, but the old French Renaissance design of the building is still freely visible and celebrated. The Mortlock library as a wedding venue actually boasts two separate locations to hold wedding celebrations. In Vivian and Rohan’s case we were heading to the larger, and grander of the two galleries which had been set up as a grand dining hall, complete with the marvellous two tiered book shelves lined with thousands of books all propped up on huge masonry columns. It’s really not hard at all to see why the library has been included in the world’s top 20 most beautiful libraries.

Mortlock Library Glamour photos

After arriving at the library after their wedding ceremony at Carclew house, we had a bit of time to make use of the stunning surroundings for a few glamour shots of Vivian and Rohan. The most stereotypical shot at this locations would have to be the bride and groom hanging out doing lovey dovey stuff near the Dent and Sons clock at one end. That clock by the way cost £50 in 1885, which is equivalent to $7,000 today. It’s stereotypical for a reason.. just look at those wonderful leading lines straight through the image lined with the texture of old books. It’;s an incredible sight.

Mortlock Library Wedding Reception

The reception itself was spread right throughout the main hall, with tables from the dance floor at one end to the taxidermy eagle at the other. The head table was located at the center, allowing for easy access for all guests to congratulate Vivian and Rohan. It was a fun night to be a part of, everyone there were really fun loving people, eager to get up and dance, while being a blast to talk to. I had a lot of fun!

I;d like to thank Vivian and Rohan for having me be their wedding photographer on their most beautiful of days. I was incredibly excited to be a part of your wedding, and I hope you like your photos as much as I enjoyed creating them!

Bridal bouquet designs

There is nothing more synonymous with weddings than the bridal bouquet. The bridal bouquet are the flowers the bride walks down the aisle with, to meet her groom. They are in nearly every photo taken on the day by their wedding photographer and they usually reflect some of the personality of the bride herself. Be it the colours, style, even what the flowers are made of, they all speak of the choices and effort the bride has put into planning the wedding day.

Some brides might follow trends in colours, such as the yearly fashionable pantone colour sets that are released each year. Or perhaps they will hop on pintrest to find the most unique style of bridal bouquet available. Perhaps still they might ask a florest for help. In any case, as a wedding photographer I have seen a vast array of different ideas and styles of bridal bouquet you may consider for your own wedding.

Bridal bouquet ideas

Origami paper flowers

One common comment I hear on wedding days are how heavy bridal bouquets often are, they can get very heavy when using real flowers, as they can be quite large in size they hold a lot of water within their stems. It’s also a costly fact, as many brides opt for having a special ‘throwing’ bouquet made so they can throw it during their reception and not hurt anyone. One cunning solution to this I saw at Michaela and Paddy’s wedding where they had a bit of a Harry Potter theme going on, so she made her bridal bouquet out of pages from the Harry Potter books. This allowed for a very light, and easy to carry (and throw) bouquet.

Native flora

Native Australian flora is not something many people think of when designing their bouquet. There’s not usually a lot of different colours, nor big bushy flowers to add, such as roses and more traditional flowers. But when designing a wedding around a more rustic theme, incorporating aspects such as heshen and more rustic decorations, native flora really works well. Tessa and Robbie’s wedding really put this together well.

Beads

Having your bridal bouquet made out of anything other than flowers may seem a little odd until you see the effect it can have on your day. Bek’s bouquet was absolutely unique to her own personality and tastes. Made to compliment their wedding colours Bek’s hand-made creation gave a bit of sparkle and personality to what would otherwise be just another bunch of flowers held by a bride. The great thing about them are that they’d last forever! Very heavy though, so I wouldn’t recommend throwing one!

Draping flowers

By ‘draping’ flowers I mean the bottom of the flower arrangement droops towards the ground, creating a rather nice train-like effect kind of mirroring what a bridal gown might do. Danielle’s bridal bouquet was carefully designed and colour selected to compliment both her own and her bridal party’s gowns. You can see the upside down tear drop of a shape the trailing flowers make towards the bottom of the arrangement. It’s all very elegant and works perfectly with a more traditional style wedding.

Artificial with jewels

The great advantage of having artificial flowers in your bridal bouquet is that you’re able to decorate them however you’d like! As was the case at Monika & Craig’s wedding, where Monkia had her bouquet studded with little gems at the centre of each artificial flower. She was also able to have her flower arrangement small and easy to carry around with her all day as they were as light as a feather.

Local Wildflowers

As with the Native fauna idea above, the local windflowers in display at Belinda and Jono’s wedding really made their native glamour photos stand out, and add a bit of natural green to their overall wedding theme. I like to think that Jono ran about in the early hours of the morning to pick them all for the girls, but I’m sure that diddn’t happen 😀

There are plenty of other ideas out there for your bridal bouquets, I just figured I’d put together some of the more novel designs I’ve come across in my years as a professional Adelaide wedding photographer!