Thursday, July 5, 2012

Wedding Leftovers

After all the fun is done, weddings usually have a lot of leftover food that needs to be distributed.  Many venues have rules against taking food with you because of liability concerns (i.e. food poisoning from leftovers that weren't properly refrigerated).  In my case, I'm free to do with leftovers as I wish.  Which means I'm going to have a lot of leftover cake and desserts to deal with.  I decided to make these leftovers a part of the favor for our guests and let them take the doggy bags home full of our delicious treats.

I didn't want to do a paper plate wrapped in syran wrap and a bag wouldn't be appropriate to put cake in, so I came up with the idea to use pink bakery boxes for all the leftovers.  Pink is one of my wedding colors and since we are having a lot of desserts, it fits in with using the bakery boxes.

I found a fairly large selection of boxes at Paper Mart.  I decided to order a small sized pastry box that pops up automatically.  The automatic boxes are just kind of pushed into shape rather than having to mess with putting the tabs together which I thought would save on time and headaches.

Image from PaperMart

I decided that I wanted to add a little decoration to the box so I began looking around for stickers that I could use on the boxes and the candy bar bags.  I found out that stickers are really pricey especially if you want any sort of personalization (range from 25 cents - $1.00 each!!!).  Because I needed about 300 stickers even at 25 cents each that would be $75 for stickers!!!!  I looked into other options and I decided to purchase a stamp from etsy that I could reuse for future thank you gifts and I could also use for the candy bar bags.  This is the one that I loved because of the doily pattern since I'm using throughout the wedding (doilies are so cheap!  more doily projects to come later).

$30 Stamp from Etsy
Image from Vendor StampOutOnline*

*The ordering process with this vendor was really easy, but the only thing I will say about StampOutOnline is that I requested a handle be added to the mounted block and the vendor promised to add it in for free, but when the stamp arrived there was no handle.  I didn't bother to follow up on the handle and just decided to "make do," but stamping without the handle definitely hurt my hand more.

I also decided to alter the stamp and just have the text written without our names on it so that I could reuse it for future gift giving (depending on the gift recipient, the gift may only be from me or Mr. 3 and not both of us).  I used a stamp pad that I already had from pre-engagement craft projects and I stamped the tops of the boxes for 135 people for a special extra touch while watching Toddlers and Tiaras.

Stamped Pastry Box

To finish everything off, I also found pink bakery tissue at Paper Mart to line the boxes. The cake will be cut early in the night, which means that the servers can box up the leftovers and have them ready to hand out to guests as they leave.

Here's a breakdown on cost-

Pink pastry boxes - $47.20 for 250 boxes
Pink bakery tissue - $8.20 for 1000 sheets
Stamp - $30 (which will be used on the candy bar bags and also reused for future projects)
Ink Pad - Free (already owned)
Total: $85.40

Not exactly a small cost, I know....but it helps eliminate a problem and keeps beautiful, yummy, fondant-free cake and desserts from being thrown in the trash and it is doubling as a part of the favor we are giving our guest.  If you breakdown the cost of these materials, it's about 63 cents per person (based on 125 guests and 10 children).  If you go with an all white box and liners, which are slightly cheaper at Paper Mart, you can save a little bit of money and you can add your wedding color through your ink choice for your stamp and perhaps a bit of baker's twine to tie the boxes together.  Also, bear in mind that these supplies were ordered in the smallest quantities available, and I will have a lot of extra.  However, these is extremely affordable if you really do need boxes for all 250 guests (about 34 cents per person).  I'll be using the leftover boxes that have been stamped for future baked good presents and the blank ones I'll use to package up small gifts like jewelry and cosmetics for Mother's Day, birthdays, Valentine's Day, etc.  This was also a really quick wedding project, it only took me about an hour to stamp the boxes I needed.

What do you think?  How are you dealing with leftovers?