our wedding favors

September 29th, 2010

I’d like to say we had 6 favors given out at our wedding, maybe 7 or 8. A lot, huh? Not all our guests partook in all, but at least we know everyone got a bit of something as a thanks for attending our wedding. With that many favors to talk about, this is going to be a mega post so brace yourselves.

1 – silk folding fans

We purchased 50 ivory and 50 chocolate colored silk folding fans from CraftsNFavors. The colors matched our theme and were just a small gift to keep our guests cool. Thank goodness it wasn’t as warm as we feared it to be–100 fans wouldn’t have been enough for all 360 guests.

Stock image from the website.

We purchased a 100′ spool of purple satin ribbon from the Wedding Channel Store to tie onto the fans. Our names and wedding date were personalized in gold foil.

The fans were lined up in a wicker basket courtesy of Tdang. A sign was placed on the wicker basket’s flap to encourage guests to use the fans.

Detailed shot of the ribbon.

2 – silhouette artist

In late June I had blogged about our silhouette artist, Karl Johnson. Now you get to see him in action at our wedding.

I was the first to get my silhouette cut.

This was his set-up.

Karl at work–deep focus and concentration huh?

The final result! How awesome is that?!

Guests glued their silhouettes into a keepsake book that we get to keep.

Our rings with our silhouettes.

3 – placecard frames

We purchased antique gold placecard frames from Bellisimo Favors. These are available at a good number of online favor stores, but I found them to be cheapest here with free shipping, no tax, and a 5% off coupon code. Purchasing such a large number resulted in bulk discounting as well. Each guest took home their name frame as a keepsake.

Workshop for printing, cutting, and inserting in names. Anh, Quang, Nancy, Jen, Thanh, and Tony helped out.

The work in progress stack of frames.

My cousin, Quang, and his then gf now fiance, Nancy, helping out.

Here’s how they turned out at our sweetheart table.

Again, I think it went very well with our theme and colors.

My new name. In case you’re wondering, the cow means I’m having filet. We also had a mushroom icon for vegetarian and kids icon for kids meal.

You can only start to imagine how arduous this process was. With titles in the Vietnamese language varying for aunts and uncles according to their rank, we had to do a lot of reprinting and restuffing due to errors. Plus with the constant changes to the seating chart I kept having to go back and forth to restack the frames according to table assignment. Glad it’s over!

4 – candy station

Our good friend, Boumy, of Boomies Goodies set up our candy station. We gave her a budget and a short list of our favorite candies and she ran with it.

Bon bons were the must have candy at the station. It’s reminiscent of our high school days where we first started dating when the French Club would sell them as a fundraiser item. There were also egg shaped candies to go with the bird theme.

Reese’s pieces peanut butter cups are also favs of ours. Green and red moss were used to decorate the station along with 2 tree stumps that Nancy worked so hard to find, cut, and make perfect for us.

Boumy carefully chose these canvas sacks to hold the candies and personally made each tag incorporating our love birds theme.

Boumy also made the candy shop sign.

The candy station was such a big hit that neither of us had a chance to see it with our own eyes. I was busy changing into my “beyonce” outfit and rehearsing one last time before the live performance. It was wiped clean by the time I got to see it.

5 – photobooth

This photobooth belongs to Thao Vu Photography (me and Duy). It is our first and was used for the very first time at my wedding. After 4 months, Duy almost single handedly built this from scratch. I didn’t want to spend $1k+ to rent one; instead, we invested the money to build one so we can rent it out for future events.

Guests using the photobooth.

These birds look familiar? You must be sick of ’em by now! hahaha. Tony had also made the sticker with his vinyl cutting machine.

Huge hit! Check out the line!!

A fun one with the bridesmaids.

Me and my dancers and one with Rob.

6 – framed photos

This might be the craziest thing we did for the wedding b/c it was done so far in advance.

On Black Friday 2006 I saw in a Target ad these beautiful frames for sale. I playfully thought, “oh these would be perfect as favors for my wedding!” even though I was no where close to getting married. I suggested it to Rob thinking he’d flatly say, “no, you’re crazy.” In the end he supported my trip to several Targets in the area to pick up ~200 4″ x 6″ frames in gold, copper, brushed gold, brushed silver, and black. We stored them for over 3 years before finally getting to pass them out as favors.

At the time I had no idea what wedding color theme we were going with so we picked up all 5 colors. Going into it black didn’t work so I had given them out as favors at my bridal shower, keeping the other 4 colors for the wedding.

Funny coincidence: a couple days after I purchased these frames I attended my friend, Judy’s, bridal shower. She had these same frames in various colors and sizes as favors for her shower. What a small world! I didn’t peep up about it at the time.

Here are all 4 color frames.

Just so our guests never forget where they got these frames from, we embossed the word ‘thank you’ and our names with wedding date on the backside. Anh, Anne, Julie, Jen, and Huyen helped me during the various states of embossing, alternating the colors, and packing them up.

Anh and Anne helping me out back in April.

The frames newly embossed lying out to dry.

Stacked with protective backing.

Here I am setting the powder on and heating the powder.

We even embossed with 3 color powders of copper, gold, and silver to match the frame itself.

We ordered a custom rubber stamp for our names and wedding date online from RubberStamps. Very affordable and easy! Just submit your design.

Now, not only did guests get these frames to take home but they also got to take it home with a photo taken with us in it. During cocktail hour Duy took photos of us with each of our guests. They were printed on site (using our photobooth printer) and stuffed into the frames in time for guests to pick up on their way out. This is where I really needed the assistance of my coordinator, Kelly Duprat, and her staff to complete for us.

One of the actual photos with a couple of our guests: Mai & Michael.

A photo with my parents.

I would borderline say the #7 favor were the birdcage centerpieces that went to only a few lucky folks who won the drawing at each table. We had purchased mini billiards balls and kept only the #’s 1-10. Placecard frames at each table were numbered randomly from 1-10 on the backside. When we did our table greetings we had a mini lottery to see who would get to take the centerpiece home.

The number we pull out of the bag is the winner! Guests check the back of their name frames to see if they are the lucky winner. It was a lot of fun and guests looked forward to us visiting their table just for this drawing.

Another borderline favor were the table numbers. I totally did not expect people to take home these framed table numbers. We only got back 6 of 36! I really wanted to get back the #’s 7, 31, and 10 to represent our wedding date. Guess that didn’t work out!

These copper 4″ x 6″ frames were on sale at Target. The number design is pre-printed and sold in packs of a dozen numbers (1-12, 13-24, etc).

Now can you evidently see my love for frames and photos? It was all over the place and I couldn’t get enough of ’em so I had to give ’em out as favors and share my love. Our guests were definitely spoiled. That’s just our style though, we spoil the people we love. =)

Images from the wedding courtesy of Kim Le Photography.

the silhouette artist

June 24th, 2010

For our wedding we’ve commissioned a premiere artist of a very rare art of silhouette cutting. Karl Johnson of Cut Arts will be at our wedding for only 2 hours to cut silhouettes of us and our guests. We’ve really enjoyed and respected this art form since our days working at Disneyland and thought it’d be a great treat to have for our guests.

Taking a snippet of his bio from his website:

Karl learned this unique skill as a young boy from his father who had been taught many years earlier by a long time friend of the family.

Karl took to this unusual art form extremely well.  Something he attributes, in part, to having vision in only one eye.  Karl was born being able to see only from his right eye.  Not having binocular vision forces Karl to judge the distance and shape of an object by examining its shadow.  This allows Karl to capture an image in shadow in an uncanny way.

Recently he was commissioned by Marc Anthony to cut an image of his wife, Jennifer Lopez, for her 40th birthday and also appeared at the party to cut silhouettes for guests.  Karl was also commissioned by the new Hong Kong Disney Park to create all the silhouette portraits to be displayed in the silhouette studio on Main Street.

Starting when he was only ten years old and now forty four, Karl estimates that he has freehand cut hundreds of thousands of silhouette images so far in his career.

We’re so excited to have Karl apart of our celebration that day and hope our guests will arrive on time during cocktail hour to have a silhouette made by such a prestigious artist. He will also be available for an additional hour during dinner to cut images for anyone who was missed during cocktail. I guess if he’s a big enough hit we’ll have to keep him there for an hour longer than we had commissioned.

Here’s a silhouette of Rob and I when we worked at Disneyland together in 1998–12 years ago! As you can see…Rob wore glasses back then. Can’t wait to see what Karl cuts of us that day.