Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Etiquette Shmetiquette: My Mom Wants Favors and I Don't!

Today is Etiquette Shmetiquette day! 

When planning your wedding, you may find that everybody and their mother (literally!) has an opinion about what you should be wearing/serving/buying/etc... Especially when you tell them you want to have an environmentally friendly wedding.

We all know we're supposed to bite our tongue and act as the compromising diplomat, but even Dear Abby wasn't perfect. Here I'll give you a common etiquette question, Dear Abby style, but with an alternative, less cultured, answer.

Dear Eco & Elsie,

I don't want to give favors out because I'm afraid they'll just end up in the trash, but my mother is horrified by the idea of not having them. What should I do?

- Amanda (Favor-less in Texas)

What you want to say: Threaten her with elopement and then, in your most exasperated tone, tell her that you'll only agree to give out these useless trinkets if she can sufficiently explain the series finale of Lost, which has left a vast and darkening hole in your life since 2010. 

What you should probably say instead: "I really appreciate your concern for our guests mom, but this wedding should represent the values that my future husband and I share. Contributing to waste in the environment is something I am deeply against." Then offer to look up more eco-friendly favors online, such as edible goodies or plantable items. 

Got an etiquette question? Feel free to send it to and don't hesitate to include your own "what you wish you could say." 


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Lissa (Bellenza) said...

Funny but true! Hope Mom comes around and lets Amanda make the choice. :-)

Lisa V said...

I love the idea of eco-friendly favors. I always feel so guilty taking a favor that I know I'm only going to throw out, so sometimes I leave them on the table. But I've never left a favor that I can eat! ha ha ha


Agreed... I think that using either edible favours or none at all is a good bet. An alternative is to make pretty paper envelopes of sweet seeds that will grow into flowers that are local to your area. If you can find a garden shop in your area that provides locally grown (preferably organic) seeds, you can either relabel them or dump together a bunch that have similar growing needs (water and sun etc) and make a "bouquet" that you can then dump into those little kraft paper envelopes. It is super easy to put the tiny envelopes into a pretty envelope and then all the growing instructions are already there. Most of the time seed packets from local farms already have that handmade look and you don't have to do much to prettify them. Or talk directly to the farm if you can find one and see if they will do you up some envelopes from their stock or if you can buy in bulk. There are SO many sweet sayings about planting seeds and love growing that you can incorporate.

My friend actually collected seeds from plants the summer before, from all the wild local plants she could find, then did up the envelopes herself by having tiny stamps made with the info. They were super pretty and she laid them all out in the rows of each type on a table so people could pick out the ones they preferred. At the very least, if they DON'T get used, at least they decompose, or maybe they get regifted to somebody who will grow them. At least it might keep your mom happy! And the flowers will keep giving if you pick ones that either reseed or perennials. I thought it was a great idea myself... :) Good luck!