A Guide to Wedding Favors and Pricing

by Kate Shaffer

Happy…Engagement Season! Yup, it’s a thing. Lots and lots of people get engaged in December, which means January is abuzz with wedding research, planning, and booking.  And searching for wedding favors.

I’ll admit it. I love a good wedding. The dress, the hair, the flowers, the tables, the food, the bar. It’s ironic, really. I think I might have had the most low-maintenance wedding in the entire history of weddings. But even a girl who likes her whiskey straight up can still admire an elaborate cocktail. A beautiful wedding has that same intoxicating allure.

When I got engaged, I had no idea that weddings were a major industry. That most brides were under huge amounts of both social and financial pressure to throw the biggest and best party of their lives. And that the state that I chose to get married in—Maine—was one of the most popular wedding destinations in the country.

As the owner of a fancy chocolate company, I now have a stake—albeit a small one—in this industry that I knew nothing about 20 years ago when I was planning my own wedding. Beautifully-packaged, hand-made chocolates are a popular favor on their own, or a favorite addition to over-the-top gift bags for members of the wedding party. For couples that choose to buck a few traditions, customized or monogrammed truffles and caramels are an excellent alternative to an expensive wedding cake. And—the best news yet—gorgeous, artisanal chocolates are a surprisingly affordable indulgence to offer your guests.

Whenever we get an inquiry from a bride or groom, one of the first questions they ask is “How much is this going to cost?” It doesn’t matter if their budget is tight, or if the sky’s the limit, people want up-front pricing on the goods and services for their big day. And yet, I hear from couples over and over again, that it’s surprisingly difficult to get clear, transparent pricing on wedding services.

From a business-owner’s perspective, I can understand this. Each couple wants something that is uniquely “them,” and so variations on personalized goods and the cost of those goods are almost endless. But from a customer perspective, I not only want to know exactly what I’m paying, I also want to know why. Below, I’ve laid out our basic pricing structure for chocolate favors—AND, I’ve also tried to explain the WHY of the pricing. If you’re a newly-engaged bride or groom, I hope this helps you navigate and understand not only the pricing of truffle favors, but also the cost of other goods and services you might be looking into. Have questions about chocolates for your wedding? Give us a call!

The basics of wedding favors

CUSTOMIZED BARK

Customized Chocolate Bars for wedding favors

This is the simplest, most straightforward favor option we have. You can pick from any of our 7 varieties of chocolate bark, and we can make a custom label for you. Choose your label from any of the available styles and create your own message. Customized Wedding Bark is $5.75 per piece, and there is a minimum order of 50 pieces.  Check out style options here.

BULK TRUFFLES OR CARAMELS

We offer two basic levels of confections/prices (you can click on the different collections to find out what varieties are in each). We refer to these prices as BULK.

Original Collection / $2.00 per piece

Farm Market Collection / $2.60 per piece

What you get: When you order BULK chocolate, you will receive chocolates of your choice in an unadorned box, tied with twine. We will include one insert in each box that identifies your chocolates. There is no minimum order for bulk chocolates.

As an example, let’s say you order 25 Peruvian Varietal Truffles (Original Collection), 25 Flagship Caramels (Original Collection), 25 Blueberry Black Pepper Truffles (Farm Market Collection), and 25 Northern Apple Truffles (Farm Market Collection).

$100 ($2.00 x 50 Original Collection Truffles) + $130 ($2.60 x 50 Farm Market Truffles)  = $230.

What this is good for:

  • DIY favors. You want fancy, delicious chocolates from an award-winning company, but you want to make your own packaging for them. Or you want to have more control over the cost of the packaging.
  • Dessert: Not having a cake? Want to have dessert passed by your caterer like an appetizer? Ordering bulk chocolate is the perfect solution. We can ship them to you directly, to your caterer, or to your venue.
  • Last-minute favors: We need almost no advance notice for orders of bulk chocolate.

CUSTOMIZED BULK TRUFFLES OR CARAMELS

We can make chocolates that have your initials, wedding date, wedding logo (or anything else you can dream up and provide artwork for) printed on them in colored cocoa butter.  We call this a cocoa butter transfer.

For Customized Bulk there is a minimum order of 250 pieces.

  • Why? We are required to order a minimum amount of customized transfers from the maker, so we pass on that cost to the customer.

There is a one-time set-up fee for customized cocoa butter transfers.

  • Why? We use a graphic designer to translate your artwork into a file that the cocoa butter printing machines can read. She will also size the image so that it fits on a 1-inch x 1-inch piece of chocolate, determine if your chosen color will print well, and adjust the image as necessary. If you use more colors, it costs more. Why? Because the printer needs to run it through the printer a second or third time, depending on how many colors are in your artwork. Printing cocoa butter is a little different than ink. Cocoa butter needs to be melted and cooled to a very specific temperature before it is viable. And each color needs to dry before the next color is printed. Yup, it’s basically magic.

There is an application fee of $0.75 for each customized truffle or caramel.

  • Why? Your special transfer is one that we don’t use on our chocolates, and will probably never use again (unless you re-order for your anniversary). Charging you the $0.75 application fee is merely how we pay for the extra labor involved in putting your customized chocolates into our production queue.

The price breakdown for customized bulk chocolates is:

  • One-color set-up fee: $175
  • Two-color set-up fee: $275
  • Three-color set-up fee: $375
  • Application fee per piece: $0.75

So, in real life, a bulk order of 125 Peruvian Varietal truffles and 125 Flagship Caramels with your sky blue wedding logo would cost

$675 (chocolate) +

$175 (one-time one-color set-up fee) +

$187.50 ($.75 application fee x 250)

=  $1,037.50.

BOXED TRUFFLES OR CARAMELS

We can box your chosen truffles or caramels for you, and tie them up with a bow in your wedding colors. These boxes can come with or without our signature rolled map of Isle au Haut. There is no minimum order for boxed truffles or caramels.

Basic pricing for boxed Original Collection truffles or caramels:

  • 1-piece box: $3.50
  • 2 piece box: $5.50
  • 4-piece box: $8.50
  • 8 Piece box: $16.75
  • 18 Piece box: $35.25
  • 28 Piece box: $54.50

If you would like to mix in truffles or caramels from our Farm Market Collection, just add $.60 for each Farm Market chocolate.

So, again, in real life, an order for 150 2-piece wedding favors might look like this:

150 2-piece wedding favors with one Peruvian Varietal Truffle (original collection) and one Maine Mint Truffle (Farm Market Collection) in each box:

$825 (150 x $5.50)

$90 (150 x $.60)                                    +

= $915.

CUSTOMIZED BOXED TRUFFLES OR CARAMELS

Just as with bulk chocolate, we can customize all or some of the chocolates in your boxes. Or we can customize your ribbon with your names, wedding date, or wedding logo. OR, we can customize the Isle au Haut scroll map with a special message for your guests.

Let’s start with boxed chocolates with a customized cocoa butter transfer.

500 2-piece boxes with one Peruvian Varietal Truffle (original collection) with a custom cocoa butter transfer and one Flagship Caramel (original collection) with no custom transfer:

$2750 (chocolate at 500 x $5.50) +

$175 (one-time, one-color set-up fee) +

$187.50 (cocoa butter transfer application fee at 250 x $.75)

= $3112.50.

Do you want ribbon printed with your names and wedding date? We can order that for you. There is a set up fee of $75 for custom-printed ribbon, and each 100-yard roll costs $105.

So, the above order, with custom printed ribbon:

$3112.50 +

$75 (set-up fee for ribbon) +

$315 ($105 x 3 rolls)

= $3502.50

And, if you want to go all out and include an Isle au Haut map scroll with a special message for your guests, add $1 per box. So,

$3502.50 +

$500

= $4002.50

DISCOUNTS

We start discounting for volume when your order exceeds $500. Our discount schedule is as follows:

$500-$1499: 5%

$1500-$2999: 10%

Over $3,000: 15%

So, the above order with all the bells and whistles, would receive a 15% discount ($600.38) (before tax and shipping, of course) for a total of $3402.12.

So there you have it. I hope this guide helps, and if we can assist you with your wedding favor or dessert needs, please don’t hesitate to give us a call!

And...Congrats!

Kate

Comments

Tiffany Eisenhauer:

Hi there,

I’m part of a non profit organization, The Atlantic Salmon Federation-Maine Council. This is a conservation organization centered around the Atlantic salmon, which once ran wild through the rivers of Maine. However, the byproduct of protecting salmon is restoring Maine’s river ecosystems and all of the flora and fauna that depend on them.

Each year, the Maine council has a fundraising dinner in Freeport. The dinner this year is March 30th. This event brings approximately 120 people from all over Maine and the rest of New England. I have been a member for five years and have become involved on the dinner committee for the last three years. In the past few years, we have tried to use the dinner as an opportunity to showcase local Maine made products and businesses.

We do provide a guest gift each year. This year our gift is an engraved wine glass. In thinking about what would be a good compliment for the wine theme, I thought that chocolate would be great!
I have had your chocolate and think it is superb!

I’m writing to ask if your company would be willing to donate pieces of your chocolate to include in our gift bags? I would also like to include a business card in each bag, so that if the guests want more, they know where to get it!

Please let me know if this is something that you would be interested in, it is a great way to get your company name out to folks who might not be aware of you and to support an organization that is protecting and restoring our natural backyard.

I can be reached by email tiffles2204@gmail.com or by phone 518-524-3606.

Thank you so much for your consideration,
Tiffany Eisenhauer
Maine Council- Atlantic Salmon Federation
Event Committee

Mar 04, 2019

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