With wedding season upon us, I find myself looking at someone’s registry nearly every week – which, truly, is not my favorite way to give gifts. I know, people register for things they definitely want or need – so I’m fine with buying part of the happy couple’s gift from the registry, but I also like to add a little personal touch. My friends Dan and Melanie, who are getting married this October, had a shower this past weekend, and the other ‘maids and I decided to put together a little wine-themed present for them. This gift involved something from their registry (a beautiful Pottery Barn wine rack), some items NOT from their registry (a set of Kate Spade Old Fashioned’s glasses, etched with “his” and “hers,” and a picnic wine tote from World Market), and some more personalized touches, including an engraved cutting board with their names and wedding date and a Marriage Firsts Wine and Whiskey Basket.
The Marriage Firsts Wine and Whiskey Basket was probably my favorite part of this present, because it’s a way for the happy couple to enjoy all of the exciting firsts they’ll encounter over their first year of marriage. It’s also a really fun project to put together!
What you’ll need:
- Basket (large enough to fit many bottles of wine)
- 6-7 bottles of wine or other beverages (I chose a few bottles of wine plus one bottle of whiskey because of the preferences of the couple involved)
- Tags (certainly possible to DIY these tags, but my roommate found a cute packet of chalkboard tags at the dollar store, so I chose to use those instead)
- Chalkboard pen or other decorative pen for the tags
- Twine and/or decorative ribbon
Not pictured (but still needed!):
- Styrofoam or tissue paper
- Shredded tissue paper
- Wine glass tags: I had a pack of cute wine glass tags (to hand out at parties so people can identify their wine glasses) hanging around the house, so I figured they would make a cute addition to the wine and whiskey basket!
Step #1: Compile all materials, including all of the bottles you want to include in the gift and the “firsts” you want to represent with those bottles. When making these choices, ask yourself the following questions:
First – what kinds of beverages does the happy couple like? Do they like wine? Do they like whiskey? Do they like beer? There are a lot of different options here, and this is one of the most fun and creative parts of this whole project – and certainly the best way to personalize this gift for the couple receiving it!
Second – what kind of “firsts” do you want to include in the basket? If you come up with some of the “firsts” you are planning on including prior to purchasing the beverages, it’s a cute idea to find wines/whiskeys/beers that correspond to those “firsts.” For instance, I chose “First Fight” as one of the bottles in the basket, and I thought this wine was incredibly appropriate:
Not all of my tags were quite as appropriate for the bottle that corresponded with it, but what can you do?
Step #2: Write out the marriage “firsts” tags you’ll be including in the bottle. There should be one “first” for each bottle you’ve included in the basket.
If you’re feeling ambitious and your tags are larger than the ones I used, you could experiment with fancier designs than I chose to use. You could even opt to include a short note or description of why you chose to include that first or why you paired that first with that specific bottle!
Step #3: Tie the tags to the bottles. The tags I used weren’t quite long enough to wrap around the entire bottle, so I used some extra twine to help with this part.
Step #4: Organize the bottles in the basket. Since you’ll most likely be traveling with this basket (to a bridal shower or even just bringing it to the happy couple’s abode), you will want to make sure that the bottles don’t clank together too much. To avoid the clanking, I used some sheets of styrofoam (I had some saved from packaging from online purchases and whatnot) in the bottom of the basket and wrapped around each bottle.
Then, to cover the styrofoam and make the basket a little more decorative, I topped it off with some shredded tissue paper.
Step #5: Top with a fancy bow, stick the wine tags in the basket, and hand it off to the happy couple!