How To Create The Perfect Bridesmaid Box + Proposal!
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One of my favorite moments of 2017 was easily my bridesmaid proposals, that is why today I am excited to share my creative process on how it all went down to help you create the perfect bridesmaid box and proposal!
I get constant questions and emails about how I created my boxes, my process, and where I found everything so I figured it would be easier to create a post basically outlining everything so you and your girls can have the best moment ever.
How To Create The Perfect Bridesmaid Box + Proposal:
Since I have 11 girls, it is easy for things to add up quickly. I knew I wanted each girl to feel extra special so I started from that point while keeping in mind I would have to times everything by 11.
It’s safe to say my idea didn’t come alive in a day. I want you to understand this took months of planning and it developed into something totally different from where it started. With that being said, I am well aware of how extra I am and in no way do you need to follow my process or even recreate it but I wanted to share what I did step-by-step for those who were asking and to help those who may have been afraid to ask.
[ If you want to skip this next part and jump to the step-by-step notes, I won’t be offended but you may find some of my next tips helpful and they make spark some ideas. ]
It started as a simple a box that I wanted to fill with cool and unique items. I knew I wanted to use a box that not everyone used and everywhere I looked, 11 boxes added up to be super expensive so I took to the internet. I also wanted to make sure my MOH’s box was a little different and had a few more items than the rest of the girls. I was pleasantly surprised to find quite a selection on PaperMart’s website.[You can find the Hot Pink boxes I used here.] They have a huge variety and their prices are great. I love that you could order in bulk [big or small amounts]. They also shipped in a timely manner. Anyways, slowly those pink boxes transformed into the elaborate video proposal that you guys saw a few months ago.
After I finally found my boxes, I knew I wanted to personalize the proposals with photos. It started out with a just a few photos and by the end, each packet was about 15-20+ pages, full of pretty much every photo we took together and even our first Facebook conversations [It was popular to actually write on your friends ‘walls’ back in the 2006-2010 era]. I wanted to show the girls the journey of our friendship and how much I appreciated everything we had been through. The only mistake I made with this, and it was a costly one, was using premium photo paper and not realizing how much ink cost. I used the best brand of photo paper because I didn’t know how much I would be printing and how much ink it would take. I went through a minimum of 5 cartridges so if you do opt to add something similar into your proposal please know, it is okay to use the staples brand of photo paper [much cheaper] and that ink will become a factor or get a professional [like staples] to print the pages for you. After I create the photo packets I knew I wanted to put them in a folder-like packet that wouldn’t cost a ton. I found some large white mailing envelops on Amazon that would fit the packets. I also decided to purchase a Cricut [because hello semi-pro life] because I no longer wanted to buy things on Etsy that I knew I could create myself. So I picked one up and started learning. The first project I made was the name tags I put on top of each box and I loved them! Ps- if you don’t own or want to buy a Cricut, that is totally normal. I still purchase things off Etsy all the time but now I know that if I want or need something I can also just make it too.
It wasn’t until after I started creating the boxes and packets that I realized I wanted to individually ask each girl. Like I said, I really wanted to make it special and for me taking the time to meet with each girl and ask them felt special to me. The con to this was that it took MONTHS! A few of my bridesmaids live out of state and one had a royal Indian wedding so I had to wait for them to be available. I also asked each girl not to share pictures of their boxes. That one kind of hurt a little because I wanted them to be excited but at the same time I didn’t want to ruin the surprise for the other girls. I told them they could share the outside of the box but just not the inside with the goods. It actually turned out to be a bit fun, and in the middle of some of the proposals, some of the girls just couldn’t wait to get to the end to see the box because they saw pictures but didnt know what was inside.
Backtracking a step, before I actually asked each girl there is a lot more to this process, so, after I decided to ask the girls individually, I decided I wanted to film the proposal. Yes, some of them wanted to kill me, but in my defense, I tried to make sure they thought we were going out somewhere so they would be decently dressed and made-up. 🙂 I wanted this to be something the girls and myself could remember and replay over and over whenever we wanted. Okay, it was mostly for me, but I really think the girls were happy with the final product and since there was so much going on I wanted them to be able to actually remember what happened.
After I started printing the packets, I decided to add a few things. I added a personalized note telling them why they were so important to me and why I loved having them as a friend and in my life. I ended the packet with a question but not the question they thought was coming. I left off by saying I had a question to ask them and then handed them the puzzle. I wanted to do something a little different which is why I selected the puzzles. I thought it would be a cute way to ask but honestly, the girls got either very competitive with winning or very overwhelmed [as you saw in the video]. It was still fun and it was one of my favorite parts of the proposal. The balloons were honestly just something to attach the puzzles too. They were from the dollar store. I also added the box bride tribe message and the save the date card just so they knew what day the wedding was.
After the girls completed the puzzle then I wanted to give them the boxes. That is when everything came full circle for me and I thought of the proposal process. I decided I would start by giving them the packet which prompted them to do the puzzle/me asking the question, and followed by a box of goodies if they said yes. Thankfully no one said no haha.
Then I had to think of where to ask each girl. This was probably the hardest part and as you saw a lot was done in public places like parking lots and NYC streets but it was fun and the girls weren’t expecting it. My only downfall [aside from the overpriced photo paper and ink], was needing extra cookies. Since it took a long time [months] to ask each girl, the original and adorable cookies I ordered were probably stale by the last few boxes so I had to bring backup cookies. The girls didn’t care but I did so if you can, don’t spread this out over months and months of time.
Hacks on how to save money:
- Dollar store saves lives: I purchased several things from the dollar store like the box fillers, balloons, and even the DIY rose gold nail kits I create. I literally just took rose gold spray paint to the holder and it made the kits look 100x better and more luxe.
- Bulk purchases [if you have a lot of bridesmaids]: if you can find products or websites that do bulk purchases that is such an easy and simple way to save money. Even if you have 4 or 5 girls, it helps to save. You can either add more goodies or better quality items.
- Discounts available?: Sometimes it killed me to wait for a sale because I wanted to get things done and I was eager to have everything assembled but sometimes waiting for a sale at Michaels or whatever store you are using is so worth it.
- DIY: Don’t be afraid to do it yourself. So you want cute name tags but don’t want to spend $20 bucks? Go to your local craft store and purchase some glittery stickers or paint or whatever will make your box or proposal beautiful.
- Ebates [random but it doesn’t hurt to get money back…ever!]: Anytime I buy something online, I check Ebates first. You literally just have to click a button and you get cash back if that store participates. Genius.
- Research: nowadays there are so many variations of things. If you find something you love but it is way out of your price range or budget, do some research and find a very similar product. For example, the boxes I kept looking for were seriously overpriced. For 11 girls, it would have cost me over $50! That’s $50 I could have spent on something else to put in the box [or ink lol] but seriously I did some research and found the amazing website that is Papermart so do your research.
- Create: I love to make my own graphics and designs with PicMonkey. Even if you aren’t a skilled graphic designer you can still make cool things. They have great templates too that you can make your own. I created my packets, bride tribe sign, save the date insert, and more using PicMonkey.
Step 1: Decide how many bridesmaids you want to ask and who you want to ask
Step 2: Decide how you want to ask them. Do you want to ask them over brunch? Individually? In small groups? Getting your nails done together?
Step 3: Decide what you want to do. Do you want to create a proposal box? Do you want to make a video? Do you want to use Balloons? Whatever you decide just take into account how many you will need to make.
Step 4: Do you want to personalize it? Adding photos or personalized tags go a long way.
Step 5: What do you want to include? Do you want to include candles, beauty items, cookies, donuts, wine, champagne? Whatever it is, make a little draft of the box or idea for yourself so you can see the whole presentation.
Step 6: Assemble the proposal and set a date(s)!
Step 7: Ask your bridesmaids!
Here is your pin-able:
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Questions? Comment below!