What is Bomboniere?


What is Bomboniere?

Photo provided by Designer Cakes by Deb!

Bomboniere, or wedding favours are petite gifts that are given as a token of gratitude to quests who attend special celebrations. Today bomboniere feature at many different types of events ranging from birthday celebrations to first communions.

In the context of weddings, the custom has its origins in French tradition where the bride and groom would give their wedding guests small bags of lollies, otherwise known as ‘bon bons’. The tradition spread across Europe and became popular among Italians and the Greek. Thus the Italian word Bomboniere was born.

Traditionally Greek wedding favours consisted of bitter sweet sugar coated almonds known as ‘koufeta’. The almonds were often placed in petite organza bags ensuring that each pouch contained an odd number and they would be served to guests on a silver tray.

According to the Herbal of John Gerard (1957) “[five] or [six] (almonds) taken fasting do keepe a man from being drunke”. The belief that almonds prevent intoxication may have led to their establishment as the traditional wedding favour. The odd number of almonds is said to symbolize the fact that the bride and groom will share everything in life and their possessions will be indivisible. It is further said that if an unmarried woman should place the almonds beneath her pillow while she sleeps her dreams will be filled with thoughts of her husband to be. The five almonds also represent five wishes of health, wealth, happiness, fertility and longevity.

Typically each favour is placed on a table in the place of each guest in ornate bags or boxes which are often personalised with the bride and grooms names and the date of their wedding.

Over time the tradition of wedding favours has evolved and given way to the favour cake or torta bomboniere. A favour cake is an elaborate looking cake comprised of small boxes in the shape of triangles. Each triangle represents a segment of the cake and inside it are sugared almonds and a memo depicting the details of the wedding. The sugar coated almond also features in traditional and Middle Eastern weddings where it is rumoured to be an aphrodisiac.

Select from the list of helpful wedding bomboniere articles below to assist with your wedding planning effort:

Modern Day Bomboniere
Modern day brides and grooms have embraced a number of delectable alternatives to sugar coated almonds, including non-edible Bomboniera... read more.

Edible Wedding Favours
Edible wedding favours are so diverse and can be achieved on a large or small budget! Buying large quantities of your choice favour will often yield significant discounts...read more.

Unique Edible Favours
A simple yet gorgeous wedding favour is a few chocolate hearts wrapped in coloured tin foil that corresponds with your wedding colour scheme. They can be placed in organza bags or spread scattered along the center of the table...read more.

Non-edible Favours
Not every bride and groom wants to give their guests edible favours, particularly as many weddings involve a large sit down meal. Thankfully there are a number of practical favours that are not edible but your guests will still enjoy them all the same...read more.

Children’s Wedding Favours
If you’ve invited children to your wedding you may also want to consider child friendly wedding favours that keep them amused...read more.

Making Your Own Favours
Whether you’re buying packaging or sweets, try to shop online at wholesale prices or ask specialty party stores if they’ll do a discount for bulk orders...read more.

Bomboniere Articles
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