I once read in a magazine that all guests really want is a favor they can eat, and, after a moment of picturing my Great Aunt holding a shot glass with “Bottoms up! Jay and Renee July 2010” engraved on it, I realized that that was pretty good advice.
I did a web search and quickly found out that 100 custom-wrapped Hershey bars would cost up to $275 plus shipping! I guess that’s not terribly expensive in the grand scheme of weddings, but if there is a way to DIY something for less, I’m going to do it. Plus, I’m sorry to say, the designs seemed to be a bit…um…kinda tacky? Is that the best way to phrase that? Let’s just say they weren’t what I had in mind. I should make a disclaimer that I’m sure there are less expensive offers out there and I’m sure that there are better designs, but brides are busy and if it’s not within the first three Os of the Goooooooogle search, I’m moving on :).
So how do you get exactly what you want for a lot less? If the title didn’t give it away yet….DIY!
You’ll need chocolate, a computer, double stick tape, and a printer (optional).
For these, I used 2.5-ounce Hershey king-sized bars because they were a good size and were double-wrapped, i.e., when I removed the brown wrapper, they were still sealed in the silver. I picked up a couple boxes from Sam’s Club ($16 for an 18-piece box).
Start by sliding off the brown wrapper. It should come right off, leaving the silver wrapper.
Next, carefully open the brown wrapper. It doesn’t have to be perfect, it’s just to measure for the wrapper design.
Measure the length and width so you know how large the custom wrapper needs to be. The measurements don’t need to be perfect either.
This one is just under 6 inches wide. Therefore, 6 inches-wide might hang over the edge a bit, but you can probably shorten the width down to 5.5 inches without a problem.
Don’t forget the length either. There is room for error here too. You can see that this wrapper is just over 5 inches long, so you can probably get away with 5 inches with enough overlap for the tape.
Then, remembering your wrapper size, design you wrapper! I used Adobe Illustrator, but Photoshop, Paint, or even Word would work. However, you may need more sophisticated software for more complicated designs. You could even hand-draw or collage a design and make photocopies!
I started by drawing a 6-inch by 5-inch square and adding stripes, shapes, and the appropriate wording. Make sure any wording is centered, and it will fit fine on the chocolate bar. You may want to leave some “bleed” on the sides. For non-designers, “bleed” is an extension of the design beyond the borders of your limits. The excess is cut off so you’re sure that there are no gaps along the edge of the design.
Now, there are a couple options for printing. I happen to have a laser printer at home that produces a nice shiny result. Before I got a laser printer, I used to take the file to Staples and have them print out copies. You can probably fit two per sheet to cut down on costs. Inkjet printers would also work, but I’ve found that the colors are generally a little duller (unless you use a higher-quality glossy paper).
Once you have enough printed, cut each wrapper out.
Center the wrapper on your chocolate bar, so that the writing is the in correct place.
Flip it over.
Add a little double-stick tape to the top layer of the overlapping wrapper. Scrapbook tape runners work great for this.
Fold the bottom layer up.
And fold the top layer (with the tape) over and press firmly.
Lightly pinching along the edges will help the wrapper stay on and the candy bar lay flat.
Cost for 100 perfectly customized chocolate bars: $109 (including having Staples print 50 full color pages). And, as I’m sure you can figure out from my example wrapper, they’re great for showers too!
If you’re really patient, these could also double as escort cards. Either type the name and table number before printing or leave a blank space to hand-write them.