It's common to give small tokens of thanks to the officiant, bridesmaids/groomsmen, and others who have helped out.
What I Did:
- The officiant was given a wristwatch with an old-fashioned hearse on it, obtained from the National Museum of Funeral History. There's a picture of it on the Officiant Costume page.
- The matron of honor was given all of the jewelry and accessories (plus the handmade dress) she wore for the ceremony.
- I liked the Victorian tradition of placing "fortune" charms in the cake (the meaning of the charm you find is supposed to tell your future), but gave it a Halloween twist. I attached a length of black ribbon to each charm and put them in a doll-sized wood coffin I found on eBay. Our female relatives and a few special guests each chose a ribbon and pulled it to see what charm they received. The meanings of each were:
- Anchor - Hope and Adventure
- Horse Shoe, Clover, or Wishbone - Good Luck
- Heart - True Love
- Flower or Fleur De Lis - Blossoming Love/Love Will Flower
- Key - Happy Home
- Ring - Blissful Marriage/Next to Marry
- Scissors or Thimble - Independence
- Teddy Bear or Rocking Horse - Next to Have a Baby
- Crown - Wealth
- Create a one-of-a-kind gift by packing the cranium of a plastic skull with various treats. See the Guest Gift page in the Projects area for a how-to.
- Mattel makes several Halloween-themed Barbie dolls, including a Morticia and Gomez Addams gift set, which might be a nice thank-you for the flower girl.
- Depending upon the age of the ringbearer, he might like a teddy bear in a Halloween costume (available from several different retailers) or something thematic like Hasbro's Queasy Bake Oven or Mattel's Creepy Crawlers Workshop.
- If your bridesmaids are adventuresome, they might enjoy a collectible Living Dead Doll, each of which comes in its own coffin, along with a death certificate.
- A stuffed black cat, ghost, or pumpkin might be a little less intense, while still maintaining the theme.
- Give your groomsmen a thematic book, such as a collection of classic ghost stories or a history of burial practices. The Museum of Funeral Customs has a nice selection to choose from.
- There are many thematic decorative items for the home, such as soft-sculpture pumpkins with a harvest motif, or hammered-brass jack-o'-lanterns.
- Pair decorative votive candle holders with themed scented candles, such as those from Dark Candles, which include scents like "Dracula," "Crypt Moss," and "Harvest."
- Give attendants or guests Halloween-themed flower pots (either shaped like ghosts or witches' hats or painted with a jack-o'-lantern face) with a small houseplant. For added effect, choose either an unusually-shaped plant or select one with a Halloweeny name. Some ideas are:
- Snake Plant (Sanseveria trifasciata)
- Devil's Ivy (Epipremnum aureum)
- Dragon Tree (Dracaena draco)
- Bleeding Heart Vine (Clerodendrum thomsoniae)
- Bat-Wing Alocasia (Alocasia amazonica)
- Snakeskin Plant (Fittonia verschaffeltii)
- Black Magic Cordyline (Cordyline terminalis "Black Magic")
- Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum "Vittatum")
- Monstera (Monstera deliciosa)
- Wart Plant (Haworthia margaritifera)
- Rattail Cactus (Aporocactus flagelliformis)
- Ghost Cactus (Cephalocereus senilis)
- Medusa's Head (Euphorbia caput-medusae)
- Carrion Flower (Caralluma burchardii)
- Spider Orchid (Brassia)
- Dracula Orchid (Dracula vampira)
- Carnivorous Plants, such as Venus Flytrap (Dionaea muscipula), Pitcher Plant (Sarracenia), Sundew (Drosera), or Butterwort (Pinquicula)