If you're planning a destination wedding, you may be wracking your brain over what to do for welcome bags for everyone. Thankfully, around the time I was planning my Hawaiian wedding, I ran across an article with the perfect inspiration for my own welcome bags:
Modern Bride's welcome bag included:
* A woven bag
* Bottled water
* Cooling gel and sun block
* Maui guide book
* First aid kit
Now, this welcome bag had some good suggestions, but it was also important to me to use as many local products as possible. (I strongly believe in supporting the local economy of both Maui, and the other Hawaiian islands that I love.) So why shouldn't I try to use all local products? So with the article as a starting point, I started a search for most of those products pictured above, but made locally.
Here is what a thousand hours of online research + months in Hawaii yielded -- the perfect "Welcome to Maui" gift bag products:
Lauhala tote bags: I discovered the online Ailana Kai catalog. Their large Lauhala Tote Bags were perfect! But, depending on how many products you're planning on including, they make bags in all sizes.
A map of the island: We grabbed a bunch of driving maps from the airport when he arrived. They were free and EXCELLENT for tourists. We also included a hand-made map of all the wedding event locations.
Sunblock: Of course we had to use Maui Babe SPF 30 sunblock! Ideally I would have loved to give everyone a large bottle, but they're very expensive. So we contacted the sellers and they hooked us up with small 1 oz bottles.
* We found Wow-Wee chocolate bars -- the most delicious chocolate bars ever! These are made on the island and come in eight different flavors. My favorite is chocolate and potato chips.
* Speaking of potato chips, we HAD to include a bag of Maui-style potato chips. They're my favorite snack on Earth. I have had them shipped from Maui to my apartment in West Hollywood. I don't care, there's nothing like them.
* To wash it all down, we also included Hawaiian Springs water, from the big island.
Mini first aid kit: Okay, this wasn't locally sourced. But I just had to include it because, you know, accidents have happened to us before while on vacation.
Fans: Also, not locally sourced, but from Koyal Wholesale.
Lip balm: I swear by Oils of Aloha Kukui lip therapy. I buy them in bulk when I go to the islands, and they're perfect for the girls and guys to use.
And here's how it looked when it was all packed up:
Of course, I'm always open for more advice or suggestions for affordable local products to make the best Welcome to Hawaii bags. So if anyone out there has any more ideas feel free to leave 'em in the comments!