A message in a bottle never fails to allure: there’s something about the idea of a heart-felt note travelling across the world in order to meet its intended recipient that resonates with us. But messages don’t just endure across vast distances, but also across time as well, and it’s this temporal endurance that Wine for a Wedding is all about.
Imagine being given a large, elaborately decorated box divided into three compartments. Upon each of the respective compartments is written: “open on your honeymoon,” “open on your one year anniversary,” and “open on your five year anniversary.” Within each compartment is a bottle of rich red wine, which will grow and mature as your marriage or union does.
Intrigued by the idea, we caught up with Marc Stitzlein of Wine for a Wedding to find out a little more about how this fabulous idea came about.
For want of a unique gift
Like all the best ideas, Wine for a Wedding is the child of necessity. “A few years back I was in need of a wedding gift, and being a procrastinator with those types of things, found that most of the registry was already spoken for.”
But Marc isn’t the type to let these sorts of hurdles get in the way, and refused to settle for a mundane solution. “I wanted something more creative than towels or a place setting and knew the couple enjoyed wine. As I started to think about it, a bottle of wine seemed like more of a house warming gift so I tried to figure out how to make it more meaningful and substantial.”
The quantity issue was quickly solved by trebling the amount of wine he planned to give. “I upped it to three bottles,” says Marc, adding that he was then faced by the problem of adding meaning to the gift.
“I started to think about the fact wine is one of the few products that you can enjoy years later–such as on a future anniversary. I thought it would be cool if the couple could always have a bottle of wine to celebrate their anniversaries. After looking high and low for a wine box, I could not find one that had separate lids that you could open at different times.”
Time got the better of Marc in this instance, but he “kept thinking about it over the next few years.” Eventually Marc set about building a prototype of the box he had in mind, had it patented, and launched Wine for a Wedding in May this year.
Message on a bottle
Marc solved the puzzle of how to make his gift idea more meaningful by allowing the boxes to be customised both inside and out.
“The range of things people put inside the boxes is amazing,” says Marc. “From funny and sarcastic notes to touching and heartfelt messages–and even “Guns N’ Roses song lyrics.”
In fact, there seem to be no limitations at all when it comes to having these wine boxes customised.
“I think because it is so customisable, people have a lot of flexibility in who they can gift it to. We have done photos, invitation monograms, and custom artwork. We also have artists on staff who can take your vision and bring it to life if you have something more elaborate in mind,” he says.
And Marc has seen his share of elaborate commissions. “One really neat thing a couple did was order three photo boxes for their wedding. One was an engagement picture of themselves, one was an original wedding photo of the bride’s parents, and the other the groom’s parents’ wedding photo. They had them on display at their wedding, then gave them to their parents as a gift with wine to commemorate the occasion.”
Some factors to consider
Although wine packages are available with a Wine in a Wedding purchase for products shipped domestically within the United States, it is not included for international orders. International customers may purchase a box and select their own local wine, but Marc advises to seek some professional assistance when it comes to buying an appropriate vintage to place in the boxes.
“Go to a local winery or wine shop and explain that you need some wine that will age well for a specified number of years. Wines can vary greatly by region, variety and vintner so it is best to get advice from someone who is familiar with what is available in your area,” Marc advises.
As to minimum order amount for international shipments, Marc says Wine for A Wedding has no minimum order required and suggests the most cost-effective shipping method as US airmail.
“It takes a little longer but can save some money. Sometimes–rarely but it happens–there are delays due to customs so the best advice is to plan ahead and allow plenty of time. If needed we can also ship Fed Ex and it can get there in a matter of days–if you have the budget for it.”
Thinking beyond the box
Another factor that helps Wine for A Wedding stand out from the crowd is its eco-friendly status. Marc says that instead of using foam or plastic packaging, the company only uses recycled paper packaging.
“We have also partnered with Trees for the Future reduce the impact of our products and help erase our carbon footprint. For every box we sell, a tree gets planted somewhere on the planet.”
The company also works to give back to the community on a social level. “Another thing we are proud of is our work with The Gifted Wedding. They are a charitable organisation that puts on weddings for couples who could not afford one otherwise. We make a special custom box that the volunteers at The Gifted Wedding give as a wedding gift to the couple.”
Contact Wine for a Wedding
Want a customised wine box? Visit the Wine for A Wedding website. Customers outside the US can email firstname.lastname@example.org with their shipping address and they will be happy to provide a shipping quote (usually between $35-$80 USD).